How are fibreglass pools made?
As opposed to concrete pools, fibreglass pools arrive as ready-made shells that simply need to be installed into your backyard in order to use. How’s that for a plug-and-play solution? Shells are cast using moulds in accredited manufacturing facilities, and a number of materials and processes are used for their creation. So how exactly does it all work?
Our fibreglass pools are cast with six different layers, but before it comes to creating the pool shell, manufacturers begin with the ‘pattern’. Also referred to as the ‘plug’, this will simulate the original shape of the pool shell using wood, fibreglass, primer and body filler. Created to be a replica of the pool, it’s used for the creation of the mould and takes up to four months to complete. Think of it like a mould for the mould!
From there, the mould is created with a steel-frame interior and fibreglass. It’s generally made in a red-orange colour, so that when it’s used to create the pool shell, it stands out against the blue gelcoat and manufacturers can easily tell where the mould ends, and the pool shell starts. As opposed to the 3-4 months it takes to create the pattern, moulds only take around 3-4 weeks, and are manufactured with wheels on the bottom so they can be maneuverered around the space easily.
Last but not least comes the actual pool shell itself! This step interestingly only accounts for a very small part of the manufacturing process. Taking only 1-2 days to complete, the pool is built on top of the mould and then released, ready for use.
Summertime Pools are built using a layering system of 6 different materials, beginning with white high resin and fibreglass. It creates a hardened exterior barrier and locks all of the proceeding layers and laminations together, ensuring strength, colour and manufacturing solidity in the pool shell. Next up is the foam core supports, which create stiffness and structural integrity for a lifetime guarantee. A layer of white resin and fibreglass follows again to enhance this structural integrity, before a vinyl ester and fibreglass layer is laid down. This provides a protective barrier that prevents the growth of bacteria in the pool, ensuring a safe and hygienic environment. The second to last layer is where it gets a little more fun – the marine grade colour gel coat, where you can choose the colour of your pool. Will you look for a deep sea blue or something a little more neutral and warm? The final layer is the colour shield clear gel coat, which is the pool shell’s first line of defence for durability. The gel coat is marine grade, meaning it offers unsurpassed UV protection to stop any chance of colour fade – also part of our lifetime protection guarantee!
After the pool shell has been built, separating it from the mould is a careful process. The mould is wheeled out of the building, and using straps, the shell is gently pulled out from the mould. The first pool shell pulled out of a new mould can sometimes get stuck, but with a team of experienced builders, the process can be smooth and easy. The mould is then ready to be wheeled back into the building, ready to create more pool shells!