Jumping Jack on Heavy Clay Soil

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by mbella, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. mbella

    mbella LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,284

    We started our last paver install of the season on Tuesday. The soil was a heavy clay soil. We excavated and time came to tamp the subsoil. Normally, I automatically tamp the subsoil with a jumping jack if it is a heavy clay soil. However, on Tuesday I didn't have the jumping jack with me and for a minute, I thought, f*** it, we'll just use the plate tamper. Then a voice said, " you a**hole, what are you doing, go get the jumping jack." I went and got the jumping jack.

    The jumping jack tamped about two inches more than the plate tamper in that soil. I know that the ramming action of the jumping jack works better on a heavy clay soil, but I don't know a lot of guys in my area that use it. I believe that sometimes the jumping jack overtamps and is overkill, say in a sandy soil.

    My question is, what do you guys do?
     
  2. MowingisMaddness

    MowingisMaddness LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 260

    I was wondering why anyone would use a jumping jack... thanks...
     
  3. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Posts: 1,796

    Never seen anyone use a jumping jack for pavers but it probably would compact better than the plate vibrators do.
     
  4. mbella

    mbella LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,284


    We don't use the jumping jack on the pavers, only on the subsoil, if it is a heavy clay soil.
     
  5. MowingisMaddness

    MowingisMaddness LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 260

    As long as I am using my plate compactor, the correct base material and depth(at least 4 inches for patios and walks) I see no reason to use a jumping jack. I go with what the manufacture specs call for. Sure the jumping jack packs the subsoil more, but I think you are barking up the right tree by calling it overkill. However, if at the end of the day you sleep better knowing you used the jumping jack to get that extra pack, then by all means pack away! :)
     
  6. MowingisMaddness

    MowingisMaddness LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 260

    I think out4now meant paving jobs, not on the pavers themselves...
     
  7. jreiff

    jreiff LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 402

    We use a jumping jack for both pavers (subsoil and aslo for compacting base) and retaining walls. They work great for tamping between retaining wall screeds that we do and for tamping back fill. The good thing about them is that they seem to tamp better than plate compactors. But the down fall is that the jumper plate is not that big and seems to take longer to go over everything. Just my 2 cents.

    Anyone else have any comments???
     
  8. mbella

    mbella LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,284

    What type of tamper do you use on the subsoil if it has a heavy clay content?
     
  9. mbella

    mbella LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,284

    I don't think that the jumping jack necessarily gives you "extra pack". The jumping jack is just better with certail soils. With clay soils the ramming action of the jumping jack is better and with sandy soils, the plate tamper seems more effective.
     
  10. D Felix

    D Felix LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,898

    If you're on undisturbed soil, why does it matter? For example, when we poured footer last summer under our sunroom (fixing the foundation), I dug them out and we poured right on top of the soil. Didn't compact it at all. I know it's a slightly different application, but still the same principle....

    Mind you, I'm not saying you shouldn't compact the subsoil. I just don't see how that extra ramming force matters that much if the soil is undisturbed to begin with. Now, if it's wall backfill, I'd rather using the jack.

    I think you'd gain time and about the same effectiveness by plate compacting, and then laying down some geo-textile fabric before putting down your base. I also think *how* you compact it is just as important as what you compact it *with*. In other words, don't run around in continually smaller circles, start at one side and work back and forth across, then switch and run at a right angle to that in the same manner.......

    Just my penny's worth.:)


    Dan
     

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