Pontooner invents the Bimini Buddy

Published online: Apr 16, 2012 News PDB Staff
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Dan Lemons and his wife love their pontoon boat and love to share it with other people. When they have friends and family over for a day, they tend to huddle under the bimini to get out of the sun and heat. That makes the boat crowded under the bimini and unstable, with up to half of the boat not being utilized.

To eliminate these problems, Lemons decided to look into purchasing a permanent front bimini from the dealer. That would cost over $2,000, and required modifications to the boat and mooring cover. Other expenses would be for hauling the boat out of the water, transporting it to the shop and the time and cost to install it.

Not happy with this option, Lemons then considered aftermarket products. He looked in one of the aftermarket catalogs and found some options that provide shade; one was to purchase an aftermarket double bimini. Although it was cheaper, it would still require permanent installation and modifications to his boat and mooring cover. The other option would be to purchase one of the aftermarket shade products, but most of these advise that they are not for use while underway. Since Lemons and his family enjoy cruising so much, and still wanted shade while moving, he did not feel this was a good solution.

In short, Lemons wanted something with the benefits of a double bimini, but without the inherent unsightliness when it is not in use. He decided it was up to him to make this happen.

While Lemons' first attempts at building a cover were decent, they required some permanent attachments for quickly connecting the bimini frame to the boat deck and railing. The storage of the components required a larger area than he thought necessary. Although the early prototypes performed well, they just did not have the aesthetic look that Lemons felt went well with the pontoon boat.

Finally, he came upon what he believes is a perfect solution. With the innovative patent-pending Bimini Buddy, in a few minutes you can have the protection of a permanent double bimini installed easily when you want it. The patent-pending Quick Clamp with its cam action lever allows for easy, quick fastening and unfastening of the port and starboard supports without the use of tools. They provide high clamping forces with just one quick and easy movement. The Bimini Buddy does not require holes for mounting and is fully adjustable. The frame bow segments are held together with detent spring buttons that allow for fast assembly and disassembly. Placing the fabric top on is simple.

The Bimini Buddy is as sturdy as the factory bimini while underway. It is easily collapsed in minutes and stored under a lounge seat of the boat when not in use. This is a great feature, because you don't have to modify your existing mooring cover or buy a new one.

Lemons finds that he spends more time on the water because the Bimini Buddy protects everyone from the harmful rays of the sun. It keeps the seating area cooler and helps protect the interior of the boat from sun damage as well.

Because of the innovative Quick Clamp, Lemons is working on many new products. The uses of the Quick Clamp seem to be endless. For more information or to purchase the Bimini Buddy, visit www.thebiminibuddy.com.

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