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: gonna break down and pave the driveway

09-26-2005, 11:48 AM
well after almost 8 years here.. i think its time to pave the driveway...

i snow blow it and its a hassle with the gravel.. plus we are forever dragging rocks/stuff into the house...

the drive is about 250 ft long.. plus im gonna have them do a road along side the garage and a path to the shed...

i may also have them do a path to where i park my trailer.. i figure its a 1 shot deal... so i want to do it right...

i believe duc uses rubber chains on his driveway... mine is not too steep so im thinking as long as i dont sit and spin out in it.. the metal chains will not do too much damage to hot top.. am i wrong??

i definetly need chains as i do all sorts of paths throughout the yard... can i expect them to dig up my new driveway??

09-26-2005, 12:12 PM
i believe duc uses rubber chains on his driveway... mine is not too steep so im thinking as long as i dont sit and spin out in it.. the metal chains will not do too much damage to hot top.. am i wrong??

From what little experience i have had with blacktop SJ, i would believe the chains WOULD tear up the blacktop. Did you price concrete versus blacktop?


09-26-2005, 12:24 PM
Did you price concrete versus blacktop?


no.. concrete would be great.. i figured its much more expensive? but not sure...

09-26-2005, 12:32 PM
I am going to replace my blacktop at some point. Maybe not for years.

I did run the question of blacktop vs. concrete past a friend of mine who does concrete for a living. Without quoting any specific numbers or considering depths / size of area / prep / etc... He said to expect concrete to be about DOUBLE the cost of blacktop.

There are benefits to concrete. For one, it doesn't get soft under the summer sun. Did you ever park a road bike on a kickstand on a hot blacktop drive, only to come back and find it on it's side with a big hole where the kickstand sunk into the driveway? I did. Not a nice situation.

I have about 1/4 mile that I snowblow around our yard. Only about 100' of it has blacktop. The remainder is a combination of gravel and some on grass. I would love to have a lot more hard surface. I would settle for blacktop but really would like to be able to afford concrete for a lot of it.

bontai Joe
09-26-2005, 03:23 PM
Metal chains don't tear up the asphault, just scratch the top surface. Remember, it will be winter when black top is at it's hardest. Concrete is nicer and more durable, needs less maintenance (no sealing) and costs more.... but it can be stained in the color of your choice if you desire. If money is no object, paving bricks make a beautiful driveway and again you have choice of color. Brick is VERY expensive, unless you do-it-yourself, should only take about a year and a half to lay all those bricks.

09-28-2005, 11:28 PM
On this street everybody's driveway is on a hill. My side is down to the street and two families I plow for are down away from the street. True macadam is hardest in Winter and it does scratch with excessive spinning. My answer on the steeper parts is I always push downhill. It can add to the plowing time but it sure saves the spinning.

Incidently if you're worring about spinning chains and making marks worry about your plow and snowblower cutting edges as well as gauge skids if you use them. They will make unbroken "gray streaks" wherever the blade touches. Brand new blacktop is not as prone to marking but cold sealer is about as durable as crayon against steel edges...

I have been checking into JD's squeegee cutting edge ($77.00) as my neighbor and myself are having our driveways sealed this Fall. When it gets snowblower deep I'll use a counterbalance spring off the front of the tractor to the blower frame and keep most of the weight off the cutting edge and skids.

Mark / Ohio
09-29-2005, 01:53 AM
My parents had a short blacktop drive at their old house. I had snow chains on my 73 Olds Omega once and parked off and on for several days on it. It just made some white scuff marks but did not really penitrate and make permanent grooves. This was an old drive that was starting to break up anyway. The cement done about the same at the current house with chains on my Elcamino. Any marks seem to weather away after a few weeks. Limiting wheel spin would be the key.

09-29-2005, 05:31 AM
SJ, have your drive plowed professionally. Then it would be their ins to pay for any problems if the new drive gets messed up It would also give you more time to sit back and admire your clean and shiny Simplicity ROF ROF

09-29-2005, 08:35 AM

Yes chains will scratch the driveway. A lot depends on your level of traction and patience though. I'm a get it done kind of guy, so when I paved my drive (I had a JD425 then) I did scratch the driveway (but the spinning does not dig in). Here's a pic where you can see the scratch marks:
As for the drive itself, make sure you use class 2 and not asphalt. Class 2 is what they make roads out of and is much more durable. Also the base is the most important part, it needs several inches of process stone that has been compacted. You probably have a good start as you have had a gravel driveway for 8+ years.



09-30-2005, 01:53 AM
JDF, what year is that Mean Green Plowin' Machine? JD still thought assist handles were a good idea back then. With all the government safety flack today they should be mandatory. I shouldn't have to grab under the fender.

I just got a price tonight for a cold seal job with traction grit @ 10 cents per sq.ft. if neighbor does hers at the same time and .12 if not... Not bad as he does all the prep work. I've got 2,900sq.ft. total with carport and turnaround...

Regarding the durability of blacktop. If the mix was correct tire chains on a garden tractor will never do any significant chipping or digging in when the pavement is below 40 degrees. (I've cut enough of that stuff with a paving breaker in the winter time to get bursitus! It stays hard.) My hill has some left over ten foot long studded tire marks from previous owner attempting to get in.

09-30-2005, 07:20 AM
I no longer use chains - I use AG tires with as much weight as I cant mount on the machine (wheel, suitcase and soon to add liquid in tires) It has worked surprisingly well
for me, Inclines as well..

I used V-bar chains which are on the aggressives side. They dig when they spin, but you never get stuck..unless your off the road or driveway entirely

Paved driveways are the best to deal with for snow removal...I would never allow a plow on it, because they will destroy the Belgin and pavers...

John Deere Addict
09-30-2005, 07:50 AM
A comparison....sort of.
I pour concrete as part of my construction business. 2 years ago we poured a driveway 12' wide and about 250 feet long, 5 inches in depth, on a hard base for $2.50/square foot using limestone gravel and a 6 sack mix.
Use a stronger mix (6 sack instead of 5) for outside approach/driveway and use limestone if at all possible.
This year concrete has of course gone up from 2 years ago (about $15.00 per yard here)and I haven't poured any approaches/driveways but maybe the example will help you get close.
When I do my driveway which is 800 feet off the road I will be pouring concrete, but in 200' sections at a time....and I don't have to pay the labor that most do, which makes it comparable to using asphalt.

09-30-2005, 10:31 AM
JDA: 800 Ft driveway.. thats a lot of concrete..

Ive had 2 estimates so far:

the 1st one would do 3" of hot top... 7800$ This company did my neighbors.. and i thought they did a great job.. real thick hot top...

The 2nd place: 2.5" of hot top... 6000$ Then he said about 500$ more for a spot where i park my trailer...

both places are failrly big and reputable.. and have been around this area for as long as i have been here...

there is a local sand and gravel and hot top place here- this is where all the hot top companies get theirs from...
they are no longer accepting jobs for this year.. but im gonna get a quote from them too.. and if they are a lot cheaper i may wait till spring...

but id like to do it now... i dont know why i waited the 7 years...

but now my yard is pretty well done.. i dont anticipate any more heavy equipment coming up the driveway any more.. so the time seems right....

09-30-2005, 12:06 PM
Simple John,

What is hot top? You should be asking for class 2 (it's the same price as asphalt, but is the same material they make roads out of). Also the thickness of the blacktop isn't so important -- the base is the real critical element. Plenty of driveways are only 2" thick and last wonderfully. The contractor that did my drive had a roller with vibration -- if left in one spot, it would actually dig a hole. He compacted the process with this, and then the class 2 after he laid it down.

This is also a good time of the year to do the drive as you will be able to drive on it right away.

You'll be saying, "why didn't I do this sooner"!



09-30-2005, 12:48 PM
Simple John,

What is hot top? You should be asking for class 2

thats on my list of things to ask when the guy comes over with the contract... im assuming thats what he uses.. but will verify...


10-01-2005, 02:46 AM
3" thick of (?mix blacktop) on 5" of Item #4 supported six cord load logging trucks when I used to buck my own firewood. I had them come when the weather had turned cold and nary a crack...

10-01-2005, 08:52 AM

That 425 was a 94' (in that pic it was about 10 years old with over 700 hours on it).