Register free!

Reply
 
Thread Tools   Display Modes
  #1  
Old 08-15-2012, 07:12 PM
dieselfuel dieselfuel is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 97
A few questions: Brick edging/mortar set

Hi guys -
I'm new here with a few questions. First off, to let you know my background: i have a degree in Horticulture and spent the past 5 years working for one of the largest landscape architecture firms in the midwest doing ultra high end residential and a lot of green roof work. I finally quit working for them and have been doing landscape maintenance for someone else and am slowly starting up my own design/build firm.

Questions:
I worked on a lot of budgeting but always had reference unit pricing numbers when we designed a project. Now that I am bidding/quoting, and just starting to do it, I'm obviously finding it difficult. I can take a pretty good estimate at how long a task will take, but I am more of a "by the numbers" type of guy. Is there a good reference book or site stating that it will take x amount of time to do specific jobs? In college we had a sheet that a company had put out where it takes you so long to move a wheelbarrow - but of course it was trashed when I was done with school.

example, how long does it take to prep and install 10' of brick edging, mortar set, simple site access, 2 person crew, etc.

What do you guys charge for brick edging per lf? or a standard unilock retaining wall per ff?

Appreciate any help to a new business owner.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:29 PM
alldayrj's Avatar
alldayrj alldayrj is offline
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Long island, NY
Posts: 3,133
Production rates are super useful as is unit pricing but its not a fan favorite method on here. Most say to base it on personal historic info like time + materials but its hard to do that when you're just starting out. What state are you in?
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:50 PM
White Gardens's Avatar
White Gardens White Gardens is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bloomington IL
Posts: 6,779
Two people should be able to do 10ft in about 1 hour tops.

We did 130' earlier this year. Two guys mixing mortar in wheelbarrows and me laying the bricks in about 2.5 hours. That comes out to 7.5 man hours per 130' I guess, but doesn't include prep. So I would say about 10 man hours total when using a bed edger to make the trench. Do the trench by hand and it would go about 15-20 man hours for 130'.

I also figure about 1, 80lb bag of type S mortar goes about 8' with 2.5-3 inches of mortar underneath the brick and a lip on the front and back.

All in all, I try to charge 8-10 bucks a foot for brick edging. Some say it's high, but I go as far as to a lot of extra time to lay out a string line for the edging to make sure I don't get any dips and humps in my brick line. Drives me nuts when I see that.

And bear in mind. If the grade is good, a bed edger with a paddle/brick bit does a great job in getting your trench set. you still might have to tweak a few areas with a shovel though.

...
__________________
White Gardens On Facebook.......WG Thread......Greencare For Troops......... mywhitegardens.com(under construction)

2005- Completion of University of Illinois Master Gardner's Program.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:54 PM
alldayrj's Avatar
alldayrj alldayrj is offline
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Long island, NY
Posts: 3,133
You just sit the brick in 3" of mortar? Usually do a couple inches of Concrete depending on application and keep the mix tight so in an hour i can mortar the brick down right to it
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 08-15-2012, 11:01 PM
White Gardens's Avatar
White Gardens White Gardens is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bloomington IL
Posts: 6,779
Quote:
Originally Posted by alldayrj View Post
You just sit the brick in 3" of mortar? Usually do a couple inches of Concrete depending on application and keep the mix tight so in an hour i can mortar the brick down right to it
Posted via Mobile Device
I just use type S mortar. It has more Portland cement in for higher strength over standard type M. I wouldn't venture to you type N though, you loose the stick factor with a type N and run the chance of your bricks coming loose.

Setting just in the Mortar is standard practice, at least around here.

In 7 years, I haven't had a failure as of yet.


....
__________________
White Gardens On Facebook.......WG Thread......Greencare For Troops......... mywhitegardens.com(under construction)

2005- Completion of University of Illinois Master Gardner's Program.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:14 AM
dieselfuel dieselfuel is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 97
I'm in Illinois. 8-10/ ft seems pretty close to what I'm getting when estimating how long it will take x hourly rate. Are you guys cutting each brick for tight joints along curves or just laying them?

Last time I did brick edging 1 80 lb bag of mortar got me about 10'. We only did a lip on the back though.

The job I have coming up has that ugly concrete curb edging that the client is ripping out himself, so at least I don't have to dig the entire trench.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 08-16-2012, 12:39 PM
White Gardens's Avatar
White Gardens White Gardens is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bloomington IL
Posts: 6,779
Quote:
Originally Posted by dieselfuel View Post
I'm in Illinois. 8-10/ ft seems pretty close to what I'm getting when estimating how long it will take x hourly rate. Are you guys cutting each brick for tight joints along curves or just laying them?

Last time I did brick edging 1 80 lb bag of mortar got me about 10'. We only did a lip on the back though.
No cutting. Most of my curves are long sweeps so the gaps are minimal at best. That and I don't like how you will got 20 feet of un-cut bricks and then all the sudden have multiple cut bricks.

Now, if the curve was super tight, I would cut them. I've made the mistake of not cutting them on sharp bends on tight landscape installs, and even though the client liked it, I didn't like the extra wide gaps.

I figure 6-8 feet per bag. With the lip on both sides I feel it helps to entomb the brick better for a stronger result. That and I'd rater be deeper with the mortar rather than shallow, so That's where the 8' number comes in. If I get 10', then I feel I didn't use enough mortar for strength.

.....
__________________
White Gardens On Facebook.......WG Thread......Greencare For Troops......... mywhitegardens.com(under construction)

2005- Completion of University of Illinois Master Gardner's Program.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 08-16-2012, 12:54 PM
dieselfuel dieselfuel is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 97
Alright thanks for the info.
I think I'm going to quote $8/lf for this job and then just do a time study.

The client wants to rip out the old concrete curbing himself so there should be a decent trench already without strenuous prep work.

I was quoted about $20/ face foot of material alone for a retaining wall. This wall is only 15' long and will just need to be 1' tall plus coping. $600 seems like too much? Or is that correct. Always had trouble quoting retaining walls.

Thanks again.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 08-16-2012, 01:18 PM
White Gardens's Avatar
White Gardens White Gardens is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bloomington IL
Posts: 6,779
Quote:
Originally Posted by dieselfuel View Post
Alright thanks for the info.
I think I'm going to quote $8/lf for this job and then just do a time study.

The client wants to rip out the old concrete curbing himself so there should be a decent trench already without strenuous prep work.

I was quoted about $20/ face foot of material alone for a retaining wall. This wall is only 15' long and will just need to be 1' tall plus coping. $600 seems like too much? Or is that correct. Always had trouble quoting retaining walls.

Thanks again.
To do a wall correctly takes lots of time and effort to set the base, compact it, backfill correctly with washed stone and fabric, etc... If anything. I'd be at + -1000.

Smaller walls to me cost more than a taller wall as most of the work is in the base and backfill. So adding a couple more courses isn't going to exponentially raise the price. To me, going by square footage on a short wall is not the way to bid it.

......
__________________
White Gardens On Facebook.......WG Thread......Greencare For Troops......... mywhitegardens.com(under construction)

2005- Completion of University of Illinois Master Gardner's Program.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 08-16-2012, 11:17 PM
alldayrj's Avatar
alldayrj alldayrj is offline
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Long island, NY
Posts: 3,133
i go $12/foot for borders if its long or mostly $15/foot. thats on concrete, mortared down, and I ALWAYS cut curves. cant stand gaps and I dont like mortaring the joints if all the others are laid dry. retaining walls are tricky since the block is only sold by the full pallet here so regardless of the size of the wall, if its under a pallet its the cost of the pallet plus other materials and labor. I also charge for the cap per foot. when it gets to about 150 FF I can charge by the FF, otherwise time and materials ( which in reality can just be broken into a higher FF price)
__________________
RJ All Day
Masonry and Landscapes
www.rjfalcone.com
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump






Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:58 AM.

Page generated in 0.07946 seconds with 7 queries