Tufa on rubber?

mudpuppy42(z7 NC)August 26, 2005

Well, I haven't lurked here for some time now--mostly because I get caught up in admiring the beautiful and inspired work you guys do and wind up spending literally hours, and I've got enough addictions already! :)

Quick question here: Has anyone tried applying a 'tufa veneer to an old tractor tire used as the form for a raised bed? Or perhaps there is even a related thread here that I've been unable to find. The tire idea sounds like a good one if you need sort of a "quick and easy" raised bed, but I don't think I could stand looking at a nude tractor tire every day. PLMK if anyone has had any experience with this sort of thing. I figure better to ask first than to risk a waste of time and effort on a potential disaster. TIA for advice and suggestions! --- Mud

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Wouldn't think it would adhere very well to the rubber, but if you wrapped it with chicken wire and stapled it onto the surface it ought to hold well enough to get a set without slipping off, then build up additional layers. You will likely need to provide some form of rigid support on the inside somehow as well, since any flexing of the tire (like when kids pounce on it) would probably allow the veneer to crack. You could fill the inside with lightweight concrete, but it would still weigh a ton...maybe expanding foam might do the trick if you built up a support ring of cement or 'Tufa along the inside edge to form a fully closed crossection. Anyone else out there have any ideas?

    Bookmark   August 26, 2005 at 11:32AM
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jazzbone(7 AL)

I agree with Tango88 about the flexing. If you use a hard, clay soil you may pack it inside the body of the tire and then use better soil for planting in the center. Whether you use clay or tufa or cement to support the tire, be carefull to fill the entire void, i.e., don;t leave an air space in the top curvature of the tire.

This has got to be a cast-in-place work it will be HEAVY when finished (unless you have a very small tractor).

Good luck. Post some pictures for us to admire.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2005 at 12:56PM
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gottatufa(z5 ny)

I love the tractor tire idea! I would love to see it complete. You could also saw the top tire wall off. That would make your raised garden larger, not use as much tufa and eliminate the flexing problem. I think you can cut tires with a power saw, couldn't you?

    Bookmark   August 27, 2005 at 9:24AM
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linnea2(z5 NY)

I've cut tires with a serrated steak knife, staying clear of the steel belting
if tractor tires have those.

I think it's a great idea! The remaining thread should help hold the tufa too,
all the other suggestions applied.
Jo's idea would greatly facilitate the filling, they use big sledges
to pack tires "au naturel".

I've considered a sound barrier wall (RR-track) of tires, covered with stucco
after filling.

There are several web sites on building with scrap tires.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2005 at 9:54AM
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mudpuppy42(z7 NC)

I think I'll probably try it once the weather cools a bit. I'm usually pretty good at figuring out a workable solution once I get going, even if it requires modifying things a bit. Someone has suggesed not only cutting off the top rim, but also turning the tire inside out which, they say, provides a less flexible surface. Since I intend to use at least two tires cut in "strips" and free-formed, this shouldn't be too difficult to do. Mind you, I have no "hands-on" experience with tractor tires, but I guess I will soon. Believe me, there is NO PROBLEM finding someone willing to give you an old tractor tire rather than pay to take it to the landfill!

    Bookmark   August 27, 2005 at 3:21PM
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