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  1. #1
    Gold Member
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    Apr 2001
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    386
    Location
    Southeastern Mass
    Tractor
    New Holland 1920

    Default Digging graves

    Anyone have experience digging graves? My brother-in-law is the caretaker and has asked me to do this. What would you charge to dig and then backfill? Thanks,
    Billfires

  2. #2
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
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    6,737
    Tractor
    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Digging graves

    I'd just charge by the hour. Most backhoe operators get $40-75/hour around here.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    May 2001
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    1,310
    Location
    Michigan
    Tractor
    Kubota L3650/AC B210

    Default Re: Digging graves

    Last one we had dug cost somthing like $250.00, and that included backfilling.

    SHF

  4. #4
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    175
    Location
    rural illinois
    Tractor
    jd 4100

    Default Re: Digging graves

    marked or unmarked?

    i would charge more for hidden ones....



    unless you are very handy with the machine, i would do some practice dodging cones or concrete blocks. knocking over headstones or dropping dirt on them is generally frowned upon.

    the people here spread out a tarp and drop dirt on that, keeps the grass in fairly good shape that way.

    rate is per hour, higher for frozen ground.
    discounts for veterans, active duty killed in the line of duty is free.

    i used to mow graveyards, but left the digging to others.

  5. #5
    Super Member JerryG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    7,202
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
    Tractor
    MF 1440-4 PowerShuttle

    Default Re: Digging graves

    Bill,
    The guy that digs all the graves around here charges $75. But then again that's the same amount he has charged for at least 15 years.

  6. #6
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Posts
    11,301
    Location
    PA
    Tractor
    NH TC25D

    Default Re: Digging graves

    <font color=blue>and that included backfilling.</font color=blue>

    I would certainly hope so! [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img][img]/w3tcompact/icons/eyes.gif[/img][img]/w3tcompact/icons/shocked.gif[/img]

    "Oh, you wanted it backfilled? Well, that's gonna cost another $250."

  7. #7
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    1,591
    Location
    Western Connecticut
    Tractor
    2003 Kubota L3430

    Default Re: Digging graves

    The more difficult question is what to charge for an exhumation. Imagine, you've been hired to dig up the newly-discovered skeleton of King Arthur. With your bucket poised over his bejeweled head, you pull the wrong lever on your Bradco 3ph-mounted backhoe.......

  8. #8
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    175
    Location
    rural illinois
    Tractor
    jd 4100

    Default Re: Digging graves

    yeah, the french revolution graves would be easier...

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    1,591
    Location
    Western Connecticut
    Tractor
    2003 Kubota L3430

    Default Re: Digging graves

    haha, good one.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    856
    Location
    South West Pa/Greene county
    Tractor
    Long/Landtrac360DTC

    Default Re: Digging graves

    Digging graves, one of my favorite subjects. I am a grave digger for a local cemetary and we charge $300 per grave (we are thinking about raising the price). It can be a lot more work than you think. Even using a backhoe (which we can't do certain sections, not enough room) you hace to finish by hand to get the hole even, square and level. You have to have a means of hauling the excess dirt off (vault displaces quite a bit of dirt), and it can be a challange to guesstimate how much dirt to haul off. When back filling you have to pack the dirt around the vault by hand (about 4" of space around sides) or the dirt will settle unevenly and you will be going back to level it up a few times. Plan on investing in some 3/4" treated plywood to rest your hoe on to prevent tearing up the ground as you dig. The best way to get the grass to regrow is to remove the sod by hand, cutting it into square pieces (about 2' x 2' ) so you can lay it back on top after you fill. If you mound it right the sod will settle in even with the rest of the ground. Plan on recieving calls on Sunday morning as you are getting ready to leave to go fishing, picnicing, Sunday drive, etc. informing you they need a grave dug so they can bury someone Monday morning. Plan on staying and filling after dark in the winter because they scheduled the services late, took a wrong turn getting to the cemetary and showed up late. Plan on being a pallbearer at the cemetary because the family is small and they don't have enough people. The list goes on and on.

    Hope all this helps
    Ed King

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