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  1. #1
    Gold Member CowwFace's Avatar
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    Kioti DK45SE HST, 401FEL, RB40-96 pivoting Rear Blade

    Default Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    Hey List,

    Well I've graded the private road I live on and I've fixed the problem we had with a steeper area washing out... but in the process the Gravel on top has seemd to dissapear? So you can imagine after 41" of snow, the road is a muddy mess.

    One of my neighbors met me out on the road yesterday and said "We've lived here 8 years and it's never been muddy like this" .. Basically... "that tractor showed up and now our road is muddy"

    So here are some questions I have:

    1. Is there a time when you should NOT add new gravel or road base to the top of a road.. Temp's to low for example?

    2. Would you recommend Gravel, or Road Base on top?

    3. What would be an estimate on the cost to have a truck drop off the materail.. and I can spread it with the tractor myself. If it's not to expensive I plan on just paying for the stuff myself, and not have to deal with the politics of Neighbors... "you messed up the road... why should I have to pay to help fix it" issues.

    Thanks Guys,
    Phill

    PS: No good deed goes unpunished.
    ================================================== ===
    Kioti DK40SE HST
    Our 2nd Amendment RIGHT comes from God and protects all the others!
    ================================================== ===

  2. #2
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    I would think that gravel and rock would be fairly cheap in CO, but that's just a guess. Here in East Texas, $23 a ton is about as good as it gets, but you have to buy a full 25 to 28 ton load for that price.

    Mud means drainage issues. Number one rule when building anyhting is to get rid of the water. It won't matter how much rock you put down if you have water washing it out. It will be an ongoing expense until you get rid of the water. Culverts are very important, but even more so are big, open tranches.

    For a road to work, you need enough base material so that it can carry the load on your soil. With good drainage and soil, four inches is the very minimum for road base. This is rock that is several inches in size mixed with everything smaller down to the smallest of fines. It's rugged with jagged edges. When spread out and compacted, it forms into a water tight, solid road. If it's not thick enough, then it will never lock together and become solid.

    I don't think it matters what time of the year it is to spread gravel. Cold or heat won't matter to it, and neither will water. But it's very VERY improtant to make sure the water issue is taken care of first.


    For estimating gravel, one truck will do about 100 feet wide enough for a single car/truck to drive on. Loads are based on weight and it's always in that 25 to 28 ton range. They get it close when loading and then move on to the next truck. While some guys will push the limits, it is a big deal to get caught with too much weight.

    Eddie

  3. #3
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    EddieWalker hit on the key item. Water.

    A crown to the road so the water runs off. Plenty of fines mixed in with the gravel and PACKED down tight before a rain washes the fines away, or before the sun dries out the moisture in the fines. Driving over the finished gravel after spreading and shaping for drainage is very important, and leave no strips where the gravel isn't packed down.

    As an example, a 12' wide gravel road should have about 6-8" crown in the middle, above the road edge. Then there should be ditches along each side for the water to drain away. Sounds like this drive may not have that.

  4. #4
    Elite Member CurlyDave's Avatar
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    JD TLB 110

    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    One thing to add to what Eddie says.

    A good truck driver will spread the gravel for you as he dumps. Around here there is no extra charge for spreading. There should be almost no tractor work involved in this. Spreading it with the truck will actually come out a lot more even than spreading it with your tractor.

    The last truck should drive back and forth over the previously spread loads before he dumps. This will compact the gravel with his wheels.

    * * * * * * * *

    6" of base & gravel is recommended around here, but I don't think your previous base completely disappeared, you just managed to spread some dirt on top of it.

    I think the way to recover is to spread some gravel on top of the road, but you don't need 6" to fix an established road. Examine a typical section and see how much gravel it takes to reduce the mud to an acceptable level. This might take an hour with a pickup load of gravel and a shovel. Then order that amount of gravel to be spread on the entire road.
    40 Acres on a hill - fantastic view. JD 110 TLB, 4-n-1, 12" bucket, 18" bucket, Addington thumb, rock bucket (doubles as root grapple)

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  5. #5
    Super Member mjncad's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    The builder of our place made the driveway from road base and called it recycled asphalt. There may be some asphalt in it; but it's a muddy mess during wet weather. Now the 'road base' with a gravel overlay may work just fine. I think what might work better is road base followed by geotextile fabric and then gravel; but that's just a guess on my part.

    If anyone has actual experience with that method of road construction, I hope they post their comments.

    In any case, water control is the key as others have said.

    Up in mountainous Conifer where CowwFace is from, he may have trouble getting a semi in there to spread the load and may to get a dump truck to do it. Otherwise he gets more seat time doing his own spreading.
    Paraphrasing Douglas Adams - So long and thanks for all the bacon.

  6. #6
    Platinum Member
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    I like to spread in early summer. In the spring when the frost comes out of the ground the roads look like they need rock because they are soft from the thaw. You usually do more damage fixing ruts than you fix. If you add rock in the fall it will not be worked down by traffic before winter and will easily be taken off with the snow plow.

    Dan

  7. #7
    Gold Member CowwFace's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    Quote Originally Posted by EddieWalker View Post
    I would think that gravel and rock would be fairly cheap in CO, but that's just a guess. Here in East Texas, $23 a ton is about as good as it gets, but you have to buy a full 25 to 28 ton load for that price.

    Mud means drainage issues. Number one rule when building anyhting is to get rid of the water. It won't matter how much rock you put down if you have water washing it out. It will be an ongoing expense until you get rid of the water. Culverts are very important, but even more so are big, open tranches.

    For a road to work, you need enough base material so that it can carry the load on your soil. With good drainage and soil, four inches is the very minimum for road base. This is rock that is several inches in size mixed with everything smaller down to the smallest of fines. It's rugged with jagged edges. When spread out and compacted, it forms into a water tight, solid road. If it's not thick enough, then it will never lock together and become solid.

    I don't think it matters what time of the year it is to spread gravel. Cold or heat won't matter to it, and neither will water. But it's very VERY improtant to make sure the water issue is taken care of first.


    For estimating gravel, one truck will do about 100 feet wide enough for a single car/truck to drive on. Loads are based on weight and it's always in that 25 to 28 ton range. They get it close when loading and then move on to the next truck. While some guys will push the limits, it is a big deal to get caught with too much weight.

    Eddie

    Hey Eddie,

    Thanks for the info! I agree with the drainage issue. I moved the crown over to one side (about 1/3 to 2/3) because one neighbor does not have a culvert so end of his driveway was getting washed out.... so THAT problem is gone.. (see I fixed something) but the 2/3 side of the road does have some watter sheading issues.

    When I called a gravel quarry, they said they are getting a bunch of calls after the snow we had... so I don't feel quite so bad.

    Thanks again for your help Eddie, I'll get some pic's up and let you guys see what's happening.

    Phill
    ================================================== ===
    Kioti DK40SE HST
    Our 2nd Amendment RIGHT comes from God and protects all the others!
    ================================================== ===

  8. #8
    Veteran Member Charlesaf3's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    same here on when to add - after spring. Otherwise I figure a good bit of it will get plowed off etc.

    Maybe work on drainage and crowning first - you might find that takes care of things.
    ----------------------------------------
    Charles

    Kubota B3030
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    Too many other random attachments to list (or to own, per my wife) and a really bad tool addiction. But at least I haven't bought a dump truck or bulldozer. Yet.

  9. #9
    Gold Member CowwFace's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    EddieWalker hit on the key item. Water.

    A crown to the road so the water runs off. Plenty of fines mixed in with the gravel and PACKED down tight before a rain washes the fines away, or before the sun dries out the moisture in the fines. Driving over the finished gravel after spreading and shaping for drainage is very important, and leave no strips where the gravel isn't packed down.

    As an example, a 12' wide gravel road should have about 6-8" crown in the middle, above the road edge. Then there should be ditches along each side for the water to drain away. Sounds like this drive may not have that.
    Hey BeenThere,

    Ohh.. I've been here alright.. no good deed! I think I should move the crown back to the middle.. but I'm half afraid to do anything... the neighbors may show up at my door with pitchforks? hehehe.

    We have not done anything to the road in 5 years so I think it was about time for it to crap out w/o my help.

    Phill
    ================================================== ===
    Kioti DK40SE HST
    Our 2nd Amendment RIGHT comes from God and protects all the others!
    ================================================== ===

  10. #10
    Gold Member CowwFace's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gravel Road .. best time to add more Gravel or Road Base to top

    Quote Originally Posted by CurlyDave View Post
    One thing to add to what Eddie says.

    A good truck driver will spread the gravel for you as he dumps. Around here there is no extra charge for spreading. There should be almost no tractor work involved in this. Spreading it with the truck will actually come out a lot more even than spreading it with your tractor.

    The last truck should drive back and forth over the previously spread loads before he dumps. This will compact the gravel with his wheels.

    * * * * * * * *

    6" of base & gravel is recommended around here, but I don't think your previous base completely disappeared, you just managed to spread some dirt on top of it.

    I think the way to recover is to spread some gravel on top of the road, but you don't need 6" to fix an established road. Examine a typical section and see how much gravel it takes to reduce the mud to an acceptable level. This might take an hour with a pickup load of gravel and a shovel. Then order that amount of gravel to be spread on the entire road.

    Hey Dave,

    I like the idea of a test section... if the neighbors put up a stink... the test section will be right in front of my driveway only hehehehe...

    I've got some feelers out for reclaimed asphalt ... seems to be less expensive and possibly better over time?

    There should be almost no tractor work involved in this. Spreading it with the truck will actually come out a lot more even than spreading it with your tractor.
    Have you lost your MIND... why would I do this w/o a tractor! That's crazy talk man!! <grin>.

    Thanks for your help Dave,

    Phill
    ================================================== ===
    Kioti DK40SE HST
    Our 2nd Amendment RIGHT comes from God and protects all the others!
    ================================================== ===

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