Building Products Plus has been supplying vinyl bulkhead materials in Texas, Louisiana, and all along the Gulf Coast for over a decade. Our experienced project consultants are happy to help you select the best materials for your project and location and your bulkhead materials will be delivered ready to build. Below is a simple breakdown of the parts of a vinyl bulkhead including:
- Vinyl Sheet Pilings
- Top Cap
- Tie Back System
Help is available if you need it. Call (800) 816-0335 or contact us online to ask about vinyl bulkhead materials.
Vinyl Sheet Pilings
Designed to perform simultaneously as structural support and a wall, vinyl sheet pilings have proven themselves as a great advancement in bulkhead construction technology. They are strong, long-lasting, and affordable.
Comparing Treated Wood, Steel, and Vinyl Bulkhead Materials
Wood bulkheads are excellent for small residential and commercial applications but decay more rapidly than other materials and are impractical for tall walls.
Steel sheet pilings are excellent for almost any size bulkheads, especially very large walls, but are expensive and tend to rust – especially when used along shorelines where the runoff water may contain fertilizers (common in the Gulf Coast).
Vinyl sheet pilings are an excellent mid-point as they allow anyone to cost-effectively build a small, medium, or large bulkhead that is strong, long-lasting, and attractive.
Choosing Vinyl Sheet Pilings
Select your vinyl sheet pilings based on your wall’s size, load requirements, location, and other considerations such as how it will be used.
Call an experienced project consultant free at (800) 816-0335 to discuss the best materials for your vinyl bulkhead.
Wales (or “Waler”)
Wales are treated timbers that reinforce your entire vinyl bulkhead and keep it straight. You willneed two wales for your bulkhead – one in front and one in back. The front wale is traditionally larger than the back wale (or “backboard”) and wales should be the longest lengths available (20′ or 24′ is common). Common dimensions for the front wale include:
- 4×6 (usually S4S)
- 6×6 (full rough)
- 2×8 (S4S or full rough)
- 3×8 (S4S or full rough)
- 4×8 (S4S or full rough)
Larger wales are common on bulkheads with high load requirements and very tall bulkhead designs often call for a second wale at some point below the top wale. We supply any custom sizes wales you might need.
The back wale is usually made of a 2x board of the same width as the front wale since the front wale typically sustains most of the load. For instance, a 4×8 front wale will probably be paired with a 2×8 back wale.
Bulkhead Top Cap
The top cap is the board that covers the top of the bulkhead along its length. It is largely aesthetic but offers minimal protection to the wales and exposed hardware. A top cap makes an excellent place to sit or stand while fishing or relaxing.
The most common top cap consists of a 2×12 or 2×15 laid length-wise along the top of the bulkhead and nailed or screwed to the tops of the wales. Another common and attractive top cap method is to essentially “deck” the top of the bulkhead with 16″ or 20″ pieces of 2×6 decking nailed or screwed perpendicular to the wales.
The longest lasting bulkhead top caps are made of polymer coated treated wood.
The purpose of your bulkhead’s tie-back system is to prevent the bulkhead from collapsing forward (towards the low side) under an exceptional load. The basic tie-back system consists of an anchor component placed behind the wall and a tie-back component to attach the wall to the anchor.
There are a variety of options for bulkhead anchors. We recommend treated wood deadmen as they are long-lasting, easy to handle during construction, and inexpensive. Deadmen are usually made of thick treated wood posts or cut-off poles approximately 5 inches or more in thickness and 4 feet or longer, depending on the size of the wall being supported. They are buried below the ground behind the bulkhead and connected to the wall with a tie-rod or other connecting component.
Your bulkhead should be attached to the deadmen with strong galvanized tie-rods and bolts. Tie rods from Building Products Plus are threaded on both ends and all-thread is available as well. Threading on both ends makes construction and post-construction adjustments easy.
We supply all the galvanized and stainless hardware you will need for your vinyl bulkhead including:
- Nails & Spikes
- Lag Screws (galvanized and stainless)
- Carriage Bolts & Timber Bolts
- Nuts, Washers, and Dock Washers
To make things easier for you, we offer bulkhead fastener kits. Ask your project consultant when you call (800) 816-0335.
Ordering Made Easy
You will get your price quotes and vinyl bulkhead materials faster if you know the following dimensions and information before you call:
- Length of Wall (horizontal length)
- Height of Wall from Mudline (bottom of water) to Top of Wall
- Type of Soil (sandy, gravel, rocky, clay, mud, etc)
- Slope of Ground Behind Wall (dry side)
- Wave Action on Water Side (none, light, heavy, etc)
Delivered Ready to Build
Because Building Products Plus supplies everything you need, your vinyl bulkhead materials can be delivered ready to build. If your bulkhead will be built by a contractor or other construction professional we are happy to work directly with them to arrange quantities, delivery, and other planning.