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Old 05-09-2011, 09:26 AM   #1
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


I recently put in a brick paved patio in the back and now it is time to use a plate compactor. This was mostly to prepare to sell the house because there needed to be something at the back door and this was best balance if economic and ease. It is 12" square grey bricks and 7'x10' patio. If course there's a gravel base that I tampered, then an inch if screeded sand. Some of the bricks are slightly uneven or have a hair of wobble ( don't really feel it but hear the sand scrapping in between). The early rows are of course worse because this was my first install so I got better as I went along. I am guessing that it would be best to rent a plate compactor to flatten any unevenness rather than try to manually do it. Any tips or suggestions?
As a side question, if I would need to, is there a way to remove just a single brick without breaking it, they seem tightly packed.

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Old 05-09-2011, 04:18 PM   #2
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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I recently put in a brick paved patio in the back and now it is time to use a plate compactor. This was mostly to prepare to sell the house because there needed to be something at the back door and this was best balance if economic and ease. It is 12" square grey bricks and 7'x10' patio. If course there's a gravel base that I tampered, then an inch if screeded sand. Some of the bricks are slightly uneven or have a hair of wobble ( don't really feel it but hear the sand scrapping in between). The early rows are of course worse because this was my first install so I got better as I went along. I am guessing that it would be best to rent a plate compactor to flatten any unevenness rather than try to manually do it. Any tips or suggestions?
As a side question, if I would need to, is there a way to remove just a single brick without breaking it, they seem tightly packed.
These are not materials you compact. Are these about 1 1/2" thick? If so, no way. If you run a compactor over them, they will break.
You might be able to lift it out with a thin stiff taping knife on either side. If it's close to the edge, remove the ones next to it to get to it. Last option is to just break it with a hammer and put another in it's place.
Ron
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:45 PM   #3
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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Originally Posted by wvphysics View Post
I recently put in a brick paved patio in the back and now it is time to use a plate compactor. This was mostly to prepare to sell the house because there needed to be something at the back door and this was best balance if economic and ease. It is 12" square grey bricks and 7'x10' patio. If course there's a gravel base that I tampered, then an inch if screeded sand. Some of the bricks are slightly uneven or have a hair of wobble ( don't really feel it but hear the sand scrapping in between). The early rows are of course worse because this was my first install so I got better as I went along. I am guessing that it would be best to rent a plate compactor to flatten any unevenness rather than try to manually do it. Any tips or suggestions?
As a side question, if I would need to, is there a way to remove just a single brick without breaking it, they seem tightly packed.

I'm pretty skeptical that a plate compactor would break a paver brick, but it would scuff them up pretty good. Put down a piece of plywood over the bricks and run the compactor over that. However, if your bricks are uneven, that means the bed they're sitting on is uneven. The compactor may or may not help that.
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:27 AM   #4
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


Some places I have read said the compactors help to level them out, so I thought I would ask here since I am sure there might be a difference between how it affects the smaller 4x8 bricks and the larger plates like I have that are 12x12. The 12x12 are also only 2" thick, or just under.
My best guess is that some of the shifting is a result of the sand having been damp leaving some sections as "soft" and eventually collapsing as it dried.I think I may leave it for a time to let things settle then pull the plates up and rescreed the sand after I make sure its dry. It's only 70 plates and should be alot less work than before. This time I wont have to load and unload the plates at lowes and again at home while also shoveling the sand into buckets in the driveway and carrying to the backyard. I just hope I can get the sand dry.
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:13 PM   #5
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
These are not materials you compact. Are these about 1 1/2" thick? If so, no way. If you run a compactor over them, they will break.
You might be able to lift it out with a thin stiff taping knife on either side. If it's close to the edge, remove the ones next to it to get to it. Last option is to just break it with a hammer and put another in it's place.
Ron
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Agree. I wouldn't use a compactor if those where my pavers,not even over plywood.
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Old 05-10-2011, 03:12 PM   #6
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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Agree. I wouldn't use a compactor if those where my pavers,not even over plywood.

Have you ever tried it? If not, you're speaking about things you really have no knowledge of. I have done on a walkway I installed recently. Worked good, didn't break any pavers. In fact, most of the installation guides I read recommended this as a final step.
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Old 05-10-2011, 03:18 PM   #7
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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Have you ever tried it? If not, you're speaking about things you really have no knowledge of. I have done on a walkway I installed recently. Worked good, didn't break any pavers. In fact, most of the installation guides I read recommended this as a final step.
what sort of pavers? Were they larger with about 1 3/4 - 2' thickness or were they thicker or the smaller bricks? Also, did you have any uneveness, if so did it help to flatten it out?
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Old 05-10-2011, 04:14 PM   #8
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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Have you ever tried it? If not, you're speaking about things you really have no knowledge of. I have done on a walkway I installed recently. Worked good, didn't break any pavers. In fact, most of the installation guides I read recommended this as a final step.
These aren't "pavers", what the Op laid was patio blocks. My only experience with compactors and patio blocks was with a neighbor a few years ago. He laid the blocks, covered them with a good layer of sand and compacted away. Busted about a 1/3 of the patio before the sand was low enough to see the blocks.
Maybe the posters blocks are stronger.
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:06 PM   #9
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


Definitely not concrete paving stone because of the size (12x12) and are probably stepping stone or pation block that are thinner than the real concrete paving stones that are 2 3/8" to 4" thick. As others have said they will probably crack (25%) due to the thicknes and lower compressive strength.

The normal installation for real concrete pavers is to spread sand over the surface and use some sort of a vibratory compactore to draw sand into the tight joints and level the surface. That is one of the reasons a fine sand is recommended as a 1"setting bed. I would not worry about scuffing the surface if they are good quality pavers from a good manufacturer since there is normally a slightly roughened surface.

These type of pavers have been used (4" tickness) on airport taxi and service roads for years (747's) and on huge 20 to 40 acre industrial site internationally.

Dick

Last edited by concretemasonry; 05-11-2011 at 07:42 AM.
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Old 05-11-2011, 12:50 AM   #10
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


A vibrator compactor with a 1/2" rubber pad attached works well for pavers.



Wouldn't try it with patio blocks.
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Old 05-11-2011, 10:49 AM   #11
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Brick pavers and plate compactor


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what sort of pavers? Were they larger with about 1 3/4 - 2' thickness or were they thicker or the smaller bricks? Also, did you have any uneveness, if so did it help to flatten it out?
I was using interlocking "I" bricks. They're 2-3/8' thick. As I recall, I got then laid fairly evenly to begin with, and I'd compacted the base pretty good beforehand. I ran the compactor over them more to settle them in than to level them. So far two winter/summer cycles and they're still looking nice and level

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