Boat Shows This Weekend | March 28th – 30th

Boat Shows This WeekendNow that it’s officially Springtime, you know that warm weather is just around the corner, the snow is melting, the ice on the lake is getting darker, and you are seriously itching to get out on the water for some summer relaxation. You won’t find a better place to take in all that the outdoors, fishing, boating, dock and lift, and lake cabin/home improvement industries has to offer than at a boat or sport show. You know exactly what you need to get done on that first trip to the cabin this year, you also know exactly what kind of accessories you want to add to your boat to make it fish ready this year, perhaps you need a new pontoon, or maybe you’re exploring your options to upgrade your old wooden dock to a new light-weight aluminum dock system with maintenance free decking. The best place to find all of this, and spend some time with the family this weekend is at your nearest boat, sport, or travel show. But you’ll need to hurry, the season for planning and exploring by visiting a boat show is nearly over, because in just a couple of weeks, it’ll be the season for doing…all the things you love to do at the lake.

To help you find a show this weekend, below is a list of shows where you can find a smart, professional ShoreMaster dealer that can help you select one of ShoreMaster’s new pontoon lifts for your new pontoon, or, they can help you find the right ShoreMaster dock system, while helping you pick from ShoreMaster’s eight decking options (that’s more decking options than you’ll find anywhere else)!

Northwest Sportshow

About The Show:

Whether you’re an avid outdoorsman or are just looking for a way to escape winter for the day, the Progressive® Insurance Northwest Sportshow is YOUR show! This annual 5-day event turns the Minneapolis Convention Center into a one-stop marketplace for outdoor fun— the best place to see and buy everything you need for your outdoor adventures! See and board hundreds of boats and explore the latest model RVs. Find gear and accessories for every outdoor activity imaginable, from boating, fishing and hunting to RVing, camping and more. Visit outfitters and resorts to plan your next trip or book a vacation, too. There’s really no better place to shop, compare and save!


ShoreMaster Dealers Exhibiting:

Marine Dock and LiftMarine Dock & Lift

410 Grand Ave (Hwy 8)
P.O. Box 308
Center City MN 55012

P: 651-257-4265
F: 651-257-4149

Booth: 1702B


LaCanne’s Marine, Inc.

19860 Roberds Lake Blvd.
Faribault MN 55021

P: (507) 334-6415
F: (507) 334-3371

Booth: 2001
Booth: 2101B
Booth: 103A
Booth: 28


The Spring Cottage Life Show

About The Show:

Meet more than 500 exhibitors showing boats, docks, builders, contractors, innovative building products, green solutions, decor and style, arts and crafts, food and entertaining, water toys and more.


ATL Distributing Dealer’s Exhibiting ShoreMaster Products

RDR Marine

Serving Lake Simcoe, Simcoe County, and surrounding cottage country areas.

CALL US: 705-487-5995ATL Spring Cottage Booth



Huntsville Marine

373 Highway 60 East
Huntsville, ON P1H 1B5

Phone: 888-295-0972


Anstruther Lake Marina

23 Fire Route 63, ON, Canada

Phone: 1-705-656-4783


Dalrymple Docks

3516 Kirkfield Rd,

Kawartha Lakes, ON L0K 1W0



The Great Upstate Boat Show

About The Show:

Great Upstate NY ShowSome of the best memories are created on the water and if you’ve been thinking about buying a boat or trading up to a newer model, you don’t want to miss the 9th Annual Great Upstate Boat Show at Adirondack Sports Complex in Queensbury – it’s the 6 best days of the year to SAVE!

The leading dealers and lifestyle boating vendors throughout the Northeast will be showcasing the latest boats and boating lifestyle accessories for you to check out, all in one convenient location.


ShoreMaster Dealers Exhibiting:

Loon Lake Marina

(518) 494-3410

47 Marina Road

Chestertown, NY 12817


Schroon Lake Marina

(518) 532-7884

31 Marina Road

Schroon Lake , NY 12870


Lake Region Boat and RV Show

Burdick Arena

North End of College Drive

Devils lake, ND 58301

See BOATS, RV’S, and Lawn and garden equipment all in one location this weekend in Devil’s Lake, ND.

ShoreMaster Dealers Exhibiting:

Blakes MarineBlakes Marine Devils Lake Show

434 Hwy 2 West
Devils Lake, ND 5830

W: 701-662-6655
F: 701-662-3020


Variations of The Word Dock by State / Region

Variations of The Word Dock by State

Just for fun we thought we would share with you an interesting and perhaps slightly tongue-in-cheek infographic that shows the variations of the word dock by state or region. While it seems a dock is simply called a dock in much of the country, how about our friends on the Kentucky / Tennessee boarder, no doubt on the shores of Dale Hollow Lake, referring to a dock as “that thing where I park my houseboat”?


Premium Dock and Lift Service Does Exist, You Just Need A ShoreMaster Dealer

Some might argue that premium service is hard to find in the dock and lift industry. To that, we say that it’s likely you haven’t visited an authorized ShoreMaster dealer yet.

What Drives A ShoreMaster Dealer To Success?

There’s an underlying reason that ShoreMaster dealers are known to be among the best in the dock and lift industry. The common thread among every authorized ShoreMaster dealer is the resolute dedication to provide only the highest quality dock and lift products from a well known and trusted brand that also offers superior customer service. This common thread creates the fabric of the ShoreMaster Dealer network. It’s what drive many of our dealers to success and it’s also what they seek in a dock and lift manufacturer.

Prososki All Care Front LawnA great example of this dedication to high quality products and superior customer service is award-winning ShoreMaster dealer Prososki All Care Service LLC, located in Pine River, MN. Prososki All Care delivers an unmatched, premium customer experience, and has since opening in 2005.

Why ShoreMaster?


RS4 IPE Decking Black Canopy 4After making the decision to provide only the highest quality docks and boat lifts, and superior customer service, Prososki All Care Service choose ShoreMaster because that’s exactly what ShoreMaster provides to it’s dealers.

Visit Prososki All Care online at

If you’ve considered adding an industry leading waterfront equipment brand to your business you can get more information by visiting our Become A Dealer Page Online.

Why Premium Boat Dealers Should Add ShoreMaster Docks and Lifts to Spur Dealership Growth

Lake Region Repair, Inc. National Capital Boat ShowA logical consideration for growth-minded marine dealerships looking to grow their revenue or expand their business is deciding whether or not to add another boat brand to their existing product mix. The decision to add a new boat brand to the existing product mix is one that marine dealerships do not take lightly; considerations need to be made at every level of the decision process from space requirements; both on the lot and in the show room, to marketing impact, sales training, advertising, promotions, to market perception, accounting integration and more. Adding another boat brand may have some merit for a marine dealership that is currently offering top-of-the-line boat brands, yet feels they might be missing out on some of the mid-level, or entry level recreational boating customers that their competitors are currently capturing. However, the biggest difficulty that these high quality boat dealerships need to overcome is that of perception. When a market recognized premium marine dealership makes the decision to take on an entry-level boat brand, what happens to that dealership’s premium status in the eyes of their boating customers and prospects? The answer is purely speculation, and will vary from dealership to dealership. One way that some premium marine dealerships have been able to increase dealership sales without diluting sales of their existing boat brands, and without risking their dealership’s premium status in the eyes of their respective geographic markets, is by adding a premium side-line brand that is closely associated with recreational boating, but not a direct part of it. ShoreMaster’s premium line of docks and boat lifts, and their related accessories fit this persona nicely. It’s no secret that ShoreMaster offers the best business opportunity in the marine industry by providing it’s dealers with access to the most comprehensive floor plan arrangement, the best customer service, training, and some of the highest quality products in the dock and lift industry.

ShoreMaster Offers Floor Plan Financing For Docks and Boat Lifts

“ShoreMaster essentially invented the floor plan program for the waterfront equipment industry back in 1985”

The best boat and marine dealerships are well versed in how dealer floor plan programs can work to help grow their business by ensuring that the dealership always has the right products in stock, and on the show floor at the right time. When managed properly, floor plan programs help marine dealerships manage their cash flow and grow their sales. ShoreMaster essentially invented the floor plan program for the waterfront equipment industry back in 1985, and today ShoreMaster continues to offer extremely competitive, and perhaps the only floor plan programs in the industry. ShoreMaster’s floor plan programs help our dealers grow their business, manage their cash flow, and make it extremely easy to have the right product mix on the showroom floor at the right time. ShoreMaster offers multiple discount structures and payment terms so that dealers can match their business needs with the right ShoreMaster dealer program.

ShoreMaster Customer Service Is Regarded As Industry Best

“Providing a premium experience for our dealers and consumers is critical to the success of ShoreMaster and its dealer network and is one of the reasons that we invest so heavily in both the human and technological aspects of customer service.”

To some dock and lift manufacturers, an investment in customer service means adding a part-time, temporary employee for a couple of months, in-season, to handle the increased call volume of their potentially unsatisfied customers. ShoreMaster, on the other hand, has consistently invested in both the human aspect, and the technological aspects of customer service through the retention of long-time employees in customer service, sales, and operations, and by implementing technological upgrades in telephony, software, and business intelligence. ShoreMaster’s investments in the human aspects of customer service mean that ShoreMaster’s dealers benefit from close contact with industry veterans within ShoreMaster’s call center. ShoreMaster’s investments in the technological aspects of customer service now allow a ShoreMaster Customer Service Agent to literally bring together a consumer prospect, and a local dealer to find the best ShoreMaster product for the consumer’s needs. This simple, yet sophisticated process improves the consumer experience with the ShoreMaster brand, and leads to more sales for ShoreMaster’s dealers. Not many dock and lift manufacturers have the capability, or the desire to be such an integral part of their dealer network’s success as ShoreMaster does. ShoreMaster is also in the process of further expanding its call center hours to further bolster services to its nationwide dealer network, and truly set the customer service expectations for the rest of the waterfront equipment industry. ShoreMaster’s expanded call center hours, ensure that a veteran call center staff member is available to assist our dealers from 7am to 6pm central time, Monday through Friday, and from 8am to 3pm on Saturdays, during the busy months of spring and summer. The additional Saturday coverage is to ensure that ShoreMaster dealers have access to a ShoreMaster representative on Saturday’s; a day in which nearly every ShoreMaster dealer remains open during the busy summer months. Providing a premium experience for our dealers and consumers is critical to the success of ShoreMaster and its dealer network and is one of the reasons that we invest so heavily in both the human and technological aspects of customer service. It’s no coincidence that customer service scores are incredibly high across all of the top 100 Marine Dealerships year after year, marine customers expect a high level of customer service from premium dealerships, and ShoreMaster fits that expectation very well. The addition of the ShoreMaster brand, and the high level of customer service that ShoreMaster provides to its dealers and it’s end users make ShoreMaster a perfect fit for premium marine dealerships looking to improve their bottom line and grow their business without sacrificing a high level of service by partnering with a dock and lift company other than ShoreMaster.

ShoreMaster Provides High Level Dealer Training

ShoreMaster offers the highest level of training in the waterfront equipment industry. Every year, ShoreMaster brings its dealers together for a comprehensive ShoreMaster University (or SMU for short) for an unparalleled level of training on everything from the best dock and lift sales practices, to distributor prospecting methods, to side-by-side competitive product comparisons, dealer awards, factory tours, and more. ShoreMaster is one of very few dock and lift companies that invest so heavily in the success of its dealer network. Then again, there are very few dock and lift companies that are as loyal to their dealer network as ShoreMaster. ShoreMaster helps to grow each dealer and distributor in its dealer network by offering unmatched, relevant and insightful training that positions each dealer for growth in the areas that they serve.

ShoreMaster Offers Only The Highest Quality Products

“Premium boat dealerships do not need to compromise on the positioning of their own brand to add revenue through the sales of docks, boat lifts”

ShoreMaster Vertical LiftIf there is one thing that most dock and lift manufacturers are not known for, it is premium product positioning. This is primarily due to the fact that most dock and lift manufacturers are mom-and pop type outfits that operate literally out of their garage or shop selling products directly to consumers and dealers, at the same time, while managing a temporary and revolving door workforce, with little-to-no sales, marketing, or customer service capabilities. ShoreMaster was founded on the principles of high-quality products and services, and ShoreMaster carries those principles today, and into the future. The addition of the ShoreMaster brand, and the high quality products that ShoreMaster provides to its dealers mean that premium boat dealerships do not need to compromise on the positioning of their own brand to add revenue through the sales of docks, boat lifts, and their related accessories.

 ShoreMaster Sales Team Is Professional and Consultative

ShoreMaster’s sales team is prepared to help you manage your dealership’s growth potential by sitting down with you to understand your business, your customers, your market, and your personal goals in both the short-term and the long-term. No other dock and lift manufacturer provides such quick and easy access to their customer service and sales team than ShoreMaster. Take one look at any other dock and lift brand and compare the difference in the accessibility of their sales and customer service team, and you’ll quickly see the ShoreMaster difference. We make it incredibly easy for you to find and contact our sales and customer service representatives, and they’ll make it easy for you to schedule an appointment with them so they can find out what your business is all about. If you determine that ShoreMaster fits within your dealership’s growth plans, we make it incredibly easy to understand our dealer and distributor programs, co-op marketing plans, place your first order, and more. Then, we’ll continue to follow up with you as you gain confidence and grow your business. In short, the ShoreMaster process that steps you through becoming a dealer is more informative and exploratory as you move through each step, and you’ll never feel rushed or pushed into becoming a dealer. We seek out partnerships that will be mutually beneficial in the long-term and we value quality over quantity, because our customers expect it from us. You’ll appreciate our consultative approach to selling as your business begins to grow and expand, and you’ll really like our industry best approach to dealer programs, customer service, training, and quality products.

Please feel free to schedule an appointment at any time with one of our Territory Sales Managers if you would like more information on whether or not your market, or your business, could benefit from the growth potential of becoming a ShoreMaster dealer or distributor. You can also fill out our contact form on the Become A ShoreMaster Dealer page.



Boat Shows This Weekend…

Boat Shows This WeekendNow is the time to get out to a boat show to see, feel, and touch all of those products you’ve been researching over the last few months. For just a few bucks, and a couple of hours of your time, you get the opportunity to find out if everything you’ve read about and looked at while researching your dream dock, boat lift, or new boat matches up to the in-person experience.

Join Marlon Recreational Products, and their dealers at The 2014 Edmonton Boat & Sportsmen’s show if your near Edmonton and are in the market for docks, boat lifts, boats, or people watching. You’ll have a great time and are guaranteed to find a great deal at the show!

If you’re in the Northeast United States, visit our friends at Lakeview Marine at the 2014 Worcester Boat Show. Lakeview Marine now offers ShoreMaster dock, boat lifts and accessories, as well as Bennington Pontoons, Larson Boats, and more. You are guaranteed a good time!

Show / Event ShoreMaster Dealer
Edmonton Boat & Sportsmen’s Show Marlon Recreational Products
2014 Worcester Boat Show Lakeview Marine

Boat lifts and docks seem to be pretty popular at the boat shows this year, and we would like to offer you a couple of articles to help you as you head out to the shows to see them firsthand.

Boat Lifts:

Make Sure You Aren’t Forced Into “Overfeaturizing” Your New Boat Lift 


Your Complete Guide To Decking Choices

1978 Glastron GT-150 Boat Restoration by ShoreMaster’s Very Own Mark Cory

Companies alone, do not have passion. The people who work at companies do. Mark Cory is a classic example of what drives ShoreMaster to greatness. Mark’s passion for anything water related is an underlying theme that guides him as he helps ShoreMaster build the best docks and boat lifts available to waterfront property owners, and helps ShoreMaster’s nationwide dealer network realize the full business potential that ShoreMaster offers.

Mark CoryAside from raising his family, taking his daughters to early morning skating practice, barefoot waterskiing, snowmobiling, helping hundreds of ShoreMaster dealers grow their business, and helping thousand of ShoreMaster dock and lift owners by answering their waterfront equipment questions and connecting them with their local ShoreMaster dealer, Mark is also passionate about recreational boating. He has a special affinity for Mastercraft Boats, and restoring 1970’s Glastron boats. The video below, was created by Mark to show his restoration of a 1978 Glastron GT-150. The video is found on Mark Cory’s Youtube Channel and while it shows images of the restoration of a 1978 Glastron, we like to think it also shows a small example of the passion that makes ShoreMaster such a great company.

Mark is one example, out of many, of the passionate people who live, work, and play the ShoreMaster Way. When it comes to offering the best business opportunity in the waterfront equipment industry, it helps to have people that are passionate about the industry on your team.

1978 Glastron GT-150 Restoration by Mark Cory:

Cabin Fever? Head Out To A Boat Show This Weekend!


Boat Shows This Weekend

Step away from your shovel, put down your mittens, pack up the family, and head out to a boat show this weekend! Believe it or not, spring is just a few short weeks away, and we know you’re ready to to start enjoying your time on the water, if only we could break the icy grip of winter that has enveloped just about every region of the United States and Canada.

If you simply can’t take it any longer, head out to a boat show this weekend to prepare your mind and make your plans for the awesomeness that summer brings! Whether you are considering purchasing a new boat, planning a summer vacation, need a new dock or boat lift, or if you simply want to get out of the house this weekend, you can’t go wrong with a boat show.  Below are a few of the many shows happening this weekend, and as an added bonus, we know you’ll be able to find ShoreMaster products at the shows listed below.

Show / Event

ShoreMaster Dealer

Fargo Sports Show Lake Area Docks & Lifts
Saskatoon Boat Show Martin Motor Sports Marine
Winnipeg Cottage Show Marlon Recreational Products
Downtown Knoxville Boat Show Norris Docks
Minot Sports Show ABC Boat Docks
National Capital Boat Show Lake Region Repair, Inc.
Aitkin Chamber Show Stevos Lawn & Sod -Aitkin, MN

Aitkin Docks – Aitkin, MN

A Few Things You Should Know about Adjustable Leveling Legs for Boat Lifts

Adjustable Boat Lift Screw LegsYou may not need them. That’s right, unless your water depth continuously fluctuates throughout your boating season you probably don’t need adjustable leveling legs for your boat lift. Wouldn’t it be a shame to pay for a boat lift that incorporates adjustable leveling legs into the boat lift design, when you don’t have a need for them? Some boat lift manufacturers are incorporating adjustable leveling legs into their boat lift design which forces customers to pay for them, even when they don’t have a need for them.

By incorporating adjustable leveling legs into every boat lift, these manufacturers are also adding to the boat lift owners’ maintenance burden, all for a boat lift accessory that may not be required by the consumer. ShoreMaster offers add-on adjustable leveling legs for their boat lifts, so ShoreMaster boat lift customers aren’t required to pay for, or maintain an accessory that they may not need, and, ShoreMaster’s adjustable leveling legs can be added onto existing ShoreMaster boat lifts, that a win for current and future boat lift customers.

You may not need them as much as you think you will. Even if your lakeshore experiences moderate water depth fluctuation throughout your boating season, you will likely find that you don’t need adjustable leveling legs as much as you think you do. For instance; if your water depth slowly drops by about 12 to 18” over the course of a boating season, you may be able to accommodate for the drop in your lakeshore’s water depth, by simply changing where you position your rack beam for entry and exit. For instance; if your starting water depth is anywhere near 4’, and you are using a vertical boat lift, you will likely be able to overcome an in-season water drop of about 12” simply by lowering your boat lift’s rack (not the entire lift) an additional 12” to allow entry and exit of your boat lift. It’s that simple, there may be no need to adjust the overall height of your boat lift at all. And unless your water depth is different from season to season, you probably will not need to adjust your lift legs after your first install. Why pay for something that will require more maintenance year after year if you really don’t need it?

They are not as adjustable as you might think. Adjustable Leveling Legs for boat lifts provide some conveniences that work well for a few boat lift owners, however it is important to note that consumers should always make sure that the amount of travel in any leg leveling system offered by their boat lift manufacturer is adequate for their seasonal water depth fluctuation. After all, built in boat lift leveling legs will do you no good if they don’t provide an adequate amount of travel.

Boat Lift AccessoriesThe Case for Add-On Boat Lift Accessories

It’s pretty difficult to improve on the time-tested design of a boat lift like ShoreMaster’s vertical DVS boat lift. That’s because a boat lift’s design should be simple, extremely durable, and should not burden its owner with constant maintenance and tightening of bolts just to keep it together, and working properly. The evolution of a boat lift should be in its “add-on” accessories designed to meet the needs of specific customers. When you incorporate a boat lift accessory like adjustable leveling legs, into the design of the boat lift, you force the accessory on customers that may not need it, and reduce the boat lift’s overall simplicity.

Along with this reduction in boat lift simplicity comes more potential for problems, more need for maintenance, and less value for the customer. Unless your innovation is something that benefits all of your customers, you are just forcing them to pay for things they will never use.

With ShoreMaster’s Adjustable Boat Lift Screw Legs, you can always add an adjustable leg leveling system as you need it. This way, ShoreMaster ensures that you are not spending your money on a boat lift accessory that you don’t need, and wasting your time maintaining an accessory that you didn’t require in the first place. 

Your Complete Guide to Dock Decking Choices

ShoreMaster Cedar Decking Option

There is no element on any dock system that connects more closely to the dock user than the decking. And most important to someone purchasing a new dock, or upgrading an existing dock, is the amount of decking choices available to them. 

“Take Away The Decking, And The Dock Becomes Useless”

The decking on any dock system is the first thing that the dock user will see as they walk toward the dock, it is the first thing they will touch as they step onto the dock, and it is the first thing that creates a feeling of safety and stability as they continue their walk on the dock. All of these connections resonate deeply in the mind of the dock owner to create a perception of their dock which is categorized around the decking choice they have made. Take away the decking, and the dock becomes useless to the dock owner, a framework of aluminum gussets and welds, and a mere shell of its former existence. Sure, the dock frames, legs, or flotation are the foundation of any dock system, but without the decking they are simply potential, unrealized. If the dock frame and its frame components are the skeleton of the dock system, the decking is its soul. To fully realize the potential of any dock system, it needs the perfect decking.

Ask any dock owner to describe their dock and they will likely tell you two things, what style the dock is, and what kind of decking it has. A common response to this question is something along the lines of “I have a wheel-in style dock with cedar decking.” In some cases, a passionate dock owner will give you the brand name as well. The point here is that the decking on any dock is so highly regarded by dock owners, that it is used as key descriptor when asked to describe their dock system.

“Not All Dock Manufacturers Have As Many Decking Choices As ShoreMaster”

When it comes to upgrading an existing dock system, or purchasing a new one, there is no more important choice to the dock owner than the decking. When it comes to dock decking, more choices are definitely better than fewer. We all know that docks are used for varying reasons, as well as some common ones such as providing access to a boat or pontoon, or fishing and swimming. Docks are also used for work, special events, and relaxation. Not all dock decking is created equal, and not all dock manufacturers have as many decking choices as ShoreMaster. 

ShoreMaster is an Industry Leader in Dock Decking Choices and Quality

Long ago, ShoreMaster realized that not all dock decking is created equal depending on how you intend to use your dock. That’s why today, ShoreMaster offers the widest range of decking choices among all dock manufacturers in the industry, and ShoreMaster decking is regarded one of the highest quality decking options available today.

So How Do Dock Owners Choose The Right Decking?

ShoreMaster offers so many decking choices that it can be hard for consumers to grasp which option best fits their needs. Other dock manufacturers are much more limited in their decking options, which might seem like a blessing to a dealer who wants to limit their on-hand inventory, but limited decking choices really affect a dock users ability to truly get the best owner experience available in the industry. As a consumer, you don’t have to settle for what a dealer has on hand, or what they have access to from a dock manufacturer other than ShoreMaster. Remember, ShoreMaster dealers have access to the most decking choices anywhere, which is a major positive for dock owners looking to upgrade an existing dock system or purchase a new one. Even if your ShoreMaster dealer does not have your ShoreMaster decking choice in stock, they have access to it, and can likely get it in a very reasonable time frame as a part of ShoreMaster’s nationwide network of authorized dealers.

“Dock decking can represent anywhere between 25% to 50% of the total cost of a dock system”

While initial cost is obviously an important aspect when choosing decking for a dock system,  you might be surprised to discover that important factors such as how you will use your dock, how much maintenance are you willing to do yourself versus hire out, and how long you expect your decking to last all have major implications on the total cost of dock decking over the life of the product. You should also consider that; dock decking typically represents anywhere from 25% to 50% (or more) of total cost of any complete dock system. Some other dock manufacturers not only limit your decking choices, but hide the true price of their decking in complete dock frame packages. This not only hides the true cost of the decking, but it can hide other factor such as how much you are paying for the dock frame, or other dock components.   

Below, we’ll describe the different decking materials that are used to create ShoreMaster’s wide range of decking options, then we’ll list out some important considerations based on each decking material, and finally, we’ll describe the decking options available from ShoreMaster in each decking material category.

Choosing Wood Decking For Your Dock System 

PG_DocksFor many traditionalists, wood decking such as red cedar or IPE hardwood is the only way to go when it comes to decking for docks. This is because these types of woods contain natural oils and tannins to resist rot, decay and insects without having to be pre-treated with potentially dangerous or harmful chemicals. Plus, many dock owners like the look and feel of a natural wood decking on their dock. It is important to note that wood decking will require more maintenance than aluminum or composite decking. A general recommendation is to power wash your wood decking annually and apply a coat of finish or stain every three to four years to keep it looking great. When choosing wood decking, it’s important to consider that natural wood decking can absorb the sun’s rays and become warm to the touch on especially hot days, on the flip side, wood decking will generally feel nice and warm even on cool days with plenty of sunshine.

Deciding between Hardwood Decking and Softwood Decking For Your Dock

Wood is a great natural looking and durable decking material for your dock system. ShoreMaster offers two types of wood decking material for your dock, IPE, which is a tropical hardwood, and red cedar, a softwood.

The first thing that you are likely to notice in the difference between hardwoods and softwoods is price. Hardwoods take longer to grow than softwoods, and this is attributable to the higher cost for hardwood material. Another difference that you’ll encounter is the density, or, the hardness of each material. Because hardwoods take longer to grow, the wood is more compact and dense; this makes hardwoods heavier than softwoods.

Softwoods grow quicker than hardwoods, and the wood is less dense, making it easier to cut and drill than hardwoods. Softwoods such as red cedar can have varying levels of hardness and resistance to insects and decay. This is directly related to the amount of heartwood in the boards. Heartwood grows near the center of the tree, which makes it harder, and more resistant to insects and decay. Sapwood grows near the outer part of the tree, and can be a bit softer and more susceptible to decay. The red Cedar decking supplied by ShoreMaster contains more heartwood so your decking is less susceptible to early weatherization and insects.

Whether you choose a hardwood or a softwood decking material for your natural looking dock, you’ll be glad to know that each type of wood contains natural oils and tannins to help protect it from insects and decay. And no matter which choice you make, each type of wood will require about the same level of maintenance to keep it looking good. In general, you’ll want to power wash your wood decking annually, and apply a finish or stain every three to four years to keep it looking great. If no stain or finish is used, you will still want to power wash your wood decking annually. Both IPE hardwoods and red cedar softwoods will weather to a nice silver-gray color when no stain or finish is applied.

 ShoreMaster Wood Decking Choices

CedarCedar Wood Decking

When ShoreMaster sources cedar decking from its suppliers, it searches for boards that contain more heartwood, which makes your cedar decking less susceptible to insects and decay. This way you can be confident that your cedar decking will resist decay and remain safe, while also looking great on your shoreline. Besides, to most dock owners, nothing feels better on your bare feet than the soft, natural beauty of red cedar decking from ShoreMaster.

IPEIPE Wood Decking

When it comes to wood decking for your dock, nothing beats ShoreMaster’s IPE hardwood decking. ShoreMaster’s IPE hardwood will add a sense of stability to your dock and feel incredibly firm under foot because of its natural hardness and density. It looks great and provides a gentle, natural wood feel on your bare feet. Because IPE is naturally dense, its heavy, but the added benefit of its weight is that it’s resistant to being blown out of the dock by wind or waves and it’s extremely firm under foot. 




Choosing a Composite or Plastic Decking For Your Dock


Composite materials are another great decking option for docks. Composite decking is usually chosen as a lower maintenance alternative to wood decking. One advantage that composite decking has over wood is that it never needs to be sanded, stained, or refinished. Composite decking is not necessarily maintenance free, however, and because many types of composite decking actually contain some wood fibers, it is important to keep them clean. Mold or mildew can grow in damp or shady areas of the decking which will then begin to show signs of decay if not cleaned regularly. It is important to note that some people may also lump plastic decking into the composite decking category. However, unlike composite decking, which is usually made out of a combination of wood fibers and plastic, true plastic decking is generally composed of 100% recycled and / or virgin plastic. Plastic decking eliminates the potential for decay caused by mold or mildew, but can sometimes be prone to cracking. In general though, composite or plastic decking is a great upgrade from wood when it comes to low-maintenance and long term durability for your dock application and where the feel of real wood decking is not important.

The Difference between Composite Decking and Plastic Decking

Plastic decking or composite decking can both be a fantastic, low-maintenance choice as decking for a dock system.

Composite decking often includes recycled inorganic materials like polyethylene or polypropylene combined with organic materials such as wood fibers. The inorganic plastics, and the organic wood fibers (or other materials) are bonded together using adhesives and other additives to form the deck boards.

Plastic decking contains no organic materials. This type of decking is typically made out of polypropylene, polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, or some combination of the three. The deck boards can be injection molded, rotationally molded or extruded. Typically the boards are lighter than composite boards, and they can sometimes have a shinier appearance than composites.

Both types of decking will weather better, and require less maintenance than natural woods. Special attention should be paid to composite decking that is manufactured with organic materials as they can be slightly more susceptible to decay caused by mold, fungi, or mildew than plastic decking.

ShoreMaster Plastic Decking Choices

TItanTitan Decking

Titan decking from ShoreMaster is a great addition to your dock system. Its design allows water, dirt and sunlight to pass through the surface of your dock. This means your decking dries faster, stays cleaner, and may even have a positive effect on the waterfront environment because of its ability to allow sunlight to pass through the surface of the decking.  Titan decking from ShoreMaster incorporates a safe, slip-resistant texture that is easy on the feet and looks good on your dock.

VertexVertex Decking

You’ve decided that you want a low maintenance decking option that isn’t wood or aluminum, but you just don’t like the idea of all those holes in the surface of the “through flow” decking options you’ve looked at. You also don’t want to risk dropping your fishing lures or your boat keys on the dock, only to have them fall through one of those holes and into the water. Then ShoreMaster’s Vertex decking is the perfect choice for you. Vertex is a very low maintenance, lightweight decking that is surprisingly safe, and non-slip, plus it feels incredible on your bare feet. Vertex decking is available in an attractive tan, non-slip flagstone pattern.

Choosing an Aluminum Decking For Your Dock

RS7 Tan Decking Gray CanopyAluminum is considered by many dock owners to be the best choice for decking material because it requires no maintenance, will not rot, decay, warp, or twist and it only needs to be cleaned as you see fit. Aluminum decking from ShoreMaster is also incredibly lightweight while remaining extremely durable. Aluminum decking can be powder coated, painted, or anodized and color options are virtually unlimited. Most aluminum decking that is to be used on a dock system is either left plain or raw, or powder coated. Some of the natural wood traditionalists have recently chosen to give up the annual maintenance rituals of wood decking ownership and upgrade to an aluminum decking that is powder coated to look very similar to real wood.  ShoreMaster’s Wood Grained Aluminum Decking is a great example of this type of aluminum decking, and a smart choice for wood decking traditionalists that want to reduce the amount of work required to maintain their old wood decking. Another advantage of aluminum decking is that it tends to stay cooler in the sun because of its ability to reflect and dissipate heat.

The Difference between Aluminum Decking and All Other Decking Options

When comparing decking options, you may find yourself choosing between aluminum and all other options that are available. One thing to consider is that in almost every comparison, aluminum decking is, by far, the superior choice for a dock system. Generally speaking, aluminum decking will be much lighter than wood, composite, or plastic decking which means it will be much easier to remove the aluminum decking for inspecting the dock frame, or removing the panels for seasonal dock storage. While just about any style of decking can be painted, or powder coated, aluminum decking will not rot or decay, and when powder coated, will provide the best paint durability of any decking choice. Aluminum is a great choice when it comes to decking for dock applications, because it is lightweight, and will not rust, twist or warp over the life of the dock system and requires no maintenance except for the occasional cleaning as preferred by the dock owner.

ShoreMaster Aluminum Decking Choices

White AluminumWhite Painted Aluminum

ShoreMaster’s white painted aluminum decking will add years of worry free, maintenance free enjoyment to your lake living experience. Because it’s manufactured from aluminum, it will never rot, twist, or warp, and you’ll never have to worry about applying stain or finish to keep it looking great. Powder coated in brilliant white, you’ll get a clean, modern looking surface that stays cool to the touch even on warm summer days. Our aluminum panels are treaded to provide you with a safe, slip resistant surface that is as comfortable, as it is beautiful.    

Tan AluminumTan Painted Aluminum

ShoreMaster’s tan painted aluminum decking gives you a worry free, maintenance free decking that makes lake living so much easier. Because it’s manufactured from aluminum, it will never rot, twist, or warp, and you’ll never have to worry about applying stain or finish to keep it looking great. Powder coated in natural tan, you get an attractive surface to compliment your waterfront property. ShoreMaster’s tan aluminum decking stays cool to the touch so you can truly enjoy every summer day on your dock. Our aluminum panels are treaded to provide you with a safe, slip resistant surface that is as comfortable, as it is beautiful.    

Wood Grain AluminumWoodgrain Painted Aluminum

You’ve just selected the perfect dock system, and you’ve even decided on a natural wood decking to match it beautifully, but you simply do not have the time or the desire to keep up with annual power washing and staining recommended for wood decking every couple of years. What to do? Consider upgrading your wood decking choice to ShoreMaster’s Wood Grain Aluminum Decking. Because it’s manufactured from aluminum, it will never rot, twist, or warp, and you’ll never have to worry about applying stain or finish to keep it looking great. Powder coated in a natural, highly realistic wood grain pattern, you get all of the benefits of aluminum and none of the work of wood. Our aluminum panels are treaded to provide you with a safe, slip resistant surface that is as comfortable, as it is beautiful.   

AluminumPlain Aluminum

ShoreMaster’s plain aluminum decking is a worry free, maintenance free, and paint free way to deck your dock for serious work, or serious enjoyment. Our plain aluminum decking is generally chosen by owners that value function over form, and it is typically placed on dock systems that are used to access the water for work as opposed to recreation. Our aluminum panels are treaded to provide you with a safe, slip resistant surface that is as comfortable, as it is beautiful.

ShoreMaster is Your Best Choice for Dock Decking Choices and Quality

With eight different decking options to choose from you can see that ShoreMaster leads the industry in high-quality decking options for your new dock system, or as way to refresh your existing dock system. We should note that ShoreMaster also offers a concrete style decking option in addition to the decking options listed above, but due to its weight, it is only used on ShoreMaster’s Galvanized Steel KitDock Floating Dock Systems.  

Now that you have more information on the types of decking options available for your dock system, you’re ready to head to your nearest ShoreMaster Dealer and see all of the ShoreMaster decking options for yourself. 



ShoreMaster Dock Flotation Specifications Have Been Updated

ShoreMaster Dock Flotation Image

Please take a moment to check out our updated ShoreMaster and Rhino dock flotation specifications pages. Website users can now view the individual dock float specification drawings via PDF. To check out the sizes, and locations of mounting slots and dock attachment locations visit the dock flotation pages below.

RhinoFloat Dock Flotation Page

ShoreMaster Float Dock Flotation Page 

What makes our dock flotation the best choice for your marina? It’s our commitment to quality and the choices we offer in dock float style, size, and capacity.

You can get more information on dock flotation from an authorized ShoreMaster Dealer, or contact our Customer Care Center, we’d love to help you out.