Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT DOCK SYTEMS DO WE BUILD?
American Muscle Docks offers floating boat dock systems in wood, steel channel, steel truss, and aluminum. Price depends on the type of material used to build the dock, with wood being the least expensive and aluminum being the most expensive. We also manufacture metal dock hardware in which you can buy parts and pieces and build your own dock.


CAN YOU USE METAL DOCKS IN SALT WATER?
Yes, the objective of a floating dock is to keep the dock's frame and decking above the water. Though water may splash onto the metal, the galvanized metal coating will hold up for many years. Wood is preferred in extreme salt water conditions.


ARE YOUR FLOATS EMPTY?
All our floats use a 100% Virgin prime grade polyethylene shell and are filled with a molded-in-place 100% Virgin 1pcf expanded polystyrene. They meet and exceed all applicable US Coast Guard regulations and will provide the end user with long lasting, trouble free service.


HOW MUCH FLOATATION DO I NEED?
This depends on a couple of factors such as the material used to construct the dock, intended use of the dock, and desired height off of the water. The crew at American Muscle Docks can help to sort out the solutions to the issues impacting your dock project. Give us a call for assistance, but if you want to work through a general dock scenario – we offer the following:

Should you be building a general dock for the use of a few people, we aim for about 30 lbs. per square foot to calculate flotation needed for a dock using a wood frame and wood decking. A marina expecting more than a few people needs about 40 lbs. per square foot. Rarely will you get the exact poundage, but you should strive to obtain as close to these benchmarks as possible.

Once you have the amount of flotation needed for the design phase, you then choose the float you want to use. We offer many options, but, generally speaking, the 12” and 16” deep floats tend to make a more stable dock. For our example, we will be building an 8’ x 20’ dock section. The amount of square feet of dock is first determined by multiplying 8’ x 20’ = 160 square feet. We then calculate 30 pounds of flotation per square feet and multiply 30 x 160 = 4800 pounds of flotation needed to satisfy the design criteria.

The next step is to determine the size float you would like to use. For this example, we will use a 4’ x 8’ x 12” float. This float has a supporting weight of 1680 lbs. per float. Three of these floats will provide 5040 lbs. of flotation for this dock. If we divide the total flotation by the square footage of the dock (5040 divided by 160) we find that our choice of float delivers 31.5 lbs. of flotation per square foot. When using these large floats, that 1.5 lbs. per square foot difference is almost as close as you can obtain and would be acceptable.


WHAT IS YOUR WARRANTY?
Our steel is warranted for one year, and we will replace the part if found to be defective. All metal is galvanized, which is the process of applying a protective zinc coating to steel or iron, in order to prevent rusting.

We use Eagle Floats that include an industry leading 15-year warranty. Unlike other float manufacturers that pro-rate the floats from the date of purchase, our floats are 100% for the first ten years. Other manufacturer warranties are extended when purchased through AM Docks.

WHO DO WE SELL TO?
We sell to retail customers, contractors, and state entities. Contractors and state entities must provide proof of current business license and necessary documentation to obtain special pricing.


WHAT SIZE LUMBER SHOULD I USE?
American Muscle Docks hardware can accommodate a minimum of 2” x 6” to 3” x 12” nominal lumber. We can make special hardware for lumber exceeding the above sizes. Typically, 2” x 8” is the most commonly used lumber for most dock applications. Water conditions may demand larger lumber or even doubling the lumber to gain strength.


HOW AND WHERE DO WE SHIP YOUR PRODUCTS?
AMD ships parts and pieces, as well as complete dock systems, worldwide. We don't like paying shipping costs either, so we make a continued effort to give our customers the lowest shipping rate possible. Customers ordering complete dock systems need to understand the weight and size associated with most built docks, as well as being able to have a way of unloading the docks other than by hand.


WHAT HARDWARE DO YOU OFFER?

Wood Dock and Steel Truss.

We manufacture three grades of wood dock hardware:

1. Residential - Residential grade wood dock hardware uses 1-1/2” thick lumber and can be used with small boats (less than 18 feet) and areas that are protected. It is made with 3/16” x 5” steel. This hardware uses 3/8” carriage bolts. Inside corners use a mitered gusset for strength, male corners use a 3/4” connecting tab, and female corners use two 1/2” tabs.

2. Standard - Standard hardware is made with 1/4” x 5” steel and wood as thick as 3” can be used. Wood docks that are in moderately rough areas and have medium size boats should use this hardware. This hardware uses 1/2” carriage bolts. Inside corners use a mitered gusset for strength, male corners use a 3/4” connecting tab, and female corners use two 1/2” tabs.

3. Heavy Duty – Our heavy-duty hardware is made with 1/4” x 5” steel. Wood as thick as 3” can be used. Wood docks that are in rough areas and have larger size boats should use this hardware. This hardware uses 1/2” carriage bolts. Inside corners use a mitered gusset for strength, male corners use two 3/4” connecting tabs, and female corners use three 1/2” tabs.

Steel Truss Hardware is the same quality as our standard Wood Dock Hardware with the exception of a 12” plate. Made of 1/4” steel with 3/4” male tabs and 1/2” female tabs.


CAN WE PICK UP OUR ORDER?
Yes, Monday through Friday (except holidays). Picking up larger orders saves greatly on shipping costs, and our office showroom allows you to view our many dock options and accessories first hand. We encourage customers picking up larger orders to call ahead of time to ensure the product is in stock and to expedite your service.