03-30-2004, 01:31 AM
My building site may be approximately 700' off the road. The area has field tile drainage and was planted to corn last season. Can anyone tell me a decent formula to calculate the tonnage of stone I will need for this type of project? Also any recommendations as to stone size? I plan to scrape the good topsoil off which will probably take me down 4-6 inches and then go from there.
I am also considering a pond. Can anyone give me a price estimate on a 1 1/2 acre pond built on flat ground?
I am planning to call a few excavating companies up next week. I'm just trying to get an idea about this stuff before I make the calls.
03-30-2004, 09:21 AM
We had the same situation about 10 years ago - we needed a new road through a pasture and corn field. I talked to enough people to realize this is a big project that needs to be done right, so we hired a professional.
The type of soil makes a difference, the rock will just keep sinking in some types of soil, you'll need more every year. He looked at drainage and recommended culverts in places to make sure the water doesn't build up under the road and soften it. He also pointed out that removing the topsoil and replacing it with rock would make the road lower in places and the snow will drift in and fill the low spots.
He brought in BIG equipment and removed the topsoil and built up a base of clay. He compacted the base, shaped the ditches to direct the water, placed some culverts under the road in places to remove the water so there wouldn't be a lot of water running all the way down the hills and replaced the topsoil. He brought in different sizes of rock and used a machine to roll it between layers. He subcontracted someone to plant grass when he was done. The cost was about $10 per running foot - in other words the road is 1,800 feet long, it cost about $18,000. I don't know how much rock it took, but it was a lot.
The result was a road that was higher than the surrounding ground, that doesn't drift and sometimes blows clear when it snows. It has not had even one pothole in more than ten years. We add rock as necessary about every other year. It handles heavy agricultural traffic with minimal maintenance.
He also talked me out of a pond. He surveyed the land and told me there would not be enough drainage to keep the water fresh. He said it would be stagnant and moss covered most years. He has a formula that looks at slopes, acreage, depth of the pond, surface area of the pond, evaporation rates and normal annual rainfall. I'd still like a pond, but I'm not going to argue with a guy that knows what he's talking about - especially when he tells me something that means less money for him!
In my opinion it pays to "Hire a Professional".
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