Gunite swimming pools are a popular choice in much of the United States. To build one of these pools, the construction crew digs a hole, puts the plumbing in place and assembles a framework grid with steel reinforcing rods (rebar). The rebar rods are spaced about 10 inches apart, and secured together with wire. When the grid is in place, the crew sprays a heavy coating of gunite, a mixture of cement and sand, around the rebar.
The sprayer unit combines dry gunite mix with water just before spraying — this produces the wet concrete material. The crew trowels the gunite smooth and lets it sit for a week or two before applying a smooth finish to the rough surface. The most popular finish is called plaster (actually a mixture of cement and marble sand), but a lot of people finish their pools with special concrete paint or pebble surfaces. Gunite pools can also have tile, exposed aggregate or even fiberglass finishes. Gunite pools are highly durable when constructed in warm climates, and they can be built in any shape or size. Gunite pool owners can also choose from many plaster finishes or pebble applications, allowing for maximum creativity.