http://i1083.photobucket.com/albums/...pskqsncxu6.jpg photo of someday pool
I am leveling under the 12"x12" patio blocks and the clay soil isn't easy to get level. I have sand I can use to make it granular ( clay and sand lay smoother than clay, it's moist but not sloppy),and even under the patio blocks so there is no undue weight more in one area than another. I am trying to level the lowest patio block with grade and then move toward the high side leveling all the way which will means digging each patio block in progressively deeper. Once the ring is done maybe hand dig the rest of the high half circle out? Isn't the ring of supports the most important part to be leveled? Since we have had rain the clay is at least possible to dig out. It still very firm so when I walk on it or even jump on it there are no dents.
My other issue is when I dig the patio block in the clay doesn't smooth very flat so I added some sand to make it granular. Sand and clay equals cement around here so once I smack it down hopefully the evenness of the clay sand under the weight is better than just uneven clay. I wasn't sure id just digging a square of clay out and adding sand would shift? Cause sand doesn't stay put it rolls around sorta?
There are times I think this was a very stupid idea of mine. Last summer I bought a 22'x52" intex AGP from walmart and my husband made me return it not that that wouldn't put me in the same spot to level. So we went pool shopping and Doughboy quoted $11,000 for an 18'x?48" installed. He thought that was way to high, not, well maybe. This is a lot of work with no help, every one in the family is always busy.
Last summer I used a 11' 2x4 with a level and went round and round, dig smooth dig smooth. When I finished it was level.
I used a bunyip water level to get an idea how far out of level the pavers are in the 18 ft diameter circle. The highest patio tile is about 2-3 inches above the lowest tile. The low tile is sloping away from the house. The pool is 15 ft from the house. The area I am putting the AGP 18 'x48" has been under 4-6" yes 4-6" of round rock( it was a huge 50ft x50' zeroscape area). I move it all out in about a 22 ft circle, mostly me... The clay soil seems pretty compacted from the initial house being built 28 yrs ago ( Colorado Prairie) with all that gravel weight it must be solid. We have had unusual torrential rains this spring so I know where my low spot is but still did the bunyip. The laser lever is $48 for 4 hrs and $72 a whole day. I wanted to get as close to level as possible then rent the laser level. Still have a ways to go I guess.
I don't want to haul in sand or road base as I just think there is a high chance it will wash away. Maybe I could haul in enough to make a perimeter of roadbase to support the patio blocks? but use the level clay soil with the carpet and poly styrene?
I understand I should dig out the high side and not add it to the low side. I think last summer when I started this, I did that and I think the 2-3 " from high side and put in the low area, the clay soil meandered away-percolated into the other gravel maybe. I didn't know disturbed soil compresses differently so adding to low side is a no no.
My plan is to level the clay soil and use the 1/2" extruded polystyrene over old carpet. The climate here is very very dry like 3 % humidity.
Any thoughts? Is digging the perimeter level for the blocks and setting blocks with sand clay mixture a good idea?