Bob Fabian knew he had to stop that sinking sensation. His pipe dock on Buckhorn Lake needed to be raised every year, as its feet slowly sank into the muddy depths. So, like every good cottager should, he turned to Cottage Life for inspiration.
Inventor extraordinaire Robert Clidero (who’s back with another brainwave, see “We Have Liftoff,” at right) had shared a dock-raising device with our readers back in the June 2003 issue. It was great for correcting big swings in water levels, but Fabian only needed to level his dock a few inches every year. He looked for a jack to replicate Clidero’s doodad, but opted to take a cheaper route with a double-hooked turnbuckle and a pipe leg bracket from his cottage hardware store.
“I saw this turnbuckle and a light went off,” says Fabian.
First, he slid the new bracket over the top of the dock leg and secured it with a bolt. With the turnbuckle hooked over a bolt on the new leg bracket, he tightened it up until its bottom hook firmly cradled the dock’s original leg bracket, then carefully loosened that fitting’s bolts. To raise and level the corner of his dock, Bob just tightened the turnbuckle with a few reefs on a screwdriver. Once he re-tightened the bolts on the original fitting, the fix was in, and could be repeated on any of the other sinking legs.
“It might not be ideal for everyone’s situation,” says Bob, “but it works for me.”