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mklawnman
03-21-2004, 03:49 PM
Was wondering how many of you do finish grading. Cause I jsut got a call off of one of my fliers to give a bid for lawn installation in my area. THe homeowner told me that theirs alot of rocks, well i drove by it today, going tommorow to measure it up. Their is piles of topsoil and all that is showing is the rough grade, so a dozer is needed to push all that topsoil back and grade the lawn properly. Should I talk to them and say I will put a bid in to put the lawn in and powerake it, but suggest that they call a grading company to do the finish grade?
The lady already has gotten a few other bids in and just for topsoil alone she was tellin me it will be $3,000, but their is alot of topsoil on site already. I have done lawn installs before, except the last one i did they had the finish graders come in and level the lawn off because i dont have the equipment to do it nor am i efficient with a dozer just yet. The biggest i've driven is a skid steer which obviously would take forever to level the lawn off.
Any thoughts or suggestions
Thanks
Matt

sidebuz
03-21-2004, 03:56 PM
Now this is without looking at it and using what I have- I would still take a skid loader and move the topsoil. Charge by the hr. Then prep and seed/sod (whatever your plans). Collect the ck.

Yeah, it is going to take a while using a skid steer. But that is alsmost pure profit in my book. Personally, I would rather do that than the seeding part. I have never brought in a dozer to the job of rough grade. I have only seen one instance where the dozer was needed and not a skid loader (in ground pool job).

mklawnman
03-21-2004, 04:04 PM
This lawn size is about a 1 acre with the totall property like 2acres or so. Its no small job. I would just think someone with a dozer would be able to get alot of it done in one day and be done by the second day.
Their would have to be topsoil hauled in because on the otherside of the driveway their isnt a pile and since the house sits into a hill some its hard to go all the way around the house and dump.
Matt

kris
03-22-2004, 12:16 AM
Geez... I don't know. Not much I can't do with a skid steer. 2 acres is nothing. We do final grades all the time. You need a final grade certificate when your done here. How many cubic yards of soil are you talking? I can push 25 yards around in no more than 1/2 hour....no problem.

NEPSJay
03-22-2004, 03:35 AM
Rent a dozer. You dont need to be a rocket scientist to run one.

mklawnman
03-22-2004, 01:15 PM
I have thought about renting a dozer but if im not efficent at it then I know im going to be losing money if i get the job. The house is kinda in a hill so the proper grading would have to be done. I've not done any big time grading, done some on a city lot size but nothing like a 1acre lawn.
I can see myself using the skid steer and digging into the topsoil pile and dumping it all over the lawn leveling it with the powerake, but that would be aalot of man hours using a skid steer. Im just thinking about mentioning to have a grading contractor do that part then I will finish it off with raking it and seeding and covering.
Just my thought
Matt

sidebuz
03-22-2004, 03:06 PM
The bad part about the dozer is what it leaves behind-- a packed soil that is harder than concrete. Then you really should have something that will dig down (3-4 inches) and loosen the soil. The power rake just won't do it.

In your case, either have the homeowner or yourself, bring in a excavation company. Then do your job.

lars
03-22-2004, 03:08 PM
Why not hire an excavator to come in and finish grade for you. I bet there are more than a few guys in your area with a dozer that do this kind of suff. Mabye you even know a few reputable guys. Simply pass the cost of the excavator off to the homeowner. The excavator does his thing, you do what you do best.

This is a great way to make some good contacts. Next time you come across a situation like this, you'll have a good contractor in your back pocket. Mabye he might be grading a yard and the homeowner might need someone to prep and seed it. A friend like that is just another great way to get more business.

Randy Scott
03-22-2004, 06:33 PM
Dude, use the fricken' skid-steer to spread the topsoil. Moving the topsoil with the skid-steer bucket is faster than the dozer pushing it all the way around the house. Gonna be hard to bury an $800 a day dozer rental anyways with the scabs that put lawns in around here for just about free. If you can't handle it Matt, give them my name! :D

kris
03-22-2004, 06:47 PM
Seems to go in one ear and out the other. ..."sigh"

mklawnman
03-22-2004, 10:35 PM
Well tommorow I will be measuriing the lot up, I would say the piles of soil are like 10' tall and about 20 or 30' long or so. Ill do some measuring of the piles too give a rough estimate of how much soil is there to be leveled. Gonna be alot of man hours in the skid steer, which i dont mind and since their is a natural grade their already sloping mostly away from the house it shouldnt be too bad. Another landscaper had put in some fieldstone retaining walls but thats bout it.
I may ask them to consider a rough grading company to do it otherwise I might see where my numbers come up in rough grading it myself with a skid steer, a nice big one with a big bucket.
Randy you think since you got ur new Bobcat that I will just send all my landscape work to you now??
Gonna have to work for it :D maybe some cut into the job too $$
Matt

weekend2007
03-04-2007, 09:18 PM
Hello Guys, I just started a Finish grading side business in December and now I have my Harley power rake. Does anyone have an idea on what i should charge to just finish grade say a half acre and a full acre lot, ...no landscaping...basically doing new construction at the moment....
weekend2007

lawnMaster5000
03-04-2007, 10:20 PM
KLINGS,

You hire the grading company as a sub contractor. make them bid the job before you submit your bid. You get a great contact and come out ahead.

If you tell the homeowner to find their own grading company you will possibly lose the job to someone that can do it all in one.

jreiff
03-04-2007, 10:23 PM
Not very good at grading or efficient enough in a skidsteer. No better time then now to make yourself better at it. After do more and more grade work, you will ahve it down, then you will not eve nthink of subbing out the work.

Mike33
03-04-2007, 11:15 PM
Why don't you stick with what your currently doing. Yard installs don't seem to be your thing.
Mike

tthomass
03-04-2007, 11:19 PM
My thought:

Tell her to get a grading company.........you just lost the contract. I'm willing the bet the other bids aren't which make them easier to deal with and one less person........you lose.

Get a skid steer, get a track machine......T190 & TL130 on the smaller side or T300 & T150 for more balls. Get a tooth bucket, not an option.

Do you know what "floating" the bucket is?

If there is a LOT of debris, get rent a rockhound also.

Offer her the package deal she wants to see. If someone else has to grade it.......YOU sub them, NOT the customer or again, 99.9% positive you'll lose the customer.

Scag48
03-05-2007, 03:29 AM
This job is over your head if you have to think about it this much. You could have been out there doing it and have half the job done by the time you sit and figure on how to go about it. Pass on this one.

Tim Wright
03-05-2007, 07:49 AM
Hello Guys, I just started a Finish grading side business in December and now I have my Harley power rake. Does anyone have an idea on what i should charge to just finish grade say a half acre and a full acre lot, ...no landscaping...basically doing new construction at the moment....
weekend2007


We charge

Acreage
1/4 $1500.00 grade, seed & straw
1/2 $2000.00 grade, seed & straw
1 $2500.00 grade, seed & straw


Tim

weekend2007
03-05-2007, 08:23 AM
Its obvious that these guys don't know anything about power raking and finish grading. Its a just a clean yard guys, and it just needs to be finished when all the debris has been cleared. No rocket science..I done my yard and it looks beautiful..2.5 acres and it only took 2.5 hours..no big mounds and no piles...Most homes here in the south will install sod...I'm on the contruction end...

Thanks Tim...

weekend2007
03-05-2007, 08:40 AM
Please forgive me guys if your response wasn't for me....I think it was for the original thread...sorry just joined yesterday....again please forgive me if i offended anyone...

Marlon

tcalb2
03-05-2007, 02:05 PM
The old company I worked for had a skid steer a cat 262 and I used it to grade plenty of yards. It can be a pain especially with with a tire machine. Have you tried the new track machine that cat has. The thing is nuts I did a yard in half the time it would have taken me with a tire machine. Just like a dozer.

tcalb2
03-05-2007, 02:05 PM
Its worth a try if you like the precision of a skid steer but you want to be able to grade alot faster.

Mike33
03-05-2007, 08:41 PM
Please forgive me guys if your response wasn't for me....I think it was for the original thread...sorry just joined yesterday....again please forgive me if i offended anyone...

Marlon

I dont think any one was beating on you just the original thread, but dont get your feelings hurt here. Hardscaping forum gets real bad.
Mike

Regular Joe
03-05-2007, 08:45 PM
Geez... I don't know. Not much I can't do with a skid steer. 2 acres is nothing. We do final grades all the time. You need a final grade certificate when your done here. How many cubic yards of soil are you talking? I can push 25 yards around in no more than 1/2 hour....no problem.

I agree with this completely. Skid Steer and a radio of some kind.