The deck is poured, expansion joints are in place, and the brick and block have arrived. My mason will probably get started on the wall next week and the plasterers could show up any day (who knows). We could not get brick to match our house or pool house, which is largely orange. The closest we found has a decent amount of red in it and was used on my neighbors house a few years ago, so the mason is going to mix up a few mortar samples to see which one will bring out the orange hues in our new brick to hopefully blend well. If we want a wall anytime soon we really have no choice. We will see. Also, it rained last night so the coping and deck look gray. When the sun is out and they are dry they look a lot more white. Once everything is complete I am going to have both sealed with siloxane-based sealants.
The masons laid the block core of the wall yesterday. They will lay the brick on Thursday if it doesn't storm. Half block cutouts were created every five blocks (~six feet) for drainage and the cores with rebar were completely filled with mortar so the wall ties in with the deck footing. I do not want this thing to move at all. The prior columns were pushed all over the place because of inadequate footings. The mason also mixed up a few mortar samples for us to try and match the existing mortar. We are going with the one on the right. Now if I could just get the plaster crew to show up. No telling when that will happen...
The wall in progress. Should be finished early next week. We had a rain yesterday and the cutouts worked great draining the deck (you can see the wet concrete beneath in the photos). When complete I will show detailed photos of their construction in case anyone wants to replicate them. While not a real concern down here, the way we did it is important to prevent premature freeze-thaw damage to the concrete block in colder environs.
I wish the brick for the wall was a little more orange to match our other masonry, but matching brick has proven to be exceptionally difficult. The original brick manufacturer is now out of business and more orange-colored lines from other manufacturers have no scheduled date of production. Apparently after the 2008 downturn, few places stock large inventories for fear they may be stuck with high overhead and no buyers so you basically have to wait until they do production runs, and they don't always have an idea of when that will be. At any rate, the new brick itself is really handsome and should make a great looking wall. The same matching challenge exists for the pavers in front of and beside the pool house. Still waiting on the plaster crew. With rain scheduled early next week, it may be after Memorial Day before they come, if at all...
The wall will be finished today or tomorrow. The plaster crew, on the other hand, is a different story. We finished pouring the deck and were ready for them at the end of April. My pool builder apparently made them aware that we were ready back then. Here we are one month later still without plaster. According to my pool builder they are telling him that they are still waiting on the materials. I called the PebbleTec representative for our area and he said there is no shortage of product so waiting on materials should not be the issue. I texted the plaster owner on May 15 with no response. I called him yesterday and he said he would check his schedule and get back to me. No response. I called and left a message yesterday afternoon asking if he had an opportunity to check his schedule. No response. I don't know why people in this industry are so difficult and unreliable and am not entirely sure who to believe in this scenario. Unfortunately, there is only one pool builder and one plaster crew for this area so my hands are tied...
"Good morning! I hope you have a wonderful day today!"
"Did you have a good day today? I sure hope so! Talk to you tomorrow!"
hehe and yes I HAVE done this! I always made sure I had a smile on my face while I said it hoping it would come through in my voice. It only took 4 days before I wore them done and they did what they needed to do.
They could not get mad as I said it in such a happy way. Well bless their little hearts!
I'm not quite sure who is fully responsible for the long wait, but I've been the squeaky wheel to both the pool builder and the plaster crew. Typically they just ignore me and don't respond. They are located four hours away so there is no visiting. I've been friendly every time as I don't have any other options. I have to be careful as the squeaky wheel gets the grease, but if it squeaks too much, it might just get replaced with a new one (i.e. never show up). My build started in November. I'm just glad I took charge and hired my own mason and concrete crew. They were much easier to deal with, communicated with me, and were more reliable.
Hopefully I'll have a pool to swim in before long and pictures to share on the forum.
I'm guessing they won't want me to take seven weeks to pay them.
I put a call into the regional PebbleTec representative and let him know. He said he would call the plaster company and get back with me. It's hard to sell your product if the plasterers won't show up to install it.