I have to replace some low retaining walls. The wood is easy because its
all rotted away, but I can't get the rebar that held them out. The ground
is shale, and doesn't want to give them up.
Any magical solutions? I thought of an auto jack, but don't see how to grip
Driving them in rather than reusing them is a solution, but driving them a
foot into shale is a real chore!
Good idea. I've been using a 2 ton hoist for this kind of operation and ruin
it where I had to do some major cutting and welding to put the hoist back in
service. The pulling tensile strength of rebar or tree roots is unbelievably
I'd try the pulling as others suggested (my suggestion would have been
the same except they beat me to it) and if it works, good, but if it
didn't or was particularly difficult, given the cost of rebar I'd just
take the torch and cut 'em off...
If you have one or access, what I use as a puller for such things
including fence posts, etc., is either bucket or the 3-pt depending on
access or how much actual lift needed...
If they don't come out with the jack, I will have at them with a sawzall.
It will still leave a stub, but that won't be too hard to pound down.
Unfortunately my 18 year old son leaves for school tomorrow. I should have
Another idea: You could use a long pipe wrench and try to spin the rebar
around. If the rebar spins freely then you know you could pull it out with a
little effort. If it doesn't spin try to force it and break it below the
I had my apple tree staked with 4 foot pieces of rebar, 3 feet of
which was in the ground. When it was time to take them out, I bent
the rebar and rotated it a lot and tugged at the same time. Wear
gloves. Once you get the first inch, it gets easier. I wondered what
was holding the bars in after I rotated them a lot.
Even if you only have 180^, I think this will work. I couldn't rotate
fully become it hit the ground.
How many do you have. I only had two a year.
Use a 4"-5" angle grinder with a grinding wheel. I have a 5" 8 amp
angle grinder that would cut each one flush with the rock in less than
a minute per bar. Just cut a groove on 180 degrees or more and bend it
over. Similar to felling a tree. No chain, no jack, no pulling.
Once it's off, grind off any sharp edges and move to the next.
i will add to that by saying buy some cutting wheels for your angle
grinder. they make extermely thin wheels (available in specialty
stores--not big box stores. maybe even an auto parts store) that are s
used for stainless--cut rebar like butter.
I have seen those cutoff wheels in action. Very nice.
OTOH, rebar is not a very high grade steel, so almost any grinding
wheel that has a bevelled edge (rather than the square edge it comes
with when new) can get the job done. I do more slag removal and edge
preparation for welding than I do making cuts.
In that case, I prefer to use my 36" bolt cutter - faster and save my
cutting wheels for some other projects and I don't have to drag my
electrical cord or air hose around. If the rebar is over 5/8" I use my
portable band saw.
Drop a short length of black-pipe over the end,
and bend them into a hook, then put a rope around them
in a timber hitch, run the rope over a sawhorse, then
under a sandbag and yank them out with a truck.
The sawhorse is to make the rope pull UP, the
sandbag is to pull the rebar to a stop when
it comes out of the ground like
a kinetic-energy weapon and tries to vaporize
But if the rebar won't come out, why not just
drill the replacement timbers to match?
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