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Old 08-03-2008, 06:09 AM
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Red State America
Posts: 18,701
Originally Posted by jrumbaug View Post
I'm new to residential irrigation and still trying to get a grasp as to "what is standard or typical". Today's puzzle is trying to estimate the cost of digging the trench that the pipe lays in.

I am writing a quote for my second job. My first trench was dug by hand by 2 men. When I look at the first job. It took 62 man hours to remove sod, dig and then re-fill, then replace sod on 240 feet of trench. That figures to about 1 man-hour per 4 feet. If I charge $20/hr per man, that's about 5$ per foot labor to charge for the service. Did I have slow employees or is this somewhere near reality?? Off the top of my head, I would have guessed $2/foot to be used to calculate how much to charge.

Jim Rumbaugh
Or secondly, maybe someone can tell me where to read about the prefered way to dig an irrigation trench? I may be working the hard way and wrong way.
The fact that you are analyzing these costs are great INMO. How else can you determine if an employee is a producer or a slacker. Not just in hand digging but gluing, coverup, etc, etc. It is manual labor to a great degree even with a trencher. I've seen guys that look really busy but get little done. Experienced a guy recently who was the busiest non-producer I have ever met.
Thanks in advance
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