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The "not so heavy equipment" photo thread

Discussion in 'Showtime!' started by JNB, Aug 9, 2015.

  1. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Flyin' low and rollin' slow...
    Location:
    North Texas
    Hey guys, thought I'd share a few photos of my work here in Tejas. For a little background, after owning a concrete company in SoCal for a long time with way too many employees, I knew that's not what I wanted to do here. I ran skip loaders and backhoes as my company needed and worked for an excavating company in the mid-seventies, so taking it up on a smaller scale was a no-brainer. Now I work by myself 99.9% of the time and really enjoy what I do. I typically work in rural areas for landowners and specialize in gravel driveways and parking lots, drainage grading and culvert installations. I own a tractor and CTL, and run the tractor whenever possible and feasible since it's inexpensive to run. Everything else I need gets rented.

    This little project involved cleaning things up, drainage grading and spreading topsoil. There are a ton of city folks moving to the country, which is right up my alley.
    A02.jpg A08.jpg A10.jpg A12.jpg A15.jpg
     
  2. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Location:
    North Texas
    I'm fortunate that I get to travel the backroads to work most days. I hear the traffic reports on the radio and think...Man I'm glad I don't have to deal with that! This job needed a bit of drainage grading, a couple of culvert pipes and then several truck and pup loads of 3/4"-minus topping.
    730 01.jpg 730 05.jpg 730 12.jpg 730 13.jpg 730 16.jpg
     
  3. Landclearer

    Landclearer Senior Member

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    That is some sharp, clean looking work. The driveway is so good it almost looks like exposed aggregate concrete. There is nothing wrong with stayin small. Lot less headaches for sure.
     
  4. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Thanks! Gravel work will never look as good as it does when I load up for the day, so I try to make it as perfect as I can.
     
  5. Landclearer

    Landclearer Senior Member

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    You nailed it for sure. I am impressed!
     
  6. norite

    norite Senior Member

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    Location:
    Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
    Nice pics to have in your portfolio, along with the recommendation of your client(s) should keep you very busy.
     
  7. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Location:
    North Texas
    Thank you! Yeah, I stay pretty busy. I was eleven weeks out a couple months ago. That's a bit too far for my liking.

    Here's a job from before the rains started this year. The owner tried to use his guy with "several years of backhoe experience" to set three modular cattle guards for his business entrance. After a full week of rental, only one section was in and it was out of level over 8" in 10'. In the guy's defense, he just moved here from out of state and had never worked in black clay. You can cut to grade on this stuff, then roll compact it and it looks like moguls on a ski slope. I brought out my stepson to rattle chains on this one. We took it down a foot, laid in #57's and got everything straightened out.
    Andre01.jpg Andre03.jpg Andre04.jpg Andre07.jpg Andre11.jpg

    I lived in the area for a year and always wondered what the heck they did in the building. No signs for any hints. The owner is a retired world class roadracer that now buys motorcycles and ships them to buyers all over the world. There had to be a hundred bikes getting ready to be shipped out while we were there.
     
  8. mowingman

    mowingman Senior Member

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    Location:
    north Texas
    Enjoyed seeing your photos. Very nice work. Isn't it nice to find there are still people who will pay you to do quality work. Of course, as you point out, often it is after they tried the cheap route.
    I am just down the road from you in Denton.
    Jeff
     
  9. grandpa

    grandpa Senior Member

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    Location:
    northern minnesota
    You can tell the work of a professional from a wanna be. Material edges nice and straight. Material not slopped all around. Nice job.
     
  10. Desertwheeler

    Desertwheeler Senior Member

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    Ca
    How about some info on the black clay? You intrigued me with your comment.
     
  11. Jonas302

    Jonas302 Senior Member

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    mn
    The gravel driveway really looks sweet nice work
     
  12. movindirt

    movindirt Senior Member

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    Everything looks great!! :thumbsup
     
  13. Dualie

    Dualie Senior Member

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    Nor Cal
    i have family in pilot point, ALOT of money there now barely recognize the area anymore.
     
  14. CM1995

    CM1995 Super Moderator

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    Nice work JNB! The cattle guard came out sharp.
     
  15. ddigger

    ddigger Senior Member

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    Northern California
    Very impressive work, its no wonder your staying busy. Well done.
     
  16. Fastdirt

    Fastdirt Senior Member

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    GA
    Great looking finish on that gravel road and that final grade looks great too. All good stuff. I'd have to get out of there quick in order to not see it get messed up.

    Not sure what a cattle guard is but man wouldn't a dog or animal break a leg in that grate. Looks like a huge drain to me. I don't know, that's new to me. Ouch.
     
  17. Scrub Puller

    Scrub Puller Senior Member

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    Location:
    Gladstone Queensland Australia
    Yair . . .

    As I say this is one of the joys of this forum . . . we call them "grid's" and (to me) it is fascinating to think that they are unfamiliar to Fastdirt

    There are hundreds of thousands of them throughout Australia even on major highways although on some of the state border crossings they just paint them on like this . . .

    untitled.png

    For installation on normal tracks these days they are available like this . . . .

    untitled.png


    Cheers.
     
  18. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Occupation:
    Flyin' low and rollin' slow...
    Location:
    North Texas
    Thanks to all you guys for the comments and thanks for looking!

    We are in the middle of the natural gas rich Barnett Shale. At my place I've been down 20' and have never seen a pebble. An eight mile down the road I dug a hole for my father in law and hit a shale slab at five feet or so. It's like that all over his 5 acres. It looks like stamped, colored concrete. Pretty weird. When the clay is moist it's a pain to compact with a tire equipped machine...the moguls I spoke about show up. This time of year I call it popcorn clay. Cracks are showing up everywhere. When we were in the middle of a drought, I stuck a tape measure in one over 10' deep. It grades ok dry, but if there's any moisture underneath it'll bring chucks up from below. Crazy stuff.

    Yeah, there are a lot of landowners selling off plots and city folks are buying it up like candy. It's good for business. I'll move out farther if I have to for space!

    Ha! Since hardly anyone wants to pay for vibratory compacting, I wheel roll it then backdrag on the way out to cover my tracks and I'm out of there. I don't want to be there the first time they drive off the edges or cut the corners.

    Like Scrub mentioned...cattle guards are all over here too. They work for the most part, but I've seen frisky steers jump over them a few times. Funny thing is that the property owner put the cattle guards in to keep his dogs out of the road. When I was leaving I watched both of them walk across like it wasn't even there. :D
     
  19. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    Flyin' low and rollin' slow...
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    North Texas
    Here are some precast end sets for a couple of new homes.
    Free03.jpg Free04.jpg

    30' culvert pipes on my 25' trailer. We're legal 5' over here with flags.
    Free05.jpg Free06.jpg Free07.jpg
     
  20. JNB

    JNB Senior Member

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    While we were setting the second set when the well guys showed up...a week early. They tried to cross the bar ditch with the drilling rig. :rolleyes: Hard to tell from the pic, but the ditch is 4' deep off the road.
    Free10.jpg Free11.jpg

    The brains (boss) came to save the day. (clears throat)...no chains to be seen!
    Free12.jpg

    Free07.jpg Free08.jpg