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Old 10-15-2020, 06:22 AM   #1
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Gravel Pad for TT Storage

I'm looking to build a gravel pad in my side yard to store my travel trailer. I've been told parking these directly on grass can be damaging in the long term. So my plan is to rent a tractor with the excavator arm on it and dig out a little pad and then put down stone or gravel.

My question is, how deep should I dig up to put down stone? 4in? More? Less? I think stone would be the best option as we don't plan to stay in this house more than another few years and would make it reversible. But i'm open to other suggestions!
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Old 10-15-2020, 06:30 AM   #2
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I used 57 rock. I leveled out the area with clay (live in Ga) an dumped the rock right on top about 2-3"deep. It's been working fine. I will probably have to put a little more down soon more so because of the weight of the truck than the trailer. The rock is sinking into the clay somewhat but not bad
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:10 AM   #3
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I used 4 inches of crushed shale and after my 2nd season topped it with about 2 inches of Item 4 because my plan is to eventually blacktop or pour cement so I wanted a tightly compacted base.
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:16 AM   #4
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It is the combination dirt and rubber chemical effect. You don't need much of a gravel layer, it all depends on the present compactness.
Better is putting a piece board under the tires. More better, jack up the whole RV with tires of the ground.
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:42 AM   #5
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Is it even worth digging down a few inches? Or just scatter some gravel underneath? I keep it on planks day to day as it is
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:55 AM   #6
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We had a contractor who excavated down to subsoil, 10ft x 35ft. Put down landscape fabric to prevent weeds, backfilled with gravel, compacting several times between loads. Since the yard slopes he then used the top soil to make the slope less steep.
Was it overkill? Maybe. But he did it all for the contracted price and after 4.5 years, no sinking and only surface weeds from the lawnmower. Obviously a man who takes pride in his work.
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Old 10-15-2020, 11:01 AM   #7
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But... do you NEED a 350 sq ft concrete pad?

Your RV only touches the ground at a limited number of small points (tyres, and jacks, basically)
Could you not put down a few small areas of rock or concrete, and just park carefully?

(Having said that, I will confess that we have a very large and expensive concrete pad alongside the carport, which was sized for our pop-up, and is now now just not quite wide enough for our TT ... but that's another story..)
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Old 10-15-2020, 07:36 PM   #8
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Spread 10 ton directly on the ground over the grass. Now grass is growing in the gravels. Hind site is 20/20 I wish I would have put down a weed barrier first.
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Old 10-15-2020, 07:38 PM   #9
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But... do you NEED a 350 sq ft concrete pad?

Your RV only touches the ground at a limited number of small points (tyres, and jacks, basically)
Could you not put down a few small areas of rock or concrete, and just park carefully?

(Having said that, I will confess that we have a very large and expensive concrete pad alongside the carport, which was sized for our pop-up, and is now now just not quite wide enough for our TT ... but that's another story..)
a large pad helps keep grass clippings off the trailer when the lawn is mowed.
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:18 PM   #10
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Concrete is terrible for rotting steel. It holds the moisture. Gravel is your best option
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Old 10-15-2020, 11:06 PM   #11
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We had a contractor who excavated down to subsoil, 10ft x 35ft. Put down landscape fabric to prevent weeds, backfilled with gravel, compacting several times between loads. Since the yard slopes he then used the top soil to make the slope less steep.
Was it overkill? Maybe. But he did it all for the contracted price and after 4.5 years, no sinking and only surface weeds from the lawnmower. Obviously a man who takes pride in his work.

I would say this^^ I like to do stuff nice and neat and right the first time, I guess that I'm too neat.
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Old 10-16-2020, 01:26 PM   #12
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We had a contractor who excavated down to subsoil, 10ft x 35ft. Put down landscape fabric to prevent weeds, backfilled with gravel, compacting several times between loads. Since the yard slopes he then used the top soil to make the slope less steep.
Was it overkill? Maybe. But he did it all for the contracted price and after 4.5 years, no sinking and only surface weeds from the lawnmower. Obviously a man who takes pride in his work.
how much did you spend on that project?
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Old 10-16-2020, 05:21 PM   #13
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It is the combination dirt and rubber chemical effect. You don't need much of a gravel layer, it all depends on the present compactness.
Better is putting a piece board under the tires. More better, jack up the whole RV with tires of the ground.
That is what I did. I cut a couple of 2x8 boards and placed those on 1.5 inch gravel. If I park on the boards it is automatically level side-to-side. Then the tongue jack finishes up the job. There is enough gravel to drain away the water from the wood.
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Old 10-16-2020, 05:27 PM   #14
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how much did you spend on that project?
Don't recall off the top of my head. It was over 4 yrs. now. If I can dig out a record, I'll repost.

We live less than a mile from Long Island Sound so a pad for an RV or boat is a selling feature for home sale. So, home improvement as well.
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Old 10-19-2020, 03:07 PM   #15
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We just had a 12 X 24 pad installed for our 175RD. We have a lot of clay where we plan to park the camper. The contractor excavated 12" down, installed landscape fabric, 6" of gravel and 6" or so of reclaimed asphalt.
Ordered Camco "tire savers" and intend to mount them on 2 X10 pressure treated boards. Blocked tongue jack and stabilizers with pads made from pressure treated scrap wood.
Should be good to go.
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Old 10-19-2020, 03:12 PM   #16
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That is what I did. I cut a couple of 2x8 boards and placed those on 1.5 inch gravel. If I park on the boards it is automatically level side-to-side. Then the tongue jack finishes up the job. There is enough gravel to drain away the water from the wood.
This is pretty much what we did. Our gravel pad is probably 3" deep. I cut the sod out and had 3 yards of gravel dumped in, I spread it. We added a layer of crushed gravel some years back. I'd like to add another layer. I also cut 2'x'8 boards for the wheels, but I dug out the gravel and laid them in so they would be flush.
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Old 10-19-2020, 03:18 PM   #17
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Crushed stone. Fine crushed stone. Drains well and the snowplow won't throw it all over. There is about three inches of 57 and three of 411. No boards. Reason is that the tires WILL freeze to the boards. I remember doing that some fifty years ago and had a heck of a time getting the tires free.
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Old 10-20-2020, 10:43 AM   #18
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We chose a Concrete Pad

For the 5th Wheel in FL, we contracted for a concrete pad. Spent about $3500 a few years back.
Reasons:
Get off the ground and grass. Discourage at least few critters and bugs.
Much nicer to crawl around underneath for maintenance and repairs.
Nicer surface to store things underneath.
Installed anchor chains between frame and pad at the 4 corners for some protection from hurricanes. It may get crushed but it won't blow away!

2-cents.
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Old 10-20-2020, 11:26 AM   #19
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A lot depends on where you live and what the city requires.

Where I live, we are no longer allowed to install a gravel parking pad or driveway. It must be a hard surface.

My parents for decades parked their TT on the "grass" no boards under the wheels. Never had an issue.

A lot could depend on your soil and site conditions. If you have clay, I would recommend putting down a good heavy duty layer of geo cloth, before the stone. This will keep it from sinking in. Depending on where you are parking the unit, you might want to dig down so you can have good drainage, of visually looks good from the yard or street. Also if it is going up against a building you want to consider the building's foundation height to ensure you do not encourage water not to cause damage to the structure.

If it was me, and not knowing your site conditions, I would dig out, install Geo Cloth between the soil and class 5, compacted in. If you want it to look nicer, then another layer of Geo Cloth, and a nice looking stone. If you have a compacted substrate it will stay cleaner and nicer looking. One thing I hate about rock, is after a few years, debris gets in between, and it looks dirty and is a great place for weeds to sprout.
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Old 10-21-2020, 08:11 AM   #20
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I removed top layer of dirt from my pad area to get down to red clay. I should have put down some geo cloth before putting down about 4-6" of No. 57 washed stone, but so far after two years nothing growing through the gravel. I was told not to let the tires sit on the stone so I purchased some 4' x 6' x 3/4" heavy duty stall (stable) mats from Tractor Supply for about $50 and cut it length wise to make two pieces 2' wide to roll the wheels on. Works great !
https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/pr...t?cm_vc=-10005
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