Truck loading docks are used at commercial locations to help easily and efficiently unload materials from the back of a truck, ranging from a pickup truck's bed to the cargo that is inside an 18-wheeler. These loading docks are made out of cement or wood and are built to a minimum height so that the truck can back up to the loading dock and the surfaces will be equal or at least near equal.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- 3-4 tons of Cement
- Wooden frame
- Heavy-duty masonry drill
- 5-10 industrial bolts
- Foam or rubber strips
Create a frame out of wood on the outside of the building or warehouse where you want the loading dock to be built. Make sure to built the wooden frame up to height of at least 4 to 5 feet, so that it will hold all of the concrete you will pour into it. Use heavy-duty pieces of wood that can hold up at least a couple tons of concrete.
Pour concrete into the frame you have constructed. Pour it to be at least 20 inches in height, as that is the minimum height of a step van, according to the Blue Giant website. However, if you are doing constant large deliveries from major 18-wheelers, build the loading dock up higher to around 48 inches in height.
Allow the cement to dry for as long as necessary. Remove the wooden frame after a few days to observe the bottom parts of the concrete and ensure that it has dried before you continue working on it.
Drill holes in the side of the dry cement and install long strips of metal, rubber or foam along the top edge of the loading dock. This will protect the loading dock from the heavy, damaging battering from the bumpers of trucks that come in contact with it. Without these bumpers, the top edge (which is the most important edge) of the loading will crack and fall apart, forcing you to spend time and money reconstructing it.
Tips and warnings
- Have a wide, flat piece of iron on hand on the loading dock. This iron can be slid over the edge of the dock and up or down into trucks that have beds that are higher or lower then the dock itself. This way, a huge differential in height can be overcome when moving items in and out of the truck.
- Install a concrete ramp that leads up to the loading dock.
- Do not try and use the loading dock or work on the loading dock until you are absolutely sure all the cement that has been poured to construct it has dried. If it has not dried, the loading dock may crack and fall apart, creating an expensive and inefficient headache.
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