Plastic railroad ties

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by Lawn-Scape, Dec 12, 2005.

  1. Lawn-Scape

    Lawn-Scape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 20

    Has anyone had any experience with plastic railroad ties for hardscape borders or retaining walls? I'm pricing a job where the homeowner wants to use ties on each side of a gravel drive to define the driveway. At this time he is opposed to concrete, blacktop, or other hardscape choices since the driveway itself aids in water drainage.

    Plastic railroad ties are made from re-cycled materials and are available in several colors. They are somewhat expensive, but uniform in width so they would match up very well. I've priced them undelivered from about $50 to $100 for standard eight footers. They can be drilled and spiked/rebar nailed just like wood. They do not rot either.

    Here are some sites to check out:

    I'd be interested in what you think about these?
  2. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    if he wants something that won't rot, try to sell him on either concrete borders or perhaps Trex?

    $100 a tie is crazy.

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    They are using concrete ties around here.
  4. Lawn-Scape

    Lawn-Scape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 20

    I agree, $100 a tie is very high. I'm not familar with trex?
  5. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    Trex makes synthetic decking materials out of recylced plastic. They come in a assortment of colors and are available in 1x1, 2x4, 2x6,4x4, 1x4,1x6 sizes etc.
  6. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    I have noticed a lot of warping with the plastic timbers in retaining walls. dont know the brand or exact composition of the materials used. also dont know if its improper installation or characteristics of the materials used. Just an observation.
  7. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,496

    Kind of makes you wonder if there is some "give" in the materials and they take a "bend but don't break" attitude when under pressure.
  8. SCL

    SCL LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 543

    Have extensive experience with a product called Expotential timbers. 6X6X8' weighs around 140 lbs. per. Cost is $30 a tie delivered, gotta drill with a hammer drill and mason bit, cut with a fiber concrete blade on a partner saw. Use anywhere you want that tie look! Pinned with 1/2" rebar. Will bend if unsupported, but won't in a wall.

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