Hot Tub at the Alma House

Summer 1999

It's odd sometimes how the combination of a person's experience is shown in their work. After the stock tank arrived I became acutely aware of a swimming pool filter and pump unit that was given to me by a neighbor after hearing of my desire of having a water-tank in my back yard. It sat under a shelf for two winters, never tested or thought much about.

Then a propane powered Bar-B-Q grill showed up at the house and an unplanned phase of my water soaking outfit, (hydrotherapy) for the urban sophisticate, began to form. Bend a copper coil into the grill, hook it up to the pump, then the tank and voila! a low cost hot tub.

My simple idea of a dip in a cool stock tank was about to get out of hand. I resolved to keep the whole idea as simple as possible. I also required that the grill would not be changed from its intended use.

Hot Tub
The whole outfit. The grill with the coil of copper inside. The pump and plumbing, the tank and the screen house. We have called it the Alma House Hot Spring or Bath House.

Copper Coil
The copper coil wrestled like a steer on branding day, was fitted just above the burner and just below the grill. The intake comes up through the bottom and the top coil exits through a hole drilled in the side.

Heating unit
The piping consists of the lower pipe from the drain plug 3/4 inch in the tank to the intake of the pump. Up through the filter and to the Tee which splits the flow to the coil and filtered return to the tank. The water heated in the coil exits through the top pipe and into the tub.
Interior view
Here Smitty uses the skimming net on the surface water and an overall view of the Bath House interior. When occupied the water level rises a few inches. We like it at about 100 degrees. The heater increases the tub temperature about 10 degrees per hour.

IN this summer of 1999 many areas of the US were baked for weeks with temperatures of over 100 degrees. Yet, here in Oregon, we've had a much cooler and rainy summer than usual with not one day at 100 degrees. This year it's been more probable to want a hot tub rather than a cool dip. The fond image of the cowboy on the range soaking in a stock tank was brought up to the present with my styrofoam insulated and heated-water stock tank. This was not my original intention, but grew out of my experience both on the range and in the modern world of construction material and supplies. I might close with the fact that the outfit works very well and has provided many a relaxing evening followed by a sound sleep.

New! Winter 1999 - Bath House for the Hot Tub.
Summer 1999 - Back to the Arrival of the Tub

Questions or comments: Keith Whittle email almahaus@gmail.com.

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