People often confuse word meanings.
Take “metaphor” and “simile” for example. If you were trying to describe a large and strong man, a metaphor would be “the man is a mountain” whereas a simile would be “the man is like a mountain”.
Though adding “like” or “as” makes the comparison a simile, most people would still refer to the later example as a metaphor.
And the same could be said for dock boards and dock plates. Though these two items are similar in design and purpose, and though the words are often used interchangeably, they have two distinct meanings.
What is the Difference between a Dock Board and a Dock Plate?
First let’s start with their similarities. Both dock boards and dock ramps are metal “bridges” designed to cover gaps between loading ramps and loading docks. They are portable, allowing users to move them out of the way when they’re not needed or swamp them out.
To describe the differences between these two items, it’s best to breakdown what each of them are and what purpose they serve.
What is a Dock Board?
Dock boards are heavy duty metal pieces of equipment designed with power equipment in mind. These portable boards feature steel side curbs to prevent forklifts from rolling off the edges. Because of their ability to support heavy loads, dock boards are more difficult to move, requiring either a forklift or multiple workers to relocate them.
What is a Dock Plate?
Though very similar to a dock board, a dock plate is designed for carts and pallet jacks. Because it doesn’t bear as heavy of loads, a dock plate can often be easily moved by a single worker.
Which do I Need?
There’s a good chance you’ll want both. If you’re using power equipment such as a forklift, you’ll need a dock board for sure. While a dock board could be used for all your bridging needs, dock plates provide a quick, mobile solution that’s hard to beat.
Do you use dock board and dock plate interchangeably? What are some other names you’ve heard for these items?