Partner Spotlight: Custom Boat Lift Installation with Williamson Bros Marine Construction

IMM Quality Boat Lifts partnered with Williamson Bros to create a custom lift for this Argo Sherp Pro XT

IMM Quality Boat Lifts would like to take the opportunity to highlight some incredible work by one of our preferred partners, Williamson Bros Marine Construction.

Exterior view of IMM Quality Boat Lifts preferred contractor Williamson Bros shop in cape coral

Headquartered in Fort Myers, Florida, Williamson Bros Marine Construction has specialized in building custom docks, seawalls and tiki huts since 1996. Built on four generations of marine construction expertise, this family-run business has grown into one of Southwest Florida’s premiere companies.

Much like IMM Quality Boat Lifts, the Williamson brothers have built their reputation and business with a commitment to exceptional customer service and old-world craftsmanship. They will design your dream project from scratch, with your needs and goals in mind.

Jimmy and Joe of Williamson Bros Marine ConstructionThese shared values have allowed a partnership between IMM Quality Boat Lifts and Williamson Bros Marine Construction to flourish. The recent installation of a custom boat lift for a specialized Sherp vehicle highlights how our two companies work together to create solutions for any custom marine construction project.

Engineering a Custom Boat Lift Installation

Recently, one of the Williamson Bros’ clients came to them with an unusual custom request. He had recently purchased an Argo Sherp Pro XT. The Sherp was originally designed to be a rescue vehicle for use in the Himalayan mountains. It can easily transition between water and land. The Sherp’s 71-inch tubeless tires provide more than enough buoyancy for the Sherp to float and function as four paddlewheels that power the Sherp across open water. The capabilities of this amphibious utility vehicle allow it to navigate the most difficult terrain anywhere on Earth.

Our client brought a grand vision for this custom boat lift project. Fitted with all the creature comforts, including a grill, and with seating for eight, he intends to use the Sherp to transport his family through the waterways of Cape Coral. He can drive onto land anywhere they like to have a picnic or enjoy the coastal environment.

However, he simply did not want to tie up the Sherp to his dock. He worried about the effects that constant submersion in saltwater would have on its components. What if someone untied the lines and simply floated the Sherp away? Obviously, he needed the safety and security of a boat lift.

Custom Boat Lift Installation with Williamson Bros Marine Construction

IMM Quality Boat Lifts and the Williamson Bros partnered together to tackle multiple challenges that arose during the project.

The first hurdle to overcome revolved around modifying a standard boat lift to handle the rolling load of the Sherp as it drives onto the lift from land. Obviously, it made sense to deck over the cradles to provide a drivable surface. But how would we prevent the decked platform from swinging away from the seawall, as the Sherp tried to drive onto it?

Most boat lift companies can only offer fixed cookie-cutter designs, because they do not have the manufacturing capabilities to make their own boat lift parts. However, IMM Quality’s factories can make any structural part that our engineers design, thanks to our advanced manufacturing process. As a result, IMM Quality Boat Lifts had the ability to custom-engineer and manufacture a solution that delivers a superior product design for our client.

Our solution involved extending the lift’s top beams so that they were cantilevered past the support pilings. That way, the lift cables would hang as close to the seawall as possible (see layout figure below). This wider installation of the cables would limit the amount of swing.

Figure of Lift Layout

IMM Quality Boat Lifts work order for boat lift figure of lift layout

Furthermore, if the cable “drop” was located at the standard installation position, there would be several feet of decked platform between the seawall and cable. The Sherp would push down on this overhanging platform, creating a lever force centered on the cable. This could cause the platform to tip up, like a seesaw.

By installing the cable “drop” as close to the sea wall as possible, we eliminated the possibility of the platform tipping. Finally, we designed special platform guides that rode the pilings as the lift goes up and down. These guides further limit the decked platform from shifting around.

Argo Sherp Pro XT secured above the water on overhanging platform

The second hurdle that we had to overcome was how to safely lift the weight of the Sherp. The lift cradle beams had to be framed with additional aluminum to support the Sherp’s weight. And, it had to be done in a way that the deck’s Thru-Flow panels could be installed securely.

With an in-house engineering and design team, this was an easy task for IMM Quality Boat Lifts. Look at this engineer’s drawing of the 7-foot by 20-foot decked platform to see how we resolved the issue.

Engineered Drawing of the 7-Foot by 20-Foot Platform

Engineered Drawing of the 7 by 20 Platform Deck Lift Frame

Finally, we had to design bunks to lift the Sherp without damaging the vehicle. The client wanted the bunks so that the lift would take the weight off the tires. That way, they could be deflated to extend the life of the tires.

Custom Boat Lift Installation with IMM Quality Boat Lifts & Williamson Bros

After the design and manufacturing of any custom boat lift is complete, the final critical piece of the puzzle is the lift installation. Poor installation negates the safety and reliability of your lift, while proper installation ensures years of use from your investment. It’s why IMM Quality Boat Lifts is grateful to partner with qualified installation professionals like Williamson Bros Marine Construction.

Williamson Bros deploys highly knowledgeable crews with decades of experience to work on each boat lift installation project. You can clearly see the crew’s attention to detail and the quality of their craftmanship in the pictures and video shared above. Their tremendous experience is invaluable with custom lift installations.

Why? Sometimes what looks good on paper doesn’t work in the real world. The practical, hands-on experience that Williamson Bros brings to the job allows them to make design alterations while in the field, if something doesn’t match up perfectly or meet the homeowner’s expectations.

Argo Sherp Pro XT parked on IMM Quality custom deck lift

As you can see from the finished product, the partnership between IMM Quality Boat Lifts and Williamson Bros Marine Construction delivered excellent results for our client.

When you combine world-class engineering, state-of-the-art manufacturing and decades of top-quality marine construction experience, great things will happen. If you have a dream that you would like to see turned into reality, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

IMM Quality custom boat lift lowers Argo Sherp Pro XT into water

Feeling inspired by this feat of design, engineering and manufacturing? Complete our CONTACT FORM or REQUEST A QUOTE and IMM Quality Boat Lifts will give you a call! To reach the Williamson Bros to schedule your boat lift installation, please call 1-844-WB-BUILT or go online to request a quote.

READ MORE: Check out this custom Superlift installation at a Cape Coral waterfront home!