surface mount hand rail options?

uxbridgechris

Bronze Supporter
Jan 25, 2018
655
uxbridge, Ontario Canada
We did not want a hand rail, now we do. Lol

My water chemistry is good and the fiberglass pool is not slippery but if the right conditions exist you can get hurt. Today, I was working in the yard and wearing shoes with no socks. I slip off the shoes to get in pool, hit the top step and go flying. Hit my head off side off pool. I was alone and it could have been worse. Must have been the sweat on my feet.

So, what are my options for a surface mount hand rail? Saftron makes one, has rather ugly surface mount plastic brackets and I’ve seen another type that is all one piece. Stainless steel tubing with a long rectangular plate welded too it.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
25,120
Bedford, TX
u,

Here is the ugly one you mention.. Ugly or not, it works for me... :p

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Jim R.
 

uxbridgechris

Bronze Supporter
Jan 25, 2018
655
uxbridge, Ontario Canada

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
50,249
Tallahassee, FL
Chris, believe me you did not offend Jim. He "owns" the ugly of this hand rail. He uses it to show others why they should plan ahead and get the anchors set for the just in case.

I am SO glad you did not get hurt worse. Did it leave a knot on your noggin?

Kim:kim:
 

gary300

LifeTime Supporter
Dec 15, 2014
586
Riverside California
Jim, I am in the market for a hand rail to add to my existing pool and am looking at surface mount to avoid having to drill 4" holes in my deck. I kind of like the Saftron units because of the grounding issue. Do you find that the coating on the Saftron rails to be cooler to the touch than a stainless rail when in sunlight? Also, do the plastic mounts seem to provide a good amount of support?

Thanks, Gary
 

Jimrahbe

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Jul 7, 2014
25,120
Bedford, TX
Jim, I am in the market for a hand rail to add to my existing pool and am looking at surface mount to avoid having to drill 4" holes in my deck. I kind of like the Saftron units because of the grounding issue. Do you find that the coating on the Saftron rails to be cooler to the touch than a stainless rail when in sunlight? Also, do the plastic mounts seem to provide a good amount of support?

Thanks, Gary

Gary,

The rail does not seem to get hot, but it does get dirty if you get in the pool just after putting on suntan lotion... :(

I'm not so old or fat that I have to drag myself out of the pool using the railing... :p I use it more just to steady myself.

I have pushed and pulled on it and it seems pretty solid to me. It would be more sturdy if I installed it the way it was intended. If you look at the pic you can see that the bottom of the rail is up about 4" from the top of the deck mounts... In theory when you use the deck mounts and not the in-concrete mounts, you are supposed to cut off 4" of the rail. Doing this would put the end of the rail in the water making it easier to reach, but I did not want the rail in the water..

I too like the idea that it does not have to be bonded. If I had to do it all over again, I would have had it installed in the deck during the pool build.

But, other than being ugly, and the price, it is a great hand rail..

Thanks for asking,

Jim R.
 

gary300

LifeTime Supporter
Dec 15, 2014
586
Riverside California
Thank you, Jim.

What I have to figure out now is if my robot (Triton Plus) will hit the rail when it tries to clime the stairs. If so I will have to go with the straight across version versus the dipped down one. My wife and I are in our seventy's, so I would really prefer the dip down version but I won't give up my robot for anything!
 

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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
25,120
Bedford, TX
Gary,

I am old as dirt also, and recommend the one that dips down... :p

I "think" that I used different hardware, but it has been a while and I don't really remember for sure. It is still just lag screws into concrete anchors... I know I bought larger diameter lag bolts, but can't remember if I actually used them or not. :(

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
25,120
Bedford, TX
Gary,

I think the OP was talking about these... Innovative Pool Products EZ Anchor Socket

They look really neat, but one reason I chose the "ugly ones" is because I could self install them.. The spacing on the rails are fixed and there is very little tolerance for trying to drill matching holes in concrete. I do believe that it would look better with the linked sockets, I'm just not sure how well I would have done at trying to drill out two 3" cores in the exact right place..

I'm more of a measure once, and drill 12 times until you get it right kind of guy... :rolleyes:

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

Rocket J Squirrel

Silver Supporter
Bronze Supporter
Jun 7, 2018
1,353
Alamo, CA
Pool Size
36000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I also have the Saftron rails because I could self-install. I would have preferred an experienced professional install my rails, but found no one would do it for fear of liability.

So Mrs. Squirrel got in the pool to hold the nose of each rail steady while I marked the screw positions. No measuring involved. I was nervous using a rotary hammer into aggregate, but it turned out fine.

No guest has ever called my rails ugly. They are not the focus of attention, but they sure help climbing out. I just wonder why the 2 previous homeowners never installed rails. We have an auto cover, maybe they’d never heard of return-to-deck rails.

We got the powder coating as opposed to naked metal. It no longer looks perfect. Little birdies love to sit on the rails & weathering happens. I now think perhaps it would have been wise to unbolt the rails and store them in the garage for winter.
 

gary300

LifeTime Supporter
Dec 15, 2014
586
Riverside California
As like others I too have selected the Saftron Rails and Mounts because of the self install and no bonding requirement. I bought the dip rail as like Jim's photo and the 6" surface mounts which are due soon I hope. As others have stated, I am a little uneasy about trying to drill six holes in concrete with fairly tight tolerances between them. This is one place where a mistake might show big time and not fixable.

What I have decided to do is to make a jig using a piece of scrap wood with holes drilled in accurate locations ( I have a drill press). I can then drill one hole in the concrete, then use an extra long bolt to affix the jig to the deck and have a way to accurately start the holes in the other five locations.

Is this a good plan or am I being a worry wart about this ;)

Gary
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
25,120
Bedford, TX
Gary,

Seems like a good idea to me..

I installed just one of the surface mounts.. Then stuck in the rail with the other surface mount not connected to the concrete. With the wife's help, I moved the rail so that it looked parallel to the pool wall and stairs and then used the loose mount to mark where the holes needed to be. Took the rail out and drilled the holes for the second surface mount and installed it.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

uxbridgechris

Bronze Supporter
Jan 25, 2018
655
uxbridge, Ontario Canada
As like others I too have selected the Saftron Rails and Mounts because of the self install and no bonding requirement. I bought the dip rail as like Jim's photo and the 6" surface mounts which are due soon I hope. As others have stated, I am a little uneasy about trying to drill six holes in concrete with fairly tight tolerances between them. This is one place where a mistake might show big time and not fixable.

What I have decided to do is to make a jig using a piece of scrap wood with holes drilled in accurate locations ( I have a drill press). I can then drill one hole in the concrete, then use an extra long bolt to affix the jig to the deck and have a way to accurately start the holes in the other five locations.

Is this a good plan or am I being a worry wart about this ;)

Gary

perfect idea. we all know, masonry bits like to skate around. plywood would work and even better if you have a piece of hardwood like maple. use a piece about 2' long and stand on it while you drill. Bob's your uncle.
 

Rocket J Squirrel

Silver Supporter
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Jun 7, 2018
1,353
Alamo, CA
Pool Size
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Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
we all know, masonry bits like to skate around.

I wouldn't attempt this job with an ordinary drill & bit. A rotary hammer is the best tool for this. My concrete is aggregate, full of pebbles, and the rotary hammer didn't skate. It just powered through the pebbles. This was my first time using this tool - I rented it for the day - so I did practice first with some scrap concrete. Making a jig is still a good idea which didn't occur to me.
 

gary300

LifeTime Supporter
Dec 15, 2014
586
Riverside California
I wouldn't attempt this job with an ordinary drill & bit. A rotary hammer is the best tool for this. My concrete is aggregate, full of pebbles, and the rotary hammer didn't skate. It just powered through the pebbles. This was my first time using this tool - I rented it for the day - so I did practice first with some scrap concrete. Making a jig is still a good idea which didn't occur to me.

I do have a heavy duty hammer drill and a couple of brand new DeWalt masonry bits. Being that the holes are only 5/16" and not very deep I don't think I will have any trouble drlling. I just wanted to use the jig to insure I don't get one of the holes off (as usual with me).

Getting my rail today, so will post my results!
 

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