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daevemac:
I thought I would make a post about mulches, blankets, and BFM to see what everyone thought about their uses and different applications.  I know that the specs on regular mulches give some slope figures for 1500/2000/ and 2500# applications as a "standard" formula without accounting for any rainfall intensity as the soil loss equations do.  I believe the maximum slope length is listed as well (50 feet?)  BFM then start with certain rates and go even steeper as far as the allowable slope angle and run length.  My question for those of you that live in high intensity rainfall areas such as mine is- what kind of guarantee do you offer when you are exceeding the specifications?  For example, what if you have a two to one slope and a run of one hundred feet that you are hydromulching at a heavy rate but in theory should fall under bfm specs.  Its one thing if the rainfall pattern is kind but something else if you get 8 inches of rain over 30 hours such as we had recently.  So, does it become no warranty or does it become fix for free??  I know that in this situation it should have been a bfm at 3000  to 3500 pounds per acre in the pure sense, but you have to be able to sell that job at a price that makes sense which wasn't the case.  Also, at the base of this covered landfill, the water was like a medium sized stream from runof from the hill- once again really a situation for hydroseeding plus a blanket from the concentrated rapid flow but no one wants to pay for the extras- so redo any washouts or failures or say that the specs was exceeded despite your   advice??  Dave M

clarcon:
It would seem to me that if someone is not willing to pay to do the job right the first time after being given the options with the potential outcome in using each method then they should assume all responsiblity for the outcome if the job fails.  As a protection there should be a clause in the contract stating that you make no guarantees against failure due to weather and the owners decision to choose an inferior erosion control method.  One thing that could also be considered would be to break up the slope length by installing wattles at the midway point to slow down the streams of water.  Just my 2 cents worth.

Craig

nozzle man:
I feel fairly confident that most of the name brand mulches out-perform there own specs.  Having said that, I really would like to see more BFM and FGM products being used in my area as blanket replacements.  Most builders (and there are tons of them where I am)  use erosion control blankets like they are going out of style.  I mean acres upon acres.  They are un-educated about the products that are available to them that will perform better and make there job site look bettter immediately upon application.  The sad thing is the builders roll these things out to comply with EPA regs as BMP's, with out even putting seed down.  They don't care if the area revegetates or not.  The average cost they pay equates to about .20 per sq. ft.  I can put down BFM's for less than that, but I don't have the salesmanship to convince these people on a large scale, that there are better and less expensive alternatives to them!  If I could convince the large scale builders of this, It would littaraly open up thousands of acres to be hydroseeded.

The other challenge is there are entitre counties that have banned hydro mulching as a BMP or as a revegetation technique.  This is due to poor performance in the past, which to me means poor application by shady contractors.  Everything is drilled and crimped.  How do I convince these municipalities that hydro mulching works, and that there are products available that out perform ECB's?

Builders will always do the bare minimum to comply with what ever they need to comply with.  Somehow I, or (we as an industry), need to promote our products and prove that  they are better, more efficient, and less expensive than rolling out ECB's with no chance for permanent revegetation (because they don't seed the area first).

I've had the same experience you guys are talking about.  Landscaper calls and says he needs an area hydroseeded, the plans call for it.  Two or three other guys have already given him a price per sq. ft. for normal hydroseeding.  I go look at the job and realize it is a slope bordering in some areas at a 3:1 right at 50' slope length.  What can you do?  I need the work, but know this should be upgraded to a better mulch than my standard 70/30.  But the landscape contractor is not going to go for a price three times his other bids.  So I do the job, put it down heavy, add extra tac, and if it fails I will stand behind it.  After all, it is a landscape, not a critical erosion control sitiuation, and again I am confident that most of the products we use out perform there own specs.  I sprayed that job in August, and drove buy there a couple of days ago...still holding!  Now I feel safe that it will hold through the winter and will reveg this spring.  I need to stand behind it because if I don't, I lose a customer, no matter what my contract says.

Having said all that, in the 2:1 100'slope at a landfill, different situation than the 3:1 50' landscape job.  Sounds like it drained right into a swale that had direct water flow, and lots of it.  Also, where I am the rain is "kind" (hardly ever rains!).  I believe the hiring contractor has all the responsibility for making a poor choice in erosion control methods, probably because they were trying to save on cash, and now they should pay to have you come back and do the job right.

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