Unusual issue with Pebbletec finish

Nikilyn

Bronze Supporter
Sep 3, 2018
700
Gilbert, AZ
Gimme smooth as a baby's bottom plain plaster if I ever build another pool. I find all those stones horrible painful to walk on.
Thank you for saying this. I feel the same whenever I've been in a pebble pool and have always sworn I'd just get quartz if I built another pool. Not like Quartzscapes because that is kind of like sandpaper, or at least the samples are, but the modified plaster with quartz crystals. That's always been my plan but there's like this pressure to get pebble. I like the color options of it but I think I will be mad at myself if I get pebble. Plus, I think of my 21 month old grandson playing on the Baja step and I can see him scraping his knee on the pebble. Everyone just looks at me weird for not wanting pebble and then I second guess myself.
 
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tomfrh

Well-known member
Jan 30, 2018
484
Australia
Gimme smooth as a baby's bottom plain plaster if I ever build another pool. I find all those stones horrible painful to walk on.

Yes I'm wondering about this myself. I need to redo my pool interior, which is degraded white marble plaster. I redid my separate spa area with 2mm white and gold pebbles. I'm planning to do the pool interior the same, however I wonder if I should simply do it as smooth plaster instead.

If I do pebbles I'll do a very light exposure. Maybe just acid wash so it's exposed aggregate, rather than pebbles sitting proud of the cement.
 

Sam1234

Gold Supporter
Nov 26, 2020
10
Santa Barbara, CA
Hi,
Another quick question - we got a sample of pebblesheen and are wondering (in addition to all of the deep pits throughout the pool) about the variability across all of the finish. For example, the difference between the top and bottom of this picture (it's this way all over the pool). We sent our builder this picture (with the sample in for reference) and asked about this variation and the missing pebbles, and got the response that this type of variation / missing pebbles is "standard for pebblesheen" - this doesn't make sense to me, but I don't know pools and wanted to confirm.
 

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Sam1234

Gold Supporter
Nov 26, 2020
10
Santa Barbara, CA
They haven't done a great job exposing the pebbles. It is quite inconsistent, and they've blown out chunks in a few areas.

Are you getting hurt everywhere in the pool? Or just at the deeper gouges? Those pebbles do look fairly sharp.

We're getting hurt most times in the pool unless we wear flippers. It's kind of like Russian roulette depending on where you put your feet and hands.
 

tomfrh

Well-known member
Jan 30, 2018
484
Australia
nd got the response that this type of variation / missing pebbles is "standard for pebblesheen"

They are defending themselves legally now. It is true that all pebblesheen being a site-mixed manually-applied manually-exposed product will have some level of surface variation. They are using this basic fact as a general defense to the level of variation in your pool, which in my opinion is excessive and unacceptable. You have areas with minimal pebble exposure, and adjacent areas of heavy exposure where pebbles are protruding excessively (hence the random injuries you are encountering). I would expect a lot better from professional pebble applicators.

They will be reluctant to admit a defective finish, as it means they need to refinish, which is expensive for them. Hence they are saying it's normal, and hoping you say ok.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
47,711
Tallahassee, FL
sad to say this but what he said ^^^^^ Make sure to get all talks about this problem in writing so you have it when you talk to a lawyer :(
 

Sam1234

Gold Supporter
Nov 26, 2020
10
Santa Barbara, CA
Oof, I was hoping that wasn't the case. We do like them as people, which is why we've been so patient. But I'm at a loss here as to what they're thinking. It's not logical to risk one's reputation in a small town like ours over what is fairly small potatoes to fix in the grand scheme. Think anyone who saw these pictures would not hire the builder responsible for them, so I just don't get it. Hopefully they will do the right thing; but it's been months at this point, and I think what we are asking is reasonable. Okay; thank you all so much for the advice; it is really appreciated.
 
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Sam1234

Gold Supporter
Nov 26, 2020
10
Santa Barbara, CA
The PB agreed to a full chip out of the finish and a reinstall. The finish installer came yesterday and hydroblasted the surface. It does not look like they removed all of the pebble as they agreed to do (?). We're open to changes in the process from what we agreed on, if they make sense, but we want this done correctly. I was wondering - is the pebble fully out here? Does a proper reinstall require them to hydroblast all the pebble out, and reinstall from the gunite? Or is this the right way to do it, where you leave most of the pebble and just remove the surface layer (which is where the problem was originally - the surface was very sharp and cutting our feet and hands)?
 

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Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,457
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
@JamesW, @jimmythegreek, can you look at the pics in post #29 and confirm that is not a full chip out? That's what the OP was promised. If this were your pool, and the brand new pebble finish needed to be redone, as determined by a PebbleTec rep, would you expect a full chip out?
 

tomfrh

Well-known member
Jan 30, 2018
484
Australia
Personally I would be happy with that level of preparation. It is heavily abraded and the new material will stick well to it. Furthermore the extra thickness will provide an additional carbonation barrier, that will delay concrete cancer down the track.

Insisting on going back to the concrete shell seems unnecessary to me.

Just my two cents.
 

jimmythegreek

TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
In The Industry
Aug 10, 2017
3,188
Morris Cnty NJ
That's what a blast looks like when done. A chip out old school is with pmuematic chipping guns, not the same thing. On a new shell I would be ok with that level of prep. You have to make sure there is enough material removed so that all tile below waterline is gone and down ttothat setting level amd around all penetration have a solid 1/4" or more build up needed to become flush finished
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,457
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Thanks @jimmythegreek! My chip out was pneumatic, which is why I didn't recognize what they did to Sam's pool. So no problem with leaving that layer of old pebble between gunite and new pebble? No risk of future separations?
 

jimmythegreek

TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
In The Industry
Aug 10, 2017
3,188
Morris Cnty NJ
It's likely ok considering it's a new shell amd the first adhesion looks good. In a perfect world we all want a full chip like you did amd that's the best. A blast is cheaper amd has its place, this is one of them. If this finish was older or regular plaster I'd want to see an old school chip. Looking at pics they got a great bond but the final finish work wasn't up to snuff. Down the road when it's time to replaster a full chip would he needed in my opinion.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,457
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Thanks Jimmy! So there you go, Sam. It's "pick your battles" time... keep us posted. We're looking forward to the "We're done and so happy!" pics... :)