Coping Shelf Construction?

ATP

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I keep seeing mention on here about doing the rock shelf about 3" down from the edge for the coping stones. All the youtube videos show the first shelf being anywhere from probably 12" to 24" or more. Granted many of these videos are using very large boulders and use heavy equipment to move them.

My question is, is this first "coping" shelf driven by the size of the boulders you have access to or regardless of size, this shelf should still be created?

@addy1 I hope you dont mind but I modified your "famous" drawing to help illustrate my question (below). What is missing for me is, what comes after this shallow shelf? Assuming this is a rock lined pond, I am guessing it is another shelf right below (red arrow) with another rock? I cant help but wonder if this would create a stacked rock look. I cant find any pictures where this exact method has been done so trying to visulize how it would look.

My plan was to try and get large coping stones ~18-24" and dig the top shelf down to around 12-15" (depending on the size of stone) leaving the top part of the stone 1/3 or more out of the water. Then add varous liner treatments to hide the liner. Am I on the right track here or should i still add the shallow shelf around the perimeter of the pond.

I know I am probably over thinking this...and I will continue until I can start digging! But, looking for direction so I dont regret not leaving this shelf out of my plan.

Shelf_LI.jpg
 
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I keep seeing mention on here about doing the rock shelf about 3" down from the edge for the coping stones. All the youtube videos show the first shelf being anywhere from probably 12" to 24" or more. Granted many of these videos are using very large boulders and use heavy equipment to move them.

My question is, is this first "coping" shelf driven by the size of the boulders you have access to or regardless of size, this shelf should still be created?

@addy1 I hope you dont mind but I modified your "famous" drawing to help illustrate my question (below). What is missing for me is, what comes after this shallow shelf? Assuming this is a rock lined pond, I am guessing it is another shelf right below (red arrow) with another rock? I cant help but wonder if this would create a stacked rock look. I cant find any pictures where this exact method has been done so trying to visulize how it would look.

My plan was to try and get large coping stones ~18-24" and dig the top shelf down to around 12-15" (depending on the size of stone) leaving the top part of the stone 1/3 or more out of the water. Then add varous liner treatments to hide the liner. Am I on the right track here or should i still add the shallow shelf around the perimeter of the pond.

I know I am probably over thinking this...and I will continue until I can start digging! But, looking for direction so I dont regret not leaving this shelf out of my plan.

View attachment 147509


it IS infamous, isn't it!!!! We routinely rents out the Boss to art galleries and such, you know, for pocket money!

Your plan will work as you've outlined it. There isn't a shelf any lower than you need it and that first 3" below waterline one is more because most put less than large rocks on the edge. But yes, dig as your vision requires. A lot of ponders don't do this, initially (me, raising my hand and waving it furiously) so a 'fix' can be done but not at 12", not easily like 3-4" can.

Just realize that rocks in the pond take away water volume; figure that into your final 'vision' re gallonage and real estate. And you can make this shelf as wide and deep as you want; just put rocks that are large enough to stick up as high as you want them. I have some wider shelves and some narrower, and the original intent has changed many times, depending on my whim. If too deep, I have to use some milk crates to lift pots up, if too shallow, I'm SOL and can only use shallow pots there.
 

ATP

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it IS infamous, isn't it!!!! We routinely rents out the Boss to art galleries and such, you know, for pocket money!

Your plan will work as you've outlined it. There isn't a shelf any lower than you need it and that first 3" below waterline one is more because most put less than large rocks on the edge. But yes, dig as your vision requires. A lot of ponders don't do this, initially (me, raising my hand and waving it furiously) so a 'fix' can be done but not at 12", not easily like 3-4" can.

Just realize that rocks in the pond take away water volume; figure that into your final 'vision' re gallonage and real estate. And you can make this shelf as wide and deep as you want; just put rocks that are large enough to stick up as high as you want them. I have some wider shelves and some narrower, and the original intent has changed many times, depending on my whim. If too deep, I have to use some milk crates to lift pots up, if too shallow, I'm SOL and can only use shallow pots there.
Ok, thank you! Just wanted to make sure I wasnt missing something. the rock will dictate how deep that first shelf is then. Appreciate it!
 
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Ok, thank you! Just wanted to make sure I wasnt missing something. the rock will dictate how deep that first shelf is then. Appreciate it!
make sure you vary the sizes, though; too much the same and you might get that 'string of pearls' look, which doesn't shout anything but 'manmade pond'!
 
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I keep seeing mention on here about doing the rock shelf about 3" down from the edge for the coping stones. All the youtube videos show the first shelf being anywhere from probably 12" to 24" or more. Granted many of these videos are using very large boulders and use heavy equipment to move them. THAT'S CONFUSING THE FIRST SHELF THAT IS FOR HOLDING BACK THE WALLS OF THE POND,lIKE YOU SAID USING BOULDERS. tHE EDGING OR COPING ROCKS ARE A DIFFERENT ANIMAL THEY SIMPLY ARE A SHELF FOR THE EDGING AND ROCKS TO SIT ON THAT WILL HIDE THE LINER AND MAKE THE POND LOOK NATURAL.

My question is, is this first "coping" shelf driven by the size of the boulders you have access to or regardless of size, this shelf should still be created? yes DRIVEN BY THE SIZE AND SHAPE OF YOUR ROCK , If you have weak soils a bog beam could be made under the liner out of concrete that will encircle the pond that the edging rocks can sit on that will not fall into the pond.

@addy1 I hope you dont mind but I modified your "famous" drawing to help illustrate my question (below). What is missing for me is, what comes after this shallow shelf? Assuming this is a rock lined pond, I am guessing it is another shelf right below (red arrow) with another rock? I cant help but wonder if this would create a stacked rock look. I cant find any pictures where this exact method has been done so trying to visulize how it would look.

My plan was to try and get large coping stones ~18-24" and dig the top shelf down to around 12-15" (depending on the size of stone) leaving the top part of the stone 1/3 or more out of the water. Then add varous liner treatments to hide the liner. Am I on the right track here or should i still add the shallow shelf around the perimeter of the pond. . THERE IS NO SET RULE HOW YOU COME ABOUT HIDING THE LINER IS UP TO YOU THE MUST SUCEDE AT'S ARE THE ROCK WILL NOT COLAPSE THE SIDE OF THE EXCAVATION AND IT AND THE EDGE FALLS IN AND CREASTES A LEAK. USING ONE METHOD ALL AROUND THE POND WILL PROBABLY COMEOUT LOOKING MAN MADE VARY THE TECHNIQUE AND THE ELEVATIONS IF YOU HAVE 24 INCH ROCK USE THOSE HEIGHTS TO VARRY THE LOOK

I know I am probably over thinking this...and I will continue until I can start digging! But, looking for direction so I dont regret not leaving this shelf out of my plan. IF YOUR SOILD ARE WEAK THEN POUR A BOND BEAM ALL THE WAY AROUND
 
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1644516464941.png
In the north east and the cold i would try to have a 6" rise from water level to the highest point of the containment walls. as snow acts like a sponge when it gets wet so a little height is needed to contain the water
 

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I made my shelf between 6” and 12” (can’t recall, so maybe it was more like 10”) deep. It was perfect and made it easy to butt surface stones up for a seamless look.
 
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If anything have the shelf lean away from the pond this will help keep them from sliding in and if the edges give way a little you have a little to give and it will now be level and not leaning in
 
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If anything have the shelf lean away from the pond this will help keep them from sliding in and if the edges give way a little you have a little to give and it will now be level and not leaning in
Good point which I've never seen mentioned.

I have always done this. Pitch all shelves away from the pond to keep whatever is on the shelves from tipping or sliding into the pond. This includes liner hiding rock shelves and deeper plant shelves.
 

addy1

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@addy1 I hope you dont mind but I modified your "famous" drawing to help illustrate my question (below). What is missing for me is, what comes after this shallow shelf? Assuming this is a rock lined pond, I am guessing it is another shelf right below (red arrow) with another rock? I cant help but wonder if this would create a stacked rock look. I cant find any pictures where this exact method has been done so trying to visulize how it would look.
No problem in using. I have nothing below mine, just a straight down side. I don't have a rock lined pond. Just liner.
 

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