Help with new pool design (SoCal...south OC)

dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
More progress...we almost had water in the pool last week but due to misdelivered spa fittings we had to reschedule the plaster...hopefully for sometime next week. In the meantime, a lot more things are coming together although still a lot of things left to do and lots of details. But here are a few pics of some progress:

First, we finally were able to connect the fire pit...there were some electrical issues but those were worked out today. Still need to figure out what we're going to put on it -- most likely rounded lava rock to match the black rounded pebble we're putting in the gaps between the tile and pavers.

IMG_7876.JPG

You can make out the bbq area a bit in the left of that pic so here is a photo showing more of that...

bbq.jpg

It is hard to make out in the photo above but you can see the top of the outdoor shower head which is behind the bbq wall...a couple more shower area pics below:

shower_1.jpg

shower_2.jpg

My wife was not a fan of my choice to do the shower...until she saw it finished. The gates are just drop dead gorgeous and the wood in general came out just awesome. We need to add the pebble around the base and get a few niceties in place (a small stool, shelf and maybe a towel rack) but the wife and kid already love it. First time the wife came back from the beach and realized she can easily get the sand off the boy before tracking it through the house and she was sold.

And some pics from the equipment pad:

equipment_pad_1.jpg

over_view-jpg.153620


equipment_pad_reverse.jpg

The intellicenter is hooked up and I can use it to start the fire pit which is nice...but really need the pool to get plastered and the aquabrite put on!!! We just went through the worst heat wave this year and it was quite disappointing not to be able to jump in the pool...but, we're getting there at least.

The plants are also mostly in which has made a huge difference. They'll need a couple years to really start to fill in but just having plants around is great. I don't have great pics of it, but you can make out some green in this next pic which is of the partially constructed water/fire feature in our courtyard:

courtyard_waterfire.jpg
The main soapstone slabs were put on last week. The middle section will have water running down it and the bottom basin, which will also be finished in soapstone, will have a linear burner in it. Expecting this feature to get finished this week so hopefully I'll have a better pic soon.

Hoping to hang the outdoor movie screen this week...plaster/aquabrite go on next week...I think with aquabrite we should be able to get in the water pretty quickly so we could be swimming in a few short weeks!

After that, it should just be some details...the artificial turf, automatic pool cover, landscaping pebble/stones and a bit more planting. There is a light at the end of this looooooooong tunnel. Having a grill (and a Costco membership) has made the past month a heck of a lot more tolerable!

IMG_2065.jpeg
 
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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
49,205
Tallahassee, FL
due to misdelivered spa fittings we had to reschedule the plaster.
Gurrrrrrrrrrrr That is happening more and more. I guess it is to be expected due to the extra high volume but still...........gurrrr

The gates are just drop dead gorgeous and the wood in general came out just awesome
VERY pretty and well done! LOVE the color and craftsmanship!

First time the wife came back from the beach and realized she can easily get the sand off the boy before tracking it through the house and she was sold.
YES! And any dogs as well!

some green in this next pic which is of the partially constructed water/fire feature in our courtyard:
Man I can't wait to see that bad boy done and going!

.I think with aquabrite we should be able to get in the water pretty quickly
It is ready as soon as they drive off and there is water in it!

Having a grill (and a Costco membership) has made the past month a heck of a lot more tolerable!
yummmmmm and yes!! Life is good with a good grill and some BBQ
 

dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Nice setup.. who is your pool builder and what kind of grill / model is that?

I'll DM you re: the pool builder -- not sure what the policies are about naming names.

re: the grill, it is an Alfresco ALXE-36. It is a pretty ridiculously priced brand but I hunted around over the past few years for great deals on scratch & dent models so it wasn't nearly so bad. So far so good. The first time we used it, I turned the burners on high after cooking to burn off the residue...went back out a couple minutes later to:

grill_thermometer.jpg
...and it was still going up. Never had a grill that could get that hot before.

We tested out the built-in rotisserie tonight and are very happy with the results...I mean, what's not to like about a rotisserie. It has a smoke feature but I haven't tried it yet...I doubt it can smoke effectively but I'm hoping it may be able to impart some flavor to bbq until I get the drum smoker built.
 

dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
...the rest of the stone is on the courtyard water+fire feature. Here is the pic from the same angle as above:

1599196326822.jpeg

...and here is from the front:

courtyard_firewater_front.jpg

I love soapstone and wanted to incorporate it into the side yard somehow so I designed this water+fire feature. I think it came out pretty cool although time will tell if we can make the water and fire aspects of it work well. In my testing, when we poured water over the surface texturing we created, it really created a cool shimmering/ripple effect. The bottom part will be full of water...and a completely submersed fire feature...so, if it goes to plan, it will look like the fire is just coming straight out of the water. At least in theory that is how it is supposed to work.

Plaster is supposed to start next week!
 
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dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I cannot wait to see this bad boy in action!! What are you plans to keep the water clean and clear?

Great question. I expect we will need to regularly drain and clean the feature.

The burner is stainless steel so that will limit what we can keep in the water re: chemicals. I may be able to use ferric oxide to control the phosphates and limit algae growth but my base assumption is that the burner is going to need to be replaced on a somewhat regular basis. I could consider chlorine if I'm willing to replace it more often -- I don't know what to expect in terms of how quickly the burner may corrode...

We are having an RO system put on it also. I also have a UV system that I could attach -- I haven't decided if that is worthwhile yet or not; I need to do some research. If it needs anything more extensive, I'll plumb in a covered sump behind the wall so I can add filters and more conveniently add chemicals and whatnot. I guess we'll see how it goes!
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
49,205
Tallahassee, FL
I for sure would have a pump of some kind on hand to drain it if/when needed. I LOVE the idea of the RO to keep the CH down! You will also want to control the pH and TA........you can and should use the same test kit on thepretty wall as the pool.
 

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Sollace

Gold Supporter
Aug 16, 2020
541
Bryan TX
2) Wood decking?
I love the look of teak/stained IPE...but I'm reading wood gets super hot

There are porcelain wood look like tiles. They are slip resistant, built for heavy traffic, can withstand temperature changes. I know the tile we got for our house can be used outdoors. Go to the Home Depot site and check specs. Yes they take a bit more time to install. They look amazing. I've had many say our floors look like wood. Nope!

ACK I see this is an old thread with updates! I am out of date! !! Yeah on getting almost done!
 

dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
FWIW, we love the ipe. It didn't seem to get overly hot for us but we missed the hottest weather so I guess we'll find out next year. I love feeling the wood under my feet though. We have porcelain tile on the covered patio that runs along the length of the pool and even though it is wet-rated (r11) and it is 1,000 times better than the non-r11 tile re: grip when wet, but I'm still a bit leery of it. We've also realized we like having rugs where people get in and out of the pool anyway as it helps keep things clean.

We'll see though, the ipe is going to be a lot of work to maintain -- it sits in the SoCal sun all day so I expect to be staining it twice a year, at least. Pros/cons I suppose.

Anyway, it's been a looooooong time since I posted...so, here is a vid of the aquabrite shoot...who doesn't love a good flamethrower video?! This happened back in mid-September, I just never got around to coming back to the site.

 

dotbombjoe

Silver Supporter
Aug 9, 2017
152
Rancho Mission Viejo, CA
Pool Size
12000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
A few stills of the aquabrite...first the pool:

pool_aquabrite.jpeg

...and the spa (almost filled):

spa_filling.jpeg

...a close up of the aquabrite and the tile...

aquabrite_closeup.jpeg

...a cool shot showing the tile along the benches and stairs...the bling is pretty awesome, even better in person. You can also see part of the pool cover system to the right of the white tile. That cavity is where the automated pool cover lives. There is additional coping that will cover that entire area -- it covers everything out to the start of the step...the "bar" of the automatic cover sits on top of the pretty tile just to the left of the white tile...the white tile is never seen because it is permanently under the cover material.

bench_stair_tile.jpeg

...a pic of the cover -- the color turned out to be pretty close to the pool color. You can see the coping in place in this picture.

covered.jpeg

...and a sunset pic...

sky_reflection_dog.jpeg

...and maybe a panoramic...

panorama_sky_reflection.jpeg

...and me, pretty much every day since water went in...it is getting a bit chilly now, down to 63 today, but still tolerable. For anyone interested in automated covers, you can make out the lead bar under the coping in this shot...when you are in the pool you just see that shiny silver bar just above the pretty tile, it is barely noticeable, and when you aren't swimming you don't even see it at all, you just see the coping above it. I will say that the coping above it sits on brackets (not mechanically attached in any way) and those brackets have a bit of flex to them. I'm sure I could fine tune it and reduce it but it isn't too bad as it is and for our pool, it's actually a good thing because we really don't want people along that edge of the pool for the most part -- the stairs extend along that wall of the pool so jumping in down there would be a bad thing...the flex of the coping above the cover is just enough to make you a notice something is different (ie, it isn't mortared in place like all the other coping) and acts as a bit of a built-in warning system.

me_pool_color.jpeg

In terms of the Aquabrite...I love the surface so far. I am super happy with how it looks, I think the color worked out really well (not too dark, not too light) and of all the pool surfaces I've used, the feel of this surface is by far the best. As the mfg states, it is very "orange peel" feeling. It is a great balance of comfort and traction.

I've had an actual, usable pool since about mid-September and I've only missed about 10 days so far...we'll see how low I can tolerate it! It is hard to believe. I'll probably post a few updated pics later -- we've had some more finishing touches in a few areas that make things look a bit nicer...but I guess we're finally nearing the end of my build thread, once and for all! WOOT! lol
 
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