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Old 09-29-2015, 08:45 PM   #1
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Hints /suggestions on leveling wall base


InstaLling " stonewall select" retaining wall. They're 12 deep, 16in wide and 8in high block. Ea weighs 65lb, is hollow core which requires to be filled. Everywhere I looked, including the vendor and whoever the body is that makes the recommendations on such things (I'm drawing a blank and can't remember out for the life of me) recommends 3/4 stone with no fines. This make leveling the block much harder! Anyone have any recommendations/suggestions on making this a little easier?
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Old 09-30-2015, 09:28 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Askin View Post
InstaLling " stonewall select" retaining wall. They're 12 deep, 16in wide and 8in high block. Ea weighs 65lb, is hollow core which requires to be filled. Everywhere I looked, including the vendor and whoever the body is that makes the recommendations on such things (I'm drawing a blank and can't remember out for the life of me) recommends 3/4 stone with no fines. This make leveling the block much harder! Anyone have any recommendations/suggestions on making this a little easier?
I feel your pain. Even after several passes with a plate compactor, the 3/4 gravel base layer recommended by our manufacturer and dealer made getting the first course leveled out tricky. One piece of gravel could make things really difficult. We ended up using a very fine layer of granite sand on top of the gravel where needed to assist with setting the first course level. Even using the sand, it took the better part of a day to get the first course set (we ended up +/- 1/4" across the 30 linear feet of base course). Went fast after that though.

Something like "road base" or "crusher run" compacts more tightly and leaves a better surface, but like you I was following manufacturer guidelines. We've had no trouble with shifting or settlement in the couple years the wall has been there.

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Old 09-30-2015, 11:26 AM   #3
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Did you compact the granite sand as well?
Is it similar to drive dust at all?
Did you get it at a big box type store?


I know it's only the first row on the pic, but it looks really good! Precise, symmetrical turns on both sides. That's pretty much what I'm looking to do. Hope comes out as well!

Thanks
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Old 09-30-2015, 11:28 AM   #4
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Meant stone dust. Dam spell check!
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Old 10-07-2015, 02:53 PM   #5
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Yes, it was paver sand from a big box store. No need to compact it really, as it was such a thin layer. Sand does not really compact, since all the grains fit so tightly together to begin with.

I laid the curves out by putting a rebar stake at my center points and using a string line and marking paint to draw them out. We had a nice tripod laser level with a reciever which helped a lot getting the trench level.
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Old 10-07-2015, 03:59 PM   #6
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Like Red, I always use crusher run then a thin layer of rock dust (class I) and finally maybe a 1/4" of sand for the final level. All the work goes into the first course. Get it right and the rest is easy. I use water and a hand tamper to compact a couple of inches at a time.
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