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Old 07-12-2020, 07:21   #1
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Alternative Bimini Top

Hi all

Thinking about my Bimini top. South Florida is tough on canvas and the threading on my 3 year old Bimini is coming unraveled everywhere. The zippers have been mostly inoperable since forever.. The cloth looks raggedy. I didn’t skimp on the purchase, and I used a “Florida specialist” to fabricate it, but just the same after just over there years it looks beat.

Looking at the fishing boats and their rigid fiberglass got me thinking. Home Depot sells 4x8 1/16 inch flexible plastic panels

Two sheets and some trimming and some adhesive and it seems as though it is flexible enough to bend with the bows.

Stainless steel grommets for affixing

This seems too easy, and since I don’t see any out here, I wonder what I’m missing. The total cost of this gamble is circa 100 dollars, so it’s not the end of the world if I try and fail, but before I do I am asking for any input from the wisdom of the board.

Thanks, in advance, for your thoughts.
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Old 07-12-2020, 08:28   #2
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Re: Alternative Bimini Top

As long as it's not too difficult to remove and stow before the next hurricane...Fabric is a bit easier to handle when storms are approaching.
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Old 07-12-2020, 08:30   #3
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Re: Alternative Bimini Top

I built a hard bimini using the HD panels as skins with a foam core. It has withstood 50 knot winds and makes a great place to mount solar panels.
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Old 07-12-2020, 08:52   #4
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Re: Alternative Bimini Top

I almost went that way as I had similar issues with my then not too old bimini fabric. But decided on looking for a used hard top so save time and effort. It worked out fine, got one that fit perfectly for under $500. As opposed to $3-5K and more for making new one. Would recommend you start there and then if you don't find one that fits explore the Home Depot alternative.

I did not take hurricanes into consideration as I'm im New England. No sense in adjusting to once in 30-50 years event as opposed to an annual threat. But the windage surprisingly is minimal or at least much less than I was expecting.
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Old 07-12-2020, 15:15   #5
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Re: Alternative Bimini Top

Typhoons (hurricanes for you westerners) are always foremost in our planning, as supertyphoons with winds >200 knots are a regular occurrence for us. Kind of like Southern Florida these days...
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