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Successful block paving doesn’t require a lot of specialist equipment. But if you’re a hard landscaping contractor who regularly lands block paving jobs, investing in certain pieces of kit will save you time, sweat and money. Read our review of essential tools for laying block pavers to find out more.
If you’re new to block paving, it’s worth reading our complete guide to laying block pavers to find out more about the basic tools needed for the job.
Now, let’s go into detail about the types of specialist equipment that will make block paving jobs a breeze, including reviews of some of the best pieces of kit.
Before laying block pavers, ideally the sub-base will be thoroughly compacted using a vibrating plate compactor.
Necessary to compact the hardcore sub-base of the driveway or path, a hand-driven compactor – like the Belle PCLX 320 – is used to fully flatten the sub-base before laying the initial layer of sand.
This Belle Streetworks plate compactor has an excellent reputation for durability.
Complete with a robust GXR120 3.1/2.3 Honda petrol engine, this mid-weight, portable compactor features a dual-force base plate that is ideal for heavy-duty work. While it can certainly be used for compacting hardcore, the Belle will also come in handy for compacting soil, gravel, tarmac and sand.
For contractors working on large areas, a roller compactor will be a more time-saving option as this can be driven over the area to compact it relatively instantly. Most plant hire businesses will lease this type of machinery.
You’re likely to initially use a shovel and rake for applying the M-grade grit sand to the area. But to make this level you’ll certainly need a screeding pole.
Both the AZL-EP screeding poles and the EP-Uni screeding set – both from Probst – are designed so you can easily set accurate levels for screeding materials. Using them allows blocks to be laid evenly, with a professional finish every time.
The AZL-EP screeding poles are fitted together to create a working width for screeding of either 13 metres or, if you’re working on a larger area, 25 metres.
For a stand-up – and stand-out – piece of kit, the revolutionary Probst EP-Uni Screeding Set allows you to stand up while screeding the area allowing you to achieve a perfect level for paving slabs and blocks.
Depending on which model you choose, each EP-Uni set includes one aluminium-profile screeding pole (1,600mm or 2,300mm), one handle for stand-up screeding, and an adjustable telescopic unit that can be used on varying profiles.
Height adjustable roller units are available as an optional extra accessory with the EP-Uni. These special units allow you to take the height off existing kerbs or pavers meaning that no further rail gauges are necessary.
Call us on 0330 122 1025 for more details.
Screed rail marks can be an unsightly feature of a newly screeded area.
That’s where the Probst MP-70 Screeding Finisher comes in handy. This robust, lightweight finisher with a hardwood handle allows you to effectively finish and refine your work on screeded areas.
Must-have tools for contractors who lay paving blocks and carry out repairs is an alignment bar, rubber hammer and paving block extractor.
The Probst Paver Set contains all of these three tools in one pack:
The alignment bar (RE) features two handles, a foot bar and a hammering surface that helps you easily drive it into the paver joints using the hammer.
The lightweight rubber hammer (GH) has a long handle that is ergonomically easy to work with in an upright position. Weighing in at 2.2kg, the hammer features highly wear-resistant rubber caps that are replaceable.
Last but by no means least, the paver set also includes a paving block extractor (SZ) that is adjustable to fit any size and shape of paver. Complete with a locking device, this galvanised tool with spring steel blades operates in a way that means you don’t have to continually squeeze the handles together.
The Probst SZ Paving Block Extractor can also be bought separately.
For those awkwardly shaped paving blocks, the Probst PaverBoy Block Lifter (PB15/24) comes to the rescue.
The PaverBoy is the easiest and most efficient way of laying paving blocks directly from the stack. It offers a gripping range of between 150mm and 240mm.
Whereas other mechanical tools can leave slight gaps between some block formats (especially for complex blocks such as double-T bricks and square and right-angled stones), the ergonomic PaverBoy allows you to close gaps quickly and easily.
When laying block pavers, there’s almost always a need to cut or split paving blocks into smaller sizes.
A great light-weight block splitter for smaller paving blocks is the Belle MiniPave Block Splitter.
Although small and light, the MiniPave features a heavy-duty blade with four edges for accurate cutting.
The Belle MiniPave is made for cutting block pavers between 47mm and 87mm in size, with a maximum cut length of 250mm.
For a more versatile paving block splitter, go for the Belle MaxiPave.
The MaxiPave is designed to cut all common types of block paving. It can cut pavers between 40mm and 125mm in size to a maximum cut length of 400mm.
Another great feature of the MaxiPave is the lock-down handle and wheels for easy manoeuvring on site.
Like the MiniPave, the MaxiPave is also light, compact and easy to transport.
If your team is regularly cutting blocks on site, you may want to consider a larger block cutter with a more substantial cutting table.
The following three paving block cutters from Probst can snap blocks with minimal operating force. What’s more they offer clean cuts without dust, noise or wastewater.
Each of the Probst block cutters come with a spring-mounted supporting table. With the STS-33-F and STS-43 models, both halves of the table can tilt.
See the comparison table below for more details.
Find out more about the Probst Block Cutters and which is best for your work on site.
Here we compare the Probst STS-33-F, STS-43 and STS-43-H block cutters.
Each of these products come with free delivery in England and Wales. There may be a small charge for delivery to Scotland.
If you’re wanting to create tailor-made curves, maybe for a path, patio or driveway, then save an enormous amount of time and hassle with a flexmarker kit.
The FMK Flexmarker-Kit from Probst includes 10 fibreglass rods (each 1m in length), 5 fixing claws and 10 clamps, offering a complete system to shape and mark curves.
The kit offers two different work modes.
The fibreglass rods can either by securely fixed to an existing pavement using the fixing claws. Mark the curve with spray paint or chalk.
For paths and bed edges, the one-liner can be laid in dry concrete and the kit fixed at the pins with the binders, showing the curve and also the vertical profile.
It’s a good idea to consider investing in a blockcart if you’re regularly working on large-scale block paving jobs.
The Probst VTK-V Blockcart is a fully mechanical transport cart for block pavers, kerb stones and slabs.
This heavy-duty device can save your team time and physical endurance, allowing them to easily move both bound and loose items from a pallet without the need of a ramp.
If moving block pavers is not something you do regularly, then a cheaper option is a heavy-duty wheelbarrow.
The Warrior Wheelbarrow (Flex Pro Tyre) from Belle is strong, lightweight, easy to manoeuvre and virtually indestructible. It carries up to 100 litres and can be used to carry paving slabs, setts, kerbs, gravel, bricks, cement, soil, garden waste, trees – you name it!
One of the great features of this wheelbarrow – and why it’s so loved by professional landscapers and DIYers – is its non-puncture tyre.
Another great time-saving device if you’re regularly working on block paving projects is the EasyFill Paver Jointing Device (EF-H).
This jointing device fills paver joints easily and quick – and with 80% less pushing force.
Easyfill can either be used with brush-in grouts (dry material) or flowable grouts like Flowpoint. For flowable grouts, just add water.
If you have any questions about block paving equipment and which would be the best buys for your business, give our friendly, family-run team a call on 0330 122 1025.
*Free delivery is offered on selected lines and is available for delivery within mainland England and Wales. There may be a small charge for delivery to Scotland. Call our team for details.
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