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Thread: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

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    james63038's Avatar
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    Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Hello, I'm Beth. First time poster, long time visitor.

    I wanted to share some pictures of our build because honestly that's what I loved most about this site. It's been a wealth of information and I'm still learning quite a bit.

    We live just a little bit outside of St. Louis on 26 acres of land and have thought about a pool for some time. We actually started this process 8 years ago but let it go given the sticker shock. Yikes...Fast forward several years and many saved dollars and it was finally time to start the planning. I starting researching last April and was interviewing several builders until we finally settled on two mid November. We made our choice and signed a contract two weeks before Thanksgiving. They wanted to start the week of Thanksgiving but since we host at our house (30+ people) I chose to hold off until the next week. They started December 1, 2014 and finished officially April 1. 2015. I can't complain at all about the process as it went fairly smooth with only a few bumps along the way. I am very thankful for that because I have read some not so good things on here with pool builders. We got lucky

    So here goes...I did create a time lapse with a GoPro of the whole build but I haven't put that together yet. These are all pictures taken from my phone.

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    The first thing they did was build this tent over the pool and started to dig. It really thwarted my plans to create a time lapse of the build. So basically I just have the Bobcat coming and going along with the workers for a few weeks.

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    My son and I would sneak into the tent after they left each day to check out the progress. He was thinking it could all be done in a day. Not even close...

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    The second day of digging I get the dreaded call that they hit rock. This was our first set back. I had a suspicion because when we built our house, they did then, but I was crossing fingers and praying that they wouldn't. Took an additional two more days and another piece of equipment to finish and more $$$.

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    It was insanely muddy....yuck. I'm sure they are used to this but I couldn't imagine going home each day caked with mud.

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    Finally time to shoot. This was a nice sight to see. Makes it all more real.

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    Before they would leave, they left this heater on and it kept it pretty warm considering it very cold outside.

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    The starting of the equipment pad.

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    Finally the tent came down. Coping went on and it was nice to look outside and see a pool besides this giant white tent. We ended up upgrading to the Tennessee Flagstone and are happy we did. It looks pretty cool.

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    My son was happy with the progress and the new contraptions to walk on.

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    I'm not really happy with where the equipment pad went but we didn't really have another option. I have been looking around for ways to hide it and if anyone has any suggestions, please shout out.

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    The kids liked this part the best. Slide installation day

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    This was another upgrade and it was actually the husband's idea. I don't think we need a bigger slide....said no one ever

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    Along with the slide, also started the boulder work. The original plan stated three boulder jumping rocks at all different heights. The plans didn't look like this at all but we really didn't care that much just as long as we got the 3 different heights. They ended up using way more boulders than we thought.

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    They added a boulder retaining wall.

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    Starting on the deck-o-drain.

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    It was nice to see this go up and get an idea on the decking around the pool. When I was researching and asking others who owned a pool, what their biggest regret or suggestion, all said they should have had more decking. We added more toward the house (you can't really see it in the pic) and I know we made the right choice with that. It's going to be a bare space for awhile but eventually will be an outdoor kitchen area.

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    Concrete and Kool Deck applied. I picked out the tan color of the kool deck, however, I wish I would have gone with the grey color. The pool builder talked me out of it saying that it would have blended in too much with the rocks. Who knows...I'll get used to it.

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    This was a last minute addition. Stone steps down to the pool. It was a push to get the husband on board for this one but eventually I won him over It would have taken us forever to do this ourselves where it took the guys just a day and a half to finish. I think in the end, we had close to 60 tons of boulders in our back yard.

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    Blue Granite Pebble Sheen )))

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    Starting to fill. We are on a well out here and I was pretty nervous about this. I've read the horror stories but thank goodness we didn't have any problems. Filled up in 3 days.

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    All finished. Hooray!!

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    Now it's time for the landscaping to be done. Unfortunately, with all the add ons, we didn't have anything left for landscaping and will have to do it ourselves. It's been close to a month since completion and the pool turned on me after we had some major rains. Took us a week to get it clear again. That's when I bought the TF100. I'm really still learning how to handle it. Since it was filled with well water, I don't know how much that messes up things or how long it'll take it get it all cleared up. It does seem to have a lot of dirt in the pool but I'm just assuming that's from the wind carrying the dirt into the pool. That's really been the only issue that we've had so far. I don't know if that's normal or not.

    Anyway, like I said before. This went really well. We only had one issue with the builder and when I brought that up, they met us in the middle without any fuss. I liked having it built over the winter because if there was a delay, it really wasn't a big deal because we couldn't get in anyway. Knowing how impatient I am, I couldn't imagine how I would have handled a summer build.
    We still haven't gotten in yet and the kids are aching to to so. I know I'm a bad guy for not letting them in but when the water is 50 degrees, I have a feeling once they jump in, I'm going in right after them
    My Build 20x40 Freeform Shotcrete (33k gal) pool. 3.6-8.6, Blue Granite Pebble Sheen, Tennessee Flagstone Coping, Sta-Rite System 3 Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Intelliflo 4x160 x SVRS, Rainbow Automatic Chlorinator, 1 LED light, Tanning Shelf, 15.6 Slide with 3 different height jumping rocks, Sta-Rite 333k btu propane heater, kool deck, TF100, Dolphin Oasis Z5

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Lovely!! Thanks for the photos.
    The pool equipment could be covered if you had a small shed built around it. Or a big pampas grass planted in front? Or some small lattice screens built like a pen.
    Just some off the cuff ideas...
    Maddie 12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    What beautiful countryside! So much space to stretch out in and play. Fun for generations to come!

    Your pool is beautiful. The flagstone is quite special and makes a great frame around the pool. That slide looks FAST - the kids (and grown up kids) are going to have a ball. Over and over and over. LOL!!! Your color choices look great - you can really see them from the bird's eye shot. I might have gone with gray decking, too, but I think as it turned out, your builder was right. The tan IMO is a better compliment to the surroundings. Aren't ya'll glad you had them do the stone steps??? It looks like they were absolutely necessary (and attractive, too)! Great job!

    I don't have any tips to add to YippeeSkippy's for the equipment camouflage, except to check out Pinterest. People (excluding myself) are so creative - I'm always amazed at the what they come up with on that site.

    Thanks so much for sharing such an interesting build! What a thrill! And please don't disappear; I want to see what's to come in the future!! Have a great summer in the pool and take care! Suz.
    Suz~Cypress area~ 2015 pool build. 23K gallons. IG swcg system. 35'x18'; 573sf; 104' perim; depth 4'-7'. Bubblers, sheer descents, 7' spa. Jandy: color LEDs; 2HP 2sp pump; 1HP 2sp pump; spa pump; 580 cartridge; 400K BTU; Dolphin M500; PS8; Inline chlorinator not used; Aqua Pure 1400. Blue Granite Sheen. Travertine deck. Lightstreams Peacock Blue TF-100, K-1766, SpeedStir

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Tan was the correct color choice for sure. You won't regret that in the long run.

    And I DIG, those steps! That is awesome and great job on the pool!

    One note - you should get your well water tested for iron content, and soon. If there is iron in the water, it will eventually (well, in short enough order), stain your plaster.
    You can control that with Jacks Magic metal sequestrant. If you do have iron in the water, then the metal sequestrant may end up being part of your general maintenance.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    That is a great pool! Bring summer!
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    dw9000's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Thanks for taking the time to post those pictures, pool looks great I hope you and kids enjoy it for many years to come.
    In-ground block / vinyl liner 33' x 22' x 5',, approx 25k gals
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    Floor drains, 2 skimmers, 3 return lines (2" plumbing ultra-flex PVC)

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    james63038's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Quote Originally Posted by YippeeSkippy View Post
    Lovely!! Thanks for the photos.
    The pool equipment could be covered if you had a small shed built around it. Or a big pampas grass planted in front? Or some small lattice screens built like a pen.
    Just some off the cuff ideas...
    Thank you for the ideas! I thought about the pampas grass but I know that stuff grows like crazy and don't want to do something that I will later regret. I like the idea of the lattice screens. I'll have to look into that.
    My Build 20x40 Freeform Shotcrete (33k gal) pool. 3.6-8.6, Blue Granite Pebble Sheen, Tennessee Flagstone Coping, Sta-Rite System 3 Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Intelliflo 4x160 x SVRS, Rainbow Automatic Chlorinator, 1 LED light, Tanning Shelf, 15.6 Slide with 3 different height jumping rocks, Sta-Rite 333k btu propane heater, kool deck, TF100, Dolphin Oasis Z5

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    james63038's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Thanks everyone for the comments! We can't wait until it warms up a bit to turn on that heater and jump in.

    SuzfromTexas: Thank you for the nice comments! We are very blessed to live out here. The land has been in my husband's family for years and years, passed down to family as we go (literally). I have checked out Pinterest and have seen some ideas but nothing that really caught my eye. I'll try again, maybe with different wording and see if I can find something.

    Divin Dave: Thanks for the heads up on the iron. I know for a fact it's high so I'll definitely look up online how to test for it and adjust for it. We have a water softener and I made sure to fill the pool where it went through the softener. I don't know if that made any difference though. My PH has always been high and I haven't been able to get it down. It seems like I'm always adding Muratic Acid and still no results.
    My Build 20x40 Freeform Shotcrete (33k gal) pool. 3.6-8.6, Blue Granite Pebble Sheen, Tennessee Flagstone Coping, Sta-Rite System 3 Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Intelliflo 4x160 x SVRS, Rainbow Automatic Chlorinator, 1 LED light, Tanning Shelf, 15.6 Slide with 3 different height jumping rocks, Sta-Rite 333k btu propane heater, kool deck, TF100, Dolphin Oasis Z5

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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Great build and I bet your wait will seem really long!! Just make sure you keep a close eye on the metals with the well water. And as some have said you may just build some treatment for that into your weekly maintenance.

    I have farm fields directly to the north and west of me (the direction all of the wind comes from) so I keep PhosFree as a part of my weekly maintenance along with the MA.

    I would plant either some big purple fountain grass with a couple of those big outcropping stones in front of it or something like arborvitaes that will give you year round blockage.


    30x20 vinyl IG, Hayward SD60 with Pentair Dynamo 340219 2HP pump, Compupool CPSC24 SWG, Hayward H200FDN heater. APC automatic pool cover.
    Central Illinois

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    Sunbaby's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    It's absolutely beautiful!
    ~Wendy
    33'X17' Sports Pool (3'6"-5'-4'6") 7' flush Spa, Blue Granite PT, Waterfalls, Weeping Wall, Baja Ledge and Doggie Beach Entry! Pentair Clean and Clear 420, IntelliFlo XF Pump, SuperFlo 1.5 HP Feature Pump, MasterTemp Heater, Pal-Treo LEDs, Dolphin M4, Liquid Chlorine & TF-100 - My Build Thread

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    ernie01jt's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    very nice pool and hardscaping, I can almost hear that heater fire up from here
    18' x 38' 20,500 gallon vinyl IGP, 3.5 - 7' depth, Pentair FNS Plus DE filter,
    2hp Whisperflo high performance pump, 1.1hp boost-rite pump for the cleaner,
    250k BTU MasterTemp heater, LetroLegend pool cleaner, Hayward TurboCell GLX-CELL-15 chlorine generator
    Speedstir, K-1776, TF-100

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    dtrujillo63's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Looks awesome. What waterline tile is that?
    30 x 20 IG Play Pool + 7' Spa ~16K Gallons, French Gray Plaster, Pentair Intelliflow VS, Pentair CCP420, Pentair MasterTemp 400K Heater, Intellibrite LEDs.

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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Thoughts on the MA/pH issue:
    A - you aren't adding enough
    B - you are adding enough but by the time you test its already gone back up (pH rises fast in new gunite pools)
    C- Your pool is much bigger than you give it credit for.
    D - Your MA was bad. I know the conventional wisdom says that acids don't decline in strength like chlorine or other chemicals, however I just bought an ineffective case from Lowe's. No change in pH after adding a gallon (and then three more) and almost no smell. The lack of odor is a dead giveaway for MA with an issue. Bought fresh MA from a new Leslie's that just opened and presto change-O, down goes the pH-O. The other MA bottles also had lots of crust on top of the plastic seals on top of them.
    I'd say it's one of the four above reasons you are not seeing the results you expect.
    Don't know if you have a SWCG or would have even turned it in yet, but they raise PH also. pH not going down is any easy problem to fix and the solution is almost always add more MA, though the reasons may vary. Keeping it down is a routine maintenance task, just like feeding your pet (to paraphrase a fellow TFP'r), depending on the pool's specifics.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. Saltwater w/ gray plaster
    Hayward equipment (cartridge filter, 2-speed pump, salt cell, automation) View Our Build
    Coverstar automatic pool cover | StoneMakers concrete retaining wall and decking
    Spring 2013 Build | Dolphin Active 20 robot cleaner | Support TFP!

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    james63038's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Quote Originally Posted by bdex View Post
    Great build and I bet your wait will seem really long!! Just make sure you keep a close eye on the metals with the well water. And as some have said you may just build some treatment for that into your weekly maintenance.

    I have farm fields directly to the north and west of me (the direction all of the wind comes from) so I keep PhosFree as a part of my weekly maintenance along with the MA.

    I would plant either some big purple fountain grass with a couple of those big outcropping stones in front of it or something like arborvitaes that will give you year round blockage.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    BDEX: Thanks for the heads up on the PhosFree and also the ideas on landscaping. My parents have a the tall grass around their equipment pad and it's really gotten out of hand. I saw some cheap white plastic fencing at Home Depot and was thinking of installing that around it. I would paint it black so that it would blend in more. Just a thought. I have 2 year old twins (along with a 7 year old) and I don't want them snooping around that area.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by dtrujillo63 View Post
    Looks awesome. What waterline tile is that?
    Honestly, don't know the name of it. I really wanted bigger tile but they said it wouldn't work with the free form of the pool. Bummer... I'm happy with what we went with though.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by bmoreswim View Post
    Thoughts on the MA/pH issue:
    A - you aren't adding enough
    B - you are adding enough but by the time you test its already gone back up (pH rises fast in new gunite pools)
    C- Your pool is much bigger than you give it credit for.
    D - Your MA was bad. I know the conventional wisdom says that acids don't decline in strength like chlorine or other chemicals, however I just bought an ineffective case from Lowe's. No change in pH after adding a gallon (and then three more) and almost no smell. The lack of odor is a dead giveaway for MA with an issue. Bought fresh MA from a new Leslie's that just opened and presto change-O, down goes the pH-O. The other MA bottles also had lots of crust on top of the plastic seals on top of them.
    I'd say it's one of the four above reasons you are not seeing the results you expect.
    Don't know if you have a SWCG or would have even turned it in yet, but they raise PH also. pH not going down is any easy problem to fix and the solution is almost always add more MA, though the reasons may vary. Keeping it down is a routine maintenance task, just like feeding your pet (to paraphrase a fellow TFP'r), depending on the pool's specifics.
    I'm going to go with A and C. I added more than what was called for and it finally tested correctly.
    My Build 20x40 Freeform Shotcrete (33k gal) pool. 3.6-8.6, Blue Granite Pebble Sheen, Tennessee Flagstone Coping, Sta-Rite System 3 Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Intelliflo 4x160 x SVRS, Rainbow Automatic Chlorinator, 1 LED light, Tanning Shelf, 15.6 Slide with 3 different height jumping rocks, Sta-Rite 333k btu propane heater, kool deck, TF100, Dolphin Oasis Z5

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    steveg_nh's Avatar
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    Re: Completed St. Louis Build: Pictures:))))

    Beautiful! And I agree, more deck is always better. We added over 600 sq ft more than our original plan and don't ever regret it!
    24'x40' 25k gal Imperial Mountain Pond IGP, full 28 mil VynAll Ocean Breakers liner. All Hayward system: 140k BTU HeatPro heat pump, 3/4HP single speed TriStar 2" Pump, DE6020 filter, AquaPlus Automation/Salt Chlorination, remote controls, ColorLogic 4.0 lighting. Polaris 280 w/PB4-60 BP. TF100 & K1766 test kits. Rinox Palazzo pavers and Spherik coping. Pool installed 9/2013, project completed 6/16/14.

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