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Thread: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

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    Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    I need to buy a reel for our solar cover. I would like some suggestion so I don't buy a lemon. I will need one that can be operated buy my wife so her an my daughter can swim when I am not home. Also the reel need to pivot off to the side so it is not in there way. I have seen a few on the internet but wanted to get some input from the TFP members. Thanks.
    Patriot Arcadia 15' round 52". Pentair Clean and Clear 100 sqft Cartridge filter, 1HP Optiflow pump, Goldline Aquatrol SWG. 2 - 4'x20' solar panels roof mounted. All rigid PVC plumbing. Resin Solar reel with 8mil Thermo-tex solar cover. 14 x 12 deck.

    Ovation 15'x24'x52'' AG. Pentair System 3 150 SQ foot cartridge filter, 1 1/2 HP pump.

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Are you "stuck" on having one with pivots and not off the end? Also, are you "stuck" on purchasing? A number of us have built reels based on Matt4x4's design and are quite pleased with the quality and the ease of use. If you want to know more, just say the word and I'll direct you to what is involved. Its not much more difficult that installing a store bought model but will last much longer and is very easy to use.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    I would be fine with making one. I just need it to be easy to operate so my wife can do it herself and it needs to be out of the way so her and my daughter can swim without having to remove the cover and reel from the pool since she would not be able to handle it herself. If you can provide me with plans and pictures I would very much appreciate it.
    Patriot Arcadia 15' round 52". Pentair Clean and Clear 100 sqft Cartridge filter, 1HP Optiflow pump, Goldline Aquatrol SWG. 2 - 4'x20' solar panels roof mounted. All rigid PVC plumbing. Resin Solar reel with 8mil Thermo-tex solar cover. 14 x 12 deck.

    Ovation 15'x24'x52'' AG. Pentair System 3 150 SQ foot cartridge filter, 1 1/2 HP pump.

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Ours is built off the back end of the pool - it sits up on posts inset into the ground - some have used landscaping timbers and some, like us, used steel posts. The reel itself is aluminum conduit pipe and sits about 3' back from the end and hangs round 2' above the top rail so definitely out of the way. I operate it alone all the time. It has a large crank handle on one side with bearings on both sides. My DH built it in about 2 hours, cost was under $30 at that time.

    When the blanket is reeled/rolled up, it is completely off and away from the pool. It takes one person to reel it up and one person to pull it back out onto the pool. Best of all to me, nothing is mounted to my pool rails. It also is nice to have it away so I can spray the cover off away from the pool to remove the little tree droppings and such that stick to the cover.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    Do you have any pictures???

    Thanks
    15 X 31' Above Ground Pool, Hayward- GM152 Sand Filter
    Hayward- SP711-13 Multi-Port Valve, Hayward- SP1511 Pump 3/4HP
    Polaris 65 Cleaner

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Check out these posts:

    Here are pics of Matt4x4s original -

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/viewtopi ... light=reel

    Here is a post with a close up of ours showing the crank, post and bearing just before we attached the straps to the reel (seen taped into place before rivets/screws)

    http://www.troublefreepool.com/viewtopi ... light=reel
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    To make it easier for your wife, you should have an 8 mil solar cover instead of a 12 mil or 16 mil cover.
    Hotrod30

    20 X 40 foot vinyl Borates and Salt Pool
    Rolachem Chlorine Feeder
    Hayward 27 inch sand filter with 80 lbs of pea gravel
    Jacuzzi Splash Pak SP55 DE filter in parallel
    Pentair VF3050 pump

  8. Back To Top    #8
    We did purchase an 8 mil. I read that before on TFP. We ended up just buying a cover on Saturday for a local store. I got tired of loosing all the heat from the solar panels overnight. I can attest to how much of a difference they make. We have had a few very cold days and the pool is still at 74 with the cover. I ended up running the filter last night with the cover on so I did not loose any heat.

    I like the idea of building a reel but I have limited space. We fit the biggest pool the city would allow us in our backyard. The pool is only 3 feet off the garage on one end and the will be a patio at the other end. That is why I may have to buy a reel that mounts to the rail and swings off to the side. I am just afraid I am going to spend $160-$200 and the reel turns out to be junk.

    I think if I build one that mounts on rods or a posts it will be in the way. Do you guys have any other suggestion?
    Patriot Arcadia 15' round 52". Pentair Clean and Clear 100 sqft Cartridge filter, 1HP Optiflow pump, Goldline Aquatrol SWG. 2 - 4'x20' solar panels roof mounted. All rigid PVC plumbing. Resin Solar reel with 8mil Thermo-tex solar cover. 14 x 12 deck.

    Ovation 15'x24'x52'' AG. Pentair System 3 150 SQ foot cartridge filter, 1 1/2 HP pump.

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    We purchased a reel system that mounted to the center of the AGP. We used this the first year and hated it. Last year I found the above pictures and my husband bought some hollow fence posts that the uprights of the reel fit into. This works great.

    My problem is the clips we are using to attach the straps to the cover. Every use, at least one of them comes off. What kind of clips are you all using?
    24ft AGP 52in deep ~13,500 gal
    Hayward Sand Filter 250 lbs
    SWG
    1.5 HP pump

    425 gal stand alone QCA Hot Tub 15-20 yrs old

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    We rivited the straps to the cover.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

  11. Back To Top    #11
    I ended up buying one off craigslist. It was new in the box never used for a little less that half. It took about 2 hours to install but it seems to work well. The mounts and reel ends are resin and the pole is aluminum powder coated white. My wife can reel it by herself so her and our daughter can swim. She just leave it on the pool and they swim at the other end. When I am home we take to reel off the pool. I like the fact that is is resin since we have a saltwater pool and a steel unit would probably rust.
    Patriot Arcadia 15' round 52". Pentair Clean and Clear 100 sqft Cartridge filter, 1HP Optiflow pump, Goldline Aquatrol SWG. 2 - 4'x20' solar panels roof mounted. All rigid PVC plumbing. Resin Solar reel with 8mil Thermo-tex solar cover. 14 x 12 deck.

    Ovation 15'x24'x52'' AG. Pentair System 3 150 SQ foot cartridge filter, 1 1/2 HP pump.

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    jimmerz's Avatar
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    Re: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    Are there any step by step guides to building your own? And some close up pictures of the way it is attached to the cover and reel? I am pretty sure I can build this, I would just like to be walked through this process like an 8 year old...

    Thanks!
    24' x 54" Oceanic Round AGP, 1090 Hayward Skimmer, EC-40 Filter system, Automatic Chlorinator. Pool will be in Full sun for most of the day (9am-6pm).

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Re: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    Quote Originally Posted by jimmerz View Post
    Are there any step by step guides to building your own? And some close up pictures of the way it is attached to the cover and reel? I am pretty sure I can build this, I would just like to be walked through this process like an 8 year old...

    Thanks!
    Do a search of the forum. I know there have been a couple of DIY reels. 😎
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

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    Re: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    I too would really appreciate the step by step of making our own cover reel. Any idea on where we could locate it within the site?
    AG owner,
    18' x 48" Intex Metal Frame
    Intex sand filter, 6,500 gals.
    Fafco 4 x 20 solar panel

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    pwrstrk's Avatar
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    Re: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    Search DIY solar cover reel. I know there are a couple of them on the forum. Not sure if there is step by step instructions. They do list parts with pictures. 😎
    Jeff
    24'x54" AG Morada RTR (by wilbar) 13'500 gal. Hayward Powerflo Matrix 1hp 2 speed. Hayward Perflex EC65 DE filter.

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Re: Sugestion for an above ground solar cover reel?

    I wish that Matt4x4 had a list of parts needed and instructions. His design is great.
    AG owner,
    18' x 48" Intex Metal Frame
    Intex sand filter, 6,500 gals.
    Fafco 4 x 20 solar panel

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