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Equipment for grading.

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by jarabe1, Oct 7, 2007.

  1. jarabe1

    jarabe1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    Hello I've been hydroseeding for about a year and want to get into grading. I want to know if you guys have any suggestions about the best equipment to do this job, I am on a thight budget but I've been thinking about geting a ventrac with a power rake attachment. Any suggestions.

    Thanks in advance
  2. Dirt Digger2

    Dirt Digger2 LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Messages: 2,396

    you can get into raking and seeding but as far as the actual grading goes, on new homes anyway it is contracted out to the excavation company that digs the basement, backfills and rough/final grades. People on here will say that a skid loader is the miracle cure all for everything, but if you want to do good grading your going to need a small dozer, or CTL with a blade...and no matter what equipment you use, you will need A LOT of experience to do a good job of it.
  3. jarabe1

    jarabe1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    What is a ctl, sorry for the ignorance?
  4. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,319

    compact track loader

    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    It really depends on what kind of "grading" you want to do.

    I've done all types and operated about all that CAT has to offer from 963 track loaders, 621 pans, motor graders, track hoes, D5, D6, D8 dozers, 815 packers, etc. Did mainly commercial sites with quite a few residential pads and basements.

    If you're wanting to do everything including basements, you're gonna need a decent sized loader. To me the perfect machine is a CAT 953. With enough experience, you can get nearly a perfect final grade with a 953. You can do it with a decent sized track hoe and skid steer...but you're not gonna be efficient. With a 963 I could dig a basement for a 2000 sqft house and disperse dirt in the appropriate location in half a day. But, a 963 isn't the best for residential IMO.

    If you're wanting to do final grades and landscape prep...I would opt for a tracked skid. I like the tracked skids over tired because you'll get a better grade IMO with less "fancy grading", meaning the wavy grade.

    With a small dozer...you're limited to what you can do. With some experience you can get just as good a grade with a loader as with a dozer, plus you can dig and load.

    A dozer the size of a John Deere 555 is a good choice also. It's just gonna be slower.

    Good luck
  6. Dirt Digger2

    Dirt Digger2 LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Messages: 2,396

    a general rule for grading...the longer your undercarriage the faster you will get it done, and the better your final product will look because like firescooby said, you will have less wavy bumpy dirt
  7. PlatinumLandCon

    PlatinumLandCon LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,315

    You have to be really good with the equipment to do grading.

    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    EXACTLY, you put it in a way that I could not think of. Thanks

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