Soil Compaction – Are Vibratory Rollers Effective?

Published by on

Within the world of construction, every day comes with a new opportunity. An opportunity to proceed, an opportunity to exceed. To go beyond the described limits. That you do by paying attention to details. Such a detail is soil compaction. Soil compaction is an important part of the construction process and plays a role imperative to the beginning or in some cases ending of the project. Soil compaction may be used to enhance engineering properties, stabilize soil behavior, and in densification of soils. When it comes to vibratory rollers for sale there are many different concepts and questions. Some of you might know about this construction equipment and some of you might not. The main confusion lies in the usage i.e. where and when it should be used. The key to a good answer lies in the details and therefore we have come up with some details pertinent to soil compaction and vibratory rollers.

“Success is the sum of details” – Harvey S. Firestone

Soil Compaction

For those of you who don’t know, soil compaction is the process which leads to the reduction in the volume of the air voids present in the soil by application of external mechanical energy. Another fact that you should know is that the quality of the structures constructed greatly depends on state of compaction of the filled layers. The layers might be made up of a wide range of materials such as granular soils, cohesive or non-cohesive soils, fly ashes, stabilized materials, grain mixtures, or artificial powders.

vibratory roller for sale,

The Effect

Now you know that there are different options, in fact a whole lot of options when it comes to choosing the material. Therefore, one should be very selective when it comes to choosing the compaction methods and equipment for compaction. Each heavy equipment is suited to do a specific type of work and that too with a specific method. Uniform settlement behavior and sufficient bearing capacity of the structures are in line with the compaction.


Simply put, there are multiple factors that have an impact on the process of compaction. What type of compaction method is used? Kneading, pounding, vibration, pressure or some other one? The water content of the soil when it’s compacted is also an important factor. Another thing that affects the compaction is the amount of external energy that is applied to bring about the results. Last but not the least, types of soil. While the soil compaction operations are going on, vibratory rollers operating frequency is also regarded as a controlling parameter.

used vibratory roller for sale,

The Working

Smooth drum vibratory rollers are composed of two rubber-tired wheels and single drum. The eccentric weights that are present in the drum, while rotating, are responsible for the generation of vibration for additional dynamic loads. What this dynamic action does is compensation. This action helps to overcome friction present in between the soil particles and accentuates the densification of soil. This friction is responsible for holding the particles together.

What does this tells us? This tell us that due to its course of action, vibratory rollers are perfect for coarse-grained soils compaction process. Vibration impulses sent in between the granule particles persuade the particles to rotate in the same direction as that of the machine rotation. Now the particles turn and then tumble. Ultimately when the machine passes over, gravity makes the particle settle in a denser configuration.

The Experience

Contractor’s experience also counts while making the decision for the equipment or method used for compaction. One might make a decision based on the results obtained in the past. However, there is always space for improvement and betterment. In some cases, the smooth drum compactors can be matched with padfoot shell kits. This gives the freedom to utilize smooth drum rollers with padfoot applications. Although the results might not yield maximum efficiency.

The Speed

The smooth drum rollers are known to generate three sorts of forces that are impact, static pressure, and vibration. The results that you see via compaction depend on the amplitude and frequency of the blows. One should also keep an eye on the speed as speed determines the time needed for a particular fill to be compacted. A speed of 1 to 2.5 km/h while working with clay and rock is required. While speeds of 2 to 5 km/h is sufficient for sand and gravel. If you are thinking about the particle size then according to studies, fine sand to large rocks are workable particle sizes for vibratory compaction. With the ability to being used on semi-cohesive soils, these machines are good to go with your choice.

bobcat vibratory roller,

Clay and Asphalt

If you have to work with cohesive soils or clay, you can work with sheepsfoot roller or vibratory rammers for your desired results. The clay particles are made up of pancake like platelets within which the molecular bonding is responsible for holding them together. The impact force leads to the trap air and extra moisture release from the soil. For asphalt compaction, you have a choice to either go with vibratory plates or vibratory rollers. Breakdown, initial rolling, intermediate rolling, and finish rolling are phases of rolling asphalt. All of these steps contribute equally to the end roll compaction of the asphalt.

A Matched Machine

This is all that you need to know about soil compaction with the vibratory rollers. Apart from this, you should also understand that each equipment will not be suitable for every type of application. One has to make decisions after considering the equipment type and specifications. However, if you choose a machine that is exactly matched with the type of work, it will lead to increased work productivity and decreased project costs. Now that you know about all of this, the decision is yours. You are free to make your mind and still if you have any questions, you can contact us right away. We’ll be more than happy to help you. Till then, happy reading!.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *