Sling Lift

CNB

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I was at a boat show yesterday and purchased a Bennington 235R SHP.  I will use this boat in the sound at North Carolina's Kitty Hawk where the water at my boathouse can get quite low with a north wind.  The pontoon boat I am replacing sits on a lift made with 6" aluminum I-beams with bunks that support the boat under the deck.  I have a V-hull fiberglass boat at the same location that I keep on a sling lift. The sling makes a big difference when the water is low.  I asked the salesman that sold me the Bennington if I could lift the boat with a sling lift so I can give the boat 6" more water to float in.  He claims that Bennington's are lifted with sling lifts all the time and the construction of the boat is such that it would not be damaged.


I have read a number of posts across multiple sites that warn against using sling lifts as they can cause damage to the pontoons or damage to the structure of the boat because the sling will create a pinching pressure. I know I could modify my existing lift and use an enhanced sling setup that has multiple slings between I-beams that I would turn length wise. I have to figure out how to support the I-beams so they don't create inward pressure or rub against the pontoons.


1) Has anyone used a sling lift for multiple years with a tri-toon so you can share your real-world experience?


2) Has anyone seen Bennington's stance on this topic? Would this void the warranty on the boat?


3) Has anyone come up with a creative solution for lifting a pontoon boat with minimum impact on how much water you need to float it when the lift is all the way down in the sand?


Thanks,


New Bennington owner
 

SEMPERFI8387

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See this thread. 
 

SEMPERFI8387

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And from Team Bennington: 



We do not recommend strapping beneath the tubes because this can (and will) cause damage to the tubes. Dealers will sometimes use straps and spreader bars with a crane to lift boats off the truck, but this is at the professionallevel. 


The stern u-bolts on either side of the transom are strong enough for lifting, but we recently added "do not lift" directions to the bow eyes because several customers have tried to use them for lifting and are unable to do so properly.


Please look at alternatives to the strap method!


 
 

cwag911

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View attachment 368This is ours and can go to the bottom. But................. if there's no water, there's no water.
 

Michiman

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Congratulations and welcome to Club Bennington! Post some additional specifications and pictures if available. Good luck with your hoist situation.
 

mattb

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Yeah, there is always a way.  Can you get bigger winches that will hold more lift cable or chain?, all you have to do is drop it a little farther right, perhaps just some extensions to the current set up.  If the lifting frame hits the bottom and there is not enough water to float, you would be SOL, as they say.  I've never seen the draft spec listed any where, I've had mine beached in some pretty shallow water but never paid attention to how shallow.  Looking at Carl's set up i just thought of something, if you notch the cross beam to allow the bunk to be recessed into the beam, weld up a plate aluminum U into the pocket to reestablish some strength, you might gain a few inches, that may be all you need.  Also, you can make a small gusset to the underside that would probably be forced into the bottom.  Check out these guys I bet they can figure something out.   http://www.undergroundmachineworks.com/  
 
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joc0623

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I was at a boat show yesterday and purchased a Bennington 235R SHP. I will use this boat in the sound at North Carolina's Kitty Hawk where the water at my boathouse can get quite low with a north wind. The pontoon boat I am replacing sits on a lift made with 6" aluminum I-beams with bunks that support the boat under the deck. I have a V-hull fiberglass boat at the same location that I keep on a sling lift. The sling makes a big difference when the water is low. I asked the salesman that sold me the Bennington if I could lift the boat with a sling lift so I can give the boat 6" more water to float in. He claims that Bennington's are lifted with sling lifts all the time and the construction of the boat is such that it would not be damaged.


I have read a number of posts across multiple sites that warn against using sling lifts as they can cause damage to the pontoons or damage to the structure of the boat because the sling will create a pinching pressure. I know I could modify my existing lift and use an enhanced sling setup that has multiple slings between I-beams that I would turn length wise. I have to figure out how to support the I-beams so they don't create inward pressure or rub against the pontoons.


1) Has anyone used a sling lift for multiple years with a tri-toon so you can share your real-world experience?


2) Has anyone seen Bennington's stance on this topic? Would this void the warranty on the boat?


3) Has anyone come up with a creative solution for lifting a pontoon boat with minimum impact on how much water you need to float it when the lift is all the way down in the sand?


Thanks,


New Bennington owner
I know this is an old post but was wondering what solution you came up with for a pontoon lift in this shallow water environment.
 

Vikingstaff

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I know this is an old post but was wondering what solution you came up with for a pontoon lift in this shallow water environment.

I dock in shallow water at our cottage. The shallowness extends out nearly unchanged for about 230’ from shore. I had a cradle and pulley lift which was horrible in the shallow water later in the season when the lake level dropped further. Which was a shame as cradle lifts give the nicest support to your pontoons.

I resolved the problem by selling the lift (even though it was a very nice set up) and switching tot Sea Legs. For shallow water, I would never use a lift again. I would get Sea Legs every time if docking in shallow water, but wanting the boat lifted up and out of the water.
 

joc0623

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I dock in shallow water at our cottage. The shallowness extends out nearly unchanged for about 230’ from shore. I had a cradle and pulley lift which was horrible in the shallow water later in the season when the lake level dropped further. Which was a shame as cradle lifts give the nicest support to your pontoons.

I resolved the problem by selling the lift (even though it was a very nice set up) and switching tot Sea Legs. For shallow water, I would never use a lift again. I would get Sea Legs every time if docking in shallow water, but wanting the boat lifted up and out of the water.
Had to look up Sea Leg system. Nice alternative! Does it have any impact on how boat handles? Our boat has the underskin covering the cross beams. Wonder If could still attach this system?
 

Carlson80

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Had to look up Sea Leg system. Nice alternative! Does it have any impact on how boat handles? Our boat has the underskin covering the cross beams. Wonder If could still attach this system?
Mine has under skin and it is added on top of the skin. It does not effect how it handles noticeably since the weight is evenly distributed. However you will loose on average 4 mph on top end. I will not own a Bennington without sea legs.
 

Vikingstaff

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Had to look up Sea Leg system. Nice alternative! Does it have any impact on how boat handles? Our boat has the underskin covering the cross beams. Wonder If could still attach this system?

Carlson covered it in his reply. You’ll lose about 3-5 MPH at WOT. Otherwise, the boat handles pretty much the same due to even weight distribution. We have underskinning too. No issues there. They tuck them in between pontoons and mount in conjunction with the underskinning.

Here are some photos to give you an idea of how they are mounted with underskinning. These are from when we were getting them added to our boat in June 2019:

F73998DA-82EB-45EC-B7AF-625F3E2CBC33.jpeg1E463E3E-41D6-487B-BA4A-1CBA7FC2D672.jpeg24724B2F-1EA8-4BF7-AAC4-A83D2B843F95.jpegD47363C0-C6DC-4037-AC04-6D3EE0451DBF.jpegA3FC27A6-2909-4596-B5C8-40F5E1BF014D.jpeg29718EBA-A5AB-4CA1-AB6C-92BB1F362AB6.jpeg
 
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