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Kalco Metals Stone Screed

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by jreiff, Feb 22, 2007.

  1. jreiff

    jreiff LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 402

    Reading through the Hardscape Magizine and saw an as for this tool.

    Any one have one or seen it? How do you think it would work? Alittle on the spendy side though...

  2. ChampionLS

    ChampionLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,066

    Heres my opinion....

    I thought about something like that years ago when I used to level each block at a time. Logically, it's a good idea. The problem is if you level one block and then screed off that for the next one, and then the next one and so on.. eventually you WILL be at different elevations, even though the blocks will be level. There is no way to guarantee perfectly level and same height without using a level string line or laser to set the grade. I'ts just like using a table saw to cut a piece of wood. You have a master.. cut one piece.. then cut one from that, and another.. eventually the last piece is bigger than the master. It might be good for a few blocks, but the time spent scraping an already compacted base seems like a waste of time. When I do a wall or steps, I lay my screed rails at least 6" to 1' wider on each side of the proposed block area. I level my rails using a laser...only takes seconds to do. Then spread my leveling base material (screenings for a wall,or steps only) A quick zip zip screed with a landscape grading rake up-side-down works fast, and it's wide. and BOOM! a nice level flat pad for my wall or steps. best part is, if I have to re-locate or move a block.. the whole area is level. Not just the space within the reach of the tool.

    Heres a photo for ya.

  3. McKeeLand

    McKeeLand LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 681

    I think it has it uses though. Many times on garden walls with radius i don't mess with screed rails and just hand level the bocks with a trowel. i think this would work well for that. i wouldn't pay $150 for it though. i would just modify one of my 2' levels and some aluminium plate. i always use the laser level to check every so many blocks. this would be good to get the leveling material close and then set it with the hammer.
  4. jreiff

    jreiff LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 402

    Champion- we use the same method tha tyou use for retaining wall base. We set stakes with the laser to the height we want, lay our screed rails in our stakes and then fill with base material, compact and then screed off. By doing this we have a perfectly level base. Basically just set the block down, check with the level and on to the next block. Usually only a couple taps with the dead blow and you are good. Does take alittle longer setting all the stakes and rails and screeding, but pays off when you have a nice base to lay block on. Lot less cussing when you have to hand level in every block.

    Just saw the screed tool in the magizine, wondered if anyone had one. Looks like they might be pretty able to make one. Like McKeeLand said, use a old 2' level and a screed plate and you have one.
  5. jreiff

    jreiff LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 402

    ChampionLS- you have any finished pictures of the stairs???
  6. ChampionLS

    ChampionLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,066

    Sure do. I believe it's back in 1996 - One of my first step jobs. This is using Versa-Lok. I haven't reviewed these pictures in years, but now I see we didn't stager the corner blocks or treads. I also used a concrete toe, but today I use much less concrete and install a piece of 3/8" rebar along the entire lineal edge. Have had no problems with growing grass. Everything was glued using SRW and after these photos, there are columns and a nice overhang that has been built on top of the porch. This is also the first job where we installed 6x6 lights. We earned so much popularity from it, that I personally set out to design a new lighting system (Evening Star). This job is still intact and is only about a mile from me. Versa-Lok makes a nice block but I've switched over to EP-Henry all the way.





  7. ChampionLS

    ChampionLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,066

    Last few Photos...



    STONE SCAPES LawnSite Member
    Posts: 145

    Hey champ looks very nice lights nice touch. Just wondering why you prefer to cement instead of useing a plastic or aluminum edge restraint.
  9. STL Ponds and Waterfalls

    STL Ponds and Waterfalls LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,177

    Are those lights made to look like pavers? I've never seen anything like that.
  10. leaflandscape

    leaflandscape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    Nice curves on that walkway, man. I swear nobody takes the time to do a nice curve anymore, just toss it down and get you check. Looks really good.

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