Pouring concrete for basketball post in PA tomorrow.

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wrote:

Thanks. I'll remember this ( What liuttle I did, I did in summer. )

They took it with them?
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wrote:

Yes, here's a video of them taking it away :-)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sj6f_u_ga94

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I tried pulling out a type of evergreen hedge. Didn't work, but no damage.
Greg
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new owner had it removed, since they had no children
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wrote:

The reason one keeps concrete wet is so that it doesn't dry. Covering it with plastic does the same thing but in cold weather this isn't much of a problem. Covering it with plastic will help keep it warm, though, and a couple of bales of straw will help even more (and the plastic will keep the straw out of the concrete).
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On Sat, 22 Dec 2012 05:11:25 -0800 (PST), andyeverett

I don't think you need to do much besides put a blanket over the top of it. Looks like at worse the temp will drop to freezing but that's AIR temp, I assume you are putting the concrete in the ground. The concrete is going to generate heat as it hydrates so it's going to be self heating. You've actually got just about the best possible conditions for getting a good hunk of concrete since a slow cure produces better strengths and less shrinkage and cracking. Basically, as long as the concrete doesn't freeze you're all set and the only part that could possibly freeze would be at the surface and with the self-heating of the concrete I don't even think that's a realistic worry.
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andyeverett wrote:

If you are going ahead and doing this, and if it is not too late to ask, maybe you could take some photos of various stages of the hole digging and concrete pour process etc. and post them here. It would be interesting to see how the project worked out.
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The posts above that recommend going deeper are right. Two feet down and two feet wide is shallower than I'd recommend.
Now, it's a pain in the butt, but if you really want resistance to toppling, don't use a round hole. Ideally you want a pyramid, nice square sides that widen as you go down.
Get some neighborhood kids and a shovel or too, and go down three feet minimum, with nice square sides, and that basketball hoop will be secure for a long time.
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Shovel?
A shovel is okay down to 2 feet, beyond that, you want a post hole digger. Hand operated is fine.
--
Dan Espen

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Again, thanks for all the help. Too late for pictures but I can describe the process. The hole went down about 26 inches, was about 22 inches in diameter at the top and about 28 inches at the bottom. Per suggestion the hole was somewhat tapered to resist frost heave and also the widened base of the hole will resist rotation better(?). I sweated out the hole in under 2hrs. The first 6 inches or so was soft top soil but then got progressively more dense. At the bottom of the hole the earth was so dense that a 20 pound breaker bar would only chip away at the earth. The earth at the bottom of the hole was so dense and hard that (it had rained very long and hard a couple of days previously) I can't imagine it holding enough water to cause much frost heave. I'm guessing frost heave depends on the soil type?
The inside of a drywall bucket was marked with several reference lines, the bucket was filled to the line where I thought the right amount of water would be needed. After several bags of concrete I got the right amount of water dialed in. This way I could add nearly all the water that was needed at once thus speeding up the mixing process. As was suggested my concrete was a bit on the wet side but if concrete is too dry there will be air pockets even with some poking and aggitation. I did add about a shovel full of extra cement to the mix. To see the instructions for the basketball setup see,
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/E1CW8p1YrbS.pdf
I hung a 100 watt bulb inside the metal tube clamped just above the bottom (heat from the inside as suggested) on the top of the concrete sat two aluminum reflector lamps also with 100 watt bulbs. On-top of this was placed about 2/3 cubic yard of fiberglass bat-insulation that another costumer wanted thrown away. The insulation was covered with a tarp and anchored with many concrete blocks. This all was done on Sunday and today (Wednesday morning) I went back to proceed with the next step (bad design, must fill the post assembly with concrete nearly to the top). I was worried that with too much heat I risked melting the plastic insert (what a nightmare that would have been) I uncovered everything and found the concrete toasty warm, not hot but warm to the touch (I should have placed a thermometer inside). And everything was toasty warm with only 1 100 watt bulb still working! The bulb inside the metal tube shattered, maybe it got wet and the smaller of the two reflector lamps had a "melt down", it got too hot and died.
If I had this to do again I would have gone deeper as suggested but the concrete for this project lies on very dense soil so I do not think I will be getting a call-back (knocks on wood).
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One final caution.
Steel surrounded by soil is electrically different from steel surrounded by concrete. I don't know the physics of why, but it is.
So. If your pole is in concrete, and somebody piles an inch or two of diret on top, there will be a voltage differential between the two lengths of steel. That will corrode through the pole right at that point.
We've all seen it with clothesline poles. They're commonly set in concrete with dirt over them and grass up to the pole. They all break off at the interface between concrete and dirt, while the rest of the pole is still solid.
The instructions you posted say to mound the concrete for drainage. That will work, mounding dirt will not.
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By fortunate change of plans the concrete does not lie flush with the ground but is about 2 inches higher via a sheet metal form.
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Sounds like dry clay?
That post hole digger would have helped get you a lot deeper with a lot less effort. I've gone down to 42 inches about 30 times with one of these:
http://tinyurl.com/c59xtnl
--
Dan Espen

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Had a nice one! The breaker bar seemed to work best, the ground was very hard.
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