Boat Dock Design Softwares

When it comes to getting a boat dock installed, that can be a natural process that takes just a couple of hours or days depending on your dock type. and the decision to either call a marine constructor or do it yourself. Whichever way, the design of a boat dock is where you need to put in a lot of thought.

This process needs to be perfected. It is in this process that you get blueprints and make a complete dock design for how you want your dock to look like; it gives you an opportunity to put into consideration the properties of your lake bottom as well as weather conditions in your locality and local regulation.

Does it look tedious already? Well, it is worth the time as it is what determines whether you will enjoy your dock or not. In order to help, there is software out there designed to assist you in making blueprints for your dream dock. Let’s have a look.

This article will take a closer look at several of the different boat dock design software packages on the market, how well they work and how to send the finished boat dock design to a professional dock builder.

Some of the Different Boat Dock Design Software Packages

Several companies offer boat dock design software packages, with some that are easier to use than others and some that offer different styles and types of docks. Some dock building companies also offer software that you can use on their website so, before you make a purchase, do your due diligence and you’ll likely save some money.

CAD Pro

If you are seeking software that can get your dock designed with ease, all you need is this software. The application has a good number of in-built features and systems to get you going with your boat dock design.

The CAD Pro has sufficient features to complete any boat dock designs and plans with intuitive drafting and design tools and symbols that anyone can use with a professional result to take you from beginning stage of your design to full concepts. It is the perfect design software for your dock design.

With CAD Pro, you do not need a marine constructor to get your pier designed. You don’t need to be an experienced professional make your dock look professional. CAD Pro has in-built textures for flooring, countertops, and more. You can also add pop-up photos for a real-world view of your boat dock design ideas. However, it is advisable that floating docks and post docks blueprints be designed with this software and more robust dock type like crib docks are left to professionals.

CAD Pro, while not specifically made for designing boat docks, is still an excellent software. CAD Pro has designs for several types of boat docks, including L, T, U and Y docks plus Floating, Post and Crib docks. The software also features intuitive tools that allow you to draft and design your dock with professional results. When you’re ready, CAD Pro also lets you see what your finished dock will look like (more or less) with realistic pop-up photos.

CAD Pro PROs

  • Intuitive Design
  • Shows how to make all of the most common types of boat docks
  • Idea recording and voice instructions
  • Pop-up text memos and photos

CAD Pro CONs

  • Relatively Expensive
Marina dock design layouts.
Marina dock design layouts.

FLOE DESIGN-A-DOCK

This software serves well in helping you get a design done for your dock. It comes with some options to ensure you have the perfect plan. A sad side to this, however, is that the software is only available for PC. However, according to the FLOE official website the app is promised to be made available for all platforms this fall.

A boat and dock retailer, FLOE offers their FLOE Design a Dock software right on their website so there’s no need to download it to your PC. They offer 3 different types of docks, including Roll-in, Sectional and Floating, and give you step-by-step instructions on how to design them from scratch. Once you’ve put in your parameters the software then lets you ‘build’ your dock and shows what it will look like as you go.

FLOE Design a Dock PROs

  • No need to download software
  • Software is free
  • Easy to use
  • Shows what your dock will look like as you build
  • Offers several different dock types

FLOE Design a Dock CONs

  • Fewer dock designs to choose from
  • Only works on PC

Great Lakes Entry Dock Designer Tool

Is a new utility you can use to help get your dock designed exactly the way you want it. It has a simple drag and drops to add the components you want onto the design surface easily and lay them out into the design you envision. With the Great Lakes Dock Designer Tool, you can design whichever type of waterfront or dock you want to have. Here is a link to the official website.

With the above software, you are sure to have the blueprints for your pier construction done with ease. With that, the design part is out of the way and you may head on to the next item on your dock construction list.

Dock Builder – Easy Dock Builder

Like FLOE, Easy Dock Builder is software available online from a company called Dock Builder. Right now they only offer plans for Cottage Style Tip In Docks and Lake Truss docks but will have plans for floating lake truss docks soon (or so their website says). Like the other software packages, Dock Builder lets you ‘see’ your dock as you build, gives options for different materials and seems easy enough to use.

Easy Dock Builder PROs

  • No need to download software
  • Software is free
  • Incorporates distances from shore, water depth and other necessary calculations
  • Relatively easy to use
  • Shows what your dock will look like as you build

Easy Dock Builder CONs

  • Very few dock designs to choose from

Wahoo Docks Dock Rendering Modeler and Parts Ordering System

Wahoo Docks, a dock manufacturer in Georgia has developed in-house software for dock design and distribution in an effort to improve efficiency and reduce environmental impact.

At Boat Dock 101, you can read about these two softwares used by them, DREAM and DOTS.

DREAM (Dock Rendering Engine and Modeler): DREAM is a program which uses proprietary algorithms allowing our engineers to create 2D and 3D models and produce manufacturing schematics.

DOTS (Dock Order Tracking System): DOTS is an interface for handling our inventory, manufacturing, and delivery logistics. It ensures all projects meet our quality standards and deadlines.

Their website also lists all parts of a boat dock and how they work together and they are for.

Wahoo Docks PROs

  • Allows for 2D and 3D model rendering
  • Uses proprietary algorithms to design your dock

Wahoo Docks CONs

  • Difficult access to software

How To Use Boat Dock Building Software

All of the different boat dock software packages allow you to input many different factors like water depth, distance from shore, type of dock, materials and more. Access to most is easy through their website, while CAD Pro must be purchased and installed on either your MAC or PC. (Some, as mentioned, only work on PC.)

Using the software, in most cases, is simply a matter of trial-and-error as you get to know the specific software and how it works, changing parameters as you go to get the desired results. When you’re finished, or wish to see what you’ve already designed, the software will show you realistic photo renderings of the dock and, in some cases, allow for 3D models to be made.

Sending Your Boat Dock Plans to a Professional Dock Building Company

Depending on the software you use sending your finished boat dock plans to your dock building company of choice is a simple matter. CAD Pro, for example, allows you to convert your finished plans into several file formats like WORD, PDF and others. Since some are hosted on the website of the dock builder they simply need to be ‘submitted’ on their website when you’re finished.

Be aware that some of the free software packages likely will only be viewable on the website of the company that offers them, for obvious reasons.

We hope you enjoyed this article and that it has given you all of the answers to your boat dock software questions. If you have more or would like to leave a comment, please do so in the space provided, and best of luck with your new boat dock!