Floating and Fixed Docks

Whether the tide is high or low, a floating boat dock will rise or fall to create a smooth transition into your watercraft. GatorDock offers three different types of floatation on our docks: the full float, the pontoon float, and the poly-tub float. Learn about these options and choose your dock design below or watch our floatation overview video in our resource library.  At Gator, we call our floating marine access structures 'docks' and we call our fixed structures 'piers.' To learn more about fixed dock systems, visit our pier section.

Whether Floating or Fixed, Make Your Docks Aluminum

GatorDock's full float system.

Full Float

The full float's rugged, fully encased aluminum float with polyurethane is designed to meet the challenging criteria of the most intricate projects. The fully welded frame provides unmatched stability and durability in the harsh marine environment. From extreme tidal fluctuations to heavy fetch from coastal waterways, no other floating dock system in the world out-performs the GatorDock Full Float System.


GatorDock's pontoon floating dock.

Pontoon Float

During our decades of research and development we invented the pontoon floating dock. Using a proprietary polyurethane injection system, the aluminum float shells are filled with durable foam. It is important to note that both the Full Float and the Pontoon Float use polyurethane foam rather than polystyrene for buoyancy. Whereas polystyrene foam (similar to styrofoam) can dissolve and degrade when exposed to common chemicals found in marine environments, our polyurethane foam will remain intact even if exposed to boat fuels and marine chemicals. Gator Pontoon docks are ideally suited for areas with moderate traffic and are popular on boat ramp docks.


GatorDock's poly-tub float design.

Poly-Tub Float

These economical plastic tubs are filled with polystyrene foam and bolted to the dock frame. Whereas the aluminum casings for the Full Float and Pontoon floatation systems are welded on the aluminum frames, the bolt on feature of the Poly-Tubs mean they can be replaced in the field. Ask Gator about incorporating a groundout cage into your Poly-Tub float design to protect the plastic casing during potential impact.

Designing Dock Solutions

A GatorDock floating dock.

Floating Dock

Whether your dock is used for fishing, swimming, or boat access, Gator can fabricate a system specific to your needs. Start designing your float dock by choosing a floatation style above then decking and accessories from below. GatorDock has been making long-lasting, durable floating docks for decades. Start your project by filling out the contact us form.


A GatorDock fixed dock.

Fixed Dock

For areas with little tide fluctuation or shallow water, a fixed dock system can be designed. Rather than choose a flotation type, your dock will be fitted with header kits and pilings for support. Enhance your fixed dock design with fenders, bumpers, cleats and utilities to create a fixed boat dock or add railing to create a fishing dock.


A GatorDock boat dock design.

Boat Dock

Gator can provide you with standard design options for your favorite boating interest including motorboats, kayaks, canoes, sailboats, rowing hulls, and other personal watercraft. Any design can be modified by changing the flotation type, decking, or accessories. When designing a dock to accommodate boat traffic, internal pile guides are often used to anchor the dock.


A GatorDock modular dock system.

Modular Dock Systems

Most of our dock systems are intended to be permanent. Some of our clients want to move the location of their docks or create multiple layout options with our aluminum dock sections. Gator can design a modular dock system specific to your use and site needs.

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More Dock Resources

Download drawings, specs, and other engineering resources in our technical section.

Dock Options & Accessories

+ decking+ accessories+ anchoring

Aluminum Non-Slip Decking

This economical decking option comes standard on our floating dock designs. Bare feet will appreciate that the aluminum deck boards are textured for slip resistance and remain cool to the touch even in strong sun. This low maintenance decking option is optimal for salt water or brackish water environments as it is also corrosion resistant.

Pressure Treated Pine Decking

Pressure treated pine decking is another cost effective decking option for marine use. This classic wood decking option is often accompanied by matching fenders. Your dock can arrive with the decking already installed or undecked to allow dock utilities to be incorporated.

Ipe Hardwood Decking

This premium decking option is a durable and sustainable option. The natural hardwood is not treated yet requires little to no maintenance just like our aluminum docks.

Composite Decking

Composite deck planks can also be used on an aluminum floating dock. Match the dock fender to the decking for a designer look.


Gator offers composite and aluminum grating options, including ThruFlow decking. If your dock needs to meet environmental restrictions pertaining to sea grass and light penetration, this decking option may be right for your project.


Almost any decking style can be incorporated into a GatorDock. It is even possible to combine Gator's superior floatation options with a concrete deck to make a hybrid aluminum and concrete dock system. Pavers are another decking style available.

Synthetic Concrete

Concrete decking has its challenges especially when it comes to cracking and weight. Gator’s synthetic concrete deck solves these issues as well as provides a minimal maintenance, durable decking solution that looks like concrete. The fiberglass panels look like concrete and provide a slip resistant surface for our docks.


Fenders are an attractive frame protection system that can be matched to the decking style for a clean, sophisticated look. Choose from pressure treated pine, Ipe hardwood, composite decking or UHMW strips for your floating dock fender.


Our HDPE bumpers wrap all the way around the exposed sides of the frame protecting boats from the aluminum dock frame and float. We offer two styles, a smaller 'P' bumper with corner pieces or a larger 'D' bumper that is mitered at the frame corners.


Gator can incorporate any cleat style into the design of your dock system. We have a few of our own favorites including a 12 inch aluminum cleat that can be bolted or welded to the dock frame.


Utility chases run the length of each of our floating docks and piers. These chases allow easy access and installation to water, electricity or other utility lines. Utility access panels can be designed into your boat dock as a custom feature.


We fabricate several rail styles at our manufacturing plant. Railing is often used to approach a dock float system or can be incorporated into the dock system itself. To learn about our available rail style, view our dock resources.

Other Accessories

Enhance your dock with gates, aluminum benches, roof systems, knee bracing or dock section connections. As a custom dock builder, we can fabricate any aluminum structure you can design.

Internal Pile Guides

GatorDock's standard internal pile guide is made from a frame and four UHMW plastic rollers. There are upgrade options and protective design features available when choosing to design your floating dock with internal pile guides.

External Pile Guides

There are two main options when choosing to anchor your floating dock with external pile guides. First, an enclosed, four roller external pile guide provides smooth movement during water fluctuations. Next, a structural D-ring hoop with a UHMW plastic roller can be attached to the side of the floating aluminum frame. Several customizations of these standard options may also be available.

Other Anchoring

Floating docks can be physically anchored to land through a strong arm style system or anchored to the water's floor through chain or a Seaflex style system. Talk with one of our floating dock experts to discuss these other anchoring options and determine the best solution for your aluminum dock needs.

TimberGuard Piles

TimberGuard® is made from lightly treated Southern Yellow Pine encased in a polymer plastic. This application does not adhere to the wood allowing the piling to expand and contract during temperature changes without compromising the integrity of the casing. This system has no harmful effects on the water or surrounding environment yet still can be constructed like you would with wood pilings and beams.

UltraComposite Piles

Our composite pilings, also known as FRP piles, can also be used to support your floating dock system. Our composite piles are better alternative than steel piles as they will not rust and do not require toxic paintings or coatings.