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Anyone worried about the high price of asphalt?

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Anyone worried about the high price of asphalt?

Old 06-16-08, 01:21 PM
  #1  
geo8rge
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Anyone worried about the high price of asphalt?

Just when I was feeling good about not using oil, turns out the most important part of my bike, the road surface, is all oil. Miles of oil.

Road projects in Alabama likely to be affected by oil prices
Key asphalt ingredient is a by-product of oil

http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/articl...5835/1007/TL02
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Old 06-16-08, 01:44 PM
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wish they would use more concrete for roadways construction.
that stuff is really durable and they've essentially eliminated that annoyingly rhythmic "thump-thump-thump-thump" that used to be the Achille's Heel in years gone past...
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Old 06-16-08, 01:54 PM
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They're borrowing money around here to repave the roads and because of the rising prices they can't even get a set price on what it will cost to repave, but they're repaving the road a 1/4mile from my house so I don't care as long as they fix the crappy road I currently have to ride on
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Old 06-16-08, 02:21 PM
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Some places are talking about reverting certain roads to gravel as a long-term cost-savings measure. Not so good for bikes, but I can understand the reasoning behind it.
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Old 06-16-08, 03:05 PM
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poor-quality asphalt is the worst solution. i'd rather see DPW crews just dump heavy gravel in potholes and pour hot tar rather than resorting to poor-quality material.
that stuff simply falls apart in chunks and makes even worse problems. heck, i'll switch to a wider-tired & fendered bike rather than have that sticky cheap asphalt anyhow!
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Old 06-16-08, 03:10 PM
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We've tried concrete at transit stations - buses kill asphalt pretty quickly. Doesn't last very long in our several thaw/freeze cycles every year, the result is even worse.
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Old 06-16-08, 07:33 PM
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My touring frame does well on dirt roads.
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Old 06-16-08, 07:56 PM
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i see asphalt layers insure their job security. "needs re-surfacing" every 7 to 10 years...do the math!

concreate costs more to lay, but there are (is) a part of local road here that hasn't been redone since original laying, 50+ years ago...do the math.

changes are coming...!
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Old 06-16-08, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by tomg View Post
concrete costs more to lay, but there are (is) a part of local road here that hasn't been redone since original laying, 50+ years ago...do the math.
you are correct. concrete is the way to go once all the numbers have been tallied.
the new technique they used to reduce roadnoise makes it a total win-win situation.
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Old 06-16-08, 09:28 PM
  #10  
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Asphalt is flexible and concrete is not. So in a nutshell, asphalt tends to develop groves when lots of heavy trucks use a road, whereas concrete does not. On the other hand, when building a road on clay or other soft terrain, asphalt is better because it sinks gracefully with the road. Asphalt can also be repaired with repaving. Repaving concrete doesn't work as well.
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Old 06-17-08, 10:47 AM
  #11  
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Pavement is overrated for bikes.
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Old 06-17-08, 11:02 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Feathers View Post
wish they would use more concrete for roadways construction.
that stuff is really durable and they've essentially eliminated that annoyingly rhythmic "thump-thump-thump-thump" that used to be the Achille's Heel in years gone past...
Disadvantages are that they have a higher initial cost, are more difficult to repair, and are also somewhat noisy if jointed, but unjointed concrete pavement is actually a method of roadway noise mitigation.

Additionally, in areas with cold winters, road salt can damage concrete roadbeds; due to the high cost of replacing the bed, exposed concrete roadbeds are infrequently seen in areas with harsh winters. However, reinforced concrete slabs are more resistant to frost-related ground heaves and pothole formation; heavily used roads in winter-prone urban areas often have concrete roadbeds covered with a thin (3cm) layer of asphalt concrete. This layer can be "skimmed off" and replaced very cheaply when it wears and deteriorates, while the concrete beneath is protected from the harsh elements. In these conditions, concrete roadbeds can last upwards of 50 years when a pure asphalt roadbed is expected to need to be completely replaced several times in this time period, offsetting the higher initial cost.
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Old 06-17-08, 11:17 AM
  #13  
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Gravel road?

Steel bike (and Ergon Grips if you're planning to ride a long distance).
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Old 06-17-08, 04:10 PM
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Here in the south we don't suffer much from hard freezes, so concrete does pretty well on roads.
Gravel would mess up too many pretty gas-guzzlers...people would complain...lawmakers would get calls...lawsuits would begin...gravel would be repaved over.
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Old 06-17-08, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by kjmillig View Post
Here in the south we don't suffer much from hard freezes, so concrete does pretty well on roads.
Gravel would mess up too many pretty gas-guzzlers...people would complain...lawmakers would get calls...lawsuits would begin...gravel would be repaved over.
Overtime gravel reshapes itself. You'll wind up with those nice little furrows with loose gravel on the sides or that nice washboard effect. Neither of which is conducive to navigating a bike.
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Old 06-17-08, 08:32 PM
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Old 06-17-08, 08:51 PM
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those cobbles can potentially last for THOUSANDS of years with the right maintenance!
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Old 06-17-08, 09:13 PM
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Sadly we dont have an army of slaves to spend the rest of their lives to assemble cobblestone roads.
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Old 06-17-08, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Feathers View Post
you are correct. concrete is the way to go once all the numbers have been tallied.
the new technique they used to reduce roadnoise makes it a total win-win situation.
Concrete isn't petroleum-free either. It takes a lot of heat energy make cement (usually from natural gas).

It would be interesting to see the latest cost comparisons, but even at today's prices I bet asphalt is still cheaper for most roads. Plus we're already geared up for asphalt, and the cost of changing has to be considered.
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Old 06-17-08, 10:33 PM
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roads that only need resurfacing every couple of decades sounds very attractive to me!
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Old 06-18-08, 05:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Feathers View Post
wish they would use more concrete for roadways construction.
that stuff is really durable and they've essentially eliminated that annoyingly rhythmic "thump-thump-thump-thump" that used to be the Achille's Heel in years gone past...
I keep hearing that, but all the new concrete sections are thumping again in a few years. What planet do you live on, where they've actually solved the problem as opposed to just saying so?
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Old 06-18-08, 09:14 AM
  #22  
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I saw an episode of "Modern Marvels" a couple years ago about the Autobahn where they mentioned the difference in the amount of concrete used on the Autobahn and on American highways. Turns out the Germens use more concrete (i.e., thicker road base) then we do in the States, which, in turns, means the roads last longer in Germany. Appartently, the best roads are made with a concrete base (for durability) and an asphalt top (for smooth riding and can be recycled).

Being originally from Michigan, I can say the biggest enemy of roads, regardless of construction, is the ice (and in part, salt, which just makes thing worse). There's a joke in Michigan that you know it's spring when the orange construction barrels are out.

As for worries about the cost of asphalt? Since I ride a hybrid, no worries here; just lower my tire pressure a little.
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Old 06-18-08, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by donnamb View Post
Some places are talking about reverting certain roads to gravel as a long-term cost-savings measure. Not so good for bikes, but I can understand the reasoning behind it.
No good. I work in the quarry industry and its getting cheaper to use concrete than gravel
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Old 06-18-08, 11:40 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by Feathers View Post
those cobbles can potentially last for THOUSANDS of years with the right maintenance!
those are setts or sets, can't remember now, cobbles are rounder, and a real pain to ride a bike on

Here in Grand rapids we have a few cobblestone roads and quite a few brick roads, bricks can be super slick when they're wet, cobbles rattle your teeth and if they're not even will throw you around.

Ken
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