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Quote:
Originally Posted by KC911 View Post
If Cliff chimes in about man tits....he'll join Jeff on my very first ignore list....I'm just sayin'.
….and this, my friends, is why I come to off-topic !
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Old 01-15-2019, 07:11 AM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #21 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by GH85Carrera View Post
Yea, the US highway construction business seems to be aimed at an annuity business. Build it as cheap as possible, do it often.


That’s all driven by the specifications that are put out to bid.

My understanding of European norms are that the jobs are put out as design build and that the contractor also includes maintenance for a defined period. This encourages more investment in a higher quality road initially rather than building to a budget and kicking the costs down to the maintenance budget.


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Old 01-15-2019, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by red-beard View Post
Concrete cracks. Seriously. Expansion joints are there to create "controlled" cracks. Asphalt roads are more "flexible" and do not need expansion joints. Concrete roads last longer than pure Asphalt roads.

The expansion joints are supposed to have a filler in them, but usually over time, these disintegrate. They are especially dangerous for road cyclists. We call them,"The valley of death".

I've always said that the best roads are concrete, covered in thin layer of asphalt. No expansion joints, lower noise, etc.

They do make a machine that is used to "level" the different pieces of concrete. It is basically a grinder.
Yes, this^^.

In my area, the I-5 was widened and "improved" over the past 40+ years and I witnessed and drove it. The new concrete was poured, set, the grooved. Years later, the grinder came and "smoothed" out the expansion bumps. Finally, one brand new stretch between Avery Pkwy. and Junipero Serra, proved to be so problematic in the rain--bumpy and slick--that it was paved over with asphalt.
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Old 01-15-2019, 07:29 AM
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I am not sure how best to describe it. This is an area where the slab of the concrete meets the expansion joints. Where it meets, it curls up just enough overwork my suspension shaking my fillings loose.



What's up with all the ridges? Can't they pour get that out during finishing?
Old 01-15-2019, 01:20 PM
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I like to think its just bad workmanship but all the new sections of concrete fwys are like this. I really don't believe every single crew are bad. There must be a reason.

Hey Vash, we are holding you responsible bud
Old 01-15-2019, 01:23 PM
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I agree with you. That section of the 405 north to the other side of the valley is some of the worst freeway in all of So Cal.
I feel for all the people that commute over that section every single day.
I always thought the 405 from LAX north to the I-10 was the worst part, but since they've ground it down it's not bad, at least compared to before grinding.

If you want to see how nice they can make freeways, come on down to the OC and take a drive on the 22 east bound. That has to be some of the best freeway around re: smoothness.

I've driven on the Toll Road down south (73?) only once and it is smooth too.

My former commute of the 405 from north OC up to LAX used to be a kidney pounder but they ground it for most of the way and it isn't bad now, IMO.
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Old 01-15-2019, 01:50 PM
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you all have nothing to complain about. Come to Massachusetts, home of the worst roads in the entire country created and maintained by the most corrupt and inept road crews imaginable. Where else can you spend $24 billion for the Big Dig and end up with something that looks half finished in a 1950s Soviet block country. And that is not an exaggeration.

I was going to post asking vash about this ages ago. CT, NH, RI... all the same weather, states with lesser economies, all have better roads.
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Douglas View Post
I agree with you. That section of the 405 north to the other side of the valley is some of the worst freeway in all of So Cal.
I feel for all the people that commute over that section every single day.
I always thought the 405 from LAX north to the I-10 was the worst part, but since they've ground it down it's not bad, at least compared to before grinding.

If you want to see how nice they can make freeways, come on down to the OC and take a drive on the 22 east bound. That has to be some of the best freeway around re: smoothness.

I've driven on the Toll Road down south (73?) only once and it is smooth too.

My former commute of the 405 from north OC up to LAX used to be a kidney pounder but they ground it for most of the way and it isn't bad now, IMO.
You know what? You are absolutely correct. I don't know too many sections in OC that ride like that except for a small area on the 55 going north. I don't driver the 405 unless I absolutely have to. All that money spent putting in an additional lane between Sunset and the Valley did freaking nothing for traffic. Its just as bad as before. The 73 is amazing, like riding on glass.

There's a new section of the 60 way out in Riverside that goes on for miles. I do noticed this only happens on many of new sections of our fwys. I want to say almost every single one. I am more sensitive because I feel it more in my truck or my Cayman due to the stiffer suspension.
Old 01-15-2019, 04:02 PM
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Around NC many if not most of the main roads are in excellent condition, smooth concrete. None of the issues you mention in CA. In NY, where I am from, the roads are generally beat to hell, cracked concrete with asphalt surfaces with the underlying cracks eventually finding their way to the new surface.
I was in the highway business a long time and from my experience the construction of a highway is (or should be) tightly controlled over the contractors by the state DOTs and FHWA with continuous inspections of all phases. The expansion joints are controlled with steel rods buried in between the joints to control vertical movement of the slabs. If these fail the trucks will start rocking the slabs, then you get the annoying bumps. This only gets worse when the slabs start to crack. The crushed, compacted base underneath and the soil below that is very important to how long the road will last, if that is flawed the whole thing will deteriorate. Another issue is overweight trucks that can tear up a surface in a surprisingly short time.
I don't know what the standards are presently, but in the past the Europeans used a thicker section of concrete that made their surfaces last longer, I don't know today if that is still the case (especially bridge decks).
The costs today of tearing up old slabs and starting over is astronomical and since most DOTs are starved of money for competing priorities, it's not going to get any better soon.
Old 01-15-2019, 04:32 PM
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US-101 here has some sections with those grooves, and some where the asphalt was laid more recently. I am assuming it’s just a long gap between prep and the actual laying of the asphalt...I know nothing about road construction.
Old 01-15-2019, 08:12 PM
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I tried to drive the Natchez Trace from Natchez north in my 911. I don't recall what the road surface was made of, but the experience was the same as we get up here in the north from frost-heaved concrete. Thump thump ... thump thump ... over and over. I had to get off of it and on to a different road after a few minutes.
There is a section of I-70 north of Dayton, Ohio that is bad in the winter and spring settles down in the summer when the slabs move back into alignment.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun @ Tru6 View Post
you all have nothing to complain about. Come to Massachusetts, home of the worst roads in the entire country created and maintained by the most corrupt and inept road crews imaginable. Where else can you spend $24 billion for the Big Dig and end up with something that looks half finished in a 1950s Soviet block country. And that is not an exaggeration.

I was going to post asking vash about this ages ago. CT, NH, RI... all the same weather, states with lesser economies, all have better roads.
We did not drive around much in MA, but we hit all the New England states on a vacation a few years ago. Vermont has great roads, but most are 35 MPH and are a maze of interconnected curvy slow highways with a roundabout intersection.

In my travels across the USA without a doubt, Michigan has the worst roads. They are heads above all the other states in bad roads. We witnessed first hand the MDOT truck "fixing potholes" by driving just past the pothole, and two guys were up in the truck, and shoveled down some fresh asphalt. They then drove off. They did NOT clean out the water and mud, they did not even drive the truck tires over it, just left a fresh loose pile of asphalt for the cars to drive through and press it into the hole. Of course my 911 got lots of tar and asphalt bits in the fenders. That was not an isolated incident, I mentioned it to other that day and they all saw the same thing. It was just a 100% waste of money and resources that accomplished nothing but a fat paycheck for the "workers" and a nice invoice for the asphalt company that supplies them with asphalt.
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Old 01-16-2019, 05:14 AM
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Originally Posted by look 171 View Post
I understand the need for expansion joints, but they all seem to be abruptly, but slightly higher near both side of the joints causing the typical bone shaker effect. Seem to be done for a specific purpose? Driving an empty 3/4 ton 4wd truck over this is a very long few miles, sometimes a lot longer. It is really bad at speed
My guess would be that they are simply complying with a new regulation written by an idiot who knows nothing of concrete or highways".

Serial, it's also entirely possible that they know the concrete blocks will move from settling etc. after traffic drives on them.
So they pour them with not much consideration for smoothness because they fully intend to "machine" the surface with giant grinders after a little while.

Last edited by sammyg2; 01-16-2019 at 06:59 AM..
Old 01-16-2019, 05:48 AM
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I'm really getting tired of all the work they've been doing on our So Cal freeways.
Had to live thru the repaving of the 405 up in the infamous south bay curve area back 20(?) yrs ago.
Then, they did it again before I was laid off in '12.
Have lived thru the addition of light standards on the 405 across the 22 to 605 stretch and the addition of a car pool lane with 'flying' bridge to the 605.
They no sooner get all that done and now we have to deal with the addition of two lanes on the 405 from 22 down to 55 or where ever. THAT is a real pain in the a$$ since they have to close local streets with bridges that cross the freeway and need to be rebuilt. This is to say nothing about the on/off ramps that need to be modified.
I guess I'm lucky I don't have to commute on the 405 to get to work any more. It still makes going places a pain though as traffic on the 405 between those end points is almost always jammed up now. It's not due to end until 2023 too.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Douglas View Post
I agree with you. That section of the 405 north to the other side of the valley is some of the worst freeway in all of So Cal.
I feel for all the people that commute over that section every single day.
I always thought the 405 from LAX north to the I-10 was the worst part, but since they've ground it down it's not bad, at least compared to before grinding.

If you want to see how nice they can make freeways, come on down to the OC and take a drive on the 22 east bound. That has to be some of the best freeway around re: smoothness.

I've driven on the Toll Road down south (73?) only once and it is smooth too.

My former commute of the 405 from north OC up to LAX used to be a kidney pounder but they ground it for most of the way and it isn't bad now, IMO.
In the past and I think also recently highway projects are put out to bid. They may or may not be awarded to the lowest bidder. The "plans" specify the required sub-grade preparation and smoothness of the final surface along with specifications on all of the required material. For example required compaction for the sub-grade and CTB.

In CA concrete freeways (in the past and probably now) there is a crack (installed using a plastic strip) between the middle of the lanes and expansion joints are cut, with a saw) at an angle and not spaced evenly. The expansion joints are really "crack" joints. It is desired for cracks to form at the crack joints and not randomly. This also applies to the center built-in crack location.

Concrete cures over a very long period of time - e.g. decades. This is why a concrete freeway can start out smooth and later become bumpy. On Hwy 17/880 here in CA the sections started to warp up at the ends as mentioned above. It is easy to fix - just grind flat.

IMO - if you don't like the quality of your freeways then all of the blame can be put on the required state specifications and inspection. On all major freeway jobs I've been involved with state inspectors are on the job everyday checking that the construction meets the specifications on the plans.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:16 AM
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I think that valley section of the 405 is some of the oldest freeway pavement around. I'm not aware of it having ever been repaved since it was first built, but then I don't live in the valley so could be wrong.
I've never seen the diagonally cut expansion joints around here.
I will tell you that the grinding operation is something else. They did it on the 405 up in LA county when I was commuting regularly up there for work. Pretty amazed that I didn't suffer a cracked windshield from any debris from that operation.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:27 AM
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Jeff, here’s your solution...loose the truck and buy this. Plenty of space for your tools. Get a roof rack for construction materials if necessary. Float along over those road imperfections in style. Think of your man boobs!

https://orangecounty.craigslist.org/cto/d/long-beach-1964-cadillac-coupe-deville/6789314505.html

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Old 01-16-2019, 10:27 AM
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Good one Jim.
I don't think you'd feel a thing in that boat.

Worst expansion joints I've ever encountered were on the Eisenhower Turnpike. They must have had 2" gaps in those, or worse. My buddy was ferrying his 911 back to Missouri when we hit them. By the time we got to KC, his torque tube in the rear had collapsed from the constant pounding.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Douglas View Post
I'm really getting tired of all the work they've been doing on our So Cal freeways.
Had to live thru the repaving of the 405 up in the infamous south bay curve area back 20(?) yrs ago.
Then, they did it again before I was laid off in '12.
Have lived thru the addition of light standards on the 405 across the 22 to 605 stretch and the addition of a car pool lane with 'flying' bridge to the 605.
They no sooner get all that done and now we have to deal with the addition of two lanes on the 405 from 22 down to 55 or where ever. THAT is a real pain in the a$$ since they have to close local streets with bridges that cross the freeway and need to be rebuilt. This is to say nothing about the on/off ramps that need to be modified.
I guess I'm lucky I don't have to commute on the 405 to get to work any more. It still makes going places a pain though as traffic on the 405 between those end points is almost always jammed up now. It's not due to end until 2023 too.
I have lived in Oklahoma City metro area for 40 years. In that time I don't think there was ever once I have been able to drive to Norman, OK which is a basic 32 miles south even once without construction traffic. To go to Tulsa, OK is 95 miles up I-44. I have actually made that trip ONCE with no construction. They have been working on it almost non stop for 65 yeas since it was opened.
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Old 01-16-2019, 10:55 AM
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I don't work in that industry and don't have any knowledge of it other than what I've read or observed but this question did come to mind ....
Suppose you were a state that is challenged with budget issues, and the federal gubmint has offered to pay a pretty good-sized chunk of the cost to fix your roads.

Would you:
a) spend a lot more than they give you to do it once every 20 years

or

2) spend just as much as they give you even if you have to do it every 10 years?
Old 01-16-2019, 11:30 AM
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