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land_scaper70
10-06-2011, 11:31 AM
I Drive past this wall every time I go to mow one of my accounts, and I laugh every time. I finally had to take picture of it and show some other the craftsmanship that is out there. Each step is another panel.

zak406
10-06-2011, 11:53 AM
Why wouldn't they have added height to the end and grade the soil up to the wall to make it a flat lawn?
Posted via Mobile Device

zedosix
10-06-2011, 01:10 PM
I've done it that way before but not so drastic.

Gilmore.Landscaping
10-06-2011, 01:17 PM
wow and its still standing? how long has that been up for?

Definitely not the way its done....no exceptions!!

zedosix
10-06-2011, 01:59 PM
I've done it that way before but not so drastic.

I just noticed that the wall was built in completely different sections. OMFG I retract my original statement. I have NOT done it that way before, I was just looking at the caps stepping down.

DVS Hardscaper
10-06-2011, 04:19 PM
Ok, but is the wall failing??
Posted via Mobile Device

zedosix
10-06-2011, 05:10 PM
Ok, but is the wall failing??
Posted via Mobile Device

I doubt it, its more of a asthetic thing.

zak406
10-06-2011, 05:26 PM
I also just noticed the issue nothing is staggered. I still think reguardless it a should have been built rigght, and b they should have made the wall higher so they could grade the lawn into the wall, nothing I cant stand more is seeing a wall like that and a slanted yard!

DVS Hardscaper
10-06-2011, 08:24 PM
Retaining walls gave been around long before any of us here. Since the 1800's and before.

I take notice of walls everywhere I go. From stone to wood to whatever. And I see some walls built and standing beautifully that have been in the ground for years and some for decades.

And I often think "this wall is standing beautifully, but the guys on the forum would think it is a disaster".

Until I see evidence of the wall actually failing, then there is nothing to tell me that the wall is poorly built.

Some people hunt deer from a tree stand.

Some people hunt deer from the ground.



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jsslawncare
10-06-2011, 08:46 PM
Why wouldn't they have added height to the end and grade the soil up to the wall to make it a flat lawn?
Posted via Mobile Device

Adding soil could kill the tree.

Stillwater
10-07-2011, 12:04 AM
I see nothing wrong with this wall
Posted via Mobile Device

2low4NH
10-07-2011, 01:16 AM
not the best or brightest way but it works I guess.

2low4NH
10-07-2011, 01:17 AM
on 2nd thought maybe they only had a 4 foot level to work with they didnt want to get out of range.

zedosix
10-07-2011, 10:22 AM
I see nothing wrong with this wall
Posted via Mobile Device

really, look closer

Stillwater
10-07-2011, 11:12 AM
Zedo its not showing up on my android what is the issue with the wall
Posted via Mobile Device

land_scaper70
10-07-2011, 11:36 AM
No, the wall is not failing in any of the sections, it seems to be maintaining it integrity for what it is suppose to be doing. It is a corner lot and it makes a right angle at the corner. In terms of how long the wall has been there, not sure, only pick the neighbors lawn up this year. I have tried to attach a few more pictures, however, for some reason they will not upload.

Gilmore.Landscaping
10-07-2011, 12:19 PM
I guess the advantage to this system if that if part of the wall start to lean you can rebuilt just that section.

DVS Hardscaper
10-07-2011, 06:28 PM
Zedo its not showing up on my android what is the issue with the wall
Posted via Mobile Device

There is nothing to see. The wall is standing fine. Just someone built it different than than how others may have. That's all.
Posted via Mobile Device

land_scaper70
10-07-2011, 06:39 PM
There is nothing to see. The wall is standing fine. Just someone built it different than than how others may have. That's all.
Posted via Mobile Device

So what you are saying is, that this could be an acceptable way to build a wall, it is just aesthetically displeasing to the eye? I do not see how this could be acceptable to build this way, even if each panel is backed with geo-grid. It just seems to me that each panel is set up to fail at sometime in the future.

amscapes03
10-08-2011, 06:01 PM
Why build one wall when you can build 15 little ones. Someday when/if it blows out it'll probably only be one, maybe two of the weakest baby walls. It'll be a quick fix. What a dopey looking wall.

zedosix
10-09-2011, 08:57 PM
The wall may be standing fine, but built in 4' sections, is just ludicrous. And skip the " walls were built this way for the last 5000 yrs bs" :)

DVS Hardscaper
10-09-2011, 09:39 PM
The wall may be standing fine, but built in 4' sections, is just ludicrous. And skip the " walls were built this way for the last 5000 yrs bs" :)

haha - block did not exist 5000 yrs ago :laugh:

Stillwater
10-10-2011, 03:37 AM
Now that i am looking at the wall on my computer and NOT looking at this wall on my phone. I am surprised no one has mentioned exactly what this wall is. I stand by my earlier statement of their is nothing wrong with this wall. You guys are getting hung up on the aesthetics of the wall and ignoring it's secondary function. This wall is not just a retaining wall, it is a acoustic reflecting barrier. this must be a abnormally noisy street. The offset panel's are reflecting the excessive road noise back away from the building more so than a traditional method of install and also explains why it wasn't built taller it doesn't have to be taller 90% of road noise is generated and transmited below knee height. Those offsets do not show up on my phone. Their are a few of these around hear. Extremely effective in killing road noise. If he road grade was opposite of what it is the offset would be reversed.

DVS Hardscaper
10-10-2011, 09:04 AM
Now that i am looking at the wall on my computer and NOT looking at this wall on my phone. I am surprised no one has mentioned exactly what this wall is. I stand by my earlier statement of their is nothing wrong with this wall. You guys are getting hung up on the aesthetics of the wall and ignoring it's secondary function. This wall is not just a retaining wall, it is a acoustic reflecting barrier. this must be a abnormally noisy street. The offset panel's are reflecting the excessive road noise back away from the building more so than a traditional method of install and also explains why it wasn't built taller it doesn't have to be taller 90% of road noise is generated and transmited below knee height. Those offsets do not show up on my phone. Their are a few of these around hear. Extremely effective in killing road noise. If he road grade was opposite of what it is the offset would be reversed.

Good scenario. I nvr heard of that.

LOL - looking at job pics on a Phone, what do you mean they're not the same as a real computer?! A few months ago all heck broke out when I commented on a pic I viewed on my phone, 2 guys here swore up and down I was making it up that I thought I saw somethin that didn't really exist, writing paragraph after paragraph telling me about myself and what a bully I am, even after I stated
That I saw a different image on my phone and posted a copy of
The image direct from my phone!
Posted via Mobile Device

DVS Hardscaper
10-10-2011, 09:11 AM
Something I noticed last week was the cuts. Someone took alotta time and effort to make those cuts. They did not go unnoticed. When I saw the cuts I thought to myself "there is a reason why they did that, I don't know why it is, but I know there's a reason for it"


.
Posted via Mobile Device

zedosix
10-10-2011, 10:45 AM
haha - block did not exist 5000 yrs ago :laugh:

pyramids were built roughly 5000 yrs ago. :)

iowa
10-10-2011, 08:59 PM
Here's a good one.

DVS Hardscaper
10-10-2011, 09:46 PM
Here's a good one.

hahaha! that is A GOOD ONE!!


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Stillwater
10-10-2011, 10:13 PM
What the hell is that wall doing
Posted via Mobile Device

amscapes03
10-10-2011, 10:16 PM
What the hell is that wall doing

Waiting to collapse.

JimLewis
10-27-2011, 11:33 PM
Wow. I missed this thread. If anyone doesn't see what's wrong with either of the walls pictured in this thread, you got issues. It did take me a second to see what the O.P. was referring too in the photo. Then I was like, "Oh damm!!!" Yah, that's messed up on several levels.

In terms of stability, a wall gets it's strength in several ways. One of the ways is the interlocking capability from side to side. Walls that end abruptly (without fading down or fading in) fail more on the ends than on any other place, from what I've seen just driving around town. And here we have about a wall with at least 12 different sections where in each section it ends abrubtly and does not interlock to anything at all or fade down. If there's even the slightest difference in hydrostatic pressure from one wall to the next, this will look like crap after a few years. Whereas, if it had been one solid wall it would have been able to resist this a lot more, because the entire wall would be connected from side to side as well as from top to bottom.

In terms of looks, I guess it probably looks okay to your average Joe who doesn't know anything about retaining walls. But to someone who knows how to do it right, it's a complete disaster.

In terms of time, why would you do it this way? Each section is on it's own separate level? What a total waste of time! It could have been done 30% faster had they just kept the same level and just stepped up the base course as needed.

So we have problems in terms of long term stability, looks, and labor with this wall. If some of you guys don't see that, maybe take a longer look.

zedosix
10-27-2011, 11:48 PM
This is the way stone walls are built in switzerland, with one large sheer line from top to bottom spaced every 5 meters. Theory is to allow frost movement to independant sections instead of the entire wall. Go figure!

DVS Hardscaper
10-28-2011, 12:20 AM
Wow. I missed this thread. If anyone doesn't see what's wrong with either of the walls pictured in this thread, you got issues. It did take me a second to see what the O.P. was referring too in the photo. Then I was like, "Oh damm!!!" Yah, that's messed up on several levels.

In terms of stability, a wall gets it's strength in several ways. One of the ways is the interlocking capability from side to side. Walls that end abruptly (without fading down or fading in) fail more on the ends than on any other place, from what I've seen just driving around town. And here we have about a wall with at least 12 different sections where in each section it ends abrubtly and does not interlock to anything at all or fade down. If there's even the slightest difference in hydrostatic pressure from one wall to the next, this will look like crap after a few years. Whereas, if it had been one solid wall it would have been able to resist this a lot more, because the entire wall would be connected from side to side as well as from top to bottom.

In terms of looks, I guess it probably looks okay to your average Joe who doesn't know anything about retaining walls. But to someone who knows how to do it right, it's a complete disaster.

In terms of time, why would you do it this way? Each section is on it's own separate level? What a total waste of time! It could have been done 30% faster had they just kept the same level and just stepped up the base course as needed.

So we have problems in terms of long term stability, looks, and labor with this wall. If some of you guys don't see that, maybe take a longer look.


Sorry bud, I don't agree :)

What you are saying is true, but I believe what you're saying applies to walls higher in height.

At this time, I do not see anything WRONG with the wall pictured.

Yeah, its different than the traditional way, but that doesnt mean it'll ever fail.


I am big on having things custom fabricated. I have a buddy who has done welding and fabricating for me for, heck, the last 16 years I'm guessing. He is a heck of a welder and a fabricator. Never had any schooling or training. He gets an idea in his head and simply makes it. And makes it to last. There ARE instances in hardscaping where the same mentality can apply. And thats how I equate the wall shown.

We just had a new roof put on my parents house. the old roof had 1/4" plywood!!!! The minimum should have been 15/32. Ok, so they're house had plywood that was too thin. BUT......it lasted 37.5 years!

My point is, I sometimes think we contractors over spec. And we get carried away doing things how we were taught in a conference room at a hotel!


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Stillwater
10-28-2011, 12:39 AM
I disagree jim, Their is nothing nothing wrong with the wall in post #1 its been their for awhile and its going nowhere.


Now if you are referring to the embarrassment in in post #252 well that is a disaster and a insult to the trade but their is nothing wrong with the wall in the first post. you just need to do some traveling.......

JoeyDipetro
10-28-2011, 11:47 PM
While the wall might be fine, who knows and time will tell, I wouldn't say it's the preferable method. Looks like somebody took the lazy way out to me. That acoustic barrier explanation sounded interesting though.:)

Stillwater
10-29-2011, 12:54 PM
While the wall might be fine, who knows and time will tell, I wouldn't say it's the preferable method. Looks like somebody took the lazy way out to me. That acoustic barrier explanation sounded interesting though.:)

When looking at these other examples remember their is a difference between highway noise and street noise.


http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/noise/noise_barriers/design_construction/keepdown.cfm

JimLewis
10-31-2011, 09:47 PM
Sorry bud, I don't agree....At this time, I do not see anything WRONG with the wall pictured.

Yeah, its different than the traditional way, but that doesnt mean it'll ever fail.


I disagree jim, Their is nothing nothing wrong with the wall in post #1 its been their for awhile and its going nowhere.

Ok. So as long as a wall isn't going to fail, then there's nothing wrong with the wall???? So I assume the wall in the photos below is a perfectly acceptable wall to you as well? I've been driving by this wall in my area for almost 10 years now (just took the photos today) and it's still holding just fine. So according to your guys' logic above, nothing would be wrong with this wall as well, right?


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JoeyDipetro
10-31-2011, 10:48 PM
When looking at these other examples remember their is a difference between highway noise and street noise.


http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/noise/noise_barriers/design_construction/keepdown.cfm

Thanks for the link. Maybe, I'm wrong, but I fail to see though how that little wall in the pics can be considered a noise barrier....even for street noise. If the wall wasn't there, there would be an embankment at the same height, correct?

AztlanLC
10-31-2011, 11:04 PM
Jim Those walls look perfectly fine to me they are serving the purpose they were build for (sarcasms face) but god forbid you ever post a picture using pavers as step treads cause all hell will break loose
:)

vtscaper
10-31-2011, 11:23 PM
my question is why? Did they "know" what they were doing and have a reason for this or was it simply out of inexperience? Because we all know it wasnt done this way for aesthetics or efficiency.

JoeyDipetro
10-31-2011, 11:26 PM
Good example of using an exception to disprove a rule Jim. That's not good business.

JoeyDipetro
10-31-2011, 11:28 PM
my question is why? Did they "know" what they were doing and have a reason for this or was it simply out of inexperience? Because we all know it wasnt done this way for aesthetics or efficiency.

Are you referring to the wall in the last pics that Jim posted?

Stillwater
11-01-2011, 01:55 PM
Thanks for the link. Maybe, I'm wrong, but I fail to see though how that little wall in the pics can be considered a noise barrier....even for street noise. If the wall wasn't there, there would be an embankment at the same height, correct?

Becouse all street noise is generated at tire hight
Posted via Mobile Device

JoeyDipetro
11-01-2011, 10:25 PM
Becouse all street noise is generated at tire hight
Posted via Mobile Device

Ok, and you probably know more about this than I do, but considering the elevation of the house, how does that wall act as any more of a noise barrier than the ground would have if the wall wasn't there?

DVS Hardscaper
11-01-2011, 10:47 PM
similar to the noise barriers along major highways and interstates that are parallel to thebackyards of houses.

The DC area has concrete noise barriers along the beltway. Cept they're about 20' tall.


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JoeyDipetro
11-01-2011, 11:00 PM
similar to the noise barriers along major highways and interstates that are parallel to thebackyards of houses.

The DC area has concrete noise barriers along the beltway. Cept they're about 20' tall.


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That's my point, the barriers that I've seen do not allow the homes to be seen. I just cannot imagine that that wall will be a barrier to noise at that home any more than the original grade would have been.

zedosix
11-01-2011, 11:03 PM
That wall has nothing to do with noise barrier, its just a shody built retaining wall built by the homeowner or inexperienced hardscaper.

JoeyDipetro
11-01-2011, 11:13 PM
That wall has nothing to do with noise barrier, its just a shody built retaining wall built by the homeowner or inexperienced hardscaper.

That's pretty much what I'm thinking. It's more like 12 or so individually built retaining walls instead one. I know it takes a little more time to adjust to the changes in elevation, but nobody will convince me it's not superior to what we see in the pics.

DVS Hardscaper
11-01-2011, 11:44 PM
That wall has nothing to do with noise barrier, its just a shody built retaining wall built by the homeowner or inexperienced hardscaper.

I think the wall is anything but "shody". Someone spent an emense amount of time and effort on the cutting of all that block. And from what I see on my screen, the cuts look rather decent.

It's standing plumb and level. Isn't that the name of the game? Until it fails.....one can't say it's not built rite.

Or, it is November, some are in dire need of a vacation!

DVS Hardscaper
11-01-2011, 11:58 PM
That wall has nothing to do with noise barrier, its just a shody built retaining wall built by the homeowner or inexperienced hardscaper.

Andy!

I swear you're one of those 60 yr old men that are set in their ways!

LOL

I just went to Google.

I typed: SRW sound barrier wall

Now. I could post the link of what I found. But I'll let you find it your own :)

The wall in the pics of the topic may not be a sound barrier wall. Or maybe it is. (Only the owner and installer know for sure. Anything else is nothin more than speculation) But the wall in the pics of this topic is built very similar to the pics of wall I found in my Google search.

ha! we learn something everyday. Don't we??!

Stillwater
11-02-2011, 04:41 AM
Ok, and you probably know more about this than I do, but considering the elevation of the house, how does that wall act as any more of a noise barrier than the ground would have if the wall wasn't there?

It dosen't and I don't think anybody said it did in fact DOT studies state that vertical earth berms are a more effective noise barriers than vertical concrete walls of the same height by 3dB. In my first post where I first brought up a road noise barrier theory, that was my input as a possible explanation of a secondary reason the wall was constructed that way. This based on other designs of purpose built road noise barriers from hardscape I have seen. I am not claiming that is why the Wall is the way it is. But Street noise and highway noise are 2 different animals. The height of a purpose built noise barrier is determined by the grade height of the item you are trying to shield from the grade height of what is generating the noise. The offset of the panels from a noise barrier is determined by the direction the noise is coming from. I remember seeing a episode of the tv show this old house many years ago where they were building a noise barrier with dry stacked field stone, the architect explained in some detail different designs and types and methods of construction. The wall they built was not straight it was somewhat jagged and offset as it went along. The farther away the source of noise is from what you are shielding the taller the barrier has to be as the wavelength of sound increases over distance traveled. I do think though that we all can or most of us can agree.... the wall looks like Butt......

zedosix
11-02-2011, 07:14 AM
Dvs likes it. I swear he's one of these 60 yr old guys that yells at his men in the day "hey tell me you didn't just answer my question with a question" .:) You need a vacation Andrew and maybe a beer or three.

zedosix
11-02-2011, 08:46 PM
Btw Andrew I don't like that red stripe beer. Gives me the sh#$^%

Moneypit
11-02-2011, 11:49 PM
My first thought was that it was built this way to save on material. They have far less buried block building it this way vs building it with a stepped base course.
They probably considered building on the same slope of the street to save on material but found that to be to hard for the base course level.
I just can't buy into the whole noise barrier theory.

JoeyDipetro
11-02-2011, 11:55 PM
It dosen't and I don't think anybody said it did in fact DOT studies state that vertical earth berms are a more effective noise barriers than vertical concrete walls of the same height by 3dB. In my first post where I first brought up a road noise barrier theory, that was my input as a possible explanation of a secondary reason the wall was constructed that way. This based on other designs of purpose built road noise barriers from hardscape I have seen. I am not claiming that is why the Wall is the way it is. But Street noise and highway noise are 2 different animals. The height of a purpose built noise barrier is determined by the grade height of the item you are trying to shield from the grade height of what is generating the noise. The offset of the panels from a noise barrier is determined by the direction the noise is coming from. I remember seeing a episode of the tv show this old house many years ago where they were building a noise barrier with dry stacked field stone, the architect explained in some detail different designs and types and methods of construction. The wall they built was not straight it was somewhat jagged and offset as it went along. The farther away the source of noise is from what you are shielding the taller the barrier has to be as the wavelength of sound increases over distance traveled. I do think though that we all can or most of us can agree.... the wall looks like Butt......

Thanks. I thought that earth berms were more effective at absorbing the noise and I guess I was just thinking why would somebody pay to build something that is less effective at doing what they want it to do, if their primary motivation was a noise barrier.

As you said, it looks like butt, and it's not the way we should build walls.