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View Full Version : Clearing/ Dozing for hiking trail need help!!


qualitylandscaping
01-16-2008, 06:13 PM
Hey guys-

We are bidding solo on a hiking trail installation for a local nature company.

The trail is going to be roughly 1.75-2 miles in length around the loop.

The entrance off the main road is heavily wooded (small trees though). The remainder of the property is fairly open and most of the the brush can be cut with our brush hog. The entire trail will need to be regraded due to water flow problems.

Anyone have an idea on time to complete something like this? I've done a few smaller trails before but nothing of this size.

Our equipment to be on site:
07 John Deere 550 LGP Dozer w/ 9'9" Blade
06 CAT 257B Skid Steer w/ grapple, bucket, harley, etc.
07 Kubota LS3240 Tractor w/ bucket, brush-hog
05 Morbark 7" Chipper
and more if required.

Alan Mesmer
01-16-2008, 08:45 PM
posted twice - sorry

Alan Mesmer
01-16-2008, 08:47 PM
You really need to do a detailed walk through with the project engineer/manager and record exactly what needs done where and layout accordingly to scale with the aid of a GPS and how it relates to the engineered design specs. Make sure that there are detailed design specs or you open yourself to a possible situation that you didn't do the job to their satisfaction. If everything is spelled out then there are fewer issues. I think that there are probably too many variables to determine costs until you break the project down to smaller parts. Instead of seeing the whole project, just look at it in stages or smaller pieces if it makes more sense to you. Look at the size of the trees and count them, the amount of grading, the necessary culvert pipes and sizes for waterways or ditches, rip rap or river rock for dry creek beds, base material for swampy areas, erosion control of graded areas, amount of stumps to get rid of, bridges, etc. Try to come up with good labor rates for your equipment and men you are going to have on the site too. Look at it closely and when you come up with a price add an additional 25% to your price for your bid!

Have you done any work for these people before? Do you feel that with past work experience on trails they would give you preference for the job.
If so then, I would see if they would entertain the thought of a time and material agreement. Explain that as a contractor you have to ensure that you are going to profit from this job and there are a lot of unknown variables that you have to consider before you could make a firm bid, where a time and material arrangement would be fair to both of you.

Good luck.

capetrees
01-19-2008, 07:46 PM
Depending on how wide the trail is going to be, you might be better off renting/borrowing a brush hog for the front of the CAT 257. I've used one and they are amazing as far as what they can do with so very little disruption to the ground. It actually might help you with run off in that it leaves the ground in place along with the roots and all so the ground is stabilized. To make it go faster, I would walk through and cut the larger trees, 3" and up and place them along the trail. Run the brush hog on the CAT through and open the trail up and then drag the chipper in to chip the trees back onto the trail, again to aid in the soil retention/runoff problems. If the trail is so steep in places that the dozer is needed, so be it but I would hesitate to do the whole thing with the dozer. Lots of damage to the woods, lots of clean up. As for time, you could get a CAT with the brush hog around that trail twice easily in a day. Even if you had to do it in two days, that just makes it perfect.

We did a job, cleared the sides of an old fire road similar to your project in '05. 4 guys cut and chipped 4 miles of roadside (2 mile road, each side)then cleared it down to the nubs with a Bobcat 300 w/the brush hog out front, all together in 5 days. Two guys were way ahead cutting the larger trees, two guys on the chipper feeding by hand and then when the guys in front were done they started at the beginning brushing the roadside, one guy in the machine, the other doing the details and unrerachables. Looked great in the end.