Jul 16, 2012


The TANK. 

A few before, during and after shots of the summer game-changer:
pre-tank, note the baby pool in the background
after (freshly treated with penofin)

C bought the tank up in Dixon, just outside of Davis, at a feed store. He used leftover pieces of recycled redwood to build the platform and benches around the pool and we filled the area with a mix of river pebbles (cheap) and mexican black river stones (not cheap but so pretty).

And now the important details for those interested:

+ the tank holds 800 gallons, it's 8 ft diameter and about 2 feet deep (perfect for soaking and floating)

+ we drain and clean the tank roughly every other week (depending on how many stinky feet and peeing babies have taken a dip) and use the water to water our garden.

+ we treat the water with peroxide following this non-toxic sanitizing solution

+ UPDATE: I forgot to mention our amazing pool cover! we bought the 12' round solar cover and cut it down to size. it looks like blue plastic bubble wrap but it does a most excellent job of heating the water.  it heats up the top 4-5" of water and you just give it all a big stir 'fore jumping in. though some (*ahem*, Germans) don't mind the cold, it's a lifesaver for those with more delicate sensibilities.

+ we took a plunge (ha, ha..) and splurged on a solar powered filter. we were lucky and scored a sweet deal on a refurbished model. so far, it's been awesome...check out this thrilling video for proof of the awesomeness.


Hayley said...

Love what you did! I"m inspired. What do you do with the "pool" during the winter?

Shayna said...



Good question! We haven't gone through a winter with it yet but we're thinking about using it for water collection. Any other great ideas???

I would love to figure out how to heat the water up so we could have a hot tub but I think that would be too costly!

Anonymous said...

Nice! I found this make it yourself hot tub a while back, and have been wanting to try: http://www.wcc.net/~jkmccoy/hottub/hottub.htm

Hayley said...

Our stock tank was delivered this morning! I was serious when I said you inspired me! :)

I saw another site who uses a propane heater during the winter to warm the water..now only if I can find that again.

What do you cover it with? Is that a blue tarp...or pool cover material?

April said...

Looks nice! We're planning on a small stock tank for a shower basin/tub in our tiny house bathroom.
If you were going to use it as a hot tub in the winter you could use a propane on-demand water heater, but I think the sides of the tank wouldn't be too thermally efficient, bet it would lose heat quickly.

Shayna said...

Hayley- That's so awesome! I'm excited for you! Yes, I totally forgot to mention our amazing cover. I'll add a link in the original post. It's made all the difference in temp.

April- Yeah, I think you're right about energy efficiency being an issue. I'm not done scheming...a hot tub would be so glorious.

Anon- nice link! That is a doozy of a project....bookmarking it. Thanks!

Bridget said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shayna said...


Sorry it took so long to reply...
The tank has a drain on the side. It lets out most of the water and then we vacuum out the remaining water with our trusty shopvac.


Anonymous said...

Think I've seen some plans where you can use a wood stove, with a water pipe that runs around the firebox....and is connected to the tub, one closer to the bottom and the other more towards the top.

It circulates thermally. Cooler water into the bottom pipe, and the heated water flows into the tub.

Lacey-0ne said...

I am enjoying reading your journey.... and i found this I hope it helps with the pool :)

Ricky Bebb said...

Wow what a fantastic idea, I need to find the name of a stock tank in french and im sorted.
For heating the water you could try a thermo syphon type idea or a rocket stove using a coil (similar to the thermo syphon). There are lots of ideas on youtube, we are looking at a few ourselves

Anonymous said...

Hi, I liked a lot your idea, tks! Suggestion: in Brazil, we have a wood stove/oven in farms w/o electricity. we cook in it and have hot water for the shower also. I hope you have google chrom to translate the page
The 2nd one teaches how to build the wood stove (w/o the water pipes) and the last one is a wood stove improvement, but you can see the water pipes in the stove.
I hope it can add some ideas to you guys. Jane

Anonymous said...

An outdoor wood burning furnace could be installed it puts out enough heat for your home, pool garage etc, depending on the size.

Gaines150 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

We for years use a Blue Plastic Stock tank for my son's swimming pool.

Anonymous said...

Maybe you could build an extra wall around the outside and then fill the space with something like sand or something for insulation so that you could heat it in the winter and not lose all of your heat so quickly. Just thinking out loud.


Anonymous said...

you could use a water tank heater for livestock, they are quite nice and work really well. you can get them in differant sizes depending on if you want a little heat or alot.