Wooden Retaining Wall Project - Landscaping & Lawn Care - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

Go Back   DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum > Home Improvement > Landscaping & Lawn Care


Thread Tools
Display Modes
Old 03-28-2017, 01:11 AM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 1
Rewards Points: 2

Wooden Retaining Wall Project

I apologize in advance for the rambling, incoherent format of this post. I'm a carpenter by trade. A homeowner who is a friend of a friend originally asked if I'd be interested in doing a terraced, wooden garden in a roughly 15x20 space on a slope. "It's wood, are you interested?" I'm in need of any sidework I can come up with to generate some extra cash aside from the hourly day job, so I got into it. Researched and researched, brought out the transit and thought "this stuff always ends up being more work than it seems, I'm no landscaper, have no machinery, homeowner conveying that that's not the way they want to go" Homeowner, of course, seemed to think that this would be simply a matter of "building out", framing cool terraced boxes that look like a 50,000 job but costs a fraction. Had a "landscape designer" come out, said he'd survey for 1,000 and design the thing out of cedar...homeowner balked when I said it would be beneficial to have a set of plans for this kind of thing...(money not really an obstacle, but obviously hiring me thinking I can do it for cheap and not that complicated)

Homeowner says, "oh, I'm actually thinking too that I want to build a small wall in this other place to bring up the grade to make it flat so I can have a firepit and put some adirondack chairs out...we can start there and use that space to throw any dirt and excess debris from garden project into there..." Pulled out the transit, shot elevations based on where homeowner said wanted level grade to begin and end. Caveat...wall to be out of wood to match garden so backyard features carry same theme...

The research begins...cedar, of course, is **** for exterior (though ive built several decks utilizing 10x10 and 12x12 cedar posts and beams) applications, especially ground contact, and expensive.

I decided to use p/t ground contact for everything below grade and completely submerged under dirt, cutting in, or tying in cedar where it would be visible. After researching figured we could get 3 years out of the thing using p/t, cedar, and building according to fairfax county retaining wall guidelines. Wall height is maximum 24.5" above grade. Homeowner didn't realize how much digging was involved, what the project involved, thought we could just throw some horizontal posts in the dirt and call it a day...you should see what the shovels look like after a day of digging shale...

using rebar, roofing tar, waterproofing, treated sealer, french drain, timberlocks...this wall is 4x4, NOT 6x6...material costs @ cedar..yeah...deadmen have not been installed yet, plenty of digging left to do, but what do you guys think? plan is to use deadmen on all three sides of the wall. ALSO, all corners above 2nd layer will be stacked in alternating fashion, not "mitered" as shown. any advice besides "cedar will rot" and "4x4 not enough?"

Last edited by diggingholes; 03-28-2017 at 01:18 AM.
diggingholes is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Retaining wall against brick+cement block foundation. Waterproofing options? homeimproverjoe Landscaping & Lawn Care 3 03-20-2017 02:47 PM
Patio with small retaining wall details.. freeclimbmtb Concrete, Stone & Masonry 0 08-08-2014 11:49 AM
Please help with retaining wall / patio issue that has arisen. coderguy Landscaping & Lawn Care 3 05-26-2012 04:45 PM
Retaining wall combining concrete blocks and PT lumber JEL Landscaping & Lawn Care 1 04-06-2012 08:39 PM
my concrete retaining wall has a major crack where the wall has now shifted DanDaMan Building & Construction 1 04-02-2011 11:34 AM

Top of Page | View New Posts