Floating docks and swim platforms for private ponds and lakes can be economical to build and provide many years of enjoyment. For this lake in a private community in Winstead, CT the owner chose 3 blocks of unencapsulated expanded polystyrene for their floating dock. Each floatation block is 10” x 12” x 96” and will float 400 lbs.
Flotation Calculations: A cubic foot of EPS will float 60 lbs of weight. If 60 pounds is placed on top of a 12” x 12” x 12” block of foam, the top of the block will be at the water level. If a 30 pound weight is placed on top of that same block, it will be half in the water and half out of the water. This type of calculation is used to advise customers on the correct size and quantity of EPS or encapsulated floats to use for their project. Other things that are factored into the calculations are the weight of the dock itself and the number of people that will be using the dock at any time.
From the photos you can see that the EPS floatation blocks are about half way out of the water keeping the top of the dock 12” to 13” our of the water. This height is perfect for entering and exiting kayaks and canoes.
The unencapsulated EPS blocks are economical and are used primarily on private lakes. On waterways controlled by government agencies like the Corps of Engineers, the Tennessee Valley Authority or even community association, require that the floats be encapsulated. When encapsulated floats are required, Universal Foam Products offers two different types.