Benefits of a Bimini Top for your Boat on the Gold Coast.

Do I need a Bimini Top for my boat?

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Do I need a Bimini top? Well, that’s your call, the best way to decide is to ask yourself a few quick questions, When do I use my boat? how long do i use it for each time? am I sensitive to the sun etc? The Gold Coast is a beautiful place for boating and protecting yourself from the elements is really important.

If you are out early mornings only and beating the sun, chances are you may not find one totally necessary, If you go out boating through the day and stay out for long periods of time then keeping that sun off you is a huge plus, if you plan to take friends & family out it’s a good idea to protect them as well as yourself and make everyones day much more enjoyable. Your Bimini will also protect you from sudden downpours.

Where do I start?  Can I buy one pre-made or do I need a custom made Bimini top?

The cheapest option will always be the standard pre-sized Bimini top and this can sometimes be a great option. If you have a popular boat model then a Bimini top retailer is more likely to have something in stock, make sure you locate a reputable retailer that specialises in Bimini tops.

You may prefer a custom job if you require the perfect fit, custom dimensions and/or add on’s or want a colour other than the standard ones on offer. Another reason for  a custom fit is that you simply don’t have the option for a pre-made Bimini due to your boat model.

If this is the case your best bet is to locate some local boat upholsterers/marine trimmers and obtain a few quotes (always get more than one to compare). Aiming for someone local obviously keeps travelling costs down as the upholsterer/marine trimmer will generally visit the boat more than once. (First up to make patterns etc and then again to install the various elements).

When comparing quotes it’s important to be clear about what material the upholsterer is using, one quote may sound cheaper but just make sure the material isn’t! Saving a few $ wont mean much if your Bimini top deteriorates and lasts half as long.

Check these items when comparing your quotes:

  • What fabric are they using, does it have UV Inhibitors to protect against fading, are they ant fungal or anti microbial so they don’t mould and deteriorate over time. What warranty is offered with the fabric they are supplying? Sunbrella fabric is undoubtedly number one for an A1 Bimini top, see our information on quality durable boating fabrics here.
  • What is the frame made of? Plastic, stainless, aluminium, Most people tend to opt for aluminium frames as it looks like stainless steel and is a lighter option.
  •  What are your connector pieces made from? some standard tops are fitted with plastic or wire fittings, these connectors take alot of the stress so heavy duty nickel plated brass or stainless steel is obviously a better option

Just make sure you aim for quality, a loose or ill fitted Bimini top just wont stand up to the test of time, people who take the lesser quality first always opt for the better quality second time round. Save yourself $ and get it right first time.

The most important thing is that you are happy, comfortable and enjoying your boat on those wonderful waterways we have here on the gorgeous Gold Coast.

 

 

Properly Prepping your boat for storage

Boat Storage

Prepping your boat for winter storage

 

It’s still way too nice out there to put the boat away, that’s if you ever do as some of us really enjoy the cooler weather.

If you do let your boat hibernate in the winter here’s some great tips to keep it in good condition. You don’t want to pull out a smelly mouldy boat when summer hits again.

Mould and mildew are the enemy, the spores are everywhere and a cool, dark, poorly ventilated area are just what they want. If you have areas that are soiled they’re going to love it even more. For this reason, it’s very important to thoroughly clean and disinfect all areas before storing. It helps to use the humidity absorbing products for stored boats (get these at your local chandlery or online).

 

Here are some pointers to keep your boat tip top while in storage.

 

  • Wash and wax your boat.
  • Wash and disinfect carpets, floors and all surfaces.
  • Remove cushions and other items that are mildew prone and store in a dry well-ventilated area.
  • Make sure during your last trip out you note any necessary  repairs and maintenance, sort out your repairs now if possible, when the gorgeous weather returns you want to pull your boat out and go. You don’t want to be fussing while everyone else is enjoying the water.
  • Any cracks in the hull can worsen during storage too so fix them asap.
  •  It’s a good idea to remove electronics, including your battery and store in a warm and dry place. Clean your battery terminals and give them a grease. You can also give your battery a good charge and check fluid levels.
  •  To avoid engine trouble you can top up your fuel tank and add a fuel stabiliser, make sure to run the engine for a good 15 mins to make sure the additives reach the fuel already in the fuel lines and engine.
  • Check your engine oil and replace filters, you can also flush the coolant system with water and if necessary add antifreeze.
  •  Another good idea is to run non-toxic antifreeze through the intake lines, y-valve, macerator and discharge hose, Drain your fresh water tanks and water heater, and then you should add a non-toxic antifreeze to your water tank and pump it through the plumbing, including ice makers, A/C pumps, sump pumps, fish wells, bilge pumps, and that shower on the transom.

 Wow, alot of work but oh so worth it, come summer you’ll be ahead of the rest and you know you’ve done your absolute best to keep your boat in top condition.

Boat Upholstery Advice

Boat Upholstery and Marine Trimming

People have so many questions and rightly so…

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What are boat covers made from?

What are the best materials to use for my bimini?

Where can I buy boat upholstery?

Who fixes boat upholstery?

Can I just fix the covers I have?

These are all questions people ask online every day and need answers for, there really is more than just one answer. What you need is dependent upon your boat, your location, your storage area, your budget etc.

If you are unsure just give us a call, we can offer advice over the phone (without trying to sell anything to you; and that’s important). Feel comfortable calling and asking for advice, we’ve got the answers for you, that’s why we’re boat trimmers.

What size boat cover do I need?

Do I really need a custom made boat cover?

How long will my boat covers last?

How do I care for my boat upholstery?

It really can get confusing for people out there, We’ve provided some hints and tips on cleaning your boat upholstery so there’s a start for you. Click Here

We’ve also offered some advice about the best materials to use and why. Click Here

Hopefully, this helps answer some of those questions you may have, give us a call for other advice without worrying about a sales pitch.

Many customers are grateful and surprised when we tell them “hey you don’t have to get new covers yet, a good clean or simply a re-stitch is all you really need right now”.

There are many options, sure if you want brand new covers we’re here to help however we are more interested in happy loyal customers here at Gold Coast Marine Upholstery.