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Old 07-07-2011, 12:18 PM   #1
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Modular Block Pricing


I'm in Connecticut. I was wondering what is the typical price range per wall square foot for the 8" height, 16" length pre-cast concrete retaining wall block. The wall will be 4' in height, so the lowe's specials at $1.88/block are out of the picture. Doesn't matter the exact type at this point, just looking for a rough range to see if my direction of thought is worth investigating further.

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Old 07-07-2011, 04:17 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by AGWhitehouse View Post
I'm in Connecticut. I was wondering what is the typical price range per wall square foot for the 8" height, 16" length pre-cast concrete retaining wall block. The wall will be 4' in height, so the lowe's specials at $1.88/block are out of the picture. Doesn't matter the exact type at this point, just looking for a rough range to see if my direction of thought is worth investigating further.
It depends on the make and style of block you choose. For example, Allan Block (www.allanblock.com) offers a free program for Microsoft Windows and Macintosh machines that can calculate the requirements for their products. (Too bad they didn't make it into a Web-based Java application so that anyone could use it with a browser, regardless of operating system or computer hardware. I use Linux, so they've left guys like me out in the cold.)

Update
: I tried installing the Allan Block free estimator program and it reports that one of the files is corrupt. Eh, what would you expect for free software?

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Last edited by andrew4096; 07-09-2011 at 04:56 PM. Reason: update
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Old 07-07-2011, 04:27 PM   #3
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I'm in Connecticut. I was wondering what is the typical price range per wall square foot for the 8" height, 16" length pre-cast concrete retaining wall block. The wall will be 4' in height, so the lowe's specials at $1.88/block are out of the picture.
You aren't likely to get any realistic answers to a question like that here.

Why can't you get an estimate from your local Lowe's?
And why is $1.88 "out of the picture"?
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:40 PM   #4
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Bud, why wouldn't you get answers like that here? How much is block worth in New England can't be answered here? Come on, really? Then what is this site for? People who don't know the answers telling people to not ask these questions?

Lowe's is out because the $1.88 lowes blocks are for walls up to 3'-0" in height because they don't provide the reinforcing required for higher walls. The doweled, or catch lipped, etc. retaining wall block is the product I'm inquiring about. Just looking for rough $'s from anyone who recently had a wall done, or knows the product in question. Just ballparking, $3/block, $4/block, sf cost?
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:43 PM   #5
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Bud, why wouldn't you get answers like that here? How much is block worth in New England can't be answered here? Come on, really? Then what is this site for? People who don't know the answers telling people to not ask these questions?
HOLY CRAP why don't you "KILL THE MESSENGER"?

Asking prices on things like that are regional and even from town to town. Unless someone here is your next door neighbor you aren't very likely to get an accurate answer. That's all I meant by that. Answering "HOW MUCH DOES THIS COST" questions on a forum isn't likely to result in any usable information. Just trying to give you a fair response and something to think about.

You're kind of an ass aren't you?
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Old 07-11-2011, 03:52 PM   #6
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The site is called DIY chat. That means information is exchanged for do it yourselfers. People who need a product installed generally call contractors and get it estimated. What good is it if someone on the web gives you a price?
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Old 07-11-2011, 04:45 PM   #7
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The site is called DIY chat. That means information is exchanged for do it yourselfers. People who need a product installed generally call contractors and get it estimated. What good is it if someone on the web gives you a price?
Who said I wasn't a DIY? So you want me to call a landscaper to give me a price on a job he'll never do?

Just wanted a point of reference like "I did 100 sq. ft. wall in PA for $5,000 in material"...Done, thanks.

P.S. Thanks for the swears BUD, real nice...

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Old 07-11-2011, 05:11 PM   #8
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For what it is worth, I built approximately a 3 foot high, 15 foot wall (in two sections, 30 feet total) using Ideal block I got from the local supplier. Ideal is a New England manufacturer of segmental concrete block, not a national firm like Versalok.

I used block that was 4 inches tall, 8 inches wide, and 16 inches long, with a split face that looks like stone. The block is keyed, and is designed for about a 7 degree batter. The block can be used for walls up to 4 feet tall without reinforcing (according to the manufacturer). The cost was about $5 per block, which is not exact because I bought some steps (different size), some corner blocks (higher cost), some adhesive, and there was a delivery charge, but $5 per block was approximately the total charge.
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Old 07-11-2011, 05:40 PM   #9
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I'm in Connecticut. I was wondering what is the typical price range per wall square foot for the 8" height, 16" length pre-cast concrete retaining wall block. The wall will be 4' in height, so the lowe's specials at $1.88/block are out of the picture. Doesn't matter the exact type at this point, just looking for a rough range to see if my direction of thought is worth investigating further.
Start at the allenblock website or one of the other distributors; find a wholesaler through the site and call to get a quote for your yardage?
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Old 07-11-2011, 06:02 PM   #10
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Ideal is just a manufacturere that may make a "knock-off" (I doubt they would do that because of the support provided by one of the major firms). The may have an agreement with a major licensor for support and advertising. Versalok is a local manufacturer that was based on 30 years of doing business in hardscaping and just developed their system about 20 years ago and now licenses many manufacturers to make their products and provide code and design assistance around the world. Ideal may make that product or a very similar product and just use their local name.

Dan - The prices you paid for a full size unit are very common for a good unit. Unfortunately, the low gravity wall units is easily spoiled by the low standards from consumers when buying. If you build high walls (up to 40'), you will only see the major products because of the product development, testing and research and engineering an code acceptance.

For a small DIY project with no regard to future performance and durability, the generic "chunks/slugs" of concrete are quite acceptible considering the changes in ownership and landscapers. Usually, those type of "knock-off) units are not purchased or specified by any municipality in purchasing unit for maintenance or use on bid projects because of the support behind the units (design, details, durability and engineering support). That is the reason most of the major systems are used in international locations (a market larger than the old, restrictive rigid reinforced concrete or reinforced concrete block wall). the major licensors will not allow a producer to make another major product line and the better producers usually signed agreements, so this lead people that were in tune with the markets to be forced to use alternate designs and standards to be competitive.

It is a small world when you travel well over 4000 miles to bump into a person from a producer/licensor that you were in national DOT meetings on durability standards and testing in the U.S. 3 days earlier. The job was 7 miles long and ranged from 3' to 40' of curved walls along a freeway.

It is a buyer beware on DIY projects.

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Old 07-13-2011, 01:29 PM   #11
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I pay about $6.50 per block for standard Versa-Lok, which are 2/3 of a square foot face and 12" deep. That price includes 2 pins per block. The caps are the same price. Obviously, you would need to estimate gravel, stone, fabric, adhesive, etc.... separately, as the quantities are unique to each job. A tumbled Versa-Lok, or "mosaic" mix is about 40-50% more per square foot.

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