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Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Posted by susan1404 (My Page) on
Fri, Aug 22, 08 at 11:33

Hi Barco, I think you said in a thread once that you have stonescapes. Well, I do too, and I have some pretty big dark areas in my pool, so I wondered how uniform the color of your plaster was. Also, I think there was a mix-up when my pool got started up, and I didn't get an acid start-up. The plasterers put acid on the plaster and then filled the pool, but the manufacturer told me that is part of the installation and I needed to have an "aggressive acid-start-up" Do you remember how your pool was started up? Thank you! Susan


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Most stone aggregate finishs like Stonescape have similar startup procedures including those like Pebbletec. I had Pebbletec as well before and it was done the same way. First, they do an acid wash. They basically pour acid on the walls of the pool and brush it, then rinse it off. In my Stonescape pool they used a stainless steel wire brush...they just used a standard pool brush with my Pebbletec pool. Mine was done about 3 hours after it was applied. This is a bit aggressive and it should be allowed to sit for more like 24 hrs.

Then you do an acid startup.... You fill the pool with water and add 3-4 gallons of acid for every 10,000 gallons of water. However, in my case I did my own startup, and I did not do as aggresive of a startup. I only added 3 gallons of acid for my pool and its about 18,000 gallons. I didn't do that because with time, the plaster pulls off anyways...and the more acid you etch you plaster with the less the pool will last. Also my wash, in my opinion was already aggressive. In some places, in fact, I can see brush marks.

The acid typically gets rid of the "light" colored cream that "hazes" over the aggregates and also allows more of the aggregate to be exposed.

IMHO, aggregate pools are not a "uniform" color...that is 1) their beauty. Nature is not a perfect white color or light blue color. There are all sorts of different colored rocks and some may be darker or lighter as they are applied 2) This non-uniform color means stains or other issues are more hidden. The entire reason I went with an aggregate pool is I knew that eventually stains appear or other issues and they are harder to see in my pool. Thus resale value is higher and also people are still interested in getting in an older 6-8 year old pool without being grossed out by possible brown and yellow stains.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Hi Barco, thank you so much for your help. I hate to sound like I'm complaining, but I have large patches (several feet long) where the plaster is dark blue and hardly any aggregate shows. It is also much rougher than the rest of the pool, and it is very noticable when the pool is still. The pool company were not being very helpful, so I called the manufacturer and they were astonished that I didn't get an acid start-up, so I thought I would check with you and get your opinion too. After I had posted my question to you, I got a message from the PB saying that the general manager, the plasterer, and a stonescapes rep were all going to come out and look at my pool (which is a relief!) If they say that it looks the way it is supposed to look, I'll let it rest. When the waterfall and bubbler are going, there is so much movement in the pool that you can't see the patches anyway, and the color is beautiful.

One more thing (I think we have twin pools, BTW!!) I know you have an ozonator, and I do too. I basically got it so I would use less chlorine, but right now I'm using the same amount as if I didn't have one, because I've been told to keep the readings in the "normal" range. How do you know what your chlorine levels should read? Is it trial and error? Thank you again for your help! Susan


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Well you should keep your Chlorine between .5 and 1 PPM...you should not need to keep it above that level.

Coming from a chlorine background, the first month I kept the pool above 1ppm, everything was clear, no algae blooms. So then I let the chlorine go to a point between .5 and 1, the second month, still clear, no algae. Then I let the pool go below .5ppm for a month, still clear, no algae. Now I'm to the point of just ignoring it. I measure the chlorine level and there are quite a few times, where the chlorine level is 0 and was probably zero for at least several days. However, the water is clear and there is no algae. I will add my chlorine to get it back up to .5. However, if you ozonenator is like mine, you really need the smallest amount of chlorine and if you let it go to zero for a few days or a week, it does not appear to be that big of a deal for me. I have yet to have an algae bloom of even cloudy water. My water is crystal clear and everytime we have folks over they say its the clearest pool water they have ever swam in.

Post pictures of the plaster so we can see it. Really an acid startup is not going to "expose aggregate. All its going to do is eliminate the haze and pull the smallest amount of plaster off. They should expose 90% of the plaster with the sprayer. Than they use the acid wash to clean off 90% of the haze and finish the exposing the rest of the 10%. The acid wash more than anything pulls the last 10% of the haze off and it helps "cure" the plaster quicker and makes it harder and less brittle. From your description, I don't thick the acid startup is the issue. In fact, as I indicated, I made my acid startup kind of weaker than recommended anyways.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Thanks so much for the info about the chlorine. I won't worry that I'm not using enough now!

I have tried to take some photos of the dark patches, but it's hard to get it to show up. Anyway, this might give you an idea of what I'm talking about:

Photobucket

Photobucket

I'd like to hear what you think. Like I said earlier, if this is how the pebble finishes are, then I'm still glad I upgraded. I just haven't seen this in anyone elses photos, and the patch in the photo isn't the only one in the pool. I'll also let you know what the PB and rep say on Thursday if you are interested. Thanks again, Susan


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Ah I see.

I have a few spots like that. Yours are darker than mine and bigger. Some of mine are on the tanning ledge and I have looked at them and they seem to be where the "color" was not mixed as well from what I have been able to see. They are shallow enough that I can see the pebbles are properly exposed.

I had just considered them to be standard color mottling.

Perhaps someone else can chime in.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

whoa, i have never seen stonescapes in person, just lots of pebbletec, but your finish seems to deviate way off the acceptable range. i think they owe you a new finish. that kind of difference is not what they manufacturers mean when they talk about variations. and the idea that you have very little aggregate in those areas...sounds like your applicator didn't do the job right. be tough on this, you don't want a resale issue down the line!


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Thanks, Gina - I needed to hear that I wasn't as crazy as my PB company would have me believe! You also just reminded me that I happened to be home on the day the plaster was installed and the mixer/machine thing broke down. I wouldn't have given it a second thought, but the guys were literally running around to get it fixed, and it was 105 in DFW that day. I wonder if that has something to do with it....I guess I'll find out on Thursday.

Barco - thanks again for responding - the fact that you don't have any patches this size makes me think my pool finish probably isn't typical.

I'd love to hear if anyone else does or doesn't have patches like this in their pebble pools, and if they think it is acceptable....


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

i hope it turns out well for you and they fix it properly. we had a dime-sized chunk of pebbletec fall off the week after installation, and they tried to fix it without emptying the pool but it did not look right and when i asked them to redo it (note, last payment was not made yet) they came out, emptied my pool, saved the water in huge inflatable pools, fixed it PERFECTLY, and then refilled the pool. we lost less than 1/2 inch of water, amazing! it took them an entire day, since the chunk was near the bottom of the pool and so much had to be emptied.

but i bring this up because pebbletec took really good care of us, and since stonescapes says they're "just as good as pebbletec" you should expect similar treatment. think of what good business it would for them to treat you well and fix it...you could tell us all and we'd have a positive impression of stonescapes. and it would probably be bad business for them to not stand behind their work...we'd all make a mental note of that.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

No Stonescape is not as "good" as Pebbletec. I'm not sure who said that but its not true. I have had both. There is definetly a difference in Quality and Price. The price of Pebbletec is nearly twice the price of Stonescape. With that much extra margin, they can afford to completely redo every 3rd pool and still make more money. So, No, I would not and I do not have the same expectation of quality.

If you have light patches where there is no stone, then they have over exposed that area. I have some of those spots and they are coming back to fix those in my pool. The darker I spots have slowly gotten less visible over time.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Mine was that "am I going to regret plain white plaster" thread and I think some folks who had had both did say they were the same. Barco is right - Stonescapes is cheaper - PebbleTech would have cost an extra $1500. My PB told me it was essentially the same - the pebbles all come from the same factory, the main difference was that PebbleTech really police their installers, which I'm sure is why they have such a great reputation and so many thrilled custmers. However, the StonesScapes rep couldn't have been nicer and more concerned when I spoke to him. Unfortunately, his hands were tied, as to get him out to look at the pool, I first had to go through my PB company (the GM told me he'd been told by the pool start-up guy that I had the best plaster he'd ever seen!), then the plaster company (who came out without telling me and removed "a tiny little leaf" that was stuck in the plaster and was causing the rough spot I spoke about). I was pretty mad about it so the GM has agreed to meet me tomorrow with the StoneScape rep. I was worried that maybe I was being too much of a perfectionist, and I would get the same sneers, and looks of astonishment that I have had from the PB before when thing weren't right (and there have been many!). Anyway, if they say it's okay, I'll live with it. My pool is beautiful, and when the waterfall is running you can't see it anyway. Gina - I do think you are right about them wanting to do the right thing, and I'll certainly sing their praises every chance I get when this is resolved. Also, that is so great that PebbleTech fixed your spot and saved your water. I must remember to ask them to save mine too - I haven't even had the water bill for the fill-up yet and I certainly didn't want to do that again!


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Can someone please give me the number where I can get a hold of a Stonescaoes Rep. My PB is out of buisness and I am having some problems with my finish. I would really appreciate a number.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

is there a stonescapes corporate website listed on any of your warranty information or paperwork? i did an internet search for you but didn't turn anything up.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Stonescape is the trade name. I believe the material company is something like MPI. Its basically a material application...its not like Pebbletec where they have taken a material application and made a true "brand" out of it. In fact, I have heard the MPI product application called by other names than Stonescape. MPI has a website but I can't remember the name...Its nearly impossible to google. I'll see if I can find some stuff on it.


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npt..not mpi

Sorry, its NPT, not MPI. Try http://www.nptgonline.com/nptg_national/finishes_main.html.

Also check with http://www.wylieplastering.com/


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

This is the link for contact info

http://www.nptgonline.com/nptg_national/contact.html

I called the Dallas office (214.366.4009) and they put me in touch with the local rep. BTW - Wylie were the plaster company that installed mine. Please let us know how you are treated, and good luck!


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Thanks, I called the Florida office. They got me to a guy close to me that knows all the installers in my area. He is suppose to get the info so I can get this resolved. They have been great so far.


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RE: Question for BARCO (and anyone who has StoneScapes)

Hi Susan1404
I know your posting is from 2008 but im hoping you might see this. We are having the EXACT same problems with our pebble sheen that you had with your stonescapes. You mentioned that the stonescape rep and pb were going to take a look at the problem. Did they have a solution to fix the problems?


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