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May 8, 2012 / aaronmarkson

Paver Patio: Preparations

I have been real busy with work and traveling with Farewell Milwaukee on a couple tours, so I haven’t done any work on the attic lately.  Living in Minnesota means long winters and short summers, although this year has been a bit of an exception, so I wanted to take advantage of the nice weather and have turned my attention to some outdoor projects.  The first project is to install a paver patio next to the house.  Originally, there was a picnic table on a bed of rocks in the middle of the yard.  The picnic table was rotting and falling apart, so I took that apart and threw it in the dumpster when remodeling the main level of our house.  We then dug up all the rock, and plied it up to use under the pavers.  Then I marked  the area and dug out a space for the new patio. I transferred grass from the new patio area to the former  rock/picnic area.  Then I put the rock down, followed by a ton of class 5 gravel.  I graded this slightly away from the house to encourage water drainage away from the house and compacted it with a plate compactor I rented.

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Once that was compacted and sloped the way I wanted it, I laid down some 1″ PVC and started shoveling into that area.  The pvc just acted as a guide to get the sand even and flat. Image

Once I got all the sand laid and flat, I ran the plate compactor over the sand to pack it as much as possible and get the area completely ready to lay the pavers.  It’s a pretty simple process, but did tire me out with all the shoveling and lifting. I think the harder part was to get the plate compactor in and out of my car by myself…not a smart thing to do.  If you rent one of those, make sure you have someone to help you lift it in and out of your car/truck.  Once this area was prepped, I immediately started placing pavers down.  I still have about 10 or so pavers to cut, but the rest of them went down in just a couple hours at most.  I am hoping to get the final pavers cut and installed later this week, and will post some final pictures once its done.

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