Thursday, April 15, 2010

Access ladder

Access ladderThe only real issue with being alongside in Southampton docks so far is access onto Lady Jane.

At high tide, Lady Jane's bulwarks are somewhat below the quay wall, and at low tide are a long way down.

Falling is not an option here, obviously.

The issue is exacerbated by a gap between the wall and Lady Jane, on account of the big fat fenders John kindly put in place to prevent the old girl being bashed against the side by the surge of water from any large boats passing, or the ferry arriving.

I had previously thought that the rickety old ladder I had on board would suffice, but it was never going to do the job.

Here you see I've welded footings which my newly purchased, long and very expensive, ladder are now attached.

At least now getting on and off Lady Jane in almost any state of the tide is much safer.

With ten tenths hindsight, I would have welded these footings onto a separate plate, then bolted the plate onto the plinth you see there. That way it would be re-usable, rather than having to cut it ff once we are ready to go anywhere.

The plinth could also be used for bitts, for coming alongside some place, something John is keen I do at some point anyway.


  1. Anonymous3:59 PM

    I'm having a hard time visualizing how the ladder sits on these footings. It looks like they would hold the sides of the ladder so the ladder is completely vertical.

    My vision would be a footing that is hinged at the bottom, allowing the ladder to lean outwards onto the dockside. Maybe there will be pictures of the final thing?

    Anyhow, look at those pretty welding magnets! We like those.

  2. Hi Anonymous

    Well spotted - this picture was taken early on in the process.

    I welded the one you see where it is, then drilled a big hole through both footings, near the top, then welded the second footing a ladders width away.

    I pushed a bar through the first footing, then the bottom rung of the ladder, then through the other footing, welding the bar either side to keep it safe.

    Now the ladder pivots around it's bottom rung on the footings you see.

    When the ladder is not being used, it rests against the wheelhouse roof.

    Welding magnets from

  3. Speaking of which... where's the photo of those nice new bitts I made you!?!
    regards, S

  4. Anonymous11:29 PM

    Pity you've moved to the docks - Real Soon Now I'm going to be going up and down past your old mooring in my very own boat. I've been a longtime lurker here - was planning to say Hi if I spotted you on deck on the way past :-)


  5. Hi Pete

    The work on the mooring bouys is supposed to take a month, so I'll be back before too long.