Barge Boat Manufacturers in South Africa

A barge boat is primarily known as a working boat, usually has a flat bottom with a shallow draft and a large open deck used to load/unload cargo.  But if you live along a water way with mild conditions like the Vaal River reservoir, a barge has a completely different purpose.  For us, it was the ultimate booze cruiser.  In the early 90’s weekend camp outs at the Vaal were a must (although we don’t think that has changed much!)  Our crowd got bigger than our 4 man Raven Wildcat, we had to start thinking bigger.  We built our first 6m barge in 1990.  Drums for floatation with a steel (double deck) frame.  Plated sides, upholstered benches, car radio with the must have pioneer speakers and a 60hp Mercury Bigfoot, pretty much all you needed.  You could amber along the river for an entire day with your packed fishing gear, CD pouch, cooler box and braai pack.  Some excursions lasted an entire weekend 🙂


We have designed and manufactured many barges since then, not just for the Vaal River but around South Africa.  They have progressively gotten bigger, more upmarket and used for private and commercial applications.  But even with the new advanced technology like fiberglass moulding, solar power and hydraulic steering that make for a more twenty first century boating experience, the simple barge will always remain the back bone of our designs.

Our barges are completely custom manufactured offering client’s choices on colour scheme, interior amenities and floor plans.  Your manufactured barge will not only be one of a kind in South Africa, it will reflect your personality.

Different barges we have manufactured in South Africa?

  • 6m – 9m river barges
  • V hull Deck boats
  • Refurbished lifeboats and classic (retro) boats
  • Cabin boats
  • 9m – 18m cruising houseboats
  • 40-120 seater ferry/function barge
  • 14m floating houses

Why choose us to manufacture your barge?

We are essentially river rats, we live, work and play on the water.  We have all the expertise to advise you on the most suitable barge for your needs.  We are registered with SAMSA, all our barges go through stringent SAMSA testing throughout the manufacture process.  Our designs and workmanship is the best in South Africa.  To see for you self, set up a site viewing of our many boats along the Vaal in Vanderbijlpark.  You can chat to the team about your ideas and plans and we can work around your budget.  You can call Chase on 082 523 1999 or mail us at

To view our dedicated barge manufacturing website, click at the Shelter Marine link below

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