Retaining walls are typically used in non perfect scenarios. As if it was a perfect scenario - then a wall would not be needed. With that said, unless the wall is along a driveway, in the residential world - there's a slim chance one would be able to get a roll off container near it.
Been a Hardscaper since 1997 and with the exception of a RR tie wall in front if a townhouse I can't recall ever tearing out a RR tie wall where you could even squeeze a pick up truck near it. With our demo work we prolly permanently remove about 4 RR Tie walls annually.
It's always best to tread lightly with advice from the WWW.
An excavator is perfect for prying solid RR Tie apart. And if they won't come apart, an excavator is perfect for lifting a portion of the wall up so it can be cut with a chainsaw.
If someone is inquiring about the best method it's because they're new and learning. I'd hate to see someone rent an excavator because the were told on Lawnsite to do so, and then be stuck with having to move 4-5 tons of wet RR Ties from the back yard to the roll off container sitting in the driveway out front with an excavator. As such a scenario would make that excavator turn into a dinosaur.
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Last edited by DVS Hardscaper; 04-30-2013 at 11:56 AM.