Finish Grading Anyone?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by mklawnman, Mar 21, 2004.

  1. mklawnman

    mklawnman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 634

    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
     
  2. sidebuz

    sidebuz LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    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).
     
  3. mklawnman

    mklawnman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 634

    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
     
  4. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Posts: 1,578

    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.
     
  5. NEPSJay

    NEPSJay LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 492

    Rent a dozer. You dont need to be a rocket scientist to run one.
     
  6. mklawnman

    mklawnman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 634

    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
     
  7. sidebuz

    sidebuz LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    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.
     
  8. lars

    lars LawnSite Member
    Posts: 117

    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.
     
  9. Randy Scott

    Randy Scott LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,915

    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
     
  10. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Posts: 1,578

    Seems to go in one ear and out the other. ..."sigh"
     

Share This Page