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paver base compaction equipment

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by steveair, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073


    I've been looking to buy another compactor this season, and trying to figure out what it is that I need and also, what I can afford.

    According to some literature, I'm hearing that a unit should have a minimum compaction force of about 9000 lbf. In this range, the plates are all reversible.

    My problem is I don't think I can swing the 9-11k for a unit like this.

    Was wondering what others use for equip? Around here, the 'norm' is you typical plate with a force of around 3000 lbf. I would really like to make a step in the right direction and invest in more serious equip this year as I want the best installation I can have.

    How many guys out there actually have invested in larger compactors, or should I say, the specified compactors, for there business.

    It's a interesting subject to me because no one in my area really uses anything bigger than a 3000 lbf.

    Would I be nuts to think I need a compactor in the 9000 lbf range?

    Also, what is a good source for used units. New are just too expensive, and I would like to find a decent used unit at a reasonable price. Most rental centers in my area don't rent many larger units, so I am thinking of calling a company like United rentals or the such. Anybody have any experience in this?

  2. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    One quick thing.

    Ideally, my compaction setup would be this.

    A 9000 lbf or better for base compaction.

    A 5000 lbf for paver compaction.

    A smaller plate (17 inch) or jumping jack for those hard to reach areas.

    Any comments on this 'dream list'?

  3. General Grounds

    General Grounds LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 902

    :blob3: steve, we use the 5000lb, unit for pavers, works real well, i purchased my stow w/ a 5hp honda for $1,300, it also has a water tank on it and is reversible. Tony
  4. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Posts: 1,625

    Steve look for a plate that mounts to your Dingo they make one thats 43" wide 5500 lbs http://coneqtecuniversal.com/compaction.html

    I'm waiting for them to make one in the 60 to 68" range, right now they are 73" which is just a bit too big. Our rollers for our skid steers are 59" which is just a bit narrow.

    One worry I would have is working near house foundations with the heavier units you can break a wall! (wall concrete is rated at 5000 psi after 30 days) a 9000 lb unit can damage it.
  5. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073


    thank you for the dingo link! I've been searching everywhere for one.

    I think I will look into that option first. Just scared to see the price. A lot of times, the attachments cost almost as much as buying a seperate stand alone machine.

    I wouldn't have thought about house problems. I really don't have any experience with the bigger plates, so its all new to me.

    I was thinking that a 5000lbf would be a decent all around machine. If the job was very large, I guess it would be more practical to just rent a large compator as needed. I just want something more substantial than the 3000lbf I currently have.

    By the way, what do people find works best for the actual paver comaction. I know 5000lbf is ideal, but I've always used a 3000lbf?

  6. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Posts: 1,625

    Steve my main concern is speed, I want a unit to to do an area fast and level, larger units do this smaller ones follow the grade more. Think of it this way, do you get a flatter surface with a small rake or a larger rake. Plate tampers work the same way. smaller imperfections are leveled out by using larger surface area speeding up the grading prossess.

    Cost, I don't know about the 43" units but the 73" units run $8K and rollers used run about $4K.
  7. PAPS

    PAPS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 404

    just a quick question... i have a brand new Weber VB50 and its about 3000 lb compaction....
    1. Is that not compaction for patios and walks??? i always thought it was... (hope so)

    2. True or False : When doing a driveway... this Weber VB50 (3000 lb) will NOT be good enough to compact the base right...??? i would need a roller or something steve mentioned... like 9000 lb right???
  8. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    I could be wrong, but this is what I've investigated on comacting equipment.

    If you have a smaller plate, it is ok to use for heavier duty jobs, however it becomes a time factor.

    In other words, to get the same effect out of a 3000lbf machine compared to a 9000lbf machine, you need to do many more passes and also need to seperate those passes into many more 'lifts' or layers, ie. 3 inch.

    This is where I'm looking for a bigger machine. Technically, in order to get the required compaction, I have to run a 3000lbf machine over a walkway like 6 times per 3 inch layer. For walks, I can live with this, but when you get to large patios/drives, the time you need to be 'technically' correct compacting becomes astronomical......in other words, for a drive with a 12" base, you would have to do 4 layers at 3 inches 6-8 times each.....thats a lot of time if you only have a 24" wide plate and even a 1000 sq ft. area.

    This is only my understanding of it, so I may be completely wrong, but all in all, a bigger machine will easily speed up the compaction process along with assuring the proper level of compaction.

  9. diginahole

    diginahole LawnSite Member
    Posts: 249

    ICPI recommends minimum 5000 lb for residential work. Next tamper I buy will be 5000 we currently run 3600.
  10. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Posts: 1,625

    Check for good used rollers at the auctions:) We have a 9 ton unit we bought for $6K

    A roller is ok for base but very hard on the pavers unless it has a rubber covered drum, then it's useless for base. The compaction plates will do it all. As soon as I find some one making a 60" - 68" plate for a skid steer they will have my money!

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