Crushed rock aggregate on driveway - how many tons?



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I remember that stuff: a white crystalline powder, which I remember tasting when I was a toddler (out of curiosity)! When I was a kid, there was a rumour that you could make explosives from it.
Al
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Tarmac does not solve the problem of weeds, and it comes with its own raft of problems. Cheap tarmac jobs last about five minutes.

We were banned from using tarmac or block by our ever-wonderful local planning office. Fortunately at the time we were permitted to demolish what had been an outside toilet block. We used the brick as hardcore and I spend many a happy day like an old road mender smashing up the brick with a sledge hammer and tamping it down to form the foundations for the drive. It has formed a free draining roadway that has resisted having a couple of giant 4x4s pounding over it for a decade. Weed growth hasn't been a problem. A dressing of shingle - the larger stuff helps to keep it looking suitable clean and tidy. The PITA is that it is overhung with trees and getting fallen leaves off it takes serious work. It's also not possible to use a blower or vacuum to remove the leaves.
To avoid weeds, a decent foundation is essential, be prepared to dig deep and to ruthlessly remove any roots that you encounter. Then fill it up with clean rubble. I think harry is talking carp again about the depth needed. We are on clay and gravel (valley floor) and the foundation for the drive was about six inches deep.
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AL_n wrote:

What about patterned concrete? No idea of the costs though...
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Yes, that may be an option, thanks. It would certainly solve the weed problem.The tamping-down is just about within the scope of a one-man DIY-er too (eliminates the hiring of a compacter or roller, as needed with aggregate). I reckon my existing driveway (old compacted clay and limestone chippings) is probably solid enough as a base to concrete directly onto, once the humps have been skimmed off with a small bulldoser.
Al
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AL_n wrote:

We have patterned concrete. Not exactly lovely, but exceptionally durable.
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When you say patterned, how was the pattern applied?
I also remember hearing about another method of making conrete look attractive. I think it involved washing the surface away to expose bare stones or somethng. I think perhaps special decorative stone was added for this purpose, possibly after the readymix had been spread and tamped. Can anyone point me to any instructions on this method?
Al
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AL_n wrote:

Decorative rubber stamp for want of a better word. Large sheet with the pattern on it, about 2 metres square. You just have to hope it doesn't rain whilst you're doing it.

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Pattern Imprinted concrete
A concrete slab is aid, an dye/hardener is applied to the surface, then a pattern applied using a mould to imprint the top of the concrete.
<http://www.pavingexpert.com/pic01.htm
We have it here (done by a previous owner) on the drive (done to look like setts) and one the patio (to look like stone slabs)
Actually, it isn't bad - certainly a lot better than plain slab, and whilst if you look you can see that it isn't 'real' it;s ok. SWMBO didn't realise the patio wasn't real stone at first.
I don't think it is realistically a DIY technique.

Exposed Aggregate.
As you say, either tamped into the top or mixed in and then the washing away the top surface.
As ever, Cormaic's Paving Expert site as the gen:
<http://www.pavingexpert.com/concxag1.htm
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Excellent. Thank you!
Al
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chris French wrote:

Ours has weathered quite nicely. It certainly does not look like stone, but it doesn't shriek concrete either. It was old when we bought the house, and we've been here 13 years. The dye surface has long since worn away, but it's dirtied up nicely over the years and blended in. A chap wanted to come round and steam clean it for us, but that's the last thing I'd do to it.

If you had a 25m drive to practise on, you'd be quite good by the end. I don't know whether you can hire the moulds. Buying one might be prohibitive.
The real problem is if it rains whilst the concrete is still setting. I guess you might have to drill it all up again.
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One possibility not mentioned here, that we use extensively at work, is Geoweb. This isn't a membrane, it's a cellular rubber structure that you peg down into the area to be turned into a road. Then you fill up the honeycomb strusture with crushed stone or whatever else is around. It's used widely in military engineering to build a road quaickly and in civil engineering to stabilise steep banks.
http://www.greenfix.co.uk /
Invasive weeds are held at bay because their roots can't penetrate the rubber walls, but weeds seeding onto the surface can still get established. Spraying with Pathclear helps.
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%steve%@malloc.co.uk (Steve Firth) wrote in wrote:

Thanks; I watched the video, and can see that suff may have uses in reducing erosion of slopes, but am struggling to see how it would be useful in creating a level driveway. (My driveway is almost exactly level, so there is little chance of any aggregate drifting out of place.
Al
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[snip]

It's used for enormous lengths of level road. The cells prevent the movement of aggregate and stop ruts from forming and also stop your vehicle tracking shingle all over the place. I take it you've not had an aggregate/gravel drive before?
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.org:

I know that loose gravel spreads around freely, but graded aggregate compacts down into an immovable crust (assuming the substrated is solid).
I suppose that if one only had the option of loose gravel then the Geoweb stuff would help to keep it in place. But would that be a better bet that compacted graded crushed rock aggregate? What is the advantage of the gravel+geoweb option?
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The highways dept can be funny about gravel at driveway entrances. It prevents rapid accelaration into traffic. My latest driveway into a busy highway, I was specifically required to have a hard surface for that reason. They have other rules about gates, splay geometry, visibity, field of view etc.
I have paviour blocks which I DIYed. Not easy to do a good job. Lots of cracks for the weeds to grow in. The ants have swifty taken up residence and are undermining, little heaps of sand everywhere.
The advantages are they can be taken up & relaid if they sink and for replacement of services. Also, lots of different colours and patterns and shapes.
All forms of aggregate surface are hard work to maintain and look like crap after a few years. With my previous road I had to get in 40 0r 50 tons of aggregate in every year. I put in nearly 3000 tons of sub base in too.
For sub base, the cheapest form of aggregate you can get is rubble from the recycle centre, topped off with crushed recycled rubble. The trouble with it is that it is full of bits of crap. Metal, wood, plastic etc. You need to pick it out by hand, esp. the metal as it can get in tyres. It needs to be topped off with new stuff. There is also industrial waste in some areas such as blast furnace slag, now being "mined" for aggregate. Aslo burned "red shale" waste from coal minng areas.
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