I am looking to buy a boat handrail but I am overwhelmed!

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by hippy, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. hippy
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: toronto

    hippy New Member

    I have recently been told that my boat is not equipped with enough handrails and the the kids aren't safe on board... Obviously this is something I am not happy about and want to sort as soon as I can. But I am a fair novice at boats etc. and am overwhelmed by the amount of products on the market! A simple ebay search returned 22 dubious results http://shop.ebay.com/?_from=R40&_trksid=p3907.m570.l1313&_nkw=boat+handrail&_sacat=See-All-Categories
    and what I thought would be a clearer search on Twenga came back with 14 of what look like the same thing to me...
    All this has resulted in even more confusion! All I am trying to do is keep my kids safe!! Why must they make it so hard!! Help is greatly appreciated, thank you
  2. mark775

    mark775 Guest

    Let's see a pic of where you want them. There is simply not enuf information on your first post.
  3. hippy
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    hippy New Member

    Oh god good point, I didn't even think about it, will have to borrow a camera at the weekend and get some photos up, in the meantime does it help to say that i want them up the outdoor stairs, about 1 metre long and then around the sides of the platform, probably 3 different sections of 2 metres... I'm sure there would have been some there orignally because there are little holes that look like they would've had handles screwed into them but the problem is i bought the boat second hand...
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Lets start with the simple stuff, such as the year, make and model of the boat. Next the age and general sailing experience of the crew members. Who informed you of the hand rail situation and what is their sailing experience.

    Everything is relative. If a neurosurgeon tells you that brain surgery is necessary, you might want to consider it, but if your uncle Vinny suggests the same, it's likely you can discount the recommendation. The same goes for grab rails, stanchions and other safety devices. As a rule the vast majority of boats could use more grab rails, but with some boats this becomes a practical problem after a bit.

    So, start from the beginning and we can work up the chain of command.
    1 person likes this.
  5. WickedGood

    WickedGood Guest

    Home Depot sells Stainless Steel Handrails for handicap bathtubs.

    They come in a varity of sizes.

    You can just pick up a few and screw them onto your boat wherever you would like.

    I was thinking of adding one on the transom over the dive platform to hang onto when climbing back into the boat with all my gear on.

    The chir would be good for the back deck while fishing. Easy to clean and hey if you gotta take a dump? There ya go.

  6. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Arlington, WA-USA

    Petros Senior Member

    Go to the marina and find examples of similar size and style boats and see what others are doing. Take notes and pictures. Than climb all over your boat, imagining where handles might be useful (imagining a pitching boat as well), you could even make some cardboard ones and tape them on to test their location.

    Than if you still are not sure, check back here. Also consider that too many rails and handles could also hinder moving about. So not only do you want to consider where to put them, also note on where you will not want them.

  7. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    I'd be a bit concerned about made-for-showers handrails (which I have installed too many of) would not be entirely stainless, but have some plain steel in the ends, or even, as I've seen in the past with other stuff, an inferior (400 series) stainless for the pipe.
    I believe one purchased from a plumbing supply (rather than Home Depot,e.g.) would be a better quality and likely not prone to corrosion at sea might be better, but bear in mind this stuff is only ever expected to deal with domestic water having little corrosive impact.
    An example of Home Depot plumbing stuff: I bought a chrome ring (used to hide gap between chrome pipe riser feeding toilet and floor) and three years later it is rusty. I had no idea the ring was PLAIN STEEL since it was chromed, and recently I discovered that the oval chrome valve handle is rusting too!
    In other words, beware cheap imitations---- on a boat your life depends on these items not corroding!
    It's possible to fashion your own stanchions from polished stainless pipe as supplied for exactly that use. Bending can be done with as simple a method as packing the pipe with fine sand, plugging the ends, and using a bigger pipe as a lever. I've done it and it works. The sand prevents kinking.
    Never comprimise when it comes to hand holds and rails of any kind. If you make up all the individual pieces you can hire a good welder to TIG weld everything together. You'll save a lot and you'll have exactly what you want.
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