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jason_carlton26

Railroad ties for a retaining wall

I'm wanting to build up a section of my back yard so that I can put in a 5000G pond with a stream to my existing 1000G pond. I'd like your feedback on retaining walls to support it.


The build-up area would be triangular shaped, with a curvy 96' wall in the front that's mostly 2' tall but curves toward the back where it will grow to 6' tall; then a straight 6' x 64' wall in the back, and a tapered wall on the side that starts at 2' tall and progresses to 6' tall.


I have a lead on used-but-good-shape creosote-treated railroad ties for $10 /each. These are usually $25 at Lowes, so that's a pretty good discount. They are 7" x 9" x 8'


By my count, I would need 168 of them... so roughly $1700. I'd probably round up to $2000 to be safe, then if I have excess then there's another area I wouldn't mind having a similar wall.


I guess I'd need a bunch of #3 rebar to drive in to it and hold it all together? 10' rebar is $6.50 at Lowes, and 4' rebar is about $5. I guess I'd need about 20 of the 10' and 30 of the 4'? So let's say $300 in rebar; but I'd buy a lot more than I need, and just return whatever's left.


Then I think I'd need 3-4" pipe to follow the length of the front and back to put at the bottom of the retaining wall, then a truck load of rip rap gravel to dump on top of it to create a French drain. So maybe $500 in that. I'm not quite sure how to do that part without loading in the dirt and then digging it back up by hand, but that's a problem for the future ;-)


If this all sounds like a reasonable plan, do you think I need to plan for anything else? Or better, anywhere that I could cut costs?

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