Fiberglass – From Auto and Marine Fiberglass Parts to Awesome Fiberglass Swimming Pools
The creation of Facebook, Apple and Windows are well-known business success stories which garnered unprecedented media coverage, captivating the general public worldwide. Some of the Internet companies seem to have been created overnight, attracting job seekers and Wall Street investors to the glamor and fame of high-tech companies. Thursday Pools on the other hand started over thirty years ago in the garage of Bill Khamis, founder of the company. The company wasn’t incorporated thirty years ago but the foundation, technical know how and expertise was born in Khamis’ garage in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Khamis started learning and making race car parts out of fiberglass for a local race car company while he was still in high school. To make the specialized parts he teamed up with resin and fiberglass suppliers to learn tool making and production techniques. The tooling he developed was much smaller than Thursday Pools pool molds but met the high standards of the auto and race car industry.
After graduating from high school and during college Khamis was asked to make bigger parts and diversify from auto parts. He founded a new company called Fabri-Tech with a high school friend, Dave Camp, and started building huge fiberglass outdoor scenes for the family entertainment centers, zoos and parks. This was his stepping stone for building large molds and parts.
After selling Fabri-Tech he moved into the marine industry and built molds for his new company, KamKraft Boats. The precision molds he built using steel substructure and part tolerances, unknown in the pool industry, were a precursor for things to come. If boat building wasn’t enough, Khamis teamed up and started making carbon fiber parts for auto and the precision measuring machine industry. The parts Khamis made out of carbon fiber had even more exact tolerances which again honed Khamis’ tool making skills. Not only did it improve his tool making skills; it also gave him hands on experience with laminate schedules and materials needed for different applications.
In parallel, Khamis began high-end custom home building along with gunite pool building. He remembers the early days when gunite was 90% of the market for the high-end, million dollar plus homes. Over the years the homeowners started requesting fiberglass swimming pools so he started hiring contractors to do the installs. During this time he compared the installation time and effort of gunite versus fiberglass. He was amazed when a fiberglass pool was installed and complete in only a few short days versus the weeks his gunite crews worked on the pools.
Fast forward to 2009 and the birth of Thursday Pools. Khamis purchased an inground fiberglass pool and when it was installed, he was seriously disappointed in the quality. But he didn’t send the pool back to the manufacturer and ask for his money back. Instead, he decided he could do better. And that’s how Thursday Pools came to be.