As i said in a previous post that we did a 315 sq ft patio a few weeks back that took 25 man hours. that was hand digging me and one other guy, took us 3 hours to hand dig and move it all to street by wheel barrow (6 man hours). then another hour to clean up and dump the stuff (1.5 man hour). laborer leveled and compacted base before gravel installation (1 man hour). bring the gravel to back yard and spread and compact it. (4 man hours). Bring brick to back yard and install, (5 man hours). Cut the borders. (1.5 man hour). Install poly joint sand (1 man hour) grade around patio and lay new sod approx 150 sq ft. (3 man hours) 23 man hours. tell if i am wrong. this is what it took to do the job 315 sq ft, add a couple hours for incidentals. there you have it 25 man hours for a 300 sq ft patio. if you cannot do it in that time frame you are doing something wrong. The place where we dug out was not hard to dig out, some areas around here are clay and some are sand, this was topsoil with a bit of sand.