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Propwash

Bimini Top Hardware

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Hi Everybody,

Last month I bought a 2006 Chaparral 236 SSI. Very nice boat and we love it. It didn't come with a Bimini top but looks like it may have had one at some point in  the past. It doesn't have a tower. Does anyone have a picture they could post of how the frame fit to the boat and is it sturdy enough to have up when running? I have a quote from Ameritex for the fabric, hardware and frame. Any suggestions for other vendors?

This is my first post. I've enjoyed reading thru the threads. I will post pictures whenI get that figured out.

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The original top would have all stainless steel tubing and hardware. Aluminum is cheaper, but not as strong. 

brick

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My last boat don't come with a Bimini, so I bought one from Overton's. It had an aluminum frame, wobbled a lot. Go with a Stainless steel one if you can.

 

Welcome to the group.....:oregonian_winesmiley:

 

.

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Different boat, but my bimini hardware came from Taco Marine. I agree with the stainless suggestion, much more robust. There are many vendors online of bimini hardware, just Google it.

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I'm not sure all the OEM bimini's have SS tubing.  The boat I just purchased, '05 210, has what I believe to be an OEM bimini and it has SS fittings, but aluminum tubing.  The SS tubing is much more robust as stated, but although it could and probably has happened, I've never known a bimini to fail due to the tubing being too weak.  I'd agree 110% with using SS hardware and fittings though cause I can just see one of those plastic fittings breaking and a pole gouging the boat.  The reason I'd hesitate to use SS tubing is because that's what I put on the boat previous to my 210, a Chap 1830  The whole thing weighted about 20 - 25 lbs and really wobbled when underway and stored in the "radar arch" position due to the weight.  When opened up the wind filled it up and it was pretty stable, but when closed it really bounced side to side.  After a season or two of waiting for it to bust the SS fitting where it attached to the side of the boat, I ended up putting in a pole that supported it side to side at a 45 degree, ie ran from the deck behind the sunpad to the upper corner of the bimini.  Solid as a rock then, but had to put up the 45 every time we took out the boat. Current boat with aluminum frame doesn't need the support.  Going with aluminum over SS tubing will also save a couple hundred $ last I checked.

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40 minutes ago, Phillbo said:

Go to a local canvass shop and have one made. 

Second that. They will make to what you want.

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there are some on ebay, aluminum frame... just search for chaparral 236 bimini.

 

Rnr-marine.com had some stainless steel ones.  about 300 extra (so 740 ish)

my stainless steel one wobbles occasionally.  Not supposed to go over 25.    

 

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Thanks everybody for posting. There appears to be many more options than I first thought. I have several pieces of the SS hardware already on the boat. It looks like all of it that is supposed to attach to the hull, but I'm not sure I have any where it attaches to the windshield. I need to pull the cover back and take a look.I also need to check the height of the frame to make sure I'll have clearance when the boat is on the lift or does the frame lay down. The boat cover may also be an issue now that I think about it. It is supposed to rain this afternoon and get cold later this week so doubt I'll be boating at least until it warms up.

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Look for two small “loops”, attached to the top of the port and starboard front windshield frame. The straps on the front of the bimini attach there. OEM cockpit covers have a slit to go around the frame to boat connection. 

brick

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5 hours ago, brick said:

Look for two small “loops”, attached to the top of the port and starboard front windshield frame. The straps on the front of the bimini attach there. OEM cockpit covers have a slit to go around the frame to boat connection. 

brick

Thanks brick, I went out and looked at the windshield and it had no hardware on it. The cockpit cover has two slits on each side for the frame so I'm good there. From the diagram AFS sent me it looks like I need a SS Round side mount and eye strap for each side of the windshield.

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47 minutes ago, Propwash said:

Thanks brick, I went out and looked at the windshield and it had no hardware on it. The cockpit cover has two slits on each side for the frame so I'm good there. From the diagram AFS sent me it looks like I need a SS Round side mount and eye strap for each side of the windshield.

The stainless eyes on my boat are just outboard of the center opening section. 

brick

 

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go here and click on eye straps, that should show you some windshield options.   check the other links for the round side mount, it could go by another name.  i checked the cecilmarine and the chaparral parts guide, but couldnt find it. 

http://www.taylormadeproducts.com/cgi-bin/catalog.pl?cat_id=12                                                                                         

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I have an OEM Bimini on my 256 SSI and it is indeed all stainless.  I have it up most of the time and generally cruise around 30 MPH.  It used to shake from side to side in moderate chop until I started crossing the front straps, X fashion side to side.  Since then it is very stable.

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This is what the quote came in at. Way more than Overton's or E-Bay but I assume it is also better. I don't really need a top until so will continue to shop. That could be the best quote quality and cost, but who knows. Thanks again for the replies.

Propwash 

 

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On 12/5/2017 at 8:39 PM, Rick480 said:

I have an OEM Bimini on my 256 SSI and it is indeed all stainless.  I have it up most of the time and generally cruise around 30 MPH.  It used to shake from side to side in moderate chop until I started crossing the front straps, X fashion side to side.  Since then it is very stable.

Thanks for the tip. i will try that. I guess i can just duck down under.

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To update this thread, I did order the Bimini top from Ameritex. It was expensive but I upgraded the fabric and it came with all stainless hardware and frame. Installed easily and does not shake or rattle at 30 MPH. The straps vibrate if going much faster but the top is rated for 30 MPH max and instructions say to take it down if going faster. 30 is fine for us b/c that is the speed I usually cruise at.

Very pleased with the top and the company.

Prop

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Sometimes the straps on mine will vibrate at lower speeds.  I put a twist in the straps if they do vibrate and it usually eliminates it.

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Second the twist.  Two or there is typically all that's needed.  Great point.

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Also works on the straps for full trailer cover.  Kept getting rub marks on the hull when I'd trailer with full cover from a couple of the straps.  Then the light went off in my head, put a twist in them and they don't move at all.  No more marks.

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I'm referring to the towing cover straps.  Twisting keeps them from vibrating and leaving marks on the hull as bad.  I don't trailer with the bimini up.

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Yup. Always put a twist or two in the straps.

brick

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On 12/5/2017 at 9:39 PM, Rick480 said:

I have an OEM Bimini on my 256 SSI and it is indeed all stainless.  I have it up most of the time and generally cruise around 30 MPH.  It used to shake from side to side in moderate chop until I started crossing the front straps, X fashion side to side.  Since then it is very stable.

@Rick480 I have some questions about the original 256 SSI bimini, I wondered if I might be able to discuss with you? If so, please feel free to call me at 540-949-8764 or email me at trguy@comcast.net. Thank you in advance for your help.

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