Cleaning and replacing 1-3in River Rock bed

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by jrodgers, Dec 19, 2018.

  1. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    Hello all
    I am in the process of cleaning out the bed around my pool that is approx 3-4 ton of existing River Rock. As I'm sure some know the rocks, over time, have become a mixture of dirt and stone that weeds love. I have done smaller jobs for customers but this is quite a task. All the rocks were removed on one side of the pool (bigger area probably 70% of the material) and new fabric was installed. The other side the rocks were removed but no fabric yet. My goal is to clean all the dirt and return the clean rocks to the bed. After trying to come up with some kind of system I settled for this:
    I got an old trailer gate, set it on some cinder blocks and would take some stones put it on the gate and worked them around let the dirt fall through to the ground. Then I take my powerwasher and wash the remaining stones. After shovel stone back into wheel barrow and back to the bed with the fabric already installed. The first couple wheel barrow full I looked at how slow it was going and got that sinking feeling of "s#*t this going to take forever". After some fine tuning things rolled along a little better but still time consuming. Another thing I did was to move the "gate setup" to the other bed where there was no fabric so I could just let the dirt fall in that bed and cover it up with the fabric.

    Sooooo.... has anyone done a similar job and have a better system to remove the rocks clean them and get them back to the cleaned out bed? I need on of those rock tumbler thing from the show Gold Rush:laugh:. Oh also what is started to do was pull the stone off the pile and use the back pack blower to blow the dirt out more to make it easier...worked a little better but....gonna grab a pic. Also any ideas from the start of this project as in "would have done this first" etc are welcomed.:)
  2. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg

    Nothing like a workable pile of dirt the day before and a dirt iceberg in the morning.
    hort101 likes this.
  3. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    Another thing. Has anyone done something to prevent this in the future. Think I just have to blow the bed out more often maybe. This is about 12yrs after the stones were installed.
    TPendagast likes this.
  4. LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,356

    Oh boy !
    Lots of work there. There is no easy way to do that.
    Throw out the rock and install pavers as border. Lot easier to keep clean.
    Mark Stark likes this.
  5. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    Yes that would be easier but what you don't see is all the paver work everywhere else. I like the mix of stone and pavers that I have as sometimes I think too many paver/walls are a bit much. But yes it's a ton of work andddd I'm not making any money on the job...quite the contrary.:dizzy:
    Mark Stark and like this.
  6. LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,356

    Not sure if it would help or hurt.
    But would a cement mixer help?
    Fill with rock and water and let it tumble. Keep pouring in water until mud is gone?
  7. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    That's interesting. My friend is in construction and has one. Might need to call him. Thanks
  8. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    I also contemplated on just getting rid of the old stone and installing new but then I'd be hauling old stone out and hauling in and installing new stone.
  9. brichter14

    brichter14 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,027

    Umm, rent a dingo. Problem solved!

    Work smart not hard, thats my motto
  10. LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,356

    Dingo won't clean the rock.

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