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Thread: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

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    Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Hi Everyone - We are looking to build next year, and our plans right now call for a 18 x 34 rectangle shaped vinyl liner pool. What we can't decide on is the best depth for the pool. Right now we are thinking of a 3.5ft shallow end and a 7ft deep end. We won't be having a diving board, but we wanted something deep enough in the deep end so the kids (and adults!) can jump in feet first safely.

    I've read where the maximum slope to the deep end cannot exceed a 1:3 ratio (1 ft down for every 3 ft in length). So I've kept that in mind in our plans.

    The attached photo shows visually what we are thinking. In a nutshell, it starts at 3.5 feet for the first 6 feet in length, then gently slopes down to 4.5 feet over a 7 foot span (1:7 ratio). Then it stays flat at 4.5 feet for the next 7 feet before starting the steeper decline (1:3 ratio) to get to 7 feet deep.

    [attachment=0:2oni50hl]pool_depth.jpg[/attachment:2oni50hl]

    There are no stairs to worry about... the stairs would be off to the side of the shallow end forming an L shaped pool.

    We would appreciate any feedback you may have on:

    1) the depth ranges in general. Is 3.5ft to 7.0ft a good usable plan?
    2) the slopes. Will the first gentle slope be okay for kids so they don't slide down?
    3) do other pools have the 3 flat depth sections separated by 2 sloping sections? Or do most just do 1 gradual slope from the shallow to the deep end?

    Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    20k Gallon IG Vinyl Pool - 19 x 34 Rectangle - 3ft to 6ft depths

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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    My 16 x 33 goes from 3 to 6 max. Difference is that I have greacian corner and benches in the deep end corner. not easy to walk up, but easy to navigate Flat side down to bottow would make IMHO a bit of a cleaning issue. Smooth slopes transitions seem to work best for me. Hope that helps!
    Sami
    16,000 IG, SWG, 175 sq. ft. cartridge, 1.5 hp pump, vinyl, Charlotte NC
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    Ocean Railroader's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    There was a pool in Lancaster Pennsyvinia I remember swimming in that fitted these dementions it was a big old 1960's cement pool. It was about 30 feet long and 18 feet wide. the shallow end was ten feet long and it started out at 3.5 feet deep and then tapered off to four feet deep. Then it had a transition zone that was eight feet long where it dropped from four feet down into five and six. After that the pool had a thing on it called the abyss where it had a sudden drop down from six feet past seven and down into a maximum depth of nine feet. The old 1960's pool used to have a diving board at one time but they took it out a long time ago leaving behind the nine foot deep end.

    If I where to build my own pool based off of this old pool which is one of my favorite pools I would make the shallow end part longer by eight ten feet but keep the other aspects of the pool.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Personally I don't feel comfortable with the idea of anyone jumping feet first into water less than 8 feet deep (8.5 or 9 is better), even without a diving board. also I can tell you from experience that when people are jumping in from the side, doing cannon balls, etc. they can often hit the water 6 or 7 feet from the edge of the water, this would not be a problem if they were jumping in to your design from the sides, but could be an accident waiting to happen if they jumped from the end and landed in 4 or 5 feet of water.

    Ike

    p.s. I would also suggest considering putting a 6 inch wide walking ledge around the deep end at 4.5 feet or less.
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    bof's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Hi
    My pool is 40 Ft X 13 Ft, the shallow end is just under 3 Ft deep for 6 Ft and then one slope 24 Ft and then 7 Ft deep for 10 FT. I have had children and adults use this last summer, and the feed back from the adults was the slope too steep for as you walk out to the shallow it can be slippy. Also the shallow is too shallow if you want to swim lengths as you tend to touch the bottom. On the other hand the kids thought the shallow was great. I had children jumping in the shallow end and they were OK with this because they could touch the ground and felt safe. Any pool is an accident to happen, You just have to be aware of the pitfalls. Do not let the worry of accidents put you off enjoying the pool. If an adult does a bomb in the shallow end then take the drink off them. lol. I have concerns about a walking edge, if someone drops in at the side will they hit it or even scrape an ankle leg??
    Living in Cyprus
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Put depth marker tiles in the deck at each transition depth so visitors know the depth. As a builder I would recommend that the deepest you go without a board is 6'.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
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    cbink's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1
    Personally I don't feel comfortable with the idea of anyone jumping feet first into water less than 8 feet deep (8.5 or 9 is better), even without a diving board. also I can tell you from experience that when people are jumping in from the side, doing cannon balls, etc. they can often hit the water 6 or 7 feet from the edge of the water, this would not be a problem if they were jumping in to your design from the sides, but could be an accident waiting to happen if they jumped from the end and landed in 4 or 5 feet of water.

    Ike

    p.s. I would also suggest considering putting a 6 inch wide walking ledge around the deep end at 4.5 feet or less.
    Feet first? I would say 8' was more than enough to be jumping into feet first.

    Quote Originally Posted by swimcmp
    Put depth marker tiles in the deck at each transition depth so visitors know the depth. As a builder I would recommend that the deepest you go without a board is 6'.
    Can I ask why you recommend this?

    Mine was designed to be 7' and is a little over that. Personally, if I were doing it again, I'd probably go a little deeper, though to do that I would want to make the pool a little longer. Mines' 38' x 24' and is 3.5' - 7'. The main reason I would go deeper is to prevent adults from hitting the bottom when jumping off the top of my waterfall (which is 5'). I don't have my transition lengths and depths to-hand but I definitely wouldn't want my deep end any shorter than it is. I'd guess it was 12' before it starts to transition - that gets eaten up pretty quickly on a dive.
    38'x24' freeform IG gunite, 26k gallons, 3.5' - 7'
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    What I deal with is having to get liner manufacturers to build the vinyl liner that way. It is hard for them to do that when they look at the liability factor. They would much rather have either 8' plus or 6' or shallower. 7' of water is deceiving and many people will try to dive at that depth and that is just flat out dangerous. To protect yourself make sure you have depth markers showing that the water is not a diving depth.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Thanks for the feedback everyone! We were debating between 6 ft or 7 ft for the deep end, and you guys made some good points. Neither depth would be safe for diving, and both depths would be good for swimming and be deep enough to fill like you're fully submerged. I think we'll plan on doing the 6 ft deep end instead of the 7. This will also allow us to have a slightly larger shallow end and less steep slopes.

    [attachment=0:2or2w3cy]pool_depth_2.jpg[/attachment:2or2w3cy]

    The first slope is now a 1:8 ratio, and the second slope a 1:4.6 ratio. I don't mind if the second slope is steeper because that's going from 4.5ft to 6.0 ft and younger kids won't be down that far to begin with. I'm hoping that the first slope is gentle enough that the kids wouldn't slip.

    I also like the idea for the ledge. We are actually thinking of having one span the entire length of the pool on one side. Probably would be 15-18 inches deep, and 15 inches wide. Hopefully with vinyl there would be a way to add a different color or at least a border along the edge of the ledge to make it obvious it were there and keep people from jumping off and hurting themselves. Could anyone with experience in vinyl liners answer this for me?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    20k Gallon IG Vinyl Pool - 19 x 34 Rectangle - 3ft to 6ft depths

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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Latham offers a white textured vinyl that you could do that with and am sure that other manufacturers will do a seating ledge the same way.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
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    Re: Pool Depth Design - Feedback Requested!

    Look good, I like the idea of two slopes.
    Living in Cyprus
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    I thought I saw the light at the end of the tunnel but it was just some PERSON with a torch walking toward me.
    I started out in life with nothing and I still have most of it left.

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