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Thread: Ramp Surface

  1. #1

    Ramp Surface

    So I'm just in the planning stages of building a ramp to my front door for my girlfriend, and I'm curious what is typically (or best) used as a surface? Like 1x's or 2x's or something crosswise? Marine plywood? Coat with anything? Most of it won't be under cover and I'm in the Seattle area, and typically wood decks get that slick algae growth on them in pretty short order. I can imagine a ramp would get pretty slick pretty quick. Any tricks to like mixing sand into paint or something?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Plywood will get _extremely_ slippery when wet, and must be coated with something non-slip.
    Try an internet search for non-slip paint.
    As you say, you could simply mix some sand into paint. A boating shop might have ideas about quantity of sand, and/or have something already mixed.
    A quick solution, although not very pretty, is to nail asphalt shingles on the ramp - that's what I did, 'cause I had a pile of the stuff left over.

  3. #3
    Senior Member jschism's Avatar
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    a roll of wire mesh can be nailed down over wood. treated lumber shouldn't get moldy if treated properly. other choice would be to purchase an aluminum ramp.

  4. #4
    Senior Member TomRL's Avatar
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    I have used ramps from http://www.amramp.com/. They're not the cheapest solution and they will need painting periodically, but you'll not slip on that surface.
    Tom

    "Blessed are the pessimists, for they hath made backups." Exasperated 20:12

  5. #5
    you can get the stuff they use for undercoating trucks or a type of truck bedliner this would work great

  6. #6
    WHy not just pour a nice concrete ramp? and tile it? that would be prettier and less "temporary"..and think what that would say to your gf
    "The trick is in what one emphasizes. We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves happy. The amount of work is the same.” ~Carlos Castaneda

  7. #7
    Composite deck materials like Trex and Timbertech have a "wood grain"for slip resistance and they are mold and mildew resistant, no/low maintenance, and highly durable. These materials are used in national park and marina applications. My outdoor ramp in our back garden is Trex (Picture of my back garden deck attached below and a closeup of the surface).

    Picture of Wheelchair Ramp about 2/3 down the page:
    http://www.woodwiseconstruction.com/ramps.html

    Drawings and instructions for a wheelchair ramp using Trex:
    http://www.lowes.com/cd_Build+a+Whee...mp_1284487683_

    Plans and specifications:
    http://www.ncsu.edu/ncsu/design/cud/...et296final.pdf

    More project pictures (scroll down about half the page):
    http://www.pgbuildersandpotomacservi...dex.php?p=1_15

  8. #8
    Senior Member jschism's Avatar
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    i have a composite deck and part is always shaded. composite decks are NOT maintenance free, they need to be washed or the dirt that collects on it will get "moldy". still saves a step by not having to treat it. I've never had any problem with either the plain treated lumber or the composite.

  9. #9
    It is hot and rainy here. Outdoor carpet makes a good ramp cover over wood. Some people use it on decks.
    You will find a guide to preserving shoulder function @
    http://www.rstce.pitt.edu/RSTCE_Reso...imb_Injury.pdf

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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by sherocksandsherolls View Post
    WHy not just pour a nice concrete ramp? and tile it? that would be prettier and less "temporary"..and think what that would say to your gf
    It think it would be great to do it out of concrete, but with a quick back of a napkin, I think it would take an unreasonable amount of concrete - on the order of 50 cubic yards. The issues is the house is on a side slope and with the door in the middle of the front of the house, so the ramp has to go the downhill direction first and then back towards the up hill direction where the driveway is. So the porch starts off like 3ft above the ground, but ramp will go down like 1ft vertical in one direction, but ends up like 10ft off the ground, due to the hillside, before going back the other direction and dropping the the other 2ft and meeting the ground near the driveway.

    But yeah I'm sure she would really enjoy the sentiment involved with a concrete ramp, just it would kind of end up looking much more massive than it needs to be.

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