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Old 02-23-2010, 11:09 PM   #1
widerberg
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Default Cheapo parking pad options?

Hi, All:

In a couple of weeks I'll be hauling home a project car that sort of fell into my lap. I've got two, so this will make three. I've got a three car garage, so no problems there . . . except, the wife's said "heck no" to my using the third stall ("her" stall).

So . . . I've got to store this car outside for the time being. I've got a 12' x 20' Handi Houses shed in my back yard and was thinking of trying to put together a cheap 8' x 16' parking pad of some kind behind it for the time being. Eventually, I'd build a lean to over the pad to keep the rain off, and at some point after that probably sheath the walls, insulate, and stick a door of some kind onto the lean to to create basically a second shed back there.

So . . . I can't afford concrete right now, and am thinking of the following as cheap alternatives. Any ideas/comments?

1) Excavate down 6 or 7 inches, buy 144 8"x8"x16" medium weight concrete blocks from Home Depot at $1.15 each. Set them all into the excavated area, on top of some kind of heavy duty plastic, and then fill the holes with road grade gravel.

or

2) Excavate down about 5 or 6 inches, buy however many used railroad ties I need to get roughly 8' x 16'. Stick them in the hole and park on top of it.

Are the railroad ties a horrible idea? Would they attract moisture or wick it away? I'm trying to ensure that I don't ruin my frame with moisture rising up from the ground, as it would if I were parking on dirt or grass.

So, whatcha think? Reasonable? Dumb?
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:17 PM   #2
kblazer87
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Why not just use gravel? Dig down 4" and backfill with a good gravel. That is what I have for my trailers and skidsteer right now.
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:21 PM   #3
widerberg
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

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Originally Posted by kblazer87 View Post
Why not use gravel? Dig down 4" and backfill with a good gravel. That is what I have for my trailers and skidsteer for right now.
Kblazer, do you have anything under the gravel to keep the moisture from rising up? I live in Florida, so while I've got sand and clay underneath, it's basically just a big swamp. I've heard horror stories of people parking perfectly usable cars on grass only to have the frames shot from rust after a year or two. So, I've gotten paranoid about the moisture.

My best option would be pouring concrete and then sealing it, but I just can't float the cash at the moment. Or any time soon, really.

Incidentally, what kind of gravel did you go with?
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:30 PM   #4
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

I have a sheet of polyethylene under the gravel to keep the weeds down. I layed it flat (didn't curl the edges up) so that water would not be trapped and could run off the edges. The gravel is just regular 3/4" crushed stone.
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

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I have a sheet of polyethylene under the gravel to keep the weeds down. I layed it flat (didn't curl the edges up) so that water would not be trapped and could run off the edges. The gravel is just regular 3/4" crushed stone.
Thanks, Kblazer. I'll have to look into that and add it to my list of options.
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Old 02-24-2010, 05:11 AM   #6
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Tar paper, heavy garden plastic very cheap, heavy tarp ive used it all with good results.
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Old 02-24-2010, 07:21 AM   #7
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

wider, i did this same thing next to my shop for the wife's swinger. what i did was put down 3" rock for fill and base, leveled it out and then put down about 3 to 4 inches of "wash out" over it. wash out comes from concrete plants, its what doesn't get delivered and washed out of the mixer trucks. they cant reuse it(it will make the load "hot"), so they gotta get rid of it cheep. it only cost me a loading fee, $15.00 and transportation,$50.00. after i put it down and leveled it, then i ran a vibrating compactor over it. it turned out ok, but i think a roller would have worked out better. I'm going to do this with my drive way also, this spring.
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:41 AM   #8
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Just a thought.......

16x8 = 128ft2

128ft2 x 1/2' = 64ft3

64ft3/27ft3 = 2.37 yards of concrete @ $90 a yard = $213.00

Seems like that would be about the same as gravel, plastic, compactor or anything else. You might have to buy a few 2x4's and stakes. Maybe throw in a few pieces of rebar. Seems like $300 would get it done.
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:59 AM   #9
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

hey, i just had the same situation with my boats, I needed a foundatin to park them on. I had crush and run stone delivered to my house, made a 30x30 pad in my backyard for about $250, its almost as hard as concrete now. Just border it with railroad ties so you dont get wash out. It has worked out perfectly for me so far. Just though I would throw that out there. Good luck with your project!
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Old 02-24-2010, 09:28 AM   #10
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Mad57, thanks for the tip. That was my original idea, but then I thought I'd want to try something a little more permanent as I'm hoping to build a stick lean-to around this ASAP (although the wife doesn't know it yet) before the rainy season hits.

Little d, that's a very good idea. I'm going to call my concrete guy and find out if he can provide wash out and at what cost.

Nostra, I'm going to have to check with my concrete guy. He's a great guy, does good work, but the prices have crept up quite a bit in the last few years. He's done a driveway and a pretty big patio pour for us over the years, but the last quote for 4" of 3500psi concrete at 4.5' x 20' (I was going to build an add-on to my shed a while back, but ultimately didn't do it) was about $400. My idea for the concrete blocks would end up being about half that. I may end up just doing heavy mil tarps under the car for a few months and just save up for the concrete. But I was hoping I could get something more permanent more quickly.
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Old 02-24-2010, 09:31 AM   #11
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrench_head943 View Post
hey, i just had the same situation with my boats, I needed a foundatin to park them on. I had crush and run stone delivered to my house, made a 30x30 pad in my backyard for about $250, its almost as hard as concrete now. Just border it with railroad ties so you dont get wash out. It has worked out perfectly for me so far. Just though I would throw that out there. Good luck with your project!
Jack-

Hi, Jack. That sounds good. I'm going to look into that. Did you underlay the crush and run with any plastic or anything?
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Old 02-24-2010, 09:37 AM   #12
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nostraquedeo View Post
Just a thought.......

16x8 = 128ft2

128ft2 x 1/2' = 64ft3

64ft3/27ft3 = 2.37 yards of concrete @ $90 a yard = $213.00

Seems like that would be about the same as gravel, plastic, compactor or anything else. You might have to buy a few 2x4's and stakes. Maybe throw in a few pieces of rebar. Seems like $300 would get it done.
Agreed whole-heartedly here... Only caveats: most concrete places have a "small load fee", just had to pay one, it was $75. If you decide to have somebody else finish it for you, then you're looking at roughly double the material amount, so figure $400-500 all-in for a concrete pad.

If you DO decide not to do concrete, then I would put down 4" of #57 stone. This would give you a great base for which to put concrete on later.
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Old 02-24-2010, 09:43 AM   #13
widerberg
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Default Re: Cheapo parking pad options?

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Originally Posted by bluesman2a View Post
Agreed whole-heartedly here... Only caveats: most concrete places have a "small load fee", just had to pay one, it was $75. If you decide to have somebody else finish it for you, then you're looking at roughly double the material amount, so figure $400-500 all-in for a concrete pad.

If you DO decide not to do concrete, then I would put down 4" of #57 stone. This would give you a great base for which to put concrete on later.
Actually, interesting point, Bluesman. I hadn't thought about just having my guy pour the concrete and then finish it myself. I'll have to see if he can quote me out that way, too.
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