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OT: Driveway Question

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  • OT: Driveway Question

    In Iowa, I live in a trailer court. It recently was sold to new owners and they are difficult, to say the least. Last summer they replaced the water lines in the park and installed meters for each lot. The new line was run along both sides of the street and a trench about 4-5 feet wide had to be dug. Of course, all the soil was piled up alongside the trench for another 5 feet or so. Now, with the trench filled in, the gravel that was there is all mixed up and a lot of the dirt that came out of the trench is still on top of the original soil alongside it. Nothing was done to compact the soil. So there is a 10 - 12 foot strip along side the street that is just pure mush whenever it rains or the snow melts. The contractor did nothing to help and the landlord refuses to do anything about it, claiming it is the tennants' responsibility. And the street is just too narrow to park on it.

    My question is, does anyone have any suggestions for something I could use to firm up this area to allow foot and auto traffic without sinking in? I know gravel, asphalt, or pavement is the ultimate answer, but all are more expensive than I want to do. Basically I am looking for free or real cheap. After all, it is their property, not mine and I will not get a single penny back from anything I do here. I plan to be here another year or two and moving to another park would also be expensive as I have two trailers. I would probably need new tires for one of them and getting set up in a new location could cost $1000 or more.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. TIA.
    Paul A.
    SE Texas

    Make it fit.
    You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

  • #2
    I'd use a lawyer.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by dp
      I'd use a lawyer.
      As large as the hole is it would probably take more than one lawer to fill .

      Steve

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      • #4
        Seriously, If the law can't help try using lime to stiffen up the mud.

        Steve

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        • #5
          Yep, rake in a couple of bags of cement. Not redi-mix but pure cement. Level it real nice. It won't look any different but it will be unusually stiff. Kind of like viagra for dirt.
          Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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          • #6
            As Evan says, mix in dry cement powder, no need to add water. I have endless problems with moles burrowing under block paths and the paths sinking. Last one I layed, I mixed about 1:15 cement powder with the sand. The mixture absorbs moisture over the next few weeks or so, and hardens. Completely mole-proof...

            Ian
            All of the gear, no idea...

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            • #7
              So if you "Damage" yourself/vehicle accessing your trailer the "Landlord" has no insurance liability?? And where were the residents representitives when the lot changed ownership or do you park for free??

              Regards Ian.
              You might not like what I say,but that doesn't mean I'm wrong.

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              • #8
                They must have went nuts with the gravel filler. Normally, over time, the dirt would all sink back into the hole. I recently had a hole dug for a radio tower. I leveled it off around the area and 2 months later I had nearly a 1 foot hole to fill in as the dirt had sunk more then I thought it would.
                - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
                Thank you to our families of soldiers, many of whom have given so much more then the rest of us for the Freedom we enjoy.

                It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.

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                • #9
                  When I was still in the grading business we would use several tons of rock....we called it "surge" here...crusher stone about the sive of a small cantaloupe on to 3 or 4 inches...this worked good on real mushy areas....if it wasnt that bad and need road type traffic we used "4's"...which is still crusher stone,but just about the size of a large egg.....spread a this layer and "walk" it in with your vehicle....over time it'll still settle...but its a firm enough base to take weight...you can refill and smooth over and it'll stay there......portland cement works,but if its a very large area and very soft from moisture...you'll probably need half a pallet of the stuff and some way to plow it in to stabilize....(the mud down low in the trench gets no air,so it takes FOREVER to dry out,so theres no base unless you plow it in..)...good luck

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                  • #10
                    First contact the county building department or health department. One or the other has oversight for potable water lines. Verify they had a permit and that it passed inspection. Could be different there, but around here they'd never pass it without proper backfill and compaction. If it's intended as off-street parking, the surface has to be suitable. Even if it isn't, has to be solid ground so you don't get sinkholes in the spring.

                    If that doesn't help, I'd probably pay a visit to the office on crutches when I payed the rent and casually mention that I'd probably never have to pay rent again. Tell them not to fix the problem since you discovered that negligence lawsuits are a lot of fun to file and you needed a new hobby anyway.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      after trying what bob just said, i'd visit the "new" place your going to move to, talk to the owners and see if they can help with your move. . .

                      maybe help with the $$$$ for you and spread it over a year or two for a payback, and im guessing there are tires in the trailer moving system where you could rent them for the move instead of buying them.

                      sorry your stuck with such a a## Hole for a landlord. i can;t imagine what the heII they're thinking. ..
                      davidh

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                      • #12
                        Like hawgwrench says, rock.
                        I've worked for a road maintenance contractor for the last fifteen years and whenever a gravel road is installed or upgraded the first thing we do is to cap the existing road base with about 12 to 18 inches of pit run, which basically consists of everything from sand to watermelon sized nuggets. This mixture when pounded in will give a solid foundation for the applied load and will help distribute the weight of traffic.

                        Naturally this time of year when the soil is almost completely saturated, (especially so since it has been disturbed and not compacted) it is almost impossible to work with as it has the consistency of soup. If this is the case I would suggest what is commonly referred to around here as "corduroying" a road. Logging roads which must temporarily sustain very high loads of heavy traffic and are installed in less than ideal locations or times of the year, will have logs placed perpendicularly across the road in order to give the road some flotation. You can achieve the same results with some wood laid across the "trench". They don't have to be logs as even 2x4 material will do for light traffic, maybe you could scrounge up some dunnage from a freight company for free, as pallets have lots of good material in them.
                        You will want to remove this material before paving, as over time it will rot and leave a void which in turn will crack the new pavement in short order.

                        Hope this helps Paul, but as some of the others have said a more permanent solution would be to get a new landlord, what a dork! He's definitely pushing the envelope.
                        Last edited by Willy; 03-02-2009, 10:46 AM.
                        Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
                        Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

                        Location: British Columbia

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Your Old Dog
                          They must have went nuts with the gravel filler. Normally, over time, the dirt would all sink back into the hole. I recently had a hole dug for a radio tower. I leveled it off around the area and 2 months later I had nearly a 1 foot hole to fill in as the dirt had sunk more then I thought it would.
                          I have been expecting that, but it hasn't happened yet. Iowa soil?
                          Paul A.
                          SE Texas

                          Make it fit.
                          You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I like the portland cement idea, but with my back I would probably have to hire someone to do it. That would cost a lot more than the cement.

                            I thought of wood, but as you say, it will rot over time. Perhaps I would be gone by then. I also thought of using old inner tubes: perhaps cut them into pieces/strips and just cover the area.

                            I like the lawyer idea, but I don't know if I could sleep with them moaning and complaining out there.
                            Paul A.
                            SE Texas

                            Make it fit.
                            You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              1st borrow the owners truck. And go buy a ton of 3/4- crushed rock . drive the truck up and down the ditch till its packed as best you can. (in front of your place anyway) then fling the rock in the ruts and drive the truck on it again.

                              In a pinch a truck loaded with rock makes for a good soil packer.

                              I used to plant big underground pipes and when we were lazy the dump truck was used just like that.

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