building a deck around a pool, calculating how far to put the beams

Old 07-22-03, 08:31 AM
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building a deck around a pool, calculating how far to put the beams

I am building a deck halfway around a 28' above ground pool.
At the apex of the pool the distance to the edge will be 13'
I found a site called but they gave plans for the cement blocks for the foundation and I have planned on putting the posts in the ground with cement. If i do the posts the way they suggest i would have to dig about 50 post holes, and that seems aliitle much. Do you design a deck dfferently when using those cement footings?
I have been trying to figure out how to do the beam and joists.
I am looking for examples or suggestions on how to go around the pool.
I have included an image of what i am trying to accomplish.
a note: there is an exisiting deck that i am adding to..
Thanks for any help
Old 07-22-03, 03:18 PM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Arlington, WA
Posts: 9,238
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I would NEVER bury the posts in the ground. Locate where the posts need to be, did a pad about 14" square and 10" deep (more if frost is an issue), fill the pad with concrete and set a pier block in the wet mud.

WHERE to locate the posts depends on what size beams you plan on using and how far they can span. I use 4X6's and space the posts about 5' to 5-1/2' apart. The spacing of the beams is determined by what you are using for joists. I use 2X6's, and space the beams about 5' apart. Your joist spacing is determined by what you are using for decking. A 2X6 deck board CAN span 24", but I never space the joists more than 20" apart -- Too much 'bounce' in the deck in a few years. A composite like Trex 2X6's can span 20" -- I reduce that to 16" for the same reason. A 5/4 deck board can span 16" -- I cut mine down to 12". And, if you are planning on diagonal decking, cut the joist spacings down another 4" to 6" from what I just told you. (20" becomes about 14", 12" becomes 8".

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