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West Kentucky Sand Stone Question.

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by KYBASSER, Jul 4, 2008.


    KYBASSER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    I recently gained access to some old farm lands that has numerous creek beds with exposed sandstone on the property. The rock in these creek beds is consistent in thickness with the length and width being some what semi consistent. There are also several old sand stone retaining walls where much larger rock appears to have been cut to a uniform size prior to their construction. Some of these walls are expansive and contain tens of thousands of pieces of rock and must have taken quite a long time to build.
    I have found one rock that is about six foot long and its shape perfectly matches the outline of the state of Kentucky.
    A neighbors daughter who worked for a landscape design company in college tells me this type of sand stone would be very well suited for landscaping, pavers and wall building. She commented that the Kentucky shaped rock would go for top dollar to the right person. One of our local building contractors told me a lot more rock is now being used in housing construction than what it was thirty years ago.
    I am considering the possibility of collecting and categorizing this rock in an effort to make it available to landscapers and stone masons. I have also given thought to building a cutter heavy enough to split the larger sand stone into uniform pieces.

    Does anyone have any advice as to the proper place to start?

    I have checked with one landscape material supply yard and they work strictly on a consignment basis. Is sales by consignment a common thing when dealing with such supply yards? What would be the pros versus the cons of dealing strictly by consignment?
  2. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 616

    I toyed with the idea of cutting circular stair tread and coping radiuses for pools etc. out of natural stone for landscapers and selling the service through landscape supply yards or directly. The waterjet to do this was big $$.

    I wouldn't put anything on consignment though a supply yard. Especially if your quantites are limited. Do you have a pic of this stone? I'd try flogging the lot to a hardscaper or a mason.

    KYBASSER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    The property has several creekbed areas containing large quantities of sand stone. I mean we arent talking about pickup loads of sand stone but rather what looks like would be rail cars full of stone.
    The largest retainer walls on this property were built with cut sand stone and are eight foot tall. All together these walls are approximately four hundred plus yards long. Im not sure why anyone would want to cut and stack that much stone but im sure it took several years if not decades to do it.
    There are other smaller walls that are not made of un-cut sand stone.

    We would like to find a market for the stone and possibly start cutting it.

    Since water jet cutter would probably cost more than what we could afford we would probably have to cut it in a somewhat similar manner as it would have been done in the eighteen hundreds. Perhaps we could take it a step farther and build a hydraulic powered shear with a blade.
  4. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 616

    Thats an amazing find. Could you not market the product direct to the end user locally and possibly distribute through some dealers further away. This way you mix it up a bit and could sustain the pains associated with consignments and 30 day terms? Do you have any pics of the stone? You may want to get some advice from a few stone cutting suppliers as to which direcion you should be taking for the cutting and splitting. We recenty got into some bedrock on a pool job, and figured okay-get the breaker here and start chipping. Breaker did nothing, as it was white granite. Now we have to drill (like swiss cheese) the area, and use an air powered splitter to snap the rock, then use the excavator to remove. Huge PIA, but these guys know everything and anything about rock and are a great resource.

    KYBASSER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Dont have any pics right now but im making progress.

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