Cheapest means to build a retaining wall at rear of garden

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Hope this is best laced in building section vs the garden area ?

Hi folks, the topic of retaining walls seems to crop up a lot with a corresponding mix of views and advice.

I am looking to level out our back garden and to allow this, wish to build a retaining "structure" at the rear of garden.
It will span the entire garden width approx 26ft or so, to a height from the lower level of a max 3 foot. The exposed face of said structure will be facing away from the garden to a dead space and fencing - so cosmetics are not really too much a concern.

Had considered steels sunk on end with sleepers inserted in the channels between, though wish to complete the work in the safest and most cost effective means possible.

What would folks suggest as possible construction methods and maerials?

Thanks in advance - if this is too vague in scope let me know as happy to provide any details pertinent - though not sure what additional info would help.
 
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Why not just sink the sleepers in on end. That will do a 3ft retainer fairly comfortably.
 
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sink vertical sleepers into concrete footings at 1.5m centres. timberlock the horizontal ones to the face of the vertical ones.
 
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Thanks gents - had considered that too. Just thought steels might be easier to sink / drive in.
While I'm comfortable (well relatvely I guess) I can manage the sleeper route either with ironwork or using vertically inserted forms as retainers, is this the most cost effective (read cheap) means to retain to the height required?
Given I'll never see the sruture itself nor will anyone else, cosmetics are not a requirement - hence I was wondering if sleepers are the best value option for such a requirement ?
 
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yes. cheaper and easier than steels and very secure.
 
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Thanks again - I'm sold on the idea.

How deep should I be sinking the vertical bearers if they are to retain a wall 3ft in height composed of horizontal spans?And the concrete footings, are these simply to retain the vertically installed sleeper - ie the concrete doesn't need to span the entire run, rather act like a post securing mix would in regular fencing terms?

Sorry if this sounds fundamnetal - better safe than sorry - or buried.
 
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Sounds simple enough. I'll just buy a couple and some glue to stick 'em together :)

I have no idea currentlt whay method of construction would be required to make the structure strong enough and sufficiently robust - hence the request for options and advice.

Would brick / block be cheaper - how would I calaculate mateirals etc - double skinned etc are terms I can comprehend, though don't know what influences the choices of such construction methods.

So brick - what type, how would the wall be formed and what considerations should I consider such as the width of the span etc? Foundations - how deep or wide would they need to be?

I can of course get a local builder to come and take all this investigation need away, yet where would be the fun?
 
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Thanks again - I'm sold on the idea.

How deep should I be sinking the vertical bearers if they are to retain a wall 3ft in height composed of horizontal spans?And the concrete footings, are these simply to retain the vertically installed sleeper - ie the concrete doesn't need to span the entire run, rather act like a post securing mix would in regular fencing terms?

Sorry if this sounds fundamnetal - better safe than sorry - or buried.

2 foot deep for the post holes, smply then concrted in like -posts as you say.

normally works out similar cost in materials but a lot cheaper in labour
 
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Thanks all.

Thermo - I figured this was the "simplest"in terms of construction needs - plus I can go with reclaimed sleepers of non prime grade to keep costs even lower given they will be buried or not seen.

One fnal question - is backfill with gravel etc required as well as some form of drainage / weepage to release pressure - or are the mounted sleepers not normally watertight enough to need that consideration?
 

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