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#271686 22-May-2020 13:00
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So I have an under house shed area, where there is a sloping Clay Soil bank and an uneven Clay floor.

 

My end goal is to turn this area into a space that can be used for a general woodworking/workshop type space.

 

In order to achieve this end goal, I'm wanting to dig back the bank to an even depth (to increase the floor space), then add a small retaining wall (under 1.2m) to control the clay debris and create a storage type area. I then want to flatten the floor area, so I have a decent base to lay some sort of false floor on which to work, probably using something cheap like pallets as a base.

 

Issue is that there's no way I'd be able to get an Excavator into this area as it's at the rear of the house, there's quite steep access and it's technically inside.

 

The bank is around 10m long and I'd be digging back between 500mm to 1000mm, meaning there's around 9m³ of clay to dig (and probably a bunch of rocks), and while I'm sure I could just start attacking the bank with a shovel, I'm not exactly keen on semi training for the Olympics if there's a smart way to handle it.

 

As for the floor, I had thought of using something like a Rotary Hoe to break up the compacted clay, levelling it, then recompacting, but unsure if this is the best way.

 

Any ideas people might have?


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  #2489400 22-May-2020 13:13
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Something like these?

 

http://dingo.co.nz/

 

Or someone who will do the work with one of these for you...

 

or hire

 

https://www.hirepool.co.nz/skid-steer-loader-mini/mini-skid-steer-loaders





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  #2489460 22-May-2020 13:47
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When I was in a similar situation I used a kango with a wide spade bit and it chomped through the clay no worries. Then it was shovels and wheel barrows.

 

OTOH I was doing perhaps 1 metre not nine.

 

Just make sure you understand 'angle of repose' for your soil type and don't go undermining your piles or foundations.


 
 
 
 


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  #2489472 22-May-2020 14:04
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elpenguino:

 

When I was in a similar situation I used a kango with a wide spade bit and it chomped through the clay no worries. Then it was shovels and wheel barrows.

 

OTOH I was doing perhaps 1 metre not nine.

 

Just make sure you understand 'angle of repose' for your soil type and don't go undermining your piles or foundations.

 

 

A Kango will make pretty quick work of clay type soils, and is probably the cheapest mechanised approach, 

 

 

 

What are you doing with the waste soil??

 

if you need to move it any distance 9 cubes of clay will give you a serious workout with just a barrow, so you will probably need one of these

 

https://www.kennards.com.au/earthmoving/dumpers/dumper-tracked-pedestrian.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  #2489486 22-May-2020 14:37
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elpenguino:

When I was in a similar situation I used a kango with a wide spade bit and it chomped through the clay no worries. Then it was shovels and wheel barrows.


OTOH I was doing perhaps 1 metre not nine.


Just make sure you understand 'angle of repose' for your soil type and don't go undermining your piles or foundations.



Under the house I'd imagine that a building permit meaning engineered solution would be needed.

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  #2489672 22-May-2020 16:04
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Shop around. They make some pretty small excavators that can get through door-ways etc. The even make electric ones specifically for use in confined spaces. 

 

https://www.cat.com/en_US/products/new/equipment/excavators/mini-excavators/1000026500.html

 

 

 

Edit: I mean shop around hire companies and/or contractors - not to purchase one of course.


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  #2489680 22-May-2020 16:20
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I dug 2-3 cubic metres of clay out from under a house I owned, to install internal stairs to the garage. Be aware that clay or dirt, once dug, increases in volume hugely. I can't remember exactly, but I think it was 17 trailer loads to get rid of.

 

Depending on your local council, you may need engineering, consents, and so on done for a 1.2m retaining wall. But probably a 1m wall would be OK.

 

Also think about the water table and drainage, you may be setting yourself up for a very damp workshop.

 

 


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  #2489733 22-May-2020 16:58
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I dug about 15 cubic metres of wet sticky clay out from under my house to lower the floor to put a new slab in so the basement would have more head room. Took a couple of weekends. Horrible job.




 
 
 
 


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  #2489762 22-May-2020 18:22
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frankv:

Depending on your local council, you may need engineering, consents, and so on done for a 1.2m retaining wall. But probably a 1m wall would be OK.



AFAIK if the wall is retaining soil that is supporting the house the height doesn't come in to it. You only get to build walls under 1.5m without permit if there is no surcharge.

neb

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  #2490134 23-May-2020 17:47
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mentalinc:

Something like these?

 

http://dingo.co.nz/

 

Or someone who will do the work with one of these for you...

 

 

+1 on the Dingo. Or contact Student Job Search or equivalent, if such a thing is operating during level 2. Just be aware that digging clay is a bitch, it's solid and heavy and really, really slow going if you do it by hand. Also, x m^3 of clay in the ground is about 3x m^3 of clay once it's dug via some sort of unexplained process also found in the Tardis.

 

 

Finally, if you're digging out the house foundations you'll almost certainly need to talk to an engineer about it.

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  #2493105 27-May-2020 19:27
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https://www.kennardshire.co.nz/ have deal this weekend 1 day hire from Friday to Tuesday morning




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  #2493178 27-May-2020 21:32
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mentalinc: https://www.kennardshire.co.nz/ have deal this weekend 1 day hire from Friday to Tuesday morning

 

 

Hmm, and one of the options is a very compact Dingo. Still even for that the 1-day rate is $375.

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  #2493314 28-May-2020 07:43
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Sure but you get to use it for three and a half days should do the whole job in the time. Compared to barely making a dent with spades...





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  #2493426 28-May-2020 10:05
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Those units aren't really for digging compacted ground. They are great for moving loose material around in open areas though. I levelled my section with one, but wouldn't try digging clay walls under my house with it.

 

 

 

Get yourself a nice new spade and shovel and pretend you're doing a gym workout for a few weeks.


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  #2493707 28-May-2020 14:55
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An hour or two a day after work, should only take a week or two depending on your level of work output.

 

Just make sure you dont dig out anything that is holding up your house.


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  #2493710 28-May-2020 15:02
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Kango, shovel, 2 wheelbarrows and 4 people would do it in a day, assuming you have an easy way of disposing of the clay you remove.

 

 





Mike

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