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  #1  
Old 10/06/09, 10:39 AM
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 57
Driveway Drag?

I've got a fairly long driveway and a large 100'x100' plus turn around area (bordered by the house and outbuildings on 3 sides). I'd like to make a drag to smooth it out once in a while. Suggestions? Ideas? I'd be pulling it behind my truck.

CB

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  #2  
Old 10/06/09, 10:52 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas
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Get you an old railraod tie, put two eye bolts thru it. Attach length of chain and hook it on the back of your truck. When you're finished just sit it off to the side somewhere. It sure won't rot.


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  #3  
Old 10/06/09, 11:20 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: South Boardman, MI
Posts: 195

Better yet would be several railroad ties, but the drillbits you'd need might get expensive.
I'd use a 25-30' length of chain, and three railroad ties. Drill a hole large enough to fit the chain through, about a foot from each end. To keep the timber from moving on the chain, use a piece of metal strapping through the links, screwed into the tie with deck screws. I'd probably do two pieces of metal strapping on the backsides, in an X. (four or more screws, for each side)

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  #4  
Old 10/06/09, 11:35 AM
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My dad used to use several logs chained on behind a tractor to drag the snow in our mile and a quarter driveway in Alaska -- we didn't have anything to plow with. If you could get heavy enough logs they'd probably work for your driveway -- for a while, until they wore out! Or get an old tooth harrow and turn it upside down and drag it that way.

Kathleen

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  #5  
Old 10/06/09, 11:43 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: MN
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A heavy beam, like the rr tie or an I beam or a nice size log, with some chain link fence behind it. You might want to put some weight on the fence - like drape a tow chain on it, or something flexable - sometimes no weight.

That would be sheap using what is around.

The beam shaves & loosens and levels the dirt. The chain link smooths it out.

--->Paul

--->Paul

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  #6  
Old 10/06/09, 11:49 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: South Boardman, MI
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Oh, one more thing... Once it's dragged, get a spreader cart and fill it with a 50/50 mix of sand and portland cement. Run that a few times up and down the driveway, then drag JUST a square of chainlink over it ONCE.

Set up sprinklers to get it moist, and don't drive on it until it's dry. That will set the surface of the driveway so it won't get rutted.

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  #7  
Old 10/06/09, 12:02 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Pittsburg, MO
Posts: 183
Our neighbor uses the tongue salvaged off a mobile home

Don't want to sound dumb, but what is portland cement? We have a long hill driveway, it is very rutted from all the rain this year. We, several times have not been able to get vehicles up to the house with out using tractor to tow us. Also the way road is at the bottom, we can't get a "run" at it. When we've put gravel on it, it all gets bladed, drug, or washed away, what the best way to improve out drive? Thankx--

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  #8  
Old 10/06/09, 12:11 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 57

Thanks for the ideas. I had actually thought about the chain link fence idea but had not thought about using wood beams or ties for the drag weights. I have some wood creocete 6x6's stacked in a shed that were used for corner post for stalls.

Do you guys think two 6x6's (one front and one at the tail) with chain link in between would work well? Should I add one in the middle too? Skip the chain link all together?

BlueJuniperFarm, tell me more about using a drag for snow removal. I don't have a plow and am curious. Right now I use 3 options for snow removal. Option #1 is do nothing if it's only a couple inches and not drifted. Option #2 is breakout the snow blower for drifts not over 2 feet. Option #3 is a helping neighbor with a large tractor and loader. He comes over and removes snow on the bad storms. If a drag works it would be a nice replacement for options #1 and 2.

CB

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  #9  
Old 10/06/09, 12:19 PM
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Well, keep in mind that we didn't actually drive in and out most of the winter! Dad would park out near the end of the driveway at his parents house and either walk the rest of the way or take the tractor. If the whole family was going someplace -- rare in the winter -- we rode on the tractor (and the tractor was the only vehicle that could make the trip during spring break-up -- Mom has a picture of our whole family on the tractor in Sunday best on our way out to some Easter festivity late one April -- five children and her and Dad!). My brothers and I walked out to the main road to catch the school bus. But if your driveway is shorter, you could probably drag it enough to drive on it, or just park near the road when the snow is too deep to drive all the way in.

I wouldn't let the drifts get too deep, though. You might have to drag several times during a bad storm. Your neighbor with the heavy equipment sounds like a very handy person to be friends with!

Kathleen

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  #10  
Old 10/06/09, 12:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaynaJ View Post
Don't want to sound dumb, but what is portland cement? We have a long hill driveway, it is very rutted from all the rain this year. We, several times have not been able to get vehicles up to the house with out using tractor to tow us. Also the way road is at the bottom, we can't get a "run" at it. When we've put gravel on it, it all gets bladed, drug, or washed away, what the best way to improve out drive? Thankx--



portland cement is the fine grey powder in a bag of cement
it is the glue that holds the agrigate together and makes what you think of as cement since the gravel "agrigate" is all ready spread on the drive he is suggesting using a spreader to put a layer of portland cement and sand a fine agrigate on top and then water it down in so that when it drys it bonds your gravel together.





if you have very steep areas you can also put in sections of concrete held together by rebar this is used as an errosion technique some times

but workin on a way to direct the water off without running down length of the drive preferably to larger stones that will trap the gravle being washed away is best if it is posable to grade it in such a way some dives that is not much of an option others need to pitch into a ditch and then have culverts or concret troughs that carry the water accross without erroding the drive
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  #11  
Old 10/06/09, 01:18 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Pittsburg, MO
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God has Blessed me today, I've learned something new!!

Thank You Green County Pete for responding. Some good information, I hope to be able to use it this fall. Going to have to spend the money I guess & have gravel brought in again & put on drive.

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  #12  
Old 10/06/09, 01:46 PM
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: MN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaynaJ View Post
Don't want to sound dumb, but what is portland cement? We have a long hill driveway, it is very rutted from all the rain this year. We, several times have not been able to get vehicles up to the house with out using tractor to tow us. Also the way road is at the bottom, we can't get a "run" at it. When we've put gravel on it, it all gets bladed, drug, or washed away, what the best way to improve out drive? Thankx--
You need ditches down each side of the drive, and you need to crown the drive so the water runs the short way off the road, into the ditches. The crown is having the center higgher than the 2 sides of the roadbed, and _no_ ruts that keep the water on top of the roadbed. A gentle slope to the sides.

Then, your road ditches need good grass, or rock, to keep them from washing out with all the water channeled to them.

Your problem is the water is now running down the middle or the 2 wheel tracks of your drive, and taking all the gravel with it to the bottom.

You need the water to flow to the side, and then away. The short distance the water flows to the side will not develop enough force to take gravel with it. The long slope down the center of your drive now lets the water build up volume & speed, and takes the gravel with it.

--->Paul
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  #13  
Old 10/06/09, 02:52 PM
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Location: michigan
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Piece of steel I beam. Add rocks and/or cement for more weight. P.S. add chain and use it straight for gradeing and angle it to the back of the truck for snow to kick it off to the side.

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Last edited by 7thswan; 10/06/09 at 02:54 PM.
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  #14  
Old 10/11/09, 12:57 AM
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: South East AZ
Posts: 387

Best drag I have ever used was a piece of old cattle guard made from railroad iron, does a great job and even removes the washboarding that fast drivers cause...

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  #15  
Old 10/11/09, 11:55 AM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 2,037

Our neighbor uses old bed springs weighted to smooth his gravel parking area.

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  #16  
Old 10/11/09, 02:44 PM
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 222

go to a tire shop and get 10 semi tires and eye bolt them together in bowling pin design... pull it behind a pickup or tractor... you can't wear it out and it will also smooth down feedlots and heavily used pastures....and as a side part, the tire shop will pay you to remove them... only expense would be the eye bolts that hold them together and a length of chain and a small amount of cable and 4 cable clamps ....mike

pm me and I will tell you how we put them together if interested

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Last edited by ozark mike; 10/11/09 at 02:49 PM.
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