Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction

   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction
  • Thread Starter
#21  
This is one area that renting kind of makes sense, since most people only need a compactor once in a blue moon. I just used one for a shed base. About $60 for a 4 hour rental. I think this was the second time in my life I rented one and I'm really old.
Yeah, I hear ya about the renting. But I can think of 3 or 4 projects I could need one for over the next year or 2. And sometimes renting things is a PITA. So if I can find one on Marketplace for a good price before I need it I might just scoop it up. I don't mind cleaning or replacing a carb if it is going to save me $300. Buying used for a good price is a win win IMHO. When I am ready to off load it shouldn't lose much or any money on the deal. I am not scared of another IC engine laying around. Have had good luck with them (knock on wood) just takes a bit of commitment to leaving them set up for success.
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #22  
This is one area that renting kind of makes sense, since most people only need a compactor once in a blue moon. I just used one for a shed base. About $60 for a 4 hour rental.
You got that right, Kenny

When I was building my house, I had to do a lot of compacting. Under slabs, in trenches, and where I needed to pave. I rented plate compactors and "jumping jacks". Nothing like the right tool for the job, and the moisture content has to right. Even compacting the gravel under a slab is important...you can lower the height of a 6" deep gravel area by an inch or more with a plate compactor.

I tried to find a beat-up plate compactor to buy, but even the broken ones were selling for over $500 back in the 90s. Never found one for a decent price. Today, you may find a new Chinese unit at an auction for <$500, which would be fine for irregular use. The HF unit is now $700 or so.

BTW, I was subject to inspection when putting down the base for my road, driveway, and parking area. I think the requirement was 95% compaction, and that had to be hired out to a compaction inspector ($$ each time). I failed in one area, even after I had my excavation contractor dig it out and compact it in layers with a sheep's foot on the end of his backhoe dipper. I still failed, so I had to replace soil with drain rock before testing yet again.
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #23  
I can't speak to how well they compact the soil having never used one, but I've read some reviews on Amazon where people said it was cheaper and more convenient to buy one of the small compactors for sale there instead of paying rental fees or taking chances on used machines.
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #24  
Eddie has the correct answer. 14” is too thick to get good compaction. Water and rain itself won’t work unless you give it a lot of time, as in months or years.

When I was working I did material testing which included soil compaction testing. It always drove me nuts when a contractor said they ran it over with a piece of equipment like a dozer. I always told them almost all equipment is designed to have low ground pressure so it doesn’t get stuck. Use a piece of equipment that is designed for compaction. An area that small won’t take long to do.
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction
  • Thread Starter
#25  
Eddie has the correct answer. 14” is too thick to get good compaction. Water and rain itself won’t work unless you give it a lot of time, as in months or years.

When I was working I did material testing which included soil compaction testing. It always drove me nuts when a contractor said they ran it over with a piece of equipment like a dozer. I always told them almost all equipment is designed to have low ground pressure so it doesn’t get stuck. Use a piece of equipment that is designed for compaction. An area that small won’t take long to do.
What sort of piece of equipment would you recommend?
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #26  
A vibratory sheep’s foot is best but for an area that small a plate compactor is probably the most practical. They don’t compact real deep so a thinner lift is more important.
 
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   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #27  
A vibratory sheep’s foot is best but for that’s all an area a plate compactor I probably the most practical. They don’t compact real deep so a thinner lift is more important.
Yeah, no more than 6 or so inches at a time, depending on the compaction equipment you have access to, and the type of material. A powered roller with sheep's foot drums is great, but that is pretty specialized and really expensive to buy.

A friend just sold a plate compactor that weighs over 1000#. If buying a small one, getting the ones with a water tank for ballast is preferable over those without. Weight is good, except when you want to move them.
 
   / Super dry fill, Impending rain and extra compaction #28  
Plate tamp will work in thin lifts. Just remember, you can't compact dust or mud; you need some moisture in the fill, but not too much
 
 
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