Wooden Pool Deck Building in Summerveld, Durban

We built this wooden pool deck in Summerveld, Durban in July 2015. There were various challenges in this wooden pool deck build which tested our skills somewhat.

Firstly the ground in Summerveld is very rocky, in fact in some areas it is just one large rock, and when digging you are actually making a small hole in a large piece of rock. There were 21 holes in total on this wooden pool deck so digging was slow and costly.

From the pics you can also see that the edge rim of the pool is a rock feature so it is not level or flat and we had to try to get our deck height to a comfortable level for access from the rock rim of the pool on to the wooden pool deck. We also had to then try to conceal the gap between rock and deck as far as possible and as neatly as possible. In some areas it took a full deck board as a fascia and in other areas it was tapered down to a half width deck board.

We ran deck boards perpendicular to the pool to avoid having long thin slivers of deck board on the pool side. When we started out the deck was planned to be half the finished size. As it took shape it was decided to extend it to its final measurements which was a double-edged sword for us as we had to dig even more holes through the rock but it increased our surface area and therefore our earnings. So we put on our big boy pants and carried on. The ends result was that the deck now extends past the front of the house so that when you are standing on the front you can see all the way along the front of the house.

A pool pump cover was added, a full balustrade around the whole deck and we clad the open vertical gaps so that one cannot see below the deck.

In one of the pics above you can see how we have returned the balustrade at 90 degrees on the first corner. This is to give the long run of balustrade perpendicular to it more strength. Long straight runs of balustrade can often become quite “wobbly” and this corner gives it good strength.

We opened a gap in the existing post and rail fence and built stairs from the garden at house level to the pool with a hinged gate and latch. Because of the angle of the stairs, and to prevent digging too deep into the ground at the top of the stairs, we built a small landing.

A short free-standing balustrade was added along the electric fence to provide some protection from the electric fence when accessing the lower garden on the right hand side of the deck.

For a free no obligation quote on your wooden pool deck or other outdoor timber structures please call us on 082 496 5444 or use the contact us form below.

Driveway Gate Clad in Balau Wood

Driveway gate clad in balau

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Here’s another driveway gate that we clad in balau in Umdloti, North of Durban. In the pics you can see the old gate which we left in place while we installed the new balau timber clad driveway gate and them removed it afterwards and scrapped it. Because this gate is right on the road facing the beach it had rusted beyond repair.

The steel gate was designed using 38mm x 76mm rectangular tube as a rectangular outer frame which then had a cross flat bar of 5mm x 30mm running horizontally across from one side to the other. At the top and bottom we welded flat bar on to the rectangular tube which had pre drilled holes in it to accept our deck boards. The horizontal cross flat bar was there to stop the deck boards bowing over time. It was all hot dip galvanised. I don’t recommend painting the galvanised steel. It can be done quite successfully but will always be a maintenance issue and will need re-painting every year or 18 months.

We set he track in concrete and attached the brackets which keep the gate plumb and then set the gate on its track. Only once it was on its track did we attach the deck boards to the flat bar on the top and flat bar on the bottom by lining up the board with equal spaces and drilling a hole through the wood. We used a 40mm galvanised hex bolt with a nut on the back-end and then finished it off with a stainless steel dome nut. It would be better to use stainless throughout, that is the bolt, washers nuts and dome nuts as they won’t rust.

Driveway gate clad in balau

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We left the timber unsealed as the client wanted it to turn natural grey. It doesn’t really affect the longevity of the timber. Balau contains natural resins and oils which slow down the process of rot considerably compared to other woods.

The trick in setting these deck boards is to make sure that they are equally spaced. It is fairly simple because the pre drilled holes are calculated to be dead centre so theoretically each hole should be drilled through the centre of the board. Practically though you need to still be careful to get the space between boards equal even at the cost of not drilling dead center of each board. The time-consuming part of this job is pre-cutting the deck boards to exactly the correct length to fit snugly in below the top and bottom tube.

The flat bar on the top and bottom, to which the board is attached, is set off centre so that the steel on the front of the gate is flush with the deck boards once they are installed. i.e. the deck boards are recessed.

When measuring for the steel frame you want to get the whole frame visible when the gate is in a closed position. You always set your boards so that the good side is on the outside.

What goes very nicely with these types of gates is matching timber in fills on a masonry boundary wall.

Driveway gate clad in balau

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For a free no obligation quote for driveway gates clad in balau or other timber, timber in fills on boundary walls and all your outdoor timber construction, please contact us on 082 496 5444 or use the contact us form below.