making pavers slope?

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by back_lash, May 16, 2008.

  1. back_lash

    back_lash LawnSite Member
    Posts: 23

    I had a question regarding how everyone achieves the 1/8 inch slope per foot slope when installing pavers? How do you lay the gravel so that it achieves the proper slope? I can't for the life of me figure it out. I can imagine it has something to do with setting up a few stakes over the installation area, and running a string line, but I dont get how you make the string line properly slope so you know how high to add the gravel. I am trying to install just a square patio in my backyard.

  2. vntgrcr

    vntgrcr LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 282

    you have to have a way to either measure elevations from high end of square to the low end i.e. a laser level or just get a string level and set it on your string so that you get about an 1/8 of the bubble over the line so the slope is going the right way. This is very simple and you will figure it out with $5 worth of tools, string and level.
  3. steve5966

    steve5966 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 210

    First figure your drop, length in inches times .02 for 2%. Set your stringline level and then lower one end that same amount. Easy enough?
  4. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,210

    We used to use a string line and line level with the 1/4, 1/4, 1/2" slope indicators. It worked pretty well. We then went to a transit and marked out x amount and feet and calculated what the measurement should read. That worked well.

    We have since upgraded to a self leveling dual grade laser level. We haven't used it yet but from what I here its pretty darn simple.
  5. neversatisfiedj

    neversatisfiedj LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    To calculate slope just take a measurement in feet. Example Your patio is 20 feet in length. Convert to feet to inches. 20x12=240 inches. Now calculate a 2% slope . 240x.02=4.8 inches. So your grade marker at the lowest point 20 feet out on the patio should be 4.8" lower than the starting elevation to give your patio a 2% slope for drainage.
  6. jbailey52

    jbailey52 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,082

    2% is pretty high for a paving slope, For streets and paved areas if I remember my college correctly, 1% is sufficient, and 2% for grassed areas
  7. ZX12R

    ZX12R LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 785

    I tend to agree.I usually shoot for a 1% grade.
  8. back_lash

    back_lash LawnSite Member
    Posts: 23

    Okay I think I get it now. So you set the 2 stakes, one closest to the house (the high point) and one at the end of the patio. Then you figure out how much your drop of is by multiplying the length of the patio by either 1% or 2%, and then move the string line at the end down by that much.

    Do you guys set out several stakes over the entire project? So if I am building just a square patio, I could set up 2 stakes (one near house, and one at the end of patio) at different intervals along the entire project?

    So what I would do is excavate from the string line, down 9 inches (6 inch gravel + 1 inch sand + 2 3/8 inch paver) and take measurements with a measuring tape along the entire string line so that I get 9 inches down to the ground once I've excavated? And then once I add the gravel, and take the measurement from string line down to the ground I should have a measurement of 3 inches along the entire string line (for sand +paver)Hopefully I have that right
  9. zedosix

    zedosix LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,635

    9" is a little on the shallow side, especially if you are in ottawa, it is mostly clay and you should aim for 12" depth, with geo textile.

    SOUTHERNGREENSCAPES LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 763

    10 foot pipe with a 6 foot level on top that has multiple lines on it. when you are touching the second line you are 1" on 10' witch is plenty enough for a patio.

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