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Question DetailsAsked on 11/28/2016


Delivering sand to fill 10x10x2 sandboxes. Not accessable by truck. shoveling and wheelbarrow to box. Each sandbox holds 10tons of sand. 4 sandboxes to deliver to. Any idea how to charge for labor?

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Hypothetical calculation for something like this:

You would have to work out how long it will take you to tram the material (assuming you have a dumping spot accessible and nearby) - and equipment cost if you can use a bobcat (if wheel/track damage will not be unacceptable) - otherwise a contractor wheelbarrow at typically 1/8 CY full load (about 350# load, for dry sand) or maybe 1/10CY load for wet sand, assuming nominal but not serious uphill and easy rolling conditions. IF your worker is not pretty strong or energetic, maybe 1/10 - 1/12 CY (more like 3CF or about 300#) per trip. I figure for myself about 10-12 round trips per hour loading loose material and wheelbarrowing not over 100 feet each way with easy rolling and good lateral clearances. (You evidently have about 30CY to fill - figuring 100#/CF for dry sand gets your 40 ton number, so that works out about right- IF you can get dry rather than uncovered outdoor stockpile, so commonly more like 115-125 #/CF).

So - I would figure (assuming the max 100 foot tram distance each way) at 1/8 to 1/10CY per trip times 10-12 trips/hour would yield about 20-30 man-hours of wheelbarrowing. That is probably a bit conservative - takes me about 10 manhours to move a 15CY load of harder to load topsoil or gravel at my home, about 10% uphill 100' each way or so, but probably in the ballpark.

So - assuming not steep uphill or longer distance, figure your manhour billing rate times 20-30 manhours and add in your materials cost and hauling cost (or delivered and dumped cost) and add on your overheads and profit and you are there. If you figure $25/hour loaded laborer cost (with overhead and profit), plus maybe $15-20/ton for the material delivered (including your profit margin) that would put you in the $1100-1600 ballpark - or about $30-40 something per ton delivered and placed - a fairly common number for that sort of product with hand moving.

Course, depending on accessibility and clearance issues, a power buggy rented for a day (commonly about $100-50/day, some places do half-day rentals) might make it a lot easier and likely bring your cost down if you think that is non-competitive - but of course reduces the manhours which you might prefer to keep up this time of year. Course, you have to rent a trailer and have trailer light connections or have some other way to get it there and back too, because having them delier it to you would be another $100 probably.

Of course, the closer you can get to the sandboxes with the truck the better, or maye even further away but good trafficking conditions and uphill from sandboxes to ease the work load and improve cycle time, but you may be limited by where you can dump because of plantings and slopes and such.

Anyway - that is an example - plug in your own estimated numbers, and be sure you include all equipment and delivery cost (expecially if renting or buying a new wheelbarrow or such), and overheads and profit.

Other option - DIY with about 30 kids with sandpails and a week or two of hauling time.

BTW - if stockpiling overnight, you might want to consider tarping with weighted edges so the customer is not upset by cat poop in the sand.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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