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LANDSCAPER30
03-09-2006, 04:14 PM
Timber Wall Before

LANDSCAPER30
03-09-2006, 04:18 PM
Timber Wall After Pic

cgland
03-09-2006, 05:18 PM
I don't really care for timber walls, I think they look crappy. I also think that you don't have enough deadman tiebacks installed. JMO though!

chris

1MajorTom
03-09-2006, 05:43 PM
Timber walls aren't my favorite, but it is what it is. Not all customers are going to want to pay the $$$'s for block retaining walls.
It looks good, clean and straight.

amvega
03-09-2006, 05:51 PM
Is this for a home owner or yourself? If it is for a home owner why would you not talk them into a segmental retaining wall? Those ties will be rooten in 10-15 years at the most plus it doesn't add any value to their home.

LANDSCAPER30
03-09-2006, 06:26 PM
Man, you Pennsylvania people are tough.:) This is a wall I did by Culver Military Academy on Lake Maxinkukee. They had an existing railroad tie wall that was totally shot. They absolutely wanted to go with a timber wall again. There was no talking them out of it. I too like the look of stone over timbers. However, a timber wall looks great in the "right" location. This wall will last well over 10-15year!:hammerhead: This is all pressure treated 6 x's and if you use them, then you know they are a hell of material for a wall. I have a deadman in on the third tier for support. The entire right side of that wall is tied in(12" spikes) from the first tier on up. Very solid. Matter of fact , over the fall last year I was down that way and took a look at...still holding...5years now I believe....as it should. :usflag:

PAPS Landscape Design
03-09-2006, 06:29 PM
Wall looks pretty good to me..

HayBay
03-09-2006, 07:01 PM
Good Job realy cleaned it up from the before pic.

MarcusLndscp
03-09-2006, 07:48 PM
Someone here just said the wall looked straight???? In what pic did you get the right view to see if it's straight or not:hammerhead: :laugh: . Just kidding with you...I agree with Chris..looks like you could use some more deadman in those creatures

UNISCAPER
03-09-2006, 09:29 PM
Is that the new galvanized lumber that don't rust?

LANDSCAPER30
03-09-2006, 09:31 PM
No, just regular pressure treated 6x6
Bryan

BigBlu250
03-09-2006, 09:49 PM
I agree that timber walls have their place. I know for a fact that you don't have enough deadmen in those walls, and if that's new-fangled ACQ pressure treated wood, don't count on it lasting long. Othet than that, nice looking walls!:)

amvega
03-09-2006, 10:26 PM
Yeah they are pressure treated, but how do plan on keeping them that way. You cannot treat the back. Did you use any drain tile. I'll guarantee they will root before 15 years. I'm not saying it will fall apart rooten but it will have to be replaced.

amvega
03-09-2006, 10:28 PM
All and actually if you look close, I don't even see any deadman. They must have taught you that in the "old school"

LANDSCAPER30
03-10-2006, 07:34 AM
There is a deadman on the third tier. Read the above post. :hammerhead: :hammerhead: :dizzy: :hammerhead: I THINK SOME PEOPLE JUST LIKE TO HEAR THEMSELVES TALK. WOW!!!:hammerhead: :hammerhead: :dizzy:

kris
03-10-2006, 08:53 AM
Timber walls aren't my favorite, but it is what it is. Not all customers are going to want to pay the $$$'s for block retaining walls.
It looks good, clean and straight.

Jodi ... you make a good point and I'm sure the gentleman posting the pics is very proud but the truth is the guys that are mentioning the lack of deadman are also correct.
His joints look nice and tight ....clean looking job but I for one never had joints like that when I did a timber job. At every joint put a "butt end" ...chamfered(45 degree) all the way around and sticking out proud about 1" , use to call these fake deadman.... also chamfering the two edges of the 6x6 that are on the face of the wall ....doing things like this separate a professional looking wall from a home owner.
Timber walls are all we use to do when I started in this racket in the 70's ...SRW were basically unheard of. I did a huge one back then retaining a parking lot for a car lot and it is still standing today .... we had more timber buried behind that wall as deadman and tiebacks then we did on the face.
Hope you can make some sense from this post ..I've never really been great putting what is in my head into words on here .... I was Landscaping when I should have been in school.:hammerhead:

Landscaper30 take any criticism as constructive and strive to improve...Thats all any of us can do.... Myself I am always learning, it never stops.

LANDSCAPER30
03-10-2006, 04:34 PM
Thanks for the input. God Bless:usflag:

YardPro
03-12-2006, 08:54 AM
landscaper.
the craftmanship of the wall looks good.
i do also agree with the need for more tie backs.

the bottom two walls will probably be carrying more of a load than the top one due to them being on a slope. They need deadmen the most.

also just FYI, there are several different grades of treated lumber.
If you can, get the marine grade lumber.
the regular pressure treated is not for ground contact, it is merely exterior grade.
marine grade lumber can last a very long time. We see it still in good shape on seawalls and docks that are 30 years old.

Mike33
03-12-2006, 10:04 PM
I think you should really calculate again, I compared the wood to my allen block very close. If you do the wood right deadmans, etc. i think i compared it to about 20% difference. Im not bragging but i have over 100 allen block walls in my area , i am a 2-3 man operation. Labor wise if we started 2 walls exact measurements, etc., you on timber and me on block i will beat you done. Then your wall will look rough because i have never seen 2 6x6 the same size, then tell your customer to seal or stain it every year or so like there deck, and by the way it might start rotting in 5 years like i have seen that happen. Now the block just paid for it self.

Mike

sheshovel
03-12-2006, 11:43 PM
I think the wall turned out really nice and I am sure you workrd very hard on that job..You already know about the need for deadmans so I will not comment on that.Nor will I about the single rock placements in the finished bed(a pet peeve of mine)
But I will say I am sure you walls will last for many years to come and I am ssure you customer got what they asked for and I think it looks good.Thanks for sharing ther pics with us.

boxsky
03-26-2007, 11:52 PM
I also have a cusotmer who wants a timber wall. Can't talk him out of it. It's just a wall from hell though. Built on the side of a hill over 100' long and 5' high.

He then wants to back fill and place pavers down. I'm afraid of rot and then there it goes. Also the soil seems unstable 18" down and haven't gone further to see when I hit something more solid.

ChrisCoope
04-17-2007, 01:40 PM
I noticed your post and thought I'd share with you the notion that if you use correctly treated wood it will not rot or be affected by pests for more than 60 years..!!
www.wallsandsoundbarriers.com may help you a little more.

A wall 5ft high, should be 'Engineered' but that said , it is a relatively straight forward proposition, providing there is little or no surcharge, and you use a sensible footing,with adequate drainage behind the wall to reduce the hydrostatic pressures that can build up.

You can even plant a wall if you take care..as below



78693

turfquip
04-17-2007, 06:06 PM
Referring to the original poster's wall photos...

If you don't mind me saying, there is too much 'run' in those walls, in other words, the joints are too close. Your walls will probably last a long time but the weakest point is the middle where the joints vertically are only offset by the width of one timber. This is not correct in my opinion.

If you were using 12 footers for example I would have cut half of them into six footers and offset each course. Makes for a stronger timber wall.

IMO, A well crafted timber wall will have fresh, square cuts on each end of every board and the last step would be to remove sharp edges along the top and at all corners. I use a hand grinder with a flap disk. Helps to grind out splinters along top edges too.

PatriotLandscape
04-17-2007, 06:47 PM
I think you should really calculate again, I compared the wood to my allen block very close. If you do the wood right deadmans, etc. i think i compared it to about 20% difference. Im not bragging but i have over 100 allen block walls in my area , i am a 2-3 man operation. Labor wise if we started 2 walls exact measurements, etc., you on timber and me on block i will beat you done. Then your wall will look rough because i have never seen 2 6x6 the same size, then tell your customer to seal or stain it every year or so like there deck, and by the way it might start rotting in 5 years like i have seen that happen. Now the block just paid for it self.

Mike

You must be 4 foot tall and full of piss and vinegar.

Did anyone ask you how fast you were?

Allan block is a poor qualtiy SRW. You nee to buy your lumber from a better lumberyard.

Mike33
04-17-2007, 09:35 PM
You must be 4 foot tall and full of piss and vinegar.

Did anyone ask you how fast you were?

Allan block is a poor qualtiy SRW. You nee to buy your lumber from a better lumberyard.

Little people have little minds. Sounds like you dont know **** about srw. BTW wood is ancient, get in to the times.
Mke

Superior L & L
04-20-2007, 10:11 PM
Allan block is for HOMEOWNERS only no real landscaper should ever use it. If your customer requests it tell then to do it them selves and you only use professional products. Oh and timber walls should only be built by carpenters or landscapers stuck in the 80's

Mike33
04-20-2007, 10:51 PM
And how is allen block not a good product?
Mike

anthonyr
04-21-2007, 02:11 PM
Why is Allen Block inferior? I just built my first retaining wall, 4ft. x 40 using the A.B. system. The only other block I can get is by Anchor - which is better, and why?

Mike33
04-21-2007, 11:13 PM
Why is Allen Block inferior? I just built my first retaining wall, 4ft. x 40 using the A.B. system. The only other block I can get is by Anchor - which is better, and why?

Thats my point very good post. I have a lot of walls out there over a 10 year period and mostly ab. Why, when i started a cont. built one 40' high very impressing i thought that must be a good product. In my area at the time there was only ab and another company sold a soild block with a thin lip on the back i didnt think much of. Now in my area we have ep henry, corner stone, and versa-lock but a pain to get in. I stick with ab because of my experience with the product they like any other block can have flaws but i can quickly over come them. I also have odds and ends left over if i am short i go home and pick them up and finish the job. The main reason also, i make money with them thats is the reason why we all go to work. I am very productive with them and will continue. Are they the best or worse? Its like the ford and chevy debate every one has an opinion. I however do not knock other products for most they all work well and have to be properly installed most systems are as good as another.
Mike

ChampionLS
04-22-2007, 03:33 AM
Allan block is for HOMEOWNERS only no real landscaper should ever use it. If your customer requests it tell then to do it them selves and you only use professional products. Oh and timber walls should only be built by carpenters or landscapers stuck in the 80's

Allan Block sucks and everyone knows it. It's made cheap, it costs nothing, you get nothing because it's mostly a heavy face. They have the WORST corner block system I ever saw. and their patented system of batter is done on the top face of the block. I see people try to build steps with this stuff, and you can't have a cap overhang (even a paver for that matter) unless you saw off that stupid locking lip. Even worse is the sides, where the front edges butt up. It's a hairline. Allan Block is made with way too many crumbs attached to the block that you must chisel off on each row. My favorite step is how their bulletins tell you to run a plate tamper on each course to "compact the block" What a nightmare!:hammerhead:

Big M LawnnSnow
04-22-2007, 06:28 AM
[QUOTE=turfquip;1798004]Referring to the original poster's wall photos...

If you don't mind me saying, there is too much 'run' in those walls, in other words, the joints are too close. Your walls will probably last a long time but the weakest point is the middle where the joints vertically are only offset by the width of one timber. This is not correct in my opinion.

If you were using 12 footers for example I would have cut half of them into six footers and offset each course. Makes for a stronger timber wall."

TURFQUIP....ABSOLUTELY CORRECT!!!!!!!!!!
Those joints are terrible.
All those joints in the middle of the wall are week and look realy bad.

PatriotLandscape
04-22-2007, 11:03 AM
Thats my point very good post. I have a lot of walls out there over a 10 year period and mostly ab. Why, when i started a cont. built one 40' high very impressing i thought that must be a good product. In my area at the time there was only ab and another company sold a soild block with a thin lip on the back i didnt think much of. Now in my area we have ep henry, corner stone, and versa-lock but a pain to get in. I stick with ab because of my experience with the product they like any other block can have flaws but i can quickly over come them. I also have odds and ends left over if i am short i go home and pick them up and finish the job. The main reason also, i make money with them thats is the reason why we all go to work. I am very productive with them and will continue. Are they the best or worse? Its like the ford and chevy debate every one has an opinion. I however do not knock other products for most they all work well and have to be properly installed most systems are as good as another.
Mike

It is far from a ford/chevy debate. AB is 6.00 a square here. good retaining walls cost 15+ a square, Ideal, Techo, Rinox. Those three can have a chevy/ford debate. AB is like a Yugo or a Hyundia.

Mike33
04-22-2007, 06:28 PM
I say your full of ****.
Mike

anthonyr
04-23-2007, 11:04 PM
well, like I said in my earlier post, A.B. and Anchor are the only systems I can get at my masonry supply. I had good luck building my first 30 ft long wall. The customer is very happy, and his neighbor asked me to build a 80 ft x 4 ft wall using the same block. I guess until I can get other blocks, A.B. works for me.

PatriotLandscape
04-23-2007, 11:12 PM
I say your full of ****.
Mike

Nice comeback. very strong.

GreenMonster
04-23-2007, 11:19 PM
It is far from a ford/chevy debate. AB is 6.00 a square here. good retaining walls cost 15+ a square, Ideal, Techo, Rinox. Those three can have a chevy/ford debate. AB is like a Yugo or a Hyundia.

I've built with AB, started with AB actually. Now that I've used others, I don't like it, and we definately have quality issues with the local mfg here.

that said, AB Europa (tumbled) is comparitive pricewise to the Techo, Ideal, Rinox, Versa tumbled.

AB split face is really little to no cheaper than anyone else's split face.

I'm just saying you're not comparing apples to apples.

chris638
04-24-2007, 11:54 PM
I cannot understand why there is so much bashing on the AB block. I have yet to install a AB wall that the customer wasn't completely satisfied with. Who cares how much they cost as long as they perform the job well. The Europa series block make some of the nicest looking walls I've ever seen. Patriot may have the worst argument ever. AB's are 6 a sq. and the others are 15 a sq., You keep paying $9.00 more a sq. for a block that just looks better in your opinion. I can't argue with AB performance when I see a 20' tall Europa Abbey blend wall built on a pond's edge everyday on my way to work.

PatriotLandscape
04-25-2007, 09:56 AM
I don't pay anymore my customers do and it is there decision as to what block I install. I recommend products I don't choose unless they ask me to. side by side the quality of AB is poor compared to the other companies.

chris638
04-25-2007, 01:07 PM
How can the quality be different when there are hundreds of 20' plus walls around our area that are in perfect condition. How can the quality be any different when they are used for a wide array of conditions and hold up just as well. Let's do this. Show me a picture of a retaining wall consisting of AB block that has failed due to the way the block is made or the quality of the block.

ChampionLS
04-26-2007, 05:30 AM
Allan block is made cheap. It's very soft, most of the weight is on the face, and the batter is built in. When you put two blocks next to each other, where the edges touch, theres a dimple, due to how the block is molded. Secondly, there are TONS of crumbs that need to be chiseled or scraped off so the next row will sit level. When you goto stager then next set of blocks on the first row, the block will not slide up and sit flush against the lower blocks lip, unless you chisel that corner clean. A few crooked blocks, and it gets worse and worse as you go up.

Who here has used their corner blocks? What a disaster. There are left and right corner blocks, and they all have a 12* batter. Allan block makes 0, 3,6 and 12* setbacks. If you use any other sizes, you have to saw cut and modify each corner block to "mate up" with the batter.

If you use any of their blocks for steps, there is NO WAY you can have a cap overhang for that eyebrow effect, or use bullnosed pavers, without more saw cutting. lips off.

ChampionLS
04-26-2007, 05:37 AM
These are Allan block steps with no caps. The landings have been filled in with cement and topped with pea gravel. Horrible!

PatriotLandscape
04-26-2007, 08:49 AM
it is not an engineering quality issue. it is a quality of product issue.

chris638
04-26-2007, 01:59 PM
You cannot blame AB for a guy doing a bad job. Once again, show me a wall that has failed from a quality stand point. I've read some of your post Champion, you seam to bash people quite a bit for having different methods of installation than you. Just because you don't agree with something, doesn't mean you can bash it. If you don't like a product, don't use it. Simple as that. I post a picture of a wall we used AB on. Granted it was about 5 years ago and is a simple wall. But I can't see a quality issue with the block

chris638
04-26-2007, 02:04 PM
Having problems posting a pic on this computer. Will try again later.

neversatisfiedj
04-26-2007, 02:26 PM
Allan block sucks !!! Watch out - Mike33 will be on this thread to defend. What's up Mike ? How's your year shaping up ?

Mike33
04-27-2007, 12:39 AM
Allan block sucks !!! Watch out - Mike33 will be on this thread to defend. What's up Mike ? How's your year shaping up ?

Defend hell no. This is what i enjoy about this forum. Keep in mind everyone im from small town usa. I have to choose from ab, lowes, cornerstone, and now ep henry which is overpriced and run by mennonites i cant stand. I never heard about techo and some of the other brands until i became a member on this site. Yes ab corners suck, i told my sales rep they need to hire an uneducated idiot to engineer there corner. I use ab because it mainly my best choice for my area. Im not going to comment how many i have built so i wont bore cgland. My area severe hill sides im building walls for what i call working purpose, not mainly for the cosmetic look of the tumbled and etc. And for general purpose the split face looks nice. Yes looking at pics here i have seen some great looking product out of my circle. But my area is low end pricing i deal with homeowners whom have to finance there project because it is a neccesity not a option of looks. Do i use the abbey blend or ashler no it is not what my area wants due to price. I just signed a contract for 2 walls 1 is 50' x 8' and the other is 100' x 5'. This guy has no choice but walls and sure isnt going to spend the money on a tumled block. Ab is a strong system, i have them out there 14' in height and 10 years old still standing. I havent had much problem with the crumbling as mentioned also this could be the local manu. issue. Im not to proud to switch but when your limited on product for your area, what do you do. Also there is an ab wall in my area and friend of mine built stands 40' its been there since 97 and i think it will last a few more years, sorry everyone you might not like the looks but its a good strong system. last but not least i go to work to make money, and i have done well at that, when your competion is bidding at the same block price are you going to bid and get the work going from a $6.00 to a $15.00 block? Business 101.
Mike

PatriotLandscape
04-27-2007, 09:02 AM
last but not least i go to work to make money, and i have done well at that, when your competion is bidding at the same block price are you going to bid and get the work going from a $6.00 to a $15.00 block? Business 101.
Mike

I live in an area of high end homes and they want the block to emulate natural stone the best it can.

almost all of the walls I install are tumbled and in ashlar patterns and we do a fair amount of them.

realatively it does not cost anymore to install these walls than AB so that seems a mute point. a wall is a wall and the block is where you differ your price.

ChrisCoope
04-27-2007, 03:30 PM
I think you may find that some of those high end homes will buy Natural stone walls, natural stone or brick walls almost always look better in my opinion, this one is actually not that expensive to build.. and the stone is really no more than the block alternative..takes longer to construct.
79389
it was quite simple to build - just has a 4 inch concrete block behind the small rock face.. what is nice is how well it weathers down to a softer texture, natural materials don't bleach out in the sun.
79390

PatriotLandscape
04-27-2007, 04:19 PM
Actually they don't choose natural over concrete because natural stone costs more. They would rather have a nice srw than a cheap natural stone. If you don't put the wall on top of a frost wall then it will heave and crack in our area.

I guide my customers to what they are looking for they choose the products I tell them how much. The natural stone walls here are mostly new england field stone with deeply raked joints or penn. flat stone. They don't like to see the mortar.

ChampionLS
04-27-2007, 09:01 PM
Chris,
I'm not bashing anyone for their method of work ethics. If your comfortable with what works for you, then great. What I am talking about is naive people that think "their" method is the only method...blah blah blah.. (my grandfather did it so it's the only way to do it right.)

Just like there are building codes that require everyone to use the right materials, planning and engineering. Why? - because these methods work and they ultimately are the safest.

Now back to the Allan block saga. I am a hop, skip and a jump away from one of the largest Allan Block suppliers in the East. I'm also an Allan block certified installer. We are forced to use their product, due to cost and availability. It's not always pleasant to loose a bid because you want to offer a better block. Allan block has it's issues, and they are not going to improve due to patent issues. It is what it is.

Heres two pictures I took today with my cell phone camera. You can see the sloppiness, and the loose corners. Will it hold up as a retaining wall.. Yup. Is is cheap... yup. Would I use it to build steps or a raised patio? No way in hell.

I'll post more of the local jobs by me, since they're everywhere and you can decide for yourself.

Mike33
04-27-2007, 11:05 PM
Chris,
I'm not bashing anyone for their method of work ethics. If your comfortable with what works for you, then great. What I am talking about is naive people that think "their" method is the only method...blah blah blah.. (my grandfather did it so it's the only way to do it right.)

Just like there are building codes that require everyone to use the right materials, planning and engineering. Why? - because these methods work and they ultimately are the safest.

Now back to the Allan block saga. I am a hop, skip and a jump away from one of the largest Allan Block suppliers in the East. I'm also an Allan block certified installer. We are forced to use their product, due to cost and availability. It's not always pleasant to loose a bid because you want to offer a better block. Allan block has it's issues, and they are not going to improve due to patent issues. It is what it is.

Heres two pictures I took today with my cell phone camera. You can see the sloppiness, and the loose corners. Will it hold up as a retaining wall.. Yup. Is is cheap... yup. Would I use it to build steps or a raised patio? No way in hell.

I'll post more of the local jobs by me, since they're everywhere and you can decide for yourself.
I could not agree more with there corners suck and they need a red blend in the regular ab stone. Those pics you showed are sloppy workman ship. The one course is un level and they could of done better on the cuts with the caps. That is no fault to the product but the person who installed. What has been a pita for me is when you make that run from a corner to say a side of house you have to cut a block to fit. That is why i hate the corners also. I do use the ab lites which i think works good for step downs.
Mike

Mike33
04-27-2007, 11:15 PM
realatively it does not cost anymore to install these walls than AB so that seems a mute point. a wall is a wall and the block is where you differ your price.[/QUOTE]

Are you saying your brand verses ab tumbled ( ashler or euproa ) price the same? Im using regular ab stone for $6.25 per block.
Mike

PatriotLandscape
04-27-2007, 11:24 PM
I'm saying that a wall installed by my company using AB is no less expensive than a wall by another manufacturer other than the cost of the stone.

Mike33
04-27-2007, 11:33 PM
Did i understand you earlier that you mainly use a 13.00 + block on most of your walls? If so then if you used a product such as ab or brand x at 6.00 you would still get the same price.
Mike

ChampionLS
04-28-2007, 12:01 AM
I buy the regular AB Stones block 8x18 for $4.25 each. As a company, we charge $35 per face foot on an average to install.

Mike33
04-28-2007, 12:15 AM
Thats a good price im paying 6 + depending on color blend or reg. Im getting around 18-22 sq' installed and still get cut by lowballers in area.
Mike

APV's Mowing
05-26-2007, 05:40 AM
Is that the new galvanized lumber that don't rust?

do you mean rot or rust? cause i dont think wood "rusts"