Shelter Design Guide
Find the right shelter for you.
Single sided shelters are ideal for channels with parallel piers, or when you only need single-sided coverage off a perpendicular pier. They are the least expensive and simplest to install. The double sided canopies provide coverage for watercraft on both sides of the pier, as well as sun-shading over the pier. Double-sided systems are more cost effective when covering multiple watercraft. Double-sided systems also turn your entire pier into a “screen porch” under a boat shelter providing more protection for you, your watercraft, and your pier.
It is important to take sun angles into consideration when positioning your dock and Mono-Port or Dual-Port. For most northern US locations, the sun will cast a shadow to the north side of a dock, providing more extended shade out farther from the pier. For optimum sun and rain protection, position the higher watercraft (pontoons, deck/ski/fishing boats) on the south side or west side of the pier, and the lower watercraft (wave-runners, kayaks, paddle boats) on the north or east side
Single or Double?
Look through our different shelter types, and select the shelter that’s best for you. If you’re looking to cover both a pontoon boat and a fishing boat you might be interested in a double-sided shelter (Dual, Wing, and Mega-Ports.) For one boat you may desire a single-sided shelter (Mono, Hemi, and Ramp-Ports.) If you’re planning on adding watercraft to your dock, or for visiting neighbors, consider going with a double-sided shelter. It will be filled before your know it.
Make your way to its product page. Don’t sweat if you change your mind….even after your selection and Design Deposit Payment, you can change your mind until you lock in the final order with us.
Step 1. Length.
Your length is usually determined by the length of your longest boat. If you’d like to cover a 21′ pontoon, you may go with an 18′ canopy if your seating area leaves room at the bow and stern, or you may want a 24′ if the sun hits at low angles, or winds bring driving rains. 21′ might be just right.
Step 2. Pick your color.
Forest Green, Royal Blue, and Charcoal are our standard colors. We make most of our tops in these colors to better control inventory. They flow nicely with the water and trees, so they are popular choices among those who wish their canopy to “melt away” visually. The Level 2 upgrades ($300) shown below are our next most popular colors, and can be made more quickly from material we stock. Level 3 colors ($500) are rarely, if ever, chosen, so we have to order the material by the full roll. Shelter Colors
Some customers like to match the canopy color to the upholstery of their boat, or to the house colors when seen from the water. Some are restricted in their choice by local homeowner’s regulations or zoning codes. We’ve never seen an extreme color like white or black, and rarely see light colors, as they show more dirt. Note that the only color that experiences fading over the years is red. The pigments used to make red don’t hold up as well in the sun.
Keep in mind that the colors on our website will appear differently on each of your screens. And even actual fabric from samples may arrive slightly different, as each roll we buy may come from different lots and fluctuate. If an exact color match is critical, please let us know after submitting the Preliminary Order and we’ll work through it with you.
Step 3. Tell us about your dock.
Understanding your dock is critical for us to help you select the correct brackets. The manufacturer, size, material? Floating or fixed? Seasonal or year round? Solid or shaky? Our lakebed anchors work wonders for shoring up an aging pier. In fact, if the pier lacks strength to attach our canopy, we can BYPASS the pier and mount directly into the lakebed. You can see all of our brackets under the Bracketing tab in the top menu, and can often tell us what type you might need. Don’t worry; we’ll confirm prior to completing your order and make sure the correct support system is included.
Step 4. Tell us about your lake.
Name of lake helps us locate it. How deep is it at your shore, and how deep at the end of the pier? Muddy bottom or rocky? How much does the water level raise or lower on a daily/weekly/monthly/yearly basis? Included what information you can to insure you have the best product for your needs.
Step 5. Tell us your watercraft information.
Make, model, manufacturer, year, length and width of each watercraft you wish to cover. Is there a pulpit on the front and rear where the seating ends, that does not need covering? Any special features like ski towers we should accommodate?
Step 6. Installation option.
Our systems have been designed to install quickly, with minimal tools. We like to think of ourselves as the IKEA of the waterfront; modular pieces that install simply from very clear visual instructions. And we’re always available to help, day or night. If you don’t have time or desire, no worries; we offer “white glove” installation straight from our factory and dealer locations all around the US and Canada.
Step 7. Side door(s) (for Mono-Ports and Slip-Ports only).
All our Mono-Ports, Slip-Ports, or Ramp-Ports come with front and rear door for both wind protection and easy access. If you board your boat from the side, we offer optional door kits for any of the 3′ bays (except the first and last.) Don’t know your exact door boarding location? Don’t worry; the doors can be installed right on the pier, with your boat there for guidance.