Replacing (In Ground) Pool Pump DIY?

Ok, I have a wreck of a house with a truly gross wreck of a pool and connected spa (circa 1985).
While draining them, I left the pump running overnight without giving it enough water to keep it busy overnight.
So - I found another pump, have figured out what is sch 40 and what is sch 80, and am looking at swapping the new one in. This will require cutting sch 80 and 40, and installing unions and new risers and misc fittings.
My biggest concern is getting a square cut - I only have about 3" of sch 80 coming out of the ground (concrete) - this is where the union needs to go.
Given that my arms are severely atrophied (osteoarthritis has kept me inactive - lifting the 60 pound pump is a stretch), how best to insure a square cut without paying some clown (Him:“I’ll see if I can work you in - how about 3?” Me - OK (shout in background) Him: "my wife has something else planned - how about 5?). Yeah dude, you are so very busy with all those people clamoring for your time) $200?

I have saber, circular, recip and hack saws - my wrists were never real good at keeping a hacksaw blade straight or flat

I wandered off there:
I need to cut 2: sch 80 pipe rising out of paved ground at a point 3" above the ground. Said cut must be square. My arms cannot accurately control a hacksaw.

Also: should the loose coupler of the union go on the top or the bottom. I’m guessing the coupler faces in the direction of the flow. Right?

Not sure what size pipe you are trying to cut. There is a pipe cutter for smaller size PVC I believe good up to 3/4 inches. But I would guess a poolis going to be on the lines of 1 1/2 to 2 inch pipe. Depending on the room that you have will depend on which saw you can use. To glue PVC the cut does not have to be perfically square. Does not really matter which way a union is put in. My choice on a union close to a wall or a pipe comming out of the ground is to put the coupler on top. Easier to glue near ground with out having to worry about the coupler.

Another method would be to use no hub couplers. These are made of rubber and have a large clamp that goes around the rubber coupler. They are only good for low pressure.

You certainly don’t need to hire a plumber to make two cuts. How friendly are you with your neighbors? This is the kind of thing that a DIY-savvy person could do in about five minutes with a small crosscut (eg: wood) saw. Sch 80 and a hacksaw would take a while. And about three of those five minutes would be spent finding the saw.

If I was your neighbor, I’d stuff a rag into the pipe below the cut line, so after cutting, it’s possible to pull out the rag and most of the bits of plastic. Then I’d ask “Do you have PVC primer?” You really need to clean and prime the joint surfaces here or the pump pressure may blow the glued joint apart.

tell me you’re in Atlanta and I’ll come do it for a sack of Krystals!

I agree with gotpasswords I find that a tenon saw (ie small crosscut) works best for PVC pipe. It is much easier to keep a straight cut and the teeth are more suited to PVC than a hacksaw. You don’t need an absolutely perfect square cut, but obviously gross cuts will weaken the joint.

As gotpasswords also says above, you must use the correct PVC glues, the two part - primer and adhesive - rated for high pressure use. It is getting this right that matters the most.

You do need to take care that the geometry is right. There isn’t much scope for getting the angles wrong, although many pumps come with universal joiners on the connections, this doesn’t give you full freedom.

Sorry about the small matter of size - it is 2" - I found a $120 ratcheting tool which purports to cut up to 2" PVC. The super-busy clown might look better.

I’m concerned about the squareness of the cut because I want max possible contact area for the cement (see? I didn’t say “glue”). When I removed the top of the filter, the stream of water shot 10’+ up - it seems we’re dealing with 150+psi - sch 40 is good to 140, so why sch 80? 80 has thicker walls - and will withstand higher pressure

I came across the idea of putting down a board to serve as a flat surface, and run the saber on its side - sound plausible? I tried it on some scrap 1" pvc and it shows promise. The board thickness would dictate the height of the cut. Any recommendations for type of saber blade for PVC?
As to access - this is where it’s nice - the only obstruction is the return line, which is a few inches away - no worry about hitting it, but is does block access from one side.
As to friendly neighbors - I seem to have left that part of civilization behind when I moved to this hellhole (Sacramento - don’t say you weren’t warned)
My neighbors are morons who like to hear their dogs bark. I’m the guy with the ultrasonic bark stoppers, and a large bottle of pills…

Thanks all!

take and place a piece of tape around the pipe at the spot you want to cut, that is a straight edge, mark that spot all the way around with a felt marker. you now have a cut mark.

with a hack saw blade in a mini hacksaw then you can cut in a tight space. there is also a cable saw (abrasive cable about 12 inches for reaching the back side of plastic pipe). with either you can start cuts around the pipe on the line (this is not the beast method though in tight situations that is what you might have to do).

Thanks to all, esp. gotpasswords for the crosscut idea - it WORKS! I have always used hacksaws on plastic pipes. which probably goes a long way toward explaining the mangled cuts.

I started with a bit of 1" sch 40, then took on the most critical cut - the one leaving me barely enough glue area - luckily, all the splices had left a built-in “rip fence” - the bottom of the lowest coupler gave me a great guide, and keeping the saw’s handle with a foot of the cut kept the blade from buckling.

Thanks to all.