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Thread: New Construction in NJ - A lot of questions

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    New Construction in NJ - A lot of questions

    photo (4).jpgGetAttachment[4].jpgGetAttachment[3].jpgGetAttachment[2].jpg

    My PB has dug the pool and laid down steel and is getting ready to Gunite. Before he does the Gunite I have the following questions:


    1. I understand that steel is usually lifted about 3 inches from the ground. He has done this with most of my pool, but I have a 140 square foot Sun Shelf where the Steel is lifted 10 inches above the ground. I am having the water 8 inches deep there, which means he will have to pour 14 inches of Gunite on the Sunshelf (10 inches of which will be below the Steel and 4 inches of which will be above it). It was my understanding (from what I have read) that the steel should be in between the Gunite and am wondering if having the Steel 4 inches below the top and 10 inches above the bottom of the Gunite is problematic. The PB says no, but they have been fixing a lot of mistakes and I'm not sure if they just don't want to be bothered adding dirt to the SunShelf so that the top and bottom of the Gunite would be equidistant from the steel. They plan to pour pretty quickly so please advise.

    2. I have a 25 foot ledge on the back of the Pool that will have Rocks on it. They have 1/2 inch REBAR coming up that wall and then bend the steel 90 degrees (for about 10 inches) toward the end of the Pool. But in some places when they bend the steel 90 degrees it doesn't reach all the way to the end of the pool (they are missing about 3 or 4 inches). Should I insist that they tie another piece of REBAR to the pieces that don't go all the way to the end?

    3. I am building a Grotto (see attached picture) that will have rocks around it and be about 4 feet high. The PB had stated in correspondence that the "grotto walls would be beefed up with 1/2 inch steel and a double curtain of steel #3 Rebar where it protrudes past the pool elevation". However, the construction plans failed to address this and initially they only put 3/8 REBAR on the Grotto walls and floor and laid it 12 by 12. When I told them it obviously wasn't sufficient, they came back and put some 1/2 inch REBAR across the walls. My first question is: Should the steel coming up the walls and bending 90 degrees toward the wall have been 1/2 inch REBAR and should I make them add more steel there. Also, what did PB mean when he said "double curtain"? And what did he mean when he said "protrudes past the pool elevation"? On the Ledges, they have 1/2 inch REBAR coming up the walls and bending 90 degrees toward the end of the Pool, so I figure they should have done that in the Grotto as well, but welcome any advice.

    4. In my Shallow end, they put 3/8 steel 12 by 12 on the Floor and this is what the contract called for. Would it make any sense for me to purchase at Home Depot 18 pieces of 20 feet of 1/2 REBAR and lay them down myself on the shallow end to make it 6 by 6? I'm not very handy but it seems easy enough. Obviously the 12 by 12 in shallow end must pass Code, but any thoughts on whether the additional cost (about $200) would be worth it?

    5. After they dug, I told the PB that I thought the portion of the Pool had the wrong depth (it was supposed to be 7 feet at the start of the Grotto). They delayed doing steel the next day and the PB came out and measured and told me it was correct. I wasn't home and before I could check again the next morning they started laying the steel. After they had laid all of the steel on the floor, I had their steel guys measure the depth and it was 6 feet ( not seven feet). So the PB had his guys come back out dig through the steel to get the right depth. Prior to the Steel they had put rocks down on the Pool floor, but when they had to dig through the steel, all the rocks in that location were lost and the pool just had dirt (or mud) there. See attached picture. My question is whether they need to put more rocks down. The Supervisor said no, that the rocks were only there to help the steel guys put the steel down (so they wouldn't be stepping in mud). Is this true, or should the rocks be put down in the spot where they were lost?


    Thanks in advance for any advice you can give me. I tried to upload some pictures but am not sure if it is working.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    I suspect you are overthinking this. Getting depths wrong is common enough, but making structural errors is fairly rare.

    1) Think of the deeper gunite as fill rather than gunite. What matters is that the rebar be in the middle of the outer 8" of gunite (near the water), the gunite between that and the ground is not structural.

    2) Unclear without better pictures, but I suspect this will be alright. I expect there be an expansion joint between the pool shell and the ledge, thus the gap, but I may be visualizing what is going on incorrectly.

    3) Impossible to say without enginerring drawings. Places that support heavy stones need more rebar, but the details vary greatly depending on the configuration. Protrudes past the pool elevation means the rebate should come up the pool wall and up into the grotto wall. Double curtain means two parallel planes of rebar.

    4) It is unlikely that would help anything. Rebar thickness required depends on the soil conditions, and your builder should be well versed in that is required in your area. Going thicker than what is required makes little difference.

    5) Gravel is sometimes required outside the shell for proper soil drainage, but that depends on soil conditions. Sometimes it is used as they describe, just to get a reasonably safe work surface.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    photo8.jpg

    Thanks a lot. On number 2, the gap is actually a mistake. The attached pictuyre may show it better, but essentially they ahve REBAR coming up the wall, and bent 90 degrees until it reached the end of the Pool. All of this REBAR reaches the end except two pieces which fall short. Thus, they were trying to reach the end, but in two occasions seem to have mesded up. I'm just not sure if this is significant.

    On Number 3, are you suggesting that their language means that they shiould have two pieces of 3/8 REBAR coming up the pool wall and continuing over the base of the Grotto and then up the back wall of the Grotto?
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Quote Originally Posted by grottoguy View Post
    All of this REBAR reaches the end except two pieces which fall short. Thus, they were trying to reach the end, but in two occasions seem to have mesded up. I'm just not sure if this is significant.
    It is not significant and will not negatively impact the performance of your bond beam.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    We really need to see your plans to answer these questions.

    Your question re the short rebar not connecting into the bond beam. While I have my doubts that it is significant I would need to see the plans to definitively say yes or no. Is this near the grotto? Is it in the deep end? I would explain my concerns to the PB.

    Double curtain as Jason explained above means two layers of rebar. Usually a couple of inches apart.

    It sounds like they are tying your grotto into the pool. That is ok. It just means they have to include the steel to make sure they stay together as one. I would need the plans and some really good picture to tell if they have done it according to plan and in a way that makes sense.

    I will say that the rebar work I see looks better than average.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    My waterfall pump was supposed to be three inch piping and the PB was going to give me two side drains (i.e., instead of main drains on the bottom of the pool, he was putting them on the side of the pool). At the last minute we changed the contract to permit me to have them put in the bottom of the pool. Right before he started the dig I exercised my right under the contract and he put a set of two main drains for the waterfall pump in the deep end floor. There are also two other sets of main drains for the other two pumps. However, I noticed that he was using 2 inch flex pipe (which was under the steel and would be covered by Gunite). When I mentioned that this piping was supposed to be three inches he said that he can't put three inch flex piping there because eh can't get three inch flex pipe and that if we kept it as it is with the 2 inch pipe, the waterfall pump would draw so much water that when it was running it would stop the skimmer from working. He said " We have two options; keep the main drains the way we have it but when you use your waterfall pump the deep end skimmer will be restricted due to the large pump drawing more water from it. The other option is to leave the main drains for the pool and regular booster the way we have it and install 3" side wall suctions for the waterfall pump. This sounds like the best option to me as it won't limit you on anything. So you would have 4 main drains and a set of two side wall suctions at 3"

    My main pool variable speed pump is also three inch piping in most places, but my contract states that when in the pool it will be 2 inch piping. This leads me to believes that he knew there was an issue with getting the three inch flex pipe into the pool.

    My question is: Is it not possible to get three inch flex pipe that will go in the pool? When I asked him about putting in a hard pipe there he said "[w]e cannot install hard pipe down to the main drains because the pipe has to bend with the shape of the deep end bowl (which we encase in gunite)."

    Any comments? I need to decide this morning.



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    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Anyone have any comments on my question above about whether there is 3 inch flex pipe that can go in the pool or whether a hard pipe could be put in with the pool shape I have?

    Thanks
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    My PB used torches to heat and shape all the pvc to their liking.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    They gunited 1/2 my pool yesterday, and I am curious about something. They had two flex pipes (for different main drains) in the pool running up one of the walls. The pipes were hitting the steel, so I made them push the pipes deeper into the wall so that the steel (and steel ties) would not hit the pipes. But there was one spot near the top of the wall where one pipe was still hitting the steel and they couldn't seem to fix that so they took a metal chair (one of those things that was used to lift steel at bottom of the pool) and placed the chair against the flex pipe to make the flex pipe get away from the steel. This solved the problem of having enough gunite beneath the steel (as opposed to having no gunite below the steel where the pipe was), but in thinking about it I am concerned that the chair could eventually puncture the pipe. Should I be worried about that?

    Also, is there any issue with not compeleting the gunite in one day (i seem to recall hearing that when pouring a foundation for a house it should be one continuous pour).

    Thanks everyone.
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Any thoughts on the above questions I posted last month?

    Also, when they gunited my pool, they were supposed to put a pipe insert into the Gunite for the Polaris pool cleaner and give me a return in my Sundeck. However, during the first day they gunited (it took two days) they forgot to put the return in the Sundeck (which was gunited on the first day) so on the second day they put it off to the right of the Sundeck (if you see computer rendering above you can get a feel for where they put it). Does anyone think not having a return in the Sundeck (as per their plans) is an issue? In addition, after they finished the gunite on the second day, I realized they forgot to put the insert for the Polaris cleaner. They have said that they can add that later and I assume that means they have to drill through the gunite. Does anyone see any issues with that?

    Thanks
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Does anyone have an opinion on a Sunstone Pearl finish (from CL Industries) color Aqua Pearl. Is the pebble finish rough on kid's feet. I tend to hear different things. We currently are supposed to get a Quartz finish color Caribbean Blue, which the PB says is 90% Quartz. I don't have the manufacturer, but am guessing it is ColorScapes ceramic Quartz since that seems to be the only one (at least that i can find) with that color. The PB has also suggested a glass finish Sunstone St. Lucia Ice.

    If you look at the computer generated picture in the middle of this thread, you will see that we have a Sundeck 140 square feet in the front middle. I was thinking it may look nice to do the Sundeck with a different base than the rest of the Pool, but am not sure what would look nice. Any suggestions?


    Thanks
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    I wish I had some input for you. I don't have an in-ground. I can't believe nobody has posted.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    You asked: "Can the PB shoot gunite over a two day span."

    I have heard two opinions about this. The old style would be a continuous single day pour. However, commercial pools often require multiple days to shoot the gunite. My limited understanding--Definitely check with your structural engineer--is that as long as the pool is properly reinforced you will be okay. But, this question is definitely one for your engineer.

    You wondered: The PB forgot to put a return in for the polaris. What do you mean? Is there piping there that was closed up?

    My PB in your area completely screwed up and undersized my pool by 112 SF, so I think you are definitely wise to question him. People here have recommended not to over think things, but that is when screw ups occur. I wish I had been more on top of the construction instead of just trusting my PB.

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Species,

    I didn't have an engineer. The PB handled everything. It's done already (they gunited over a two day period) so there is nothing I can do.

    On the Polaris, the PB was supposed to put in a pipe insert (or something like that) into the Gunite for the Polaris pool cleaner, but he forgot to do it when they were doing the Gunite. He has since said he can fix it, but I assume that means he has to drill through the Gunite to insert what he needs for the Polaris. Do you see an issue with that?

    One of my returns was supposed to be in my Sundeck, but they forgot that also. So they put the return that would have gone there, to the right of the Sundeck. Do you think it was important that a return actually be in the Sundeck?

    Any thoughts on pool finishes (see my post above). I was now told that the Quartz I would be getting is made by Estes and supposedly is 90% Quartz.


    Thanks
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    We have a return in our sundeck and it doesn't really seem to help that much with moving debris out of the area. So, i would say it isn't all that important.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    I cannot comment on the return for the sun deck. I would contact a pool structural engineer and ask him his opinion on this matter.

    I assume your PB has already put in the piping for the polaris system and that it was just covered up. Is that correct? If so, I would think the only issue will be to locate precisely where the plumbing for the Polaris is located. Still, it is a really, really, really stupid thing for either the PB or the gunite company to have done.

    I went with Diamond Brite for my pool surface and it is rough on the feet. I understand that Pebble Tec is even worse, but much more durable. Still, I love the Diamond Brite upgraded plaster.

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    And, I think you are fine with having the pool shot over a two day period.

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Actually, the PB did NOT put in the piping for the Polaris. They were going to do it when they did the Gunite (just like they did the returns when they did the Gunite), but they messed up.

    I've read that Pebble Tec is very rough on the feet, but that Pebble Fina and Pebble Sheen are much better. But my PB doesn't offer those brands. He only offers Sunstone Pearl from CL Industries, and I'm not sure whether that particular brand is comparable to Pebble Tech or, alternatively, to either Pebble Fina or Pebble Sheen.

    Has anyone used CL Industries Sunstone Pearl, and if so, was it rough on the kids' feet.
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Grottoguy -- make sure to take tons of pictures all along the way and document everything. Try to nonchalantly get confirmation of whatever PB states verbally in email or text if possible. I'm sorry to hear that your PB is making costly errors so early in the game. That is somewhat of a red flag.
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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    You should speak with a structural engineer about banging into the gunite. I don't think it will be a problem, but double check with the experts.

    I wonder if your PB is the same as mine. My PB shorted me by over 110 SF! Talk about a major screw up.

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    Re: New Construction in Marlboro NJ - A lot of questions

    Does anyone have an opinion on whether an AcquComfort Heat pump is good quality. The Acqucal heat pump states that Heat Exchanger tube is made from pure titanium, and is virtually impervious to water-chemistry damage. Is this better than the AcquComfort heat exchanger?
    1200 Sq Ft 41,000 Gal. Gunite, JANDY SVRS VS pump, JANDY JXI 400,000 BTU, Polaris 280 w/ 3/4 BP, Rockwall and Grotto (w/6 jets and blower), 2 JANDY Lam Jets, 2 LED Bubblers, 5 Ledlights, AQUALINK P16 RS, 90% Quartz, SWF 185 GMP BP, SWF 125 BP, Levelor K1100 Autofill, AP Digital SWG, 2 skim and 5 returns, and mostly 3 inch piping

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