The original owner had formed cement strips in the front lawn where he had intended to anchor a wrought iron fence.  There was over a hundred feet of them.  Bad idea.

Ken Ross, my next door neighbor and retired General Contractor, offered to remove the cement strips that were a pain to trim and mow around.  He said it would be a "peace of cake" and take no time at all to do.  He had a Bobcat, and figured he could pull it up without much trouble.   BRRRRZZZ!!!  WRONG ANSWER!

They were a foot deeper than what he thought they were, and had two strips of rebar in them.  It took two days and the hiring of two Mexicans to get it all out, and several days for me to get it all cleaned up.  

I also had to lower several sprinklers, and repair some broken ones, as well as broken pipe in two different places.  I was a week in getting everything back as it should be.

There are some explanations below each picture.  Be sure to use the bottom slide bar to see them all.

Just to remind you, this is the cement strip to be removed.  I could not tell you how much time it took to keep the lawn trimmed on both sides, besides extra mowing time. The cement had to be cut into about 6' sections, and that meant getting in far enough to cut the iron. Here you can see the two strips of rebar, and just how far in they were.  Once they were cut, then Ken could use his Bobcat to left and break apart.


A Rotohammer was used to chip into the cement to get to the rebar.  I had to hire these two men to do it.  There was just no way that I could do it.  It took them two days of hard work to get it done.   This is Ken chipping a bit more out, as the sections would not break apart. One used a diamond blade to cut the cement, while the other would then use the Rotohammer to chip it all out. Notice the left edge of the roof.  That is what the wind has done.  I am forever having to repair the roof from wind damage, and the winds this year have been something else.  That is not easy work for this young man, believe me.


I did most of the attaching of the choker, but did not on this one as I wanted a picture of it being done. Some of the strips were so heavy in pulling them out, the weight actually lifted the rear wheels of the Bobcat off of the ground. This was a long piece that had not as yet been broken apart into two pieces. Ken would haul the strips to the property just across the alley from my garage.  Each strip must weigh over a thousand pounds.  I would guess that it was about 7 yards of cement.  A cement truck hauls about ten yards, so that will give you an idea of how much cement there was in the strips. I have not counted them, but there must be somewhere between 15 and 20 of them that had to be cut up, lifted out, and then hauled to here.

All of this will have to be hauled to the dump, which we will be doing in a week or two.  Ken has a really great trailer that has a bed that raises to dump the load.  That will cost a few bucks at the dump.  I am just glad that we have one only a few miles away.  Doing such in L A County costs twice as much to dump, and means driving a long ways to do so, and then waiting in a long line to get in.


Removing the cement left a trench about a foot deep.  Ken would bring back a load of dirt from the area south of the garage after taking a cut up section to that area. I would get as much of the crumbs and large broken off chunks raked into the hole as I could, and roughly spread the dirt while he was bringing more.


These are pictures of the finished work.  All of the crumbs had to be raked off of the lawn (and there was an incredible amount of them), and the dirt leveled out. This was a lot of work, and took much time to accomplish. We will have to do some more fill work as you can see, so there is still more time to spend on it.  In case you are wondering, the grass will eventually spread and cover the new dirt.  And, now that it is spring, I will be getting the lawn in shape and back to being green.
A couple of pictures of the pile of strips that had to be taken to the dump.  It took four trips to get it done.



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