Spotlight on Specialties: Excavation

Spotlight on Specialties: Excavation

So you want to break into excavation but don’t know how? Come on, guys; you should know by now that we’ve got you covered. We’ll start by giving you a basic breakdown of what excavation is. In this case, excavation is removing dirt, rock or any other ground material with specialized tools (or machinery) specifically made for these kinds of jobs.

Of course, there’s much more to it than just digging up dirt. There are, as we said, certain tools that you need and many different kinds of excavation. There is also the fact that you’ll need to thoroughly survey the land before you can even begin the dig. If you want to know more, read on.

What’s Involved in the Excavation Process?

Ok, so you dig; that much you already know, but what else does excavation entail? Well, you survey. We already said this too, but the purpose is to ensure that you don’t damage any of the surrounding landscape or nearby monuments/artifacts (if there are any).

Once this is done, you would then draw up your plans for the area you’re excavating. This would include deciding on the size of the site and how deeply you’ll dig. When you’ve done that, you’re ready to start excavating.

Excavating Tools

Here, we’re going to tell you about a few of the basic machines you’d need for excavation:

Multi-Terrain Loaders – these are used to get to remote, out of the way sites that other vehicles may not be able to reach. They’re strong machines and are able to maneuver steeper, rougher terrain and can do all of the digging, pushing, and scooping of materials that you’ll need them to
Compact Truck Loaders – these are useful for grading (leveling the terrain at a specific slope for construction work) the terrain around a residential area for landscaping. Compact trucks are often used for road work too. Compact trucks are lighter than multi-terrain loaders and can move and push around dirt (or mulch) with relatively little ground disturbance
Backhoes – if you need to move material, dig out a trench, dig up the ground in general, or to backfill areas; then you want a backhoe. These are useful for landscaping, roadwork or to clear off land slated for construction
Skid Steers – also called skid steer loaders, these machines are on the smaller size, but they can scoop, carry, push and grab at whatever you need them to onsite and lift up into a truck
Mini-excavators – they’ve got a base scoop and a bucket for you to dig with. They’ve got tracks that enable movement and maneuverability which makes them excellent for remote digs. Their smaller size makes them a good fit for areas that are unable to accommodate bigger, heavier machinery.

Types of Excavation

There are many different kinds of excavation, but we’ll just give you the rundown of a few types that mainly pertain to construction.

Top Soil excavation – removal of the upper layers of soil, vegetation and other decaying detritus that could potentially make future structures unstable
Muck excavation – the removal of water and soil unfit for construction. The term ‘muck’ comes from the combination that soil and water create
Rock excavation – also known as mechanical splitting, this kind of excavation involves removing rocks that may be in the way of construction projects. Unlike other kinds of excavation, this type involves the use of explosives although in some cases – if there are small amounts of rock or blasting isn’t possible – workers may use an excavator outfitted with a power hammer
Basement excavation – this usually occurs underground for projects that have to be done completely or partially underground. The property’s size can make this kind of digging somewhat arduous
Footing excavation – this kind of excavation also includes the pouring of concrete for building foundations
Underground excavation – this sort of excavation is where shafts and tunnels are dug to create sewage systems and subways.
Unclassified excavation – this basically means that there’s either a material that’s hard to remove or something involves a number of different means by which to remove it. These don’t fall under a specific category, so they are labeled as “unclassified”

We know that this might have been a lot to read through, but even as just a basic introduction to excavation, it’s better that you’re knowledgeable and prepared than going in blind. For those of you that are a little more versed in excavation than our newcomers, tell us about your experience in this field in the comments, nothing like words from an old hand to show you how it’s done! The world’s still a bit crazy guys, so whatever you do, do it safely; use your face masks and the like. See you later, folks!