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Michigan Homesteading and Home Improvement Forum about building, buying, and caring for second homes or properties in MI, and general home improvement questions.

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  #1  
Old 03-27-2009, 04:25 PM
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Question Digging a pond- Backhoe wanted

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We're thinking of enlarging a small pond on our property this summer.Does anyone know where a Backhoe can be rented in the Branch,Baldwin to Ludington area ??
We have an experienced operator,we just need the machine for a weekend.
Any help would be appreciated.Thanks Al
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Old 03-28-2009, 07:54 AM
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How big is your pond now and how much bigger you gonna make it? You might need something more than a backhoe. You might need to use an exavator and a bulldozer.Just asking.
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Old 03-28-2009, 08:00 AM
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I know of a backhoe and operator that can be had for 35 dollars an hour.
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Old 03-28-2009, 12:26 PM
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The pond is only about 20 feet across and about 2 feet deep, its in a low spot on the property and it always has water. I've been told that it's fed by the water table.I want to make it 3 or 4 times wider and maybe 2 times deeper and that's why I think a backhoe would do the job. I have an operator, and only need to rent the backoe, but if I can only get one with an operator, maybe we can work something out. Thanks
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Old 03-29-2009, 11:35 AM
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word of advice if you borrow one, make sure everything is in tip-top shape.
my brother-in-law borrowed an excavator last yr. to dig a pond. one whole drive track ( gears, bushings est.) was rusted together. it ran ok until he noticed a shaft running out the side. we spent a couple weeks making new parts for it.
everything turned out fine for him. but just beware if you borrow an old machine
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Old 03-29-2009, 01:13 PM
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More advice make sure you get the proper permits for doing this. Digging a pond requires permits. Even if the low spot is always wet. You will need a permit to dig it out and create a pond.
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Old 03-30-2009, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigcountrysg View Post
More advice make sure you get the proper permits for doing this. Digging a pond requires permits. Even if the low spot is always wet. You will need a permit to dig it out and create a pond.
I would keep real quiet and have someone come in with a longstick escivator and a dozer. BTW do not dig through your hard pan as you could loose your pond completly.
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Old 03-30-2009, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suzyandal View Post
The pond is only about 20 feet across and about 2 feet deep, its in a low spot on the property and it always has water. I've been told that it's fed by the water table.I want to make it 3 or 4 times wider and maybe 2 times deeper and that's why I think a backhoe would do the job. I have an operator, and only need to rent the backoe, but if I can only get one with an operator, maybe we can work something out. Thanks
That's alot of earth that you want to move with a backhoe.
If it's low and mucky you may want to wait untill there is some frost in the ground before starting.

NO PERMITS are needed in many areas of Michigan.
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Old 03-30-2009, 06:53 PM
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As previously mentioned, a backhoe would work, but an excavator would be more efficient. With that being said, a google search for "ludington rental" revealed a rental place in Ludington with a "mini-excavator". If your pond dried up in the summer, it might be able to get the job done but it would take quite a bit of time. If it was me, I would rent from Hertz Rental or United Rental in Grand Rapids. They will deliver to the site. Bigger machines = greater efficiency=cheaper in the long run.
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Old 03-30-2009, 07:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ESOX View Post
I know of a backhoe and operator that can be had for 35 dollars an hour.

^ is your BEST BET HERE.
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Old 03-30-2009, 08:30 PM
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If you are not sure what you need, I'd call someone that knows what they are doing to at least take a look at it for you. Either a contractor, or one of the sales reps. from one of the more reputable dealers will give you some advice. They're all hungry right now.

I have been in the highway/heavy construction business for 36 years and sold for Cat for 25 years.

I would'nt even venture to give you a guess as to what the proper machine(s) would be until I saw the site, looked at the soils, disposal area, etc, etc.

Do yourself a favor and call someone that knows what they are doing. I've seen more injuries and fatalities around ponds than any other construction worksite.

They're dangerous!!

Do'nt mean to scare you, but I hope I do.
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Old 03-31-2009, 06:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phyrelin View Post
I would keep real quiet and have someone come in with a longstick escivator and a dozer. BTW do not dig through your hard pan as you could loose your pond completly.

Posting his plans on here is not keeping quiet. Also your not just messing with state law. Your also messing with Federal Wetland Protection Laws. You can't keep quiet once one of the nieghbors water supply wells goes dry because your pond changed the water table.

There are a lot of reasons for needing these permits. Now sure this person could just start digging as you say. But once caught the big fines could follow. Which could go into the excess of 10,000 dollars. Just something to think about.
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Old 03-31-2009, 07:05 AM
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Big Country is right.

I would not move one scoop of dirt without checking with the local soil eroision enforcement agency or DEQ office. Those folks are no fun to mess with.
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Old 03-31-2009, 08:05 AM
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I would not move one scoop of dirt without checking with the local soil eroision enforcement agency or DEQ office.
Just reposting for effect.
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Old 03-31-2009, 08:11 AM
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Another thing is if your caught, and the DEQ fines you not only do you have to pay the fine. You also have to pay the DEQ to come in and repair the damage you done.

Another thing a low spot is not always the best place for a pond. Just because it is always wet. You could start digging and find muck or a peat moss pit. Which then your intentions of a pond is completely ruined. You will also ruin the eco system of the peat moss pit you just dug up.


Even if you have an exsisting pond you want to make bigger or dredge out. You need a permit for that as well.

Once a pond has been erected. It now falls under the Federal Wetland Protection laws. So an enviroment impact study needs to be done to make any changes to the exsisting pond.

Trust me you do not want to create this big legal hornets nest. Even if you have a big deep pockets filled with green. Because those pockets maybe become big deep pockets that are empty.
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Last edited by bigcountrysg; 03-31-2009 at 08:14 AM.
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