Some pics of our Nova Scotia DIY pool

novagolfMay 17, 2008

Hi folks,

I have been lurking for quite a while and have posted a couple of times. Thanks to everyone who have posted as I have learned a lot in preparation for our project.

We started a 18 X 39 Lazy L ingound vinyl pool a few weeks ago. Currently I am sitting inside waiting for the rain to stop so that hopefully we can mix and trowel the portland/vermiculite for the pool bottom tomorrow. Doing all the work ourselves with the exception of the excavation for the pool.

Pool builders warned us not to do it ourselves ... however not hard at all ... you just have to do the research, be particular, and take your time.

Thanks again to everyone ... and I'll keep updating the picks as we go along.


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I really admire those of you who do it yourselves! Grouting my bathroom scares me! There's no way I'd have the nerve to tackle something that big!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2008 at 11:40AM
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It's looking great!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2008 at 12:55AM
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Portland/vermiculite almost done :-)

    Bookmark   May 20, 2008 at 6:45AM
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Hi Novagolf. Pool looks great. I'm doing a diy 22x44 freeform vinyl pool myself. Starting to plumm this week. How long did it take you to put in the portland/vermiculite bottom?

    Bookmark   June 10, 2008 at 3:42PM
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Wow - good for you! After spending almost a year wrestling with our now terminated PB, there are MANY times we wish we would have done the pool ourselves! Even if we had made mistakes, it probably still would have been cheaper and less stressful in the long run. Good for you for doing the research - it's going to be beautiful. How deep is it? Please keep the pics coming!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2008 at 4:24PM
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Hi folks,

Sorry ... now that the nice weather is here I have been busy working on the pool ... and not as much time at the computer.

Pool progress is going well ... (although a little slower than I would like ... I guess that is to be expected when you are doing it yourself and work keeps getting in the way :-). Hoping to have the 3' concrete deck around the pool done tomorrow (along with floor of the pool house) and then pavers for the rest of the pool deck. I don't have latest pictures here but here is one more.

To answer a few of the questions you can do the portland/vermiculite in a day ... although it took me more than that as there were 3 of us for part of it, then 2 of us, then the last bit (not done in the pic above) I did myself. Not difficult to do but it did give some muscles a workout that hadn't had a workout in a while :-). I would say it would take a total of 10 hours with 3 guys if three of us did it straight ... and of course this is all new to us ... so someone who knows what they are doing would probably be faster.

As for the depth it is 8 feet in the deepest part.

Here is one more pic ... I'll add more when I get them up on photobucket. Pool needs to be cleaned big time ... all the dirt from working around it and the fact it is not being filtered has created a great place for bugs and dirt to collect :-) Hopefully in another week or so the pool house will be done (over where the pipes are coming out) and the filter and chemicals (SWG) will do their magic.

I love doing this project myself ... besides the tremendous money that we are saving ... the project has been a wonderful experience ... I would strongly recommend it to anyone thinking of putting a pool in :-)


    Bookmark   June 30, 2008 at 2:40PM
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Wow! That is so impressive! You have every right to feel good about your work - looks like it's going to be really nice! Want to come down to TX & put one in for us? ;-)

    Bookmark   June 30, 2008 at 3:30PM
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I was in Dallas back in December at a conference ... caught a Mavericks game and a Billy Joel concert ... we had a great time :-). I'm not sure I'm ready to go pool "pro" ... I don't have the speed part down yet :-)

Here is a couple more pics ... one from when we were filling it and another from tonight ... just waiting for the concrete guy to come ... hopefully tomorrow if the weather holds out.


    Bookmark   July 1, 2008 at 8:48PM
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great job! it sounds like you did your homework (that's what i'm doing...its 2am!!) do you mind sharing any links you found useful? and where did you get your kit? (i'm in canada as well) how much was the excavation?

thanks so much!!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2008 at 2:08AM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

just curious did you vacuum the liner in place while you filled it?
Unfortunately my pool builder on my vinyl liner pool at my previous home did not know how to properly vacuum in a liner and I paid the price by having a liner with wrinkles in it and not properly seated.
When replacing my liner I got professionals out to do it and it was absolutely a WORLD of difference in how the liner went in and fit, I quickly found out that a liner really must be put in with a vacuum. I never had another wrinkle or twisted liner.

Your build looks great, after what we went through with our pool builder on our vinyl liner pool, basically he was never there and I ended up running the show, we too thought we could have done it a lot better than him. He did not set up his transit level properly to level the pool so as a result we had one corner that was lower which is so obvious when the pool is full.
You did a great job!

we had similar steps only ours were bigger and had the metal hand rail at the center, we had the spa jets in the steps.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2008 at 4:08PM
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Here are some update pics. Yes ravencajun .... I used 2 shopvacs as 2 garden hoses filled the pool. I think they are an important part of the liner installation.

Next steps are to finish the pool house (complete with bar :-), fencing, tumbled pavers, and landscaping.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2008 at 9:11PM
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Dave, your pool looks great. My Dh and I are thinking about a DIY pool and we're in Nova Scotia too. Are you interested in sharing any links you found helpful or chatting about the process?


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 9:55AM
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Hi Alicia,

Sure ... absolutely. I am in Lower Canard and you can reach me by email and I'll email my phone number so you can call. I am always careful to post email addresses online but I'll use one I normally use for spam and will keep an eye out for your email. You can email me at jonesd at

Here a pic from the grand opening ... not the nicest day but the kids didn't mind - they loved it!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 11:25PM
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Hi there,

Well it is almost a year since my last post ... been working hard on the pool and area and we are getting close (between work and family commitments!). Here are a couple updated photos ... only the outside of the shed and some landscaping to finish. Quite a commitment to do it yourself ... but worth it in the end!


    Bookmark   July 26, 2009 at 8:40PM
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Congrats on the project, I'm certain that the thrill of enjoying it is great.
Your workmanship is awesome on every aspect of the construction.
Proof positive that with a bit of mechanical aptitude and a willingness to sweat, anything is possible!!!


See ya,

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 1:50AM
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Updated Photos :-)

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 10:26PM
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That's a great looking pool and pool area!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 11:18AM
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