IMM Quality Boat Lifts TM manufactures the world’s best boat lifts – and the news is out! Our well-appointed facilities in Fort Myers, Florida, buzz with daily activity. We have an expertly trained team of more than 40 designers, engineers and manufacturers. Each year, we ship more than 2,000 American-made boat lifts across the country and throughout the world.
During the past five years, we’ve made headlines globally and experienced a marked increase in consumer demand for our safe, maintenance-free boat lifts. As a result, IMM Quality Boat Lifts has invested more than $3 million into new equipment, factory improvements and facility space. That allows us to grow and expand our business capabilities while prioritizing a safe environment for our employees.
But what actually makes our boat lifts better than the rest? It’s simple: IMM Quality Boat Lifts manufactures all the structural parts that go into our boat lifts. That means we can approach any project, or any client’s vision for custom design, with complete freedom. We never take a “one-size-fits-all” mentality.
You’ll never catch us cobbling together pre-made, commercially available parts to make a product that’s the “best of what’s available,” under any circumstances. Boat lifts cobbled together from existing parts always sacrifice performance, durability and safety. Instead, our advanced manufacturing and engineering capabilities give us tremendous flexibility to design and create any part needed to assemble a precise, custom-manufactured boat lift with specialized capacity or enhanced accessibility. No one else has that capability.
Engineering the World’s Best Boat Lifts
To accomplish this, IMM Quality Boat Lifts deploys a refined engineering process for the highest quality boat lift products for sale in the industry.
- Aluminum Delivery
Our facility setup provides our manufacturing team with the same resources as national automotive and aerospace companies that produce highly refined products for travel and space exploration. Similarly, our patented technologies and designs outperform the competition and cannot be purchased elsewhere.
Our exceptional attention to detail along every step of this process is why many of our original boat lift products are still in operation after over 40 years of consumer use!
Step #1: Marine-Grade Aluminum Delivery
It all begins when a shipment of marine-grade aluminum arrives at our production facility in Fort Myers, Florida. We use only aluminum for our boat lifts. That’s because a fundamental property of aluminum is that it only oxidizes on the surface. Comparatively, steel and iron will rust all the way through. Therefore, aluminum retains its structural integrity in situations where steel and iron would fail.
Galvanized steel is coated with zinc to limit its oxidation. Unfortunately, the zinc coating is easily scraped off during transport, which can quickly lead to rust. Some competitors use materials like galvanized steel to craft components in their boat lifts. In some cases, those products may already be rusting upon delivery! How long will these products last before they fail?
Salt water is especially harsh on lesser materials, which can degrade the performance and longevity of your boat lift. That’s why IMM Quality Boat Lifts only uses the best materials: marine-grade aluminum and stainless steel. Only marine-grade aluminum or stainless steel can stand the test of time. These best-in-class materials ensure our customers gain a lifetime of use from their boat lift purchase.
Step #2: Cutting Boat Lift Parts
Our engineers design each lift using the industry’s most modern computer-aided design (CAD) software. We carefully review our designs using materials stress-analysis testing software. We also extensively test the designs at our facility before any product is approved for sale.
Although we’re confident in our designs, we still send them to outside engineering firms for review. Their engineers will independently analyze our designs and provide signed and sealed copies of our engineering specifications. These documents can be used during the permitting process to legally certify that our products exceed Florida’s current building code, the most rigorous marine construction code in the nation.
Once it is time to build a boat lift, we generate a work order. This document contains all engineered drawings and instructions to manufacture every part of a lift. Before making the first cut, our production manager carefully reviews specifications for each boat lift while ensuring we have the necessary materials on hand.
After the materials arrive, each piece of aluminum must be cut into the right size before machining the parts. Our CAD designs are converted into computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) files. Those files are then imported into computer numerically controlled (CNC) machines. With the CAM files loaded, our CNC auto-saws quickly cut the stock aluminum material into the correct pieces.
Taking this computer-guided approach to engineering streamlines an otherwise time-consuming manufacturing process. It allows IMM Quality Boat Lifts to keep up with increased demand for the world’s best boat lift products!
Additionally, taking a computer-guided approach to our engineering process allows our team to consistently produce precision-cut boat lift parts. No matter how diverse or customized the design specifications may be, we can cut even the smallest parts with confidence. That ultimately shows in the quality of our products!
Step #3: Machining Boat Lift Parts
Once the raw materials are cut down to size, the next step is machining. Using 3D modeling software, we complete manufacturing with our fully computerized CNC machines, which guarantee precision and quality. The following series of photos and videos show the production of a gearbox mount plate, from engineered drawing to fully machined part.
Here is an engineering schematic of a mount bracket designed to attach the gearbox to the top beam of IMM Quality’s 32-40K Platinum boat lifts.
As they say, measure twice, cut once! In the video below, you will see the CNC machine’s probe determines the exact location of the aluminum blank before starting to cut.
Next, the CNC mill makes a perfectly flat surface for the part.
Then, it’s time to cut the aluminum part down to the engineer’s specifications.
Finally, this next video shows the CNC mill forming threads within the gearbox mount bracket for screwing in bolts.
The surface texture seen in this before-and-after photo is deliberate.
While the machine could create a perfectly flat face for the aluminum, a ridged surface provides friction and helps prevent the part from slipping under high torque. It’s just one more example of the innovative improvements that set IMM Quality Boat Lifts apart from competitors. This is thanks to extensive manufacturing capabilities that allow us to design, engineer and manufacture all components for our boat lift products at our own facilities!
IMM Quality Boat Lifts uses the best equipment and technologies available to manufacture the highest quality boat lift parts, such as the modern software suite that designs our products and runs the CNC machines.
- CNC auto-saws
- CNC vertical mills
- CNC horizontal mills
- CNC routers
- CNC lathes
- CNC plasma cutters
- CNC iron workers
- CNC punch presses
- Hydraulic presses
- Hydraulic breaks
- Hydraulic shears
- Hydraulic pipe and tube benders
- Drill centers with sliding presses on linear rails
For example, one boat lift design might call for the use of a CNC vertical mill to drill holes for future assembly. For another, a turn on the lathe might be needed to finish the creation of a boat lift’s new pulleys or cable winders. The result is meticulously precise, reliable boat lift parts that are ready for welding.
Step #4: Welding the World’s Best Boat Lifts
While some parts are ready for assembly directly after machining, other parts are combined into a larger construct. Generally, we only bolt together those parts that require adjustability. For example, bunk brackets are bolted to cradles so that the spacing of the bunks can be adjusted in the field. Otherwise, we weld our parts together to create a rigid unibody construction.
Quality welding begins with the best equipment. For stainless-steel parts like the pile mount strap, we have dedicated Millermatic 255 MIG welders. For all the aluminum parts, we have dedicated Miller systems with XR-Alumafeed guns and AlumaPower 450 machines. Both systems have push-pull guns with synergic-pulsed MIG welding. This type of welding increases ease of use and achieves “stacked dimes” on every weld.
Our primary welding department is spacious enough for six welders to work simultaneously to keep up with high production demands. Even more important than the equipment and workspace, all our welders are American Welding Society-certified tradesmen with more than 100 years of combined experience. Once our experts complete the welds, they are cleaned and inspected to make sure they meet IMM Quality Boat Lifts’ quality control standards.
This video demonstrates the precision welding of a bearing block to the stepped channel for one of IMM Quality’s boat lifts.
Step #5: Assembly
Now that precision-cut pieces of marine-grade aluminum have been welded and machined into final form, it’s time for assembly.
We have three separate areas where our team assembles the top beams, cradles and bunks. We even purchased and installed a specialized crane lift. This makes it easier for our staff to transfer heavy parts across the factory while assembling shipments.
To prepare the top beams, our staff:
- Install the drive pipe and the drive system with gearboxes and motors.
- Pre-wind the stainless steel cable.
- Install the cover over the drive system.
Many people are surprised at how competitors often deliver the lift un-assembled, relying on the installer to correctly assemble the gearbox and electric motors into their top beams!
To assemble the cradle beams, we pre-install the pulleys, wedge-lock cable adjusting mechanism, guide-post brackets and bunk brackets. A bunk system appropriate to your boat’s hull design is made to order. Rest assured: There will be no top-side rivets to scratch your hull on our bunks!
Once assembly is complete, our shop manager inspects each order for accuracy. Then, our expert team carefully wraps and bundles all boat lift components for delivery, including the top beam, cradles and bunks. We also include any additional accessories along with straightforward installation instructions.
Although the pandemic created many challenges for manufacturers, IMM Quality Boat Lifts has successfully grown our very own fleet of delivery trucks. We now have a grand total of eight trucks. This allows us to make deliveries across the United States and Canada, satisfying North America’s increased demand for the world’s best boat lift products.
Today, IMM Quality Boat Lifts is ideally situated to deliver our shipments to any port in the world. This economy of scale keeps our delivery costs low while the cost of shipping freight continues to skyrocket.
Buy the World’s Best Boat Lifts from IMM Quality
After reviewing our engineering process, it’s clear that IMM Quality Boat Lifts manufactures the world’s best boat lifts. As we continue to innovate and improve upon our industry’s best boat lift products, IMM Quality remains focused on safety, quality and performance. Meanwhile, we still provide exceptional value with every purchase.
Our expert engineering team is always available to consult with clients on custom design projects. We love a challenge and look forward to meeting your boat lift needs in the years to come.
Learn more about IMM Quality Boat Lifts or explore our product lines on our website. Complete our CONTACT FORM or REQUEST A QUOTE and we’ll give you a call!
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