Pea Gravel - calculations - brain hurts

mag9977May 27, 2012

I am having a hard time figuring out how much gravel I need. I was also comparing prices at 2 different places which is making it more confusing.

The area in question is 11F X 4F and 3.5 X 4 I think I would want the gravel 2 inches thick.

(I am choosing bags since I don't have a truck, but if the price is a lot cheaper I might rent a trailer)

The lady at the stone place says I need 20 bags for it to be 2 inches thick. They say each bag is about 6sq feet and 1"deep.

OK so at another place, they say each bag is .50 cubic sq feet, so would I need 54 bags, correct?

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(11x4+3.5x4)x0.2=11.6 cubic sq feet
6sq feet?I guess it be 0.6 cubic sq feet.
20 bags maybe right.But the finished results are some different from the figuring sometime. I think you need a grading too.the grading should be either 1/4" per foot or 1/8" per foot. If don't rent a trailer,I buy 10 bags first to finish the small one for that I am sure how many bags.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 10:21PM
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She stone place said 10 bags were .25 yard, at 1 inch. Since I wanted 2 inch I figured I needed 20.

Its the bags that were .50 cubic feet confusing me

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 10:31PM
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" .50 cubic feet" should not be very wrong.(S)he sell the products everyday, know the isn't very different from 0.6 cubic feet.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 11:17PM
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What are you using the gravel for?

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 11:21PM
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Why don't you have it delivered from a stoneyard? It would be much cheaper in bulk for sure, even w/delivery charges.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 7:19AM
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This is the way I think the math works -
44 sq ft + 14sq ft = 58sq ft.
if the amounts they are telling you are correct - these seem like quite large bags-
at the stone place you would need about 20 bags. 58/6=9.6bags to spread at one inch so double that to spread at 2 inches. 9.6x2=19.2

at the other place to convert to cubic feet 58 x .167(an inch is one 12th of a foot, not one 10th) so you need 9.8 cubic feet. it turns out to be about 17 bags. (9.8/.6=16.33)

if you have it delivered by the yard you need a quarter yard - most of the places around here would not even sell you that little if you had a truck, much less deliver.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 8:25AM
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As a factor, If .167 represents 2" thickness (and it does) then 58 x .167 = 9.68 cu. ft., rounded to 9.7 cu. ft.

9.7 cu. ft. x 2 (as there is 1/2 cu.ft. per bag) = 19.4 bags. I'd round up to 20.

But again, I ask what are you using this for? If's it's for gravel mulch, OK... (I would never want, but OK for you.)

If you are creating a walk surface you are using the wrong material.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 11:46AM
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They deliver with a min order of 4 yards. We can get it bulk for what we need with our own trailer (which we would need to rent) I really do not want to get a railer, as we do not have a wheel barrel (which we will need), and the loose gravel appears to be more work. I am 6 months pregnant and I am the yard person and my husband it is not at all interested in yard work (he does the laundry, cooks, cleans etc) This is really my project I wanted to get done this summer so the yard is nicer next summer (just bought the house last May). I figured since I was not able to do the manual labour, I would like to make it easy on my husband.

I will post again in a few minutes with some pictures explaining what I am doing.

Thanks all for your help

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 11:51AM
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I hired someone a few weeks ago to clean up the yard and thatch. He also cleaned up the dog run (we have no dog) this area before was full of weeds and junk. It is the only access from the front to the back yard. Here is the finished product. The 2nd picture is an area I have had problems with, grass does not like that area and there are many holes and it is not even. The clean up guy suggested I carry the gravel over around the house to the stairs to the deck. I thought it was an excellent idea. I am now doing it.
Since I have everyone's attention to you think I should put some stepping stones (circle, grey ones) maybe a few in the back to make it look nicer? Still many more projects to work on!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 12:05PM
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*********last post************ I realized that it is not pea gravel I have now. I have some crush with sand in it. My plan is to use the same material from the dog run to the back. However, I am open to suggestions. Nothing top crazy as I am not that good at this yet, I was also thinking to get that guy to finish it up. Unsure yet, it will save us $100 to do it on our own.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 12:09PM
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It doesn't look like pea gravel. If you continue the same material it seems it will work fine. It would be good to place a non-stretch type of landscape fabric as a separator between the ground and the rock. Excavate first for adjusting grade IF it's needed. Otherwise not.

Can you buy this exact crushed rock material in bags? You definitely will not want bags of pea gravel!

Since the total amount of material you need is less than 4/10 of 1 cubic yard, bulk delivery seems not an option. How can you access a pickup truck?

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 12:50PM
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Thanks for your reply. You all are helpful. I will put down a weed barier under the gravel and again, I should not have called this pea gravel. I can get the same material in bags. The more I think about it the more I think I might hire the guy to finish it instead of me.

One last question. How would you border the lawn the the "walkway?

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 1:02PM
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mag, a note of caution, those bags are heavy. Ask your OB about toting them.

In my neighborhood, we borrow from one another. If one of your neighbors has a truck and will go to the stone yard, bet another one will have a wheelbarrow to loan. If you have room, store some of the pea gravel in 5 gallon buckets, bottoms drilled for drainage, to you can freshen it as needed.

HTH, Rosie

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 4:19PM
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For retaining the gravel and separating it from the lawn search Google images for examples of "brick mowing strip." Look especially for ones where the brick is set flush and none standing above grade.

Also, see examples of "steel edging" where the edging is set flush with the lawn.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 10:19PM
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OK, I'll chime in although I'm sure you have it all figured out. The easiest way for me to think about the gravel coverage issue is that one 1/2 cubic yard bag (the standard size around here) will cover 3 square feet to a depth of 2 inches. So all you ever need to do is divide your total square footage by 3 and you have the number of bags required.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 10:26AM
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"one 1/2 cubic yard bag (the standard size around here) will cover 3 square feet to a depth of 2 inches. "

Christine, you mean to say 1/2 cubic FOOT... not YARD... is the standard bag size. (The yard is 27 times greater.)

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 11:15AM
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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

How would you border the lawn the the "walkway?

There are a variety of ways to accomplish this.
We usually consider the style of the house, budget, if there will be kids amongst other thoughts.

Pressure treated wood will last in the ground for about 10 years. It is great on straight runs and is inexpensive and easy to install for the DIY'er.

Trex or any other plastic composite product cost a bit more per foot , especially if you purchase a 2x6, but it holds up for years. There two basic thicknesses to choose 3/4 inch and 1.5 inch. The 1.5 inch thickness holds a nice arc and doesn't get 'wavy' when properly set.

Metal edging comes in a variety of styles. The cleaper stuff that you see at the big box stores eventually rusts out pretty quickly . Higher end metal that comes from a metal fabrication shop holds up for a lot longer . It looks clean and crisp but it can be dangerous if you have it in an area with kids. It is unforgiving to bare feet and can really do damage if you fall on it.
If placed in an area where a metal blade can come in contact with it , particularily in hot dry climates it can cause a spark which can lead to fire.

Pavers, bricks, and stone can be very classy looking and depending on how you tie it in with your architecture it can be a wonderfully uniting feature.
The cost varies from material to material and how it is installed makes a big difference in the labor installation price.

Below is a photo of a composite plastic edging used in a childrens play yard :
From portfolioMay08.jpg

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 12:11PM
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