Boat Stands

Whether you are new to boat ownership or an experienced veteran, you need boat stands if you want to store your vessel safely on land. » Read More

What Are Boat Stands?

Boat stands, also known as poppets or jack stands, are used while your vessel is on land to provide support for the starboard and port sides of the boat. They are normally used in conjunction with keel stands or keel blocks that take most of the boat’s weight. Most stands have three to four legs and a strut at the center with a threaded rod and pad at the top.

Common Uses for Boat Stands?

Boat stands are often used when working on or storing your boat for extended periods of time. Common examples include:

Why Type of Stands Should You Get?

While you may think the obvious option would be to choose boat stands based on the vessel type you own, this is not always the best decision. For instance, if you have a powerboat that has a deep V-shaped bow, you would be best using motorboat stands for the stern, but sailboat stands that are angled for the bow. There are also specific stands for powerboats and pontoon boats. In addition to these options, you can explore using boat dollys and boat lift systems. Boat lift equipment allows you to 

Therefore, the better way to make the right choice is by considering the angle that is formed between the boat’s hull and the central strut of the stand. Ideally, the threaded rod on the stand should slot into the center strut at an angle of approximately 90-degrees to the hull.

Boat Lifts and Dollys 

Boat lifts are commonly used when looking to store a boat off of its trailer. Boat lift systems consist of multiple legs and span the bottom of the entire hull, making them a good match for smaller boats or those that don't have a very flared hull. 

Boat dollys are perfect when you need to work on your boat but keep it semi-mobile. Since they are supported by wheels and designed to be mobile, they are best for smaller crafts in general. Pontoon boats are also a good fit for boat dollys, as the shape of the dolly can fit the curve of the pontoons. With multiple heights, available dollys are a great choice when dry storing and maintaining your pontoon boat!

How Many  Stands Do You Need?

As you would imagine, it depends on the type of boat you have. If you own a powerboat, it is generally recommended that you use at least four stands, two pairs. If, though, your powerboat has a greater length than 20-feet, you should always use an additional set of boat stands for each extra 10-feet. 

If you have sailboats, you should use five boat stands, one that has a v-shaped head to rest the bow on and at least four more with swivel tops. 

How Do You Use Boat Stands Properly?

To use your stands properly, they need to be securely positioned on flat, preferably firm ground. If you need to place stands on softer ground, you need to make sure the dunnage is under the stand base.

Supports For Starboard/Port Sides

Choose a place to store your boat where there is stable, hard ground to ensure the legs and keel blocks do not sink. The tops of the stand rods should have a minimum amount of thread exposed with the rod placed at an angle as close to perpendicular to the hull as you can. To make sure this is possible, the rear legs should be placed parallel to the waterline. They Should be placed square with the hull, with the top of the legs under the flat of the hull to offer stability.

Stands for Stern and/or Bow

The majority of sailboats need supports with vee tops to stop the vessel’s bow from dropping forward. There is only one real exception to this rule – if you have a full keel sailboat that does not have a heavy bow. If the stern has an excessive overhang, you will need two extra stands starboard and port.

Boat Stand Safety Chains

If you are using safety chains with sailboats, supports are placed in a position where the top of the stand is snug against the hull. 3/16-inch safety chains are placed at the special notch of those supports with the chain passed athwartship either under, after, or before the keel and to the starboard. The starboard supports are placed in their approximate position without being too snug against the hull, then you pull the chain tightly and place it into the starboard stands chain notch. Once it is snug in there; you can pull the starboard boat stands outboard until the chain is tight. You then tighten the stands' top, being sure that the rear legs run parallel to the boat’s hull. Using more safety chains, repeat this process for all sides to stop the boat stands from just sliding up the hull of the boat. 

Keel Blocking Boat Stands

It is recommended that you use at least 2 blocking piles on stable and firm ground to take the weight of the boat. Each pile of blocking should have three blocks. This stops the blocks from sinking.

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Commonly Asked Questions about Boat Stands 

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