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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Someone in our neighborhood does concrete curbing for $2.85/ft. I feel like I could learn to do it myself for cheaper, but I don't know how much it would cost and how long it will take to do it myself. I have about 178 ft I'm looking to do.

One of the challenges is my wife really wants the slanted style, but I'm not seeing a trowel that will do that for less than $70. I can estimate the price of some of the materials, but I'm not sure about how much concrete it will take. Even then, I don't know how long it will take. Keep in mind I have very rocky dirt here so digging to make the forms will take a bit longer than in other places. It's a bare dirt landscape at the moment, so no obstacles to deal with. Could someone who is familiar with the work and/or has done it recently give an estimate on DIY price and time so I can decide if it's worth trying to save money? TIA
 

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JUSTA MEMBER
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That $2.85 per foot, is that cubic foot, or linear footage ?

Yes it matters.

You need more than just a trowel, there's a mixer, or wheelbarrow, shovels, edger trowels, forms, and levels, and many more tools.

And if you happen to get the mix on your skin, you just might be one that burns easily.

This is not a project for a NOOBIE. :devil3:

And saving money, sometimes costs more than hiring the work done.



ED
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm pretty sure it's per linear foot, but I can get a quote. I have a wheelbarrow and shovel, as well as a drill, but I will probably need to buy anything related to the concrete work (like the trowel) and the form building. That's why I'm starting to think that when all is said and done, having the guy do it wouldn't cost a whole lot more (maybe a couple hundred dollars, maybe even less) and would save me a lot of time.
 

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retired framer
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I'm pretty sure it's per linear foot, but I can get a quote. I have a wheelbarrow and shovel, as well as a drill, but I will probably need to buy anything related to the concrete work (like the trowel) and the form building. That's why I'm starting to think that when all is said and done, having the guy do it wouldn't cost a whole lot more (maybe a couple hundred dollars, maybe even less) and would save me a lot of time.
Is you doing the decorative curb they put between garden and lawn and that kind of stuff. With a machine that look like a small road placer?

You can't compete. :wink2:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
2.85/ft seems cheap. Are you sure it's not 12.85/ft?
Here's what the Facebook page shows, and others in the neighborhood have mentioned that these are the prices. I think that's the going rate in this area, based on another local company's website. With a bare new construction lot, there's not much prep that needs to be done.
 

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JUSTA MEMBER
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Here's what the Facebook page shows, and others in the neighborhood have mentioned that these are the prices. I think that's the going rate in this area, based on another local company's website. With a bare new construction lot, there's not much prep that needs to be done.
Yep: they have a curb and gutter machine, that needs a flat length to roll over to lay the curb.

The no prep, is a catch, even if they have to use a shovel to move 1 little rock, you get charged for prep.

So double the price, in your mind, then decide if you really want to hire, or do it yerself.

If they do it, it is done in 1 day, if you do it, it's gonna take at least a week, or even several weekends out of your summer.

You can do a 10' section Saturday, move the forms Wednesday, and do another 10"' Saturday, repeat for the entire length.


ED
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yep: they have a curb and gutter machine, that needs a flat length to roll over to lay the curb.

The no prep, is a catch, even if they have to use a shovel to move 1 little rock, you get charged for prep.

So double the price, in your mind, then decide if you really want to hire, or do it yerself.

If they do it, it is done in 1 day, if you do it, it's gonna take at least a week, or even several weekends out of your summer.

You can do a 10' section Saturday, move the forms Wednesday, and do another 10"' Saturday, repeat for the entire length.


ED
Ok, that's a good thing to consider. I have a couple neighbors who used their services, I can ask them how it went and what they did to prep.

But about the forms, I was thinking if I did do it myself I would build the form for the whole job, like in this video.
https://www.quikrete.com/athome/video-building-concrete-lawn-border.asp
Is this an incorrect way to do this?
 

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JUSTA MEMBER
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That is a good way to do it, You will take several days building the forms.

But I wonder will this curb ever have vehicle traffic on it, even once and it will probably crack, unless you install re-bar.

Also take note of their expansion jointing, you need many of those, you get similar weather that I get, and the wonderful freezing / thawing makes a mess if you do not joint things.

Then at 180 feet long with just a wheelbarrow to mix in, that is going to be one looooong day.

You stated a slant curb, that will take 2 different sizes of forms, and more trowels than they used.


ED
 

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I had some concrete curbing done around my flower beds. Looks awesome.

They extrude the shape out of a machine. They almost always put color into the mix. I think he sprinkled some more color powder on top after extruding, to give it a bit of a dual color effect. Curves are no problem. Almost a waste to do straight line curbs with this system. After extruding the shape, he will tool the surface of the concrete a little (depending on what texture you ask for), and put in some control joints every 2 or 3 feet ( ground will move in winter).

Looks better if you go to the trouble of putting a glossy concrete sealer every year or so. I don't bother and it still looks good.

Yeah, I think you can do it. Slanted shape sounds easy. Screeding concrete is something that even a rookie can do well the first time, so set up your front and rear forms at the finished heights. Maybe a radiused edging tool for front and rear corners.

Hope the guy who does it for $2.85/ft is not a neighbour though. You will never hear the end of what you did wrong and how he would have done it better.

$500 for 178 feet ? --- not a chance I would try doing it myself, unless you really want to be able to say "I did it myself".


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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
That is a good way to do it, You will take several days building the forms.

But I wonder will this curb ever have vehicle traffic on it, even once and it will probably crack, unless you install re-bar.

Also take note of their expansion jointing, you need many of those, you get similar weather that I get, and the wonderful freezing / thawing makes a mess if you do not joint things.

Then at 180 feet long with just a wheelbarrow to mix in, that is going to be one looooong day.

You stated a slant curb, that will take 2 different sizes of forms, and more trowels than they used.


ED
Several days? Wow, I greatly underestimated the time it would take to build the forms.

No, I'm not expecting any vehicle traffic.

I think the video showed a control joint every 8 ft, but I was planning on doing every 3 if I did it myself.

I figured the forms would be 2 different sizes, but finding the right trowels to use is one of my obstacles. I'm starting to think we might as well have the guy do it since buying the trowels might bring the DIY price too close to the contractor price to make the savings not worth it, especially if it's not a do-it-in-a-weekend type of job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I had some concrete curbing done around my flower beds. Looks awesome.

They extrude the shape out of a machine. They almost always put color into the mix. I think he sprinkled some more color powder on top after extruding, to give it a bit of a dual color effect. Curves are no problem. Almost a waste to do straight line curbs with this system. After extruding the shape, he will tool the surface of the concrete a little (depending on what texture you ask for), and put in some control joints every 2 or 3 feet ( ground will move in winter).

Looks better if you go to the trouble of putting a glossy concrete sealer every year or so. I don't bother and it still looks good.

Yeah, I think you can do it. Slanted shape sounds easy. Screeding concrete is something that even a rookie can do well the first time, so set up your front and rear forms at the finished heights. Maybe a radiused edging tool for front and rear corners.

Hope the guy who does it for $2.85/ft is not a neighbour though. You will never hear the end of what you did wrong and how he would have done it better.

$500 for 178 feet ? --- not a chance I would try doing it myself, unless you really want to be able to say "I did it myself".


.
As I mentioned to de-nagorg, I'm not sure what trowel(s)/tools I would buy to make it work. But to your last points, one of my neighbors is one of the ones who works for that company, and although I don't think he would judge me for doing it myself rather than going with him (and he probably won't pass in front of my house often as he lives on a different street), it does seem that at that price I don't really have a good reason to do it myself. By the way, the concrete edging would be around our lawn, with the front yard being curved, but the back lawn is just a rectangle.
 

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If your neighbor can really do it for 2.78/fit or 500 dollars, I'd go that route.

That price just seems suspiciously low. Like the car dealership that advertises a brand new truck for some ridiculous low price, but when you read the fine print tires, steering wheel, and and engine are not included in the price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
If your neighbor can really do it for 2.78/fit or 500 dollars, I'd go that route.

That price just seems suspiciously low. Like the car dealership that advertises a brand new truck for some ridiculous low price, but when you read the fine print tires, steering wheel, and and engine are not included in the price.
I understand, so I will vet with my neighbors who have already had it done and ask how their experience was.
Here's another local company
who has some estimates listed online, so it looks like that's probably the competitive rate for this area.
 

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You must be in a low cost of living area. Maybe it is that inexpensive.


It seems the time involved with digging, setting forms, mixing and pouring concrete, and the cost of materials would be a lot more than hiring it out.
 

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You must be in a low cost of living area. Maybe it is that inexpensive.


It seems the time involved with digging, setting forms, mixing and pouring concrete, and the cost of materials would be a lot more than hiring it out.
All of that is "prep work".

Which plainly states in the ad, is extra.

Just like the tires, steering, and even seats in that used car.:wink2:


ED
 
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