Sunday, May 23, 2010

For the second week in a row I helped someone with landscape installation:

Last week it was Boy Scout Troop 1033, this week it was Max and Pete. 
When you buy a pallet of "boulders" there's always a big one at the bottom. That's either the good news or the bad news, or more likely both. That's a heavy rock; by my rough calculations it weighs between 950 and 1250 pounds and I'd bet a good bit of money that it's not within a hundred pounds of the low estimate. It's a heavy rock. The others, weighing between 150 and 300 lbs.? were easily moved with a pneumatic -wheeled two-wheel dolly, but not the monster.

Max and Pete had installed the front beds here three or four years ago and have since done a couple of installations in the back. Marie, the homeowner, treated herself to these rocks and so they took the opportunity to replace the pile of stones that had been taking the place of the "large boulder" called for in the design with this monster. I figured I'd ride along in case they needed help moving a half-ton rock. They didn't really need physical help, thankfully, but I like to think my experience and wisdom were of some use.  First let me say...Nobody moves rocks this size without machinery. Nobody. When M&P bought me rocks for Christmas, the stoneyard loaded them with a backhoe....and they weighed less than 100 lbs. each. We did it though, and in the rain.
We tore the pallet apart and used the sides for a "sliding" ramp. The stone was too heavy/and or angular to roll so we had to inch it along. In the top two pictures, Max patiently levers it forward. In the bottom Peter contemplates the fact that it still needs to be rotated 180 degrees as the front is backward and the back is frontward! We accomplished this relatively easily, (relative being the operative word). When the bed has been restored around it I'll take a nice picture!

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