WorkFloat, a folding work platform that won the Spirit of Innovation Award at Seawork 2019, is planning an impressive presence for this year’s show.

As well as exhibiting WorkFloat, their folding Cat 5 coded Workboat that tows behind a 4x4 or slides into a shipping container, they have also chosen Seawork to officially launch a new modular pontoon product they have developed called ScaffFloat®. Toby Budd, Founder and Director said: ‘​’Last year we worked with Dehns, a specialist patent firm in Bristol, who have been helping us with what we feel is a strong IP and patent claim for ScaffFloat. Now this process is complete, and we have built and tested a range of prototypes, we are ready to start taking bookings and speak to potential delivery partners’’.

ScaffFloat is a set of large, tough, plastic floats (0.6m3 to 1.5m3) that have been specifically designed to integrate with standard scaffolding parts. The system allows the ScaffFloat team to build a range of very versatile structural pontoons and rafts that come as standard with boarded sides, a tough wooden deck, handrails and cleats. The product is well suited to provide temporary flotation for commercial activity on inland, estuary, harbour and nearshore waters.

As well as standard flat pontoons that provide access for workers, equipment and plant; the extremely versatile nature of scaffolding allows you to easily build up, or down, from the floating structure. Examples include structures like staging, roofing, lifting a-frames or gantry cranes, moon pools and spud legs.

ScaffFloat has been developed to bridge a gap in the pontoon hire market between large metal boxes that connect together (Combifloat, Nato pontoons etc.) and plastic modular pontoons that wobble and flex. Whilst it does not come close to the strength and high deadweights of the metal boxes, it does have significantly more structure and deck load capability than modular plastic pontoons.

​The team are following a hire-only business model to help them maintain control over the product’s use. They consider safety and certification as a key selling point and want to ensure that ScaffFloat is built, maintained and used correctly. To do this they have developed a simple and transparent pricing structure based on a price per square metre, per day. This starts at £6 for short term hire, and drops to £1 for longer term hire. As an example, an 8 x 6m pontoon, with a 48m2 deck area, 700mm freeboard, 15ton deadweight, wood deck, handrails, cleats and mooring lines would cost £288 a day on a one week hire, or £48 a day on a twelve-month hire.

​The ScaffFloat team only need to ship the floats and longitudinal lattice beam to site, with the heavy steel tubes, couplers and deck boards hired locally. The build can take place on a slipway or beach on a single tide, on a riverbank and be slid in the water, or on the quayside and be craned in. A LWB van and flatbed trailer can carry enough floats and lattice beam to build a 16m x 6.5m pontoon barge with a 35 ton deadweight in the UK. Or a 40ft container can carry enough floats, beam, truss, tubes, boards and couplers to provide an overseas build kit for a 20m x 10m drill barge, with moon pool, gantry crane, propulsion, safety equipment, anchors, tender, loading ramps and spud legs.

Like WorkFloat, uses for ScaffFloat span several sectors including survey, drilling, geotechnical, renewables, oil & gas, civils, events, disaster relief, access and working at height. ​As standard, ScaffFloat comes with structural calculations, method statements and importantly a stability book (including a range of common load scenarios - scaffold tower, cherry picker, gantry crane etc). The company is also looking to offer maritime certification as an optional extra where the client is looking for third party validation. ​As well as delivering projects themselves, the team are also looking for delivery partners who will help install ScaffFloat pontoons.

Visit Workfloat at Seawork on vessel berth VA56