Desperately need to fix driveway

   #53  

/pine

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Shot, shot...

Chaser


So in other words, the road needs to the high point in the equation. Ditches always have a fall line down hill, but laterally, they still need to be lower than the road surface to drain water with the crown as the force of gravity.

LoL...So what exactly does stating the obvious have to do with anything?...LoL

You misunderstood what I posted....you should have just read it very slowly until you understood...!

The point was that several replies indicated that the road bed needed to be built up higher than the surrounding grades...I merely pointed out that you don't need to raise the road just lower the ditches...get it now ?

BTW...this is all basic stuff for those of us that went through 'route location and design' courses on the way to civil engineering degrees...!
 
   #55  

fried1765

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LoL...So what exactly does stating the obvious have to do with anything?...LoL

You misunderstood what I posted....you should have just read it very slowly until you understood...!

The point was that several replies indicated that the road bed needed to be built up higher than the surrounding grades...I merely pointed out that you don't need to raise the road just lower the ditches...get it now ?

BTW...this is all basic stuff for those of us that went through 'route location and design' courses on the way to civil engineering degrees...!
I actually still do remember those basic premises from my CE highway design courses of 60 years ago.
 
   #56  

Snobdds

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LoL...So what exactly does stating the obvious have to do with anything?...LoL

You misunderstood what I posted....you should have just read it very slowly until you understood...!

The point was that several replies indicated that the road bed needed to be built up higher than the surrounding grades...I merely pointed out that you don't need to raise the road just lower the ditches...get it now ?

BTW...this is all basic stuff for those of us that went through 'route location and design' courses on the way to civil engineering degrees...!
Ditches need to go down hill...but the road needs to drain latterly to get into the ditch. Which means the road needs to be higher than any ditch.


Now your a civil engineer too. I thought you were a world renown AI guy. You're an expert in everything I see...
 
   #57  

/pine

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Ditches need to go down hill...but the road needs to drain latterly to get into the ditch. Which means the road needs to be higher than any ditch.


Now your a civil engineer too. I thought you were a world renown AI guy. You're an expert in everything I see...

LoL...ditches are not the surrounding terrain...duh...! like I said if the road was higher there would be no need for ditches (in many cases)...

You build the road then cut the ditches...you don't dig the ditches and then build the road up higher...LoL...!

I spent 40+ years as a GC...educational background was a plus but never certed as a CE...late in life I went back and studied computer science (UNIX system admin)....what I've learned about AI has mostly been from reading and listening to lectures
 
   #58  

deezler

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Well we could argue with each other until this thread is 10+ pages long, but Graziaka (OP) is awol, so....

I'll just say here, for the record, that I am personally the single most knowledgeable gravel driveway expert on this entire forum. :p

But I like my ditches to be about 2 to 3 feet higher than the road bed. Takes a lot of experience to get them shaped up for inverted water drainage.
 
   #59  

fried1765

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Well we could argue with each other until this thread is 10+ pages long, but Graziaka (OP) is awol, so....

I'll just say here, for the record, that I am personally the single most knowledgeable gravel driveway expert on this entire forum. :p

But I like my ditches to be about 2 to 3 feet higher than the road bed. Takes a lot of experience to get them shaped up for inverted water drainage.
I must have missed that lecture in my long ago CE class days!😬
 
   #60  

PILOON

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This style of of grader or drag has proven itself many times over.
A simpler version can be pulled with chains attached from the 2 front corners.
The angled blades slice bumps and move the material laterally so as to fill in dips.
Blade lengths are adjusted so that material from the front blade is caught by the next one with the rear blade acting like a finish blade.
1623183372856.png

We maintained a much travelled 4 mile country for many years using an old Jeep as our tow vehicle.
Since we'd often snag our drag on rocks and feared pulling the Jeep bumper off we looped the chains thru a 12 inch trailer tires and they acted as efficient shock absorbers.
3 or 4 inch channel or angle is all U need (and a good welder).
 
   #61  

Snobdds

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LoL...ditches are not the surrounding terrain...duh...! like I said if the road was higher there would be no need for ditches (in many cases)...

You build the road then cut the ditches...you don't dig the ditches and then build the road up higher...LoL...!

I spent 40+ years as a GC...educational background was a plus but never certed as a CE...late in life I went back and studied computer science (UNIX system admin)....what I've learned about AI has mostly been from reading and listening to lectures

Not surrounding terrain? Does surrounding terrain even matter beyond the ditches?

So all your tale of being an AI expert is just from reading? Gotcha.
 
   #62  

CoyPatton

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"Crusher run" (usually defined as 3/4" minus) packs tightly together and is what works best.
"Creek gravel" is small rounded stones, and will not stay in place!

Glad you agree on creek gravel!

I agree crusher run holds together best.
However having had those sloping curves (please go back and look at OP’s photos post #1), I have watched the fines in my crusher run, wash right down the slope with running water, this after it was compacted. Reality is reality!
 
   #63  

/pine

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Not surrounding terrain? Does surrounding terrain even matter beyond the ditches?

So all your tale of being an AI expert is just from reading? Gotcha.

You really should take your own advise and read more slowly...!

The replies I was referencing stated that the road bed needed building up...it's much easier to lower the ditches...like I said you don't cut the ditches and then build the road up...!

About the surrounding terrain being significant...it does when the grades determine where the controlled water (ditches etc.) can be "turned loose" ...

Whether you realize it or not...true AI is still at least a decade away...what you refer to as AI is like the analog version of artificial intelligence...The first true quantum computers are still at least ten years away...

BTW...There are bots swarming the Internet that are 10 times more sophisticated than IBM's watson...!
 
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   #64  

fried1765

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Glad you agree on creek gravel!

I agree crusher run holds together best.
However having had those sloping curves (please go back and look at OP’s photos post #1), I have watched the fines in my crusher run, wash right down the slope with running water, this after it was compacted. Reality is reality!
My solution to the fines being washed away on a slope was to grade with my rear blade, and fold the larger crushed gravel pieces into the areas tending to wash out.
 
   #65  

CoyPatton

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My solution to the fines being washed away on a slope was to grade with my rear blade, and fold the larger crushed gravel pieces into the areas tending to wash out.

And my point which again you agree with is there is no easy fix it and leave it with the slopes and run off, it will have ti be touched up from time to time. With a low rider vehicle, the interval will not be long term during heavy rains.
 
   #66  

DaveD1944

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Try lengthening the top link all the way so the box blade rides on the rear blade only.
Bruce, this is standard practice and I did this many years ago when I was trying to make the box scraper work, but it made no difference--the box still filled up with gravel. Yesterday I removed the scarifier shanks, the front-facing blade, and the hinged rear gate, slightly over 150 lbs. total, tilted it all the way back with the top link fully extended, lowered it to the ground in float mode with only the rear-facing blade in use, and it still dug in deeply and collected massive amounts of gravel in the box.

As described by Land Pride in their user's manuals, the box scraper is made to move lots of material from place to place. If I could control the height of the box scraper with the 3-point hitch controls it might work. But every part of my driveway and especially the part that needs the most maintenance is either a convex or concave curve of varying radius, and the only thing that will work is allowing the implement, whatever it is, to float on the gravel surface.

Coming to terms with what I need to do to make this less work as I grow older, I am seriously thinking now of a grader scraper. It is made to float on its skids and would have to be used that way. But from several threads in TractorByNet I gather that these are also not without their problems, especially with loose gravel, so I need to research further.

If I need to go much farther with this I may start another thread. TractorByNet has several on the subject, but they are getting old and don't answer all of the concerns I have, and I find this forum to be very helpful.

A photo of the most difficult part of the drive, the ~350 ft. over a drainage area, is attached. The drop to the drain pipe is about 12 feet, so washout was a problem with heavy rains and a crusher run surface until I had it re-graveled, and the heavier gravel stopped the erosion completely, but it moves about more freely.

2021 06 front drive.jpg

Thanks for your help, Dave Dalton
 
   #67  

/pine

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If a box blade is still cutting aggressively moving forward with the top link fully extended...something is wrong... likely too short of top link...

BTW...the 3PH is always in float...there is no need to detent a T&T cylinder into float....
 
   #68  

deezler

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Here's my recent thread about wanting a land-plane scraper, and being advised by forum members to try extending the top link and using my box blade instead.


Long story short, it mostly worked. You need to get the box blade tipped wayyyy back, so that the front facing blade doesn't scrape much at all, and so that the sides dont hold material.

OriDHKMh.jpg


OFtToDbh.jpg
 
   #69  

CoyPatton

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Using the rear blade on a box scraper can have the desired effect mentioned, but can be difficult to obtain as many times the top link will not extend enough to obtain the desired effect.
When you think about it, often people want to shorten a TL to get the most aggressiveness from the BB scarifiers, thus they end up with a short TL and can not obtain the desired effect.
The desired effect might be simpler with a rear blade reversed. The length of the TL can have an effect on the results but much less drastically. This was often my go to for a quick dress up. Basic blades can usually be found on marketplace. Price varies widely with width, condition and functions. If you want an offset tilting blade, they will be less common, less availability, and cost more. If you want a simple reversal blade they are usually readily available and reasonably price varying usually by age and condition.
 
   #70  

fried1765

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Here's my recent thread about wanting a land-plane scraper, and being advised by forum members to try extending the top link and using my box blade instead.


Long story short, it mostly worked. You need to get the box blade tipped wayyyy back, so that the front facing blade doesn't scrape much at all, and so that the sides dont hold material.

OriDHKMh.jpg


OFtToDbh.jpg
A box blade is absolutely not the proper tool for driveway maintenance!
A box blade simply cannot properly bring material back to the center that has migrated to the driveway edges.
A rear scrape blade is the proper driveway maintenance tool!

That driveway looks decent, but should definitely have more fines to help hold it together, to lessen surface material migration.
 
   #71  

deezler

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A box blade is absolutely not the proper tool for driveway maintenance!
A box blade simply cannot properly bring material back to the center that has migrated to the driveway edges.
A rear scrape blade is the proper driveway maintenance tool!

That driveway looks decent, but should definitely have more fines to help hold it together, to lessen surface material migration.
Lol fried, you are so passionate against Box blades and for rear scraper blades as driveway maintainers. I use both, and you are absolutely right that the box blade can't re-shape the crown. But it does a nice refresh and smoothing of washboards, etc.

And NO, I don't want any fines, thanks. Everyone's driveway with fines that I see here locally, or even here on TBN, is a mess of muddy pot holes. Fines don't allow drainage. I don't mind re-working my driveway a few times per year to avoid the muddy water splash of a driveway with fines. I never have to use scarifiers to break it up, either.
 
   #72  

zzvyb6

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Except a blade doesn't comb out driveway content you'd rather not have there. All it does is drag piles of gravel. You need gauge wheels and no rigid top link to do this maintenance. Otherwise you get a roller coaster as the tractor dips and rises and carves out humps and valleys. Seldom do you see gauge wheels on a scraper blade. Always available with a landscape rake. But it depends on what is acceptable driveway quality. If you like an irregular roller coaster, sure use the blade. Cheaper, too, because owners give up trying to make a smooth driveway and just about give them away (usually bent, too, because they don't 'give').
 
   #73  

K5lwq

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If you are getting a humps and valleys using a rear blade on a driveway you are doing something wrong. I have put in many drives and a few runways for airplanes using nothing but a rear blade without a gauge wheel.
 
   #74  

fried1765

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Lol fried, you are so passionate against Box blades and for rear scraper blades as driveway maintainers. I use both, and you are absolutely right that the box blade can't re-shape the crown. But it does a nice refresh and smoothing of washboards, etc.

And NO, I don't want any fines, thanks. Everyone's driveway with fines that I see here locally, or even here on TBN, is a mess of muddy pot holes. Fines don't allow drainage. I don't mind re-working my driveway a few times per year to avoid the muddy water splash of a driveway with fines. I never have to use scarifiers to break it up, either.
Why am I "so passionate against box blades"?
Because I have one that I bought new, 7 years ago,..... and have never used.
I maintained a 2000' gravel driveway for 17 years with a cheap 5' TSC rear blade.
I then bought a 7' KK rear blade, because it had a greater reach at angle.
I then bought the 5' KK box blade... that I have never used (it looks nice sitting in my barn though).
I have most recently used a 6' EA Deluxe Scrape Blade, which is absolutely the cat's axx.

Have you ever seen a road construction crew using a box blade for grading/shaping?
A box blade is intended for moving material, not shaping road surface material.
Egon, in post #35 outlines this grading issue best of all!
 
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   #75  

fried1765

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If you are getting a humps and valleys using a rear blade on a driveway you are doing something wrong. I have put in many drives and a few runways for airplanes using nothing but a rear blade without a gauge wheel.
Agreed!
Problem is that some who buy the rear blade are not willing, or able, to train themselves on proper use.
There is a learning curve for using a rear blade.
 
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   #76  

/pine

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A man who has mastered the box blade is like the man that can catch a fly with chop sticks...He can do anything...!

Box blades are dynamic GRADING tools...it's what they do...their only imperfection is the lack of ability to angle...

many operators do not get the desired results after the first few attempts and give up...there is a learning curve...conquer it and be proud...

About the only time you see even a full sized tractor on a commercial road building job is doing the final clean up and maybe grass seeding after the actual job is done...
box blades and rear blades are implements made for tractors that emulate what the big boys use...
 
   #77  

deezler

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Except a blade doesn't comb out driveway content you'd rather not have there. All it does is drag piles of gravel. You need gauge wheels and no rigid top link to do this maintenance. Otherwise you get a roller coaster as the tractor dips and rises and carves out humps and valleys. Seldom do you see gauge wheels on a scraper blade. Always available with a landscape rake. But it depends on what is acceptable driveway quality. If you like an irregular roller coaster, sure use the blade. Cheaper, too, because owners give up trying to make a smooth driveway and just about give them away (usually bent, too, because they don't 'give').
Nah. Gauge wheels aren't necessary. Nice to have? sure, maybe. But absolutely not required. The 3-pt hitch doesn't have down pressure, so you toss the attachment all the way down and let it ride. Minor tractor dips dont affect the floating implement. A nice heavy box blade or rear scraper blade is going to ride along steady with it's current load of material. See my pic in post #68, no dips or bumps whatsoever.
 
   #78  

repete

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A initial crown, drainage and a landscape rake. Not a pothole using 5/8" minus.
 

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   #79  

Egon

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Agreed!
Problem is that some who buy the rear blade are not willing, or able, to train themselves on proper use.
There is a learning curve for using a rear blade.
It's much different than pulling a box blade. As in road work operating a grader is one of the more complex pieces of as there are a myriad of options for the situation at hand. It is probably easier these days with the newer controls with which I'm not familiar!
 
   #80  

fried1765

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It's much different than pulling a box blade. As in road work operating a grader is one of the more complex pieces of as there are a myriad of options for the situation at hand. It is probably easier these days with the newer controls with which I'm not familiar!
A good grader operator is an artist!
I hired the Shelburne county grader operator to do some work for me.
I swear....I think he could almost pick a persons teeth with that machine!
He was amazing, but sadly..... died of a heart attack a few years ago.
600 people turned out for his funeral, in a town of only 1500.
He was an exceptionally well liked man!
 
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  • Thread Starter
#81  
OP
Binx

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Holy cow! Thank you guys! I apologize for the delay in my response (life, working late and a new puppy).

We were planning to start building on our dream home this year, but lumber prices are insane. We will probably need to wait until next year before we can start and don't want to sink a ton of money into this driveway, but we do want to make it right.

The previous owner had gravel that was about 1" or less and we used to watch the small pieces run down the driveway, along with the rainwater. A contractor recommended that we put in surge stone for the base, which we did, and the plan was to live with it and decide what to do next. The surge stone (3-5") fixed the run off and we needed to add more stone to top it off. This is when the professional occurred.

There is too much gravel right before and right after the curved part of the driveway and the excess gravel needs to be pulled out of there because this is where the UPS / FedEx / Amazon / Me can get stuck. Husband has that 4x4. :(

Based on everything I'm reading from you guys, we really do need either a land plane or box blade with scarifiers to pull up/level out the surge stone, gravel, dirt, etc. I am leaning towards a box blade because of it's versatility, ability to move dirt, ballast, fix a driveway and it's more mobile at 1/2 the depth of a land plane with about the same amount of weight. But the majority of you guys are saying land plane w/scarifiers. Isn't the land plane primarily for driveways? Wouldn't a box blade do an acceptable - good job and still be useable for other things?

@deezler,
Yes, I'm a bit overwhelmed with all the answers and some of them seem to tell me to go in different directions back blade instead of land plane or box blade.

We don't have any run off or ruts caused by water and it's mainly the delivery trucks.

Please let me know if this will work. I think I'm following your advice:
Buy a box blade or land plane w/scarifiers. Is 700lbs sufficient?
Hubby nixed the back blade, but he's open to getting a landscape rake depending on it's price.
Scarify.
Spread out the loose gravel.
If we get a landscape rake, get at least an 7' rake and use it to pull gravel back into main driveway.
Make a crown and smooth the drive.
Expand the ditch on the right side of the drive.
Compact it with the tractor.
Lengthen the ditch on the right side of the drive.
Check on what the driveway looks like and decide if we should get crusher run or something in between.
Compact it again and wait for a rain.
Finish off with crusher run.
Compact again.
Don't let UPS or Fed Ex or Amazon drive on it until after the crusher run is spread, it is rained on and has been well compacted.
Maintain after that.
 
  
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#82  
OP
Binx

Binx

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If you are having drainage issues install a few water bars to divert the runoff. I have a drive uphill, gravel and a half mile long. It would wash out every time we had a hard rain, I cut some water bars problem went away. We just had 5 inches of rain a couple of weeks ago and very minimal damage.
What are water bars?
 
  
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#83  
OP
Binx

Binx

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I should add - I have a hydraulic top link. It makes using all my land engagement implements so much easier. They will do the very best job for you because any adjustments are done on the fly and can be done until the implement is working perfectly.
The tractor sales person said we really didn't need hydraulics!!! We may have the local Kioti dealer install the hydraulics as he's only 10 minutes from the future house. The Kubota dealer we purchased from is about an hour away and the local Kubota dealer doesn't have a good rep.
 
  
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#84  
OP
Binx

Binx

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I agree with the Crusher Run. Not sure what they call it in your neck of the woods. But it does pack hard. I also think that you will get a real benefit by putting down a matting. I started my driveway with it and 6 years later it's fine. My neighbor has been just using Shale stone for the last 30 years and he needs to Top it every three years as the stone gets rutted and driven into the ground. I bought my matting at Lowe's. After that, a box would probably work to pass over once a year, after snow plowing pushed stuff around a bit

We'll look at using geo textile on our future driveway. Weeds in the driveway are bad!
 
   #85  

fried1765

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What are water bars?
Water bars are ridges running diagonally across a driveway to direct runoff flow!
Despite what your husband may think,...you need a rear blade (Think EA Deluxe Scrape Blade), and you (or he) need to learn how to use it!.
A box blade is great, if you need to move material just for the sake of moving it, but it is a less than satisfactory tool for driveway maintenance.
 
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#86  
OP
Binx

Binx

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Like a lot of rural/semi-rural folks, I also have a 400' drive that needs help to stay passable, particularly in spring. The problem is clay fines. They absorb water, freeze and expand. During spring thaw, they release the moisture and combined with their slippery-when-wet nature, create mud for weeks.

A few years ago, I took an area in front of my carport 30'x30' and tried a three step process: grade for runoff, add a layer of 3/4" washed rock (no fines) about 2-3" thick, then a layer of "crusher dust" 1-2" thick, which is all rock and about a 1/4"-minus aggregate. The no-clay-allowed crusher dust locks the washed rock together, the rock layer allows movement of moisture over the graded base and for 3 years, no mud in spring.

I'm about to do three other areas this summer, same fashion. Grading for runoff on the base (mine has too much clay for my liking..) adding a very porous layer, and then a locking layer allowing seepage with no ability to absorb water itself. I have needed to add some crusher dust in a couple of areas in the original patch that sift down into the larger rock. With real soft ground, start with some 3-6" minus stone for a base.

Also: if one can find and afford the proper fabric under the rock, it really is the pro touch for road-building over a soft area. At some point, the total cost begins to approach or exceed asphalt.
We have to look at what the driveway looks like after we smooth it out and compact it. I know we'll need the crusher run, but I have a feeling we'll need that 3/4" washed rock.
 
   #87  

fried1765

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We'll look at using geo textile on our future driveway. Weeds in the driveway are bad!
Weeds will continue to grow in the gravel atop the geo textile.
Once over yearly with a Glyphosate solution will take care of the weeds.
I hate driveway weeds also.
I maintain my white shell driveway free of all weeds, using Treflan herbicide, and/or Glyphosate.
 
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#88  
OP
Binx

Binx

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I just when back and looked at OP’s 1st post. Particularly at type photos posted.

Some specific comments related to the photos
1) forget trying to crown your complete driveway!
Folks before you go wild!!!! go look at the 2 photos!!! She has spots shown that are mild banked curves, water will always drain to the low side. If you have a stretch of flat area, crowning would be good in those areas.
2) you need ditches! With the trees close to your drive that can be seen, you may not be able to cut ditches with your tractor. Some trees will have to go, while others are going to have roots where you need the ditch to be. Personally, if I were doing it, this is a job for a medium sized mini excavator. Once a ditch is established, by picking the ground conditions it can be maintained and shaped with your tractor and an offset rear blade.
It is difficult to tell based upon the limited view of the photos, but full length ditches may not be what best meets your needs. ‘Short’ (relative term) ditches on the bottom on the curve slope dumping into a natural low spot, built retaining pond, natural creek or other water control feature may better serve your needs.
3) with those ‘banked’ curves, you will have gravel movement. In my opinion it will be pushed to the high side by vehicles traveling too fast. As well as water flow and gravity will roll gravel down hill. You can reduce some of both effects with some fines in the gravel. You do not ever want to have ‘creek’ gravel on those areas. In my area, creek gravel is often solid my land owners that have creeks on their property. It is typically very smooth and will roll/slide always.
We do have short runs of ditches on the right side of the driveway. There are numerous ruts from the delivery trucks and the gravel is building up on the left side of the driveway. I'll try to order a rake too and pull that buildup over.
 
   #89  

fried1765

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We do have short runs of ditches on the right side of the driveway. There are numerous ruts from the delivery trucks and the gravel is building up on the left side of the driveway. I'll try to order a rake too and pull that buildup over.
An angled rear blade is the BEST way to pull that buildup back into your driveway!
 

deezler

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Welcome back, Graz. I think your listed out plan is pretty solid. The choice of what single implement to purchase is not an easy one. Personally I find a rear scraper blade and box blade to both be essential tools with different functions. The land plane is really only for gravel driveway maintenance or other loose-material smoothing; a one-trick pony, if you will. Some people like a landscape rake for driveway work, and I don't doubt that they can pull gravel around, but I could see one struggling to be effective with the large stones you have. They just aren't very heavy or strong tools.

Your location of SE presumably means south east, where you don't have snow to deal with in the winter.

For me: the box blade is on almost all summer long. I do my landscaping stuff in the summer, and otherwise it makes for quite compact and heavy rear ballast, keeping the tractor maneuverable and the loader work safe.
The rear scraper blade is on all winter long, for any snow plowing duties, and in the late fall and early spring is when I find I need it to dress my driveway and re-shape the crown. A box blade can only pull forwards - the lack of side-to-side angling makes it less productive for some driveway work, like fried1765 likes to so often point out.

I would try to get both implements. Kind of surprised you don't have either already, with the type of work you need to do. If you search your local craigslist and facebook marketplace, you can probably get a solid rear blade for a few hundred bucks, and a nice box blade for several hundred or so.
 

CoyPatton

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A man who has mastered the box blade is like the man that can catch a fly with chop sticks...He can do anything...!

Box blades are dynamic GRADING tools...it's what they do...their only imperfection is the lack of ability to angle...

many operators do not get the desired results after the first few attempts and give up...there is a learning curve...conquer it and be proud...

About the only time you see even a full sized tractor on a commercial road building job is doing the final clean up and maybe grass seeding after the actual job is done...
box blades and rear blades are implements made for tractors that emulate what the big boys use...

In my part of the country, a tractor is a routine piece of equipment on new road construction once trees and rocks have been removed. May not been everywhere. They show up about the same time as earth movers use pull scraper boxes. They are one of the last to leave as they can do so many different jobs simply by changing implements.
 

BukitCase

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Graziaka, I don't recall anyone posting this link but I'd recommend reading it thoroughly

Box Scraper Beginners guide to using a box blade

It isn't a quick read, but well worth it since NONE of the recommended implements are gonna help if you don't know how to use 'em -

Another thing others tend to "poo-poo" if they haven't used them - Top and Tilt hydraulics. If you can swing it, especially considering all the projects you're gonna get into, IMO that addition to your tractor will save you a LOT of frustration when you're trying to get things just right... Steve
 
  
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Binx

Binx

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Graziaka, I don't recall anyone posting this link but I'd recommend reading it thoroughly

Box Scraper Beginners guide to using a box blade

It isn't a quick read, but well worth it since NONE of the recommended implements are gonna help if you don't know how to use 'em -

Another thing others tend to "poo-poo" if they haven't used them - Top and Tilt hydraulics. If you can swing it, especially considering all the projects you're gonna get into, IMO that addition to your tractor will save you a LOT of frustration when you're trying to get things just right... Steve
Thank you Bukit. I'll see if I can convince my husband on the top and tilt. Is it expensive and/or difficult to install if you're handy?
 

jfh0jfh

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We have a rear blade, box blade, and York rake. I've only used the York for 10+ years. ~1/3-mile stone driveway
 
  
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Binx

Binx

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Welcome back, Graz. I think your listed out plan is pretty solid. The choice of what single implement to purchase is not an easy one. Personally I find a rear scraper blade and box blade to both be essential tools with different functions. The land plane is really only for gravel driveway maintenance or other loose-material smoothing; a one-trick pony, if you will. Some people like a landscape rake for driveway work, and I don't doubt that they can pull gravel around, but I could see one struggling to be effective with the large stones you have. They just aren't very heavy or strong tools.

Your location of SE presumably means south east, where you don't have snow to deal with in the winter.

For me: the box blade is on almost all summer long. I do my landscaping stuff in the summer, and otherwise it makes for quite compact and heavy rear ballast, keeping the tractor maneuverable and the loader work safe.
The rear scraper blade is on all winter long, for any snow plowing duties, and in the late fall and early spring is when I find I need it to dress my driveway and re-shape the crown. A box blade can only pull forwards - the lack of side-to-side angling makes it less productive for some driveway work, like fried1765 likes to so often point out.

I would try to get both implements. Kind of surprised you don't have either already, with the type of work you need to do. If you search your local craigslist and facebook marketplace, you can probably get a solid rear blade for a few hundred bucks, and a nice box blade for several hundred or so.
Thanks Deezler.

Do you know how long I've been asking to get a box blade? I think my husband finally realized how bad the driveway is when he drove my car a couple of times. He also saw how bad the skid plate looked when we changed the oil. Final factor was that we needed to fix the driveway if we were going to sell or house in the next year or two.

So I want to get an order in next week, but just undecided on the size of the box blade or land plane (72, 78, 84?) (EA or Woods or?) and what size landscape rake (possibility since this is something we'll use at the next house).

Sorry Fried, getting a back blade is not worth the "discussion" we would have. It may be something we purchase in the future.
 

fried1765

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We have a rear blade, box blade, and York rake. I've only used the York for 10+ years. ~1/3-mile stone driveway
If you don't like to keep any sort of meaningful crown on your driveway I am sure the York rake works just fine.
 
  
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Binx

Binx

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Weeds will continue to grow in the gravel atop the geo textile.
Once over yearly with a Glyphosate solution will take care of the weeds.
I hate driveway weeds also.
I maintain my white shell driveway free of all weeds, using Treflan herbicide, and/or Glyphosate.
It would be a bunch cheaper to spray it. I'll put that in my driveway notes. Thank you!
 

fried1765

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Thanks Deezler.

Do you know how long I've been asking to get a box blade? I think my husband finally realized how bad the driveway is when he drove my car a couple of times. He also saw how bad the skid plate looked when we changed the oil. Final factor was that we needed to fix the driveway if we were going to sell or house in the next year or two.

So I want to get an order in next week, but just undecided on the size of the box blade or land plane (72, 78, 84?) (EA or Woods or?) and what size landscape rake (possibility since this is something we'll use at the next house).

Sorry Fried, getting a back blade is not worth the "discussion" we would have. It may be something we purchase in the future.
Of course!
Is the "Civil & Highway Engineering" degree on parchment, hanging on the wall behind me, more "fake news"?
If only I knew just a little bit more about grading methods.
I surrender.
I have said my piece!
 
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