Author Topic: A bit of a construction riddle  (Read 8410 times)

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Offline catchrcall

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A bit of a construction riddle
« on: February 13, 2011, 04:37:30 PM »
Ok, so here's the deal.  My county has passed an ordinance that says that my dogs have to be kept on a surface that does not absorb water.  That means I have to change their dirt floored kennels, which have trimmed up cedar trees in them for shade.  The kennels are kind of on a side hill, which helps with draining when it rains.  I am looking for a way to keep the trees in the kennels because the dogs really like them, but still have a floor that doesn't absorb water so i can be legal, preferably without breaking the bank, but I am willing to spend some to keep the dogs right. I was thinking maybe some sort of cement stabilized sand?  Not sure how to go about making it.  I am open to any suggestions. thanks.

Online Redoverfarm

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2011, 04:54:56 PM »
What about stable mats.  Usually sold at most farm supply stores.  You can cut/slit to fit around the trees.  It will be easy on the dogs feet as well and easy to clean up with a garden hose.

Offline MountainDon

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2011, 05:02:00 PM »
How much floor per dog?

Would pouring a section of x by y concrete with dirt around satisfy them?
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline catchrcall

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2011, 05:16:08 PM »
concrete would satisfy them, but the ground is pretty uneven and maybe too steeply sloped for the way i'd have to get it back there.  I only have a footpath through the trees.  The stable mats though...  I could build a level floor in each kennel with the mats on top of it and it would be level enough to work.  maybe recycle some pallets so rain would run under them. the kennels are 20x10 each and there are six of them, but i could make it so the kennels are two parts, one part a dirt exercise yard sort of deal and another "living area" with the mats.  might work out.  anything else?  Thanks guys.

Online Redoverfarm

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2011, 05:26:19 PM »
What area or jurisdiction are you in/under.  Did they explain the reasoning.  If this is a rural area what are they making the farmers do with their animals?

Offline catchrcall

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2011, 06:03:58 PM »
I live in central texas.  I'm outside city limits on a county road. They made it so that if you have more than three dogs (we have seven, all working dogs that live outdoors) you have to have a kennel permit, which means passing their inspection.  That was the only thing holding us up is the kennel floors.  I don't really know what the purpose is. Believe it or not the inspector suggested stainless steel floors for my outdoor kennels in texas.  That would probably heatstroke every one of them in the summer.  Each dog has a 20x10 kennel, with either eight or ten feet of it covered depending on which kennel you're in.  I left the cedars inside the pens for more shade yet and the dogs like to dig down in the dirt until they hit the cooler wet dirt in the summer.  They also get cedar chips so if it rains they are not in mud.  Unfortunately that's not good enough anymore.

Offline Don_P

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2011, 06:09:58 PM »
I can see their intent but it doesn't make a whole lot of sense unless they are also regulating where the runoff from this impervious area goes when it rains.

Offline catchrcall

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2011, 06:36:30 PM »
No rules about the runoff, you could have them in a giant concrete bowl if you wanted to, as long as the surface doesn't absorb water.  They say it's to keep the dog's waste off of the ground. 

Offline MountainDon

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2011, 06:39:18 PM »
Maybe we should all tip toe around that very carefully unless one of those rule makers has an epiphany and realizes that without a septic system dedicated to the dog kennels their non absorbent pad rule makes no sense at all.  d*
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline catchrcall

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2011, 06:45:22 PM »
Yes sir, especially when the neighbors have horses that are legally kept on dirt  ??? 

Offline MountainDon

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2011, 06:56:49 PM »
Maybe you can teach the dogs to crap in a plastic bucket that can then be sent off the the municipal offices once a week.



No, I didn't really say that did I?  ???
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline catchrcall

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2011, 07:06:33 PM »
'Bout time somebody did! ;D

Offline cmsilvay

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2011, 12:52:17 PM »
You said the dogs are working dogs, so how much time do they spend in the kennel? I could see if this was a puppy mill or a kennel that keeped them penned up 24/7.

Offline cmsilvay

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2011, 11:24:10 PM »

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2011, 06:47:34 AM »
The CBRI floor without piers would be perfect for this.  It is in my underground cabin thread but as John stated we are doing a write up on it as soon as I get my butt in gear.

All you need to do in this case is get a bag of cement and a yard or two of plaster sand.  Reinforcement is Jute erosion control netting available at Home Depot, landscape supplies etc. $75 for a 4x225' roll I think.llll or split gunny sacks would work too.  For added strength I get Fibermesh from the local concrete company - about $6.50 per 1 lb bag - add a handful to each batch of concrete mix.

http://www.agriculturesolutions.com/Twine-and-Netting/Geo-Jute-Netting-Erosion-Control-4-x-225.html

The jute is simply laid in a single layer over the smoothed out ground.  Holes can be filled with loose soil and lightly packed enough to hold you up while working.  The jute will bridge them as reinforcement so no worries.  Lap the jute at the sides

If you want no earth moisture coming up through, put a plastic vapor barrier under it with a little sand on it- maybe 1/2 inch.

Mix cement to sand about 1 to 3.  Add a handful of fibermesh to the mix and continue mixing until it is spread throughout the plaster.  Make the mix reasonably wet for easy troweling.  Plaster the mix over the jute thick enough to cover it just ovver the reinforcing material - maybe 1/4 inch thick total.  Use a wood float or rubber tile grout float  the first day as you want a surface that the second layer of plaster will stick to.

The next day come back with another coat appx 1/4 to 1/2 inch or so thick as needed to plaster a smooth surface over the previous coat.  Remember you are using a cement rich mix and it is thin so a little wetter than normal cement is fine.  The excess water will be used up quickly soaking into the previous days plaster and evaporating.  When troweling smooth for a finish with a steel trowel...I like a swimming pool trowel with rounded corners and thin for flexibility... water may need to be sprayed a bit with a spray bottle or hose sprayer.

Don't forget fibermesh in the second coat too.  It makes the floor so strong that you will not break through a 1/2 inch floor under normal to heavy use.  It is rated at 50 lbs per square foot but has been tested in India to 450 lbs per square foot with no problem.

If desired, color can be added to this top layer for pretty.  Lots of troweling makes the surface all one color.  Splotchy color heavy in places as well as multiple colors lightly troweled gives a natural flagstone look.  Liquid or powdered colors can be used.  Spray a bit of water with the powdered colors to prevent sticking to the trowel.  It will look intense in places but will greatly lighten in color intensity when dry in a week or so.

You can begin using the floor in a few days but about 7 would be best.  Polyurethane can be used as an easily cleanable sealer after completely dry or you could use an admix to waterproof the cement too.

Coverage will be over 640 square feet per cubic yard of plaster at 1/2 inch thickness.
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Offline MountainDon

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #15 on: February 15, 2011, 07:26:32 AM »
In catchrcall's situation with the trees right there I wonder if that would create a problem for the trees. ???
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #16 on: February 15, 2011, 08:17:05 AM »
Note that with the CBRI floor I mention above you can go right around the cedar trees leaving a reservoir area open, and the floor will follow the contour of the growing roots under it with little or no damage.  If there is any damage repairs are as simple as mixing a bit of plaster, cleaning and adding a concrete bonder or Elmers glue to the surface and in the patch material if desired and just troweling it on and smoothing it.  Simply cut the jute to conform to the area desired to be floored leaving sufficient room for the trees.

You can also mold the floor right over wood or earth curbs and make gutters etc. as desired.  You are only limited by your imagination.  Heck... you could build a plaster dog house with it if you wanted.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline MountainDon

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #17 on: February 15, 2011, 08:32:49 AM »
The concern I was thinking of is whether or not this will affect the aeration of the soil. That is necessary for best tree health. An open well area around the trunk does little to get water out where the water grabbing feeder roots are, in the area of the circumference of the drip line of the tree. This might be a great solution depending on how much ground has to be covered to satisfy the zoning. I'd try and get the horse neighbors to rally round and appear in force at a meeting.
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #18 on: February 15, 2011, 08:36:18 AM »
Sani-tred also makes great waterproofing products I have used on steel tanks that even prevented leakage through rust pinholes.

I would trust their floor waterproofer too.

http://www.sanitred.com/GarageFloorCoating.htm  Check their other materials besides this product too.

I am not sure what the situation is at the kennel but I assume that the trees will seek water from further out and that root growth would occur in time to prevent damaging them as the floored area will not prevent migration of water under it.  A drip system could be used to provide moisture to feed the trees directly also.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline firefox

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #19 on: February 15, 2011, 10:46:27 AM »
Could you please give me a pointer to how this
drip system works for feeding trees. I have three redwood trees that
are starting to die due to lack of water. We no longer get the early morning fog that these trees depend on so I need to suplement it.
Thanks,
Bruce
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #20 on: February 15, 2011, 07:54:16 PM »
Sure, Bruce.  It can be done very simply.

Do It Best or other hardware stores all carry at least some drip irrigation equipment.

You can buy a kit with nearly everything you might need or the pieces separately for custom needs.  There is an adapter that hooks the drip hose to a faucet or timer.  You need a piece of the 1/2 inch (commonest size) to go from the faucet around the crops or trees as needed.  A drip punch hose punch puts a small hole in the drip hose to screw or poke a fitting into,  For trees likely a 180 degree or 360 degree fan mini-sprinkler would be good, or you can use drippers that also just poke into the holes.

If you want to automate it a Raindrip analog timer is about the best timer.

A pressure reducer is good in high pressure areas to go on before the timer or hose.  That is the quick version.  Here is one I did using drip tape at Permies .com with pix.

http://www.permies.com/bb/index.php?topic=17.msg41365#msg41365

There are lots of different ways to apply drip - most are pretty simple and hopefully you can find a knowledgeable store employee to help you out too.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline firefox

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2011, 09:08:34 PM »
 [cool] Thanks Glenn!
Bruce
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2011, 09:12:26 PM »
My pleasure,Bruce.  I have my trees on drip here -most on a different timer than the garden - so when I am away in the summer working, they still get watered.

The timer pictured on permies is the easiest to use of all - one nob for when - one for how long and it should cover nearly any desired watering scheme.

I find nearly any of the digital ones to be quite a bit of trouble to program.  The analog one I can program as desired or change in about 2 seconds.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline firefox

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Re: A bit of a construction riddle
« Reply #23 on: February 17, 2011, 01:38:36 PM »
Love your writeup in permies! Also the pic of the Bobcat.
I was a little confused on that though. It looked like there were
handles on either side of the front portion where it grabs the load.
Does this mean that the operator has to grab the handles and lift the load? ??? ;D

Thanks again,
Bruce
Bruce & Robbie
MVPA 23824