Hello everyone, I found this site while doing some research for a new pool I intend to install in the spring next year. I'm in the early planning stages and this forum seems like a pretty good resource! I'm hoping to find some help from any Michiganders, specifically in the south eastern part of the state. I'm pretty much committed to going the OB route with as much DIY as possible.
***IF YOU'RE NOT INTERESTED IN MY HISTORY OR BACKGROUND, PLEASE SKIP TO THE LAST PARAGRAPH***
I think its safe to say I'm pretty handy, I have some construction experience helping my parents build their own home which they GC'ed and did a lot of DIY. With help from some friends and family, we framed the house, roofed it, laid flooring, and did the finish carpentry work ourselves and subcontracted the rest. I also have a mechanical engineering degree which hopefully counts for something. Don't get me wrong, I know full well I haven't swallowed all the marbles and even with my experience, GC'ing a pool is definitely intimidating! So thats a little bit about my background.
So two years ago, my wife and I decided we wanted a pool. We met with several pool builders and selected a pool shape and type (vinyl). We even hired a landscape designer to draw up a comprehensive plan for the entire property with the proposed pool so that we could make smart decisions during construction that would accommodate any future plans. We had all of the financing lined up when we made the wise but difficult decision to pay off some debt first, so we put the pool on hold. Cut to today, and I'm ready to start again but with a different perspective and realization that we could be saving a significant amount of money or at least getting better value by being my own GC.
So at this point I'm starting to put together budgets, gathering information about pool kits and generally learning as much as possible. I've even purchased a copy of the Michigan building codes. Now, I mentioned I wanted to do as much DIY as possible, but I don't think excavation is one of them (nor is concrete finishing). Although I actually do have experience running bobcats, backhoes and excavators, that experience does not include the precision that I think is necessary for this project. And even though I'm actually pretty confident that I could do it, it wouldn't be as economical as hiring a pro...which leads me (finally I know, sorry for long post) to my first question. I have tried in vain to contact several excavators to meet with me, but NO ONE is returning my calls! I would love to hear form anyone in the SE Michigan area (specifically Livingston county) that has any experience building their own pool and/or could recommend an excavator. Of course I welcome any other help, guidance or tips that anyone is kind enough to offer. Thanks in advance, I look forward to sharing my journey with the community!