Really nice guy, but time to cut ties

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by DVS Hardscaper, Aug 9, 2012.

  1. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,583

    Oh, how's that?
    Posted via Mobile Device
  2. LTL

    LTL LawnSite Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 98

    The soil should have already been delivered and on the ground many hours before the guys were ready for it. 1 hour late by the truck driver should not have mattered.
    I can, however, understand the frustration of truck drivers. I deal with them frequently. I order materials not when I need them but before I need them.
  3. rawtoxic

    rawtoxic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 106

    Here is my rules to avoid this from happening. Every supplier no matter how good will be late at sometime. They have road side truck scales, things go wrong for truckers just like you and me, etc. I have found that I do two things that really help.

    1) Order materials a few hours before I think we will need them
    2) Try and get the first delivery of the day so less can go wrong
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    Good advice... Same applies to Dr visits, air travel and so forth.
  5. zedosix

    zedosix LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,665

    We order large quantities of granular the day before, its just good planning
  6. jmacd

    jmacd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 230

    I can kill an hour at the gas station by the time I use the bathroom, get coffee, and fill up.
  7. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,583

    Well buddy, thanks for the feedback.

    But what cloud do you live on? LOL Your scenario would be great if we lived in a perfect world. I do not feel that you have much experience in excavating / grading.

    However, before you can spread top soil, you must grade. You must carve the land to ensure proper water run off etc. after the grading is complete, which for what we do we're able to accomplish in one day. Usually moving 150 to 200 cubic yards of fill, with a skid steer from the driveway to the back. And then we spread top soil. It's impossible to stage 20 to 40 cubic yards of top soil onsite when you have back to back trucks of fill rolling in every 30 min. on a 1/4 acre property. We do about 30 to 40 of these jobs a year, an are embarking on our 4th yr with this division.

    Grading is usually completed around 1700 or 1800 hrs. Top soil delivery is always scheduled for first thing the following morning.

    If you knew what we do and saw how fast we do it - you would be impressed. We have a routine downpat. It's pretty cool.

    So making negative comments about people's practices is nothing more than an individual with a negative mind :)

    If a supplier can't do as they say - then they should communicate. Either by calling and saying they will be late,
    Or simply by not agreeing to the times requested.

    You can flip the coin over all you want, but an agreement is an agreement. If you can't fulfill - then don't agree to it.

    Even a hardscape job for example. There is usually no room to stage top soil for a day without disturbing more turf.
    Posted via Mobile Device
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2012
  8. TriCountyLawn

    TriCountyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,517

    And if there was room to stage who would want to handle the material more than once.

    I fight this kinda thing but its not like I have dropped anywhere close to the coin other contractors have so I just do my best to be the first delivery of the day. But I have recently been put out by others poor planning and had a rental machine sitting waiting for the delivery and counting down the time in which I have the machine for that day. Pretty frustrating stuff.
  9. GreenI.A.

    GreenI.A. LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,131

    I was going to respond with something very similar. Not all of us live in Oklahoma, some of us have to deal with tight properties. Evan worse than the description you gave, try a house in the city where there is no driveway or front lawn to stage materials. Instead you have to pay for two police details for the day while the delivery trucks have to double park and you must dump directly into the skidsteer bucket, dingo, concrete buggys, what ever you can get onsite to speed the process of handling the material. Not only are you paying for the detail but you are also paying your wholesaler more because their trucks need to be onsite for 30-45 minutes a piece.

    Even worse, we did a design and proposal for a customer this spring on a busy narrow 1 way street. Same as above, no front yard or driveway for staging. The City wouldn't give us permits to block parking spaces. Tri-axles would not be able to make it down the street without blacking the spaces, it is tight enough getting a f350 mason dump through the street. Instead they were going to require us to park all the vehicles down the street about 700ft away. We would have to have all materials loaded/dumped at the second site, then we would have to move the materials the 700ft up and down the street by skidsteer. The city was also going to require us to have a 4 officer detail because of the equipment being run on the street. We didn't get that contract, a lowballer came in and gave a ridiculous price. Four hours into the first day of the job they got shut down by the city, they had blocked of the street to traffic and didn't know you need permits to do so. The job site still hasn't been touched after 4 months.
  10. jmacd

    jmacd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 230

    It is an interesting topic and a fun thread to read. Construction work of any kind is not easy or anybody would do it.

    The only way I found to be in control of my time and profit is to do as much of the work as possible. I purchased a 1989 Mack dump truck back 10 years ago and a now have a second 2001 Mack dump. Although they are not real profit making machines they are mandatory in any kind of material moving.

    Look at any companies that move any amount of material on daily basis and they have a dump truck. When you export material out what do you do? Hire a dump truck out to sit and be loaded?

    Even the small landscapers, masons, or hardscapers here have a small dump truck. I understand the reluctance to spend the money but from what I have read DVS looks to be doing some volume and maybe it's time for him to buy a dump truck.

    My business is not hardscaping so maybe I am living on a cloud. What would be your average quantity of material (yards) that need to be imported and exported in a week?

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