Progress?

It has been a while, with sporadic work being done intermittently enough that once something finally happens, it’s not exciting, just less frustrating.

We got a surprise call from the sales guy today, inquiring about our cover color selection because he still hadn’t ordered the actual cover for our automatic pool cover.

That’s right, we have had a big, water filled hole in the back yard since mid June. We also still have big gaps in the fence. The epitome of safety,  and the pool company hasn’t even ordered the cover.
Since the summer has been cool, the water temperature hasn’t been very pleasant. Something that a cover would also have helped with.
As of today, we have most of the equipment hooked up, apart from the salt water generator, which means we are still chlorinating the pool manually.

But let’s back up and take things in order:

 

After the flurry of having the pool set, things slowed down. A lot. As in we didn’t see anyone from June 17th until July 18th. However we did get our pavers delivered on July 5th, and got to work laying the upper patio area.

10 pallets of field pavers and one pallet of gray brick for the soldier course. With the upper patio finished we almost 4 full pallets of field pavers left and 2/3 of the brick.
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These two picture shows how things were stalled from mid June to mid July. We had the PVC pipes neatly stacked. We had the pool equipment on the pad ready to be hooked up. And then a whole lot of nothing.

 

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After recruiting a new sub contracting electrician to come install a sub panel and electric box during the second half of June we were hoping to get things rolling again.
At least get the pump hooked up so we could filter the water…

It took until July 18th(!) for anything to happen whatsoever.

 

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Ta-da! It took less than 2 hours to hook up the pipes to the pool pump. 
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The equipment pad is not the sturdiest thing I’ve ever seen, but look!  Filter closest to the camera, followed by pump and heater. The electrical box is on the wall.

Finally the pool was usable!


 

On August 1st they were going to build the moulds for the concrete wrap only to realize that one side of the pool was bowing in.
Since the tracks for the autocover needed to be installed on the pool edge, to be incorporated into the pool wrap, this was not awesome.

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The chains, turnbuckles and anchors putting tension on the bowed pool side.
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There is dirt everywhere, but at least the pool is clean!

On August 7th the mould building actually happened

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A plywood box around the autocover hideout, and tracks in place.
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Rebar, copper wire (ground) and plenty of crushed limestone. Note the metal stakes holding the boards in place. Those things hurt.

 

The concrete wrap around the pool was finally poured on August 23, after an interesting obstacle course made up of of bare rebar and concrete moulds surrounded the pool for two and a half weeks prior.

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The concrete was tinted a light tan colour (well, when dry, it looks not so light here), and they used a chestnut release. The release is the purplish powder they put on the concrete before the stamps are pressed on, and will be a darker tone in the cracks and crevices.

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Bubblegum scented release in the sprayer gets applied to the vertical mould forming the coping of the pool.
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This is how it looked like for a day until they came back and rinsed off the release.
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Other end of the pool. And some dirt and gravel in the water.
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Another angle.

The release was washed off the day after, and the moulds were removed. The day after that the concrete was sealed, bringing out the final colour.

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I can live with this, the rebar is gone 😉

 

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Dory (pool robot with amusingly erratic algorithm making her seem lost more often than not) doing her thing.

 

Today , August 29th, lots of things happened. The trench was backfilled, and the area for the lower patio and fire pit was dug out. Concrete moulds were placed and crushed limestone base installed.
Enough to warrant a blog update even!

 

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Trench backfill.

We also got the stairs rearranged, to make up for the elevation change due to new moulds being used for the pool wrap. We had the option of three steps, with the lower just having a 2 inch step down to the pool deck, or two steps and some innovative solutions for the front of the stairs. I think there will be about an inch of a slightly higher step than the 6-8 inches of the rest of the natural sandstone slabs.

 

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Crushed limestone going in first.
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Placing the last stair stone. The slabs are not level and square, so getting things to be level enough without toe traps wasn’t easy.
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Digging out for the lower patio. Notice the stairs now are four slabs wide!

 

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Limestone base and the beginning of the last concrete form.

 

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Lower patio area, with circular hole for the fire pit. Crackling fires good, exploding concrete bad.
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Placing the big boulder back to the far side of the stairs involved the backhoe and a chain.
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We ended up with two stair slabs extra, since one of the original nine wasn’t deep enough and the replacement wasn’t needed once we decided on the change to the stairs. 4 wide, 2 high, vs 3 wide and 3 high. So we’re trying to fix the approach from the gate to the patio. It’s a work in progress.

 

Supposedly we will have concrete coming on Saturday, September 2nd, weather willing.
But with how the project has been going  I really wouldn’t bet money on it…

 

 

 

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