Pontoon Construction

Designing, constructing, and living aboard a houseboat.

Pontoon Materials

Two local businesses donated the materials for this phase: 32 polyethylene barrels from a pharmaceutical company and 800 cubic feet of dock foam from a nearby marina.

Shaping the pontoons

The internal structure and external shaping of the pontoons was completed inside our warehouse space. Once the pontoons were prepared for a skim coat of concrete, they were moved to an outside construction site. Roughly 20 people were required to lift each pontoon.

Skim coating in concrete

A custom mix of Portland cement, sand, and plastic aggregate was used to for an abrasion resistant coating. Once completed, bottles, jacks, and pulleys were used to carefully rotate the pontoons for transportation.

Transport from Construction Area to Launch Site

A truck axle was used to move these one-ton pontoons from the initial construction area to the waterfront. Unused dock pilings were utilized to build a system that held pontoons in a square position.

Collecting Foam
Collecting Foam
Reused Barrels
Reused Barrels
Prepping the Barrels
Prepping the Barrels
Barrel Lid Attachments

Lag bolts used to fasten barrels lids.

Barrel Lid Attachments
Bolted Barrels
Bolted Barrels
Barrel Close Up
Barrel Close Up
Pontoon Structure
Pontoon Structure
Shaping the pontoons
Shaping the pontoons
Starting to wrap pontoons
Starting to wrap pontoons
Shaped Pontoons
Shaped Pontoons
Pontoons Wrapped
Pontoons Wrapped
Moving the pontoons
Moving the pontoons
Moving the pontoons

Roughly 20 people carried the pontoons outdoors for cement coating.

Moving the pontoons
Carrying the pontoons outside
Carrying the pontoons outside
Cementing Barrels
Cementing Barrels
Rotating the pontoons
Rotating the pontoons
Cemented Pontoons
Cemented Pontoons
Preparing pontoon for move
Preparing pontoon for move