How to Build a 4-Bow Bimini Frame
A bimini makes for a dependable addition to your boat when you need protection from the sun, rain and spray. Of course, a stable frame is the first step in creating a lasting bimini. With our Bimini Frame Kits, you can build a custom bimini that will serve you season after season. In this step-by-step video tutorial, we’re going to show you how to measure, cut and properly assemble your 4-bow Bimini Frame Kit from Sailrite.
Before starting your frame, there are a few important decisions you’ll need to make. First, conclude if you’ll be installing the bimini on the deck or rails of your boat, since this will determine the height. You’ll also need to choose the frame material, as Sailrite offers frame kits in both stainless steel and aluminum. Stainless steel is sturdier and better for saltwater, while aluminum is a lighter, less expensive option. In this video tutorial, we will be building a stainless steel 4-bow bimini frame. It features a maximum spread of 98 inches, a maximum height of 51 inches and a maximum width of 106 inches. However, if you find your boat does not require this much coverage, we recommend choosing a 2- or 3-bow Bimini Frame Kit. Sailrite offers the highest quality kits to help you create your own 2-, 3- and 4-bow bimini frames. Once your frame has been constructed, make sure to check out our “How to Make a 4-Bow Bimini Top” (300198XHT) video to complete your project!
With our help, you can adapt any Bimini Frame Kit and Bimini Skin Kit to fit the unique specifications of your vessel. You’ll also be able to customize everything from frame material to the color of the canvas. Our frame kits come with all of the hardware and components needed to assemble and install the frame. They are designed to pair with the Bimini Skin Kits, which include the durable Sunbrella Marine Grade Fabric and supplies needed to sew your bimini top after the frame is complete.
In this video, we built our bimini frame on a wooden platform on the floor instead of on the boat. This is a practical option if you don’t have your boat nearby or need protection from the elements and it allows full access to every angle of the frame. This video includes instructions and materials needed to make the wooden platform if you wish to follow our example. Choosing your Bimini Frame Kit and Bimini Skin Kit together from Sailrite guarantees you a custom, high-quality addition to your boat.
- Measuring for Bimini Frame – 0:35 min.
- Building Wooden Platform – 2:04 min.
- Bedding Hardware - 4:40 min.
- Drawing Scale Rendition – 7:48 min.
- Measuring and Cutting Tubing – 14:00 min.
- Assembling the Bows– 17:45 min.
- Mounting Primary and Secondary Bows – 22:47 min.
- Mounting Intermediate Bows – 25:45 min.
- Strapping Bows in Place – 27:50 min.
- Materials List – 35:00 min.
- 4-Bow Frame*
- Universal Deck Hinge (Stainless Steel)- Item #103120*
- SS Phillips Oval Head Screw #10 x 1-1/4”- Item #121251*
- Strap Eye Stainless Steel- Item #28221*
- SS Screw Flat Head 6 x 1/2”- Item #777040*
- Rivet Stainless Steel (for Bimini & Dodger Frames)- Item #103118*
- Eye End Stainless Steel 1”- Item #42101 or 7/8”- Item #207*
- Jaw Slide Stainless Steel 1”- Item #42102 or 7/8” - Item #33208*
- Fast Eye Snap Hook Stainless Steel 1”- Item #100532**
- Trimmable Butyl Tape 3/4”- Item #103689
- Rivet Stainless Steel 5/32” (for Marine Fittings)- Item #121165*
- Drill Steady Tubing Tool- Item #100967
- Filament Strapping Tape 3/4”- Item #103520*
- Tape Measure, Sharpie Marker, Grid Paper, Straight Edge, Yard Stick, Hacksaw, Spring Loaded Center Punch, Scissors, Drill, #11 Drill Bit, 1/8” Drill Bit, Countersink Bit, Allen Wrench 1/8”, Phillips Screw Driver, Slotted Screw Driver, 1/8” Allen Wrench, Hammer
*Included in Bimini Frame Kits
** Included in Bimini Skin Kits
Wooden Platform Build List:
- 2 x 4 Boards- 5 each at 10 foot
- Saw to Cut Boards (if required)
- Connector Plate 1-1/2” x 4”- 12 each
- Carpet Scraps (used to protect floor and for easy sliding of wooden platform)
- Stapler to secure carpet scraps