- A diverse support system that can be designed as a cantilever system, braced system, or tied-back system.
- Low noise and vibration installation when drilling method is selected.
- Ability to place piles with low overhead equipment.
- Design can support extremely deep excavations when bracing and tie-back anchors are used.
- The face of the shoring can be used as a backform for the permanent concrete walls.
- The case of the solder piles & lagging Is a suitable surface for placing waterproofing.
Soldier beams and lagging is an earth retention system utilized in deep excavations. After soldier beams have been placed and installed, earth excavation begins on the front face of the beam. As soil is removed, lagging walls are installed to bridge and retain the soil, preventing it from entering the excavation area.
Soldier beams, also known as soldier piles, are vertically driven into the ground and are usually spaced at regular intervals between 6 and 10 feet, but can go as far as 12 feet apart as well. They’re typically steel beams, however, when steel isn’t the best solution, alternative sections can include everything from micropiles to precast concrete. Once the piles are in place, the excavation proceeds with lifts.
Depending on the soil type, especially if it’s difficult to lift, the height of the excavation may need to be lowered to prevent the soil from moving through the soldier beams. If the soil is non-cohesive, lagging installation won’t be conducive to that soil type.
These wall systems are designed to limit or reduce horizontal movement of soil and any other materials behind the wall. Cantilever walls are used when more stability or deeper excavation is needed. In that event, tie backs, bracing, and anchors can be used for additional stability reinforcement.
Lagging walls are horizontal supports that prevent soil from moving into the excavation as the excavation proceeds. Some common lagging materials include shotcrete, timber lagging, and precast concrete panels. With these materials, permanent and temporary wall systems are created.
Temporary Walls = Timber Lagging
Permanent Walls = Concrete or Shotcrete
Based on the project you’re doing, whether temporary or permanent, that will determine the materials best suited for your lagging wall.
Key Features and Benefits
- Affordability: The construction of soldier pile and lagging is considerably more cost-effective than other earth retention systems, which is very beneficial being that excavations are primarily temporary.
- Minimal Noise Disturbances: Soldier piling and lagging have very laborious installation techniques, however, the actual installation process is comparably soundless to alternative wall retention solutions. This is especially beneficial when working in residential areas.
- Speed: Because soldier beams and lagging walls are short-term projects for construction sites, they’re easy to construct and deconstruct.
- Control and Versatility: The versatility of the construction materials allows builders freedom and control over the layout and spacing of the soldier piles, making any type of last-minute change of plans or adjustments feasible.
- Longevity: The soldier piles and lagging walls method is an earth retention system that has been around since the late 18th century. Commonly used in big metro cities like New York and Berlin, the method (known as the Berlin Wall when using steel piles and timber lagging) has seen continued success in construction, which is why it is still used today.
Now, despite these key features and benefits, it’s also important to know that soldier beam and lagging isn’t always a suitable solution for every project as well. If your construction site has sand or is of a clay-like consistency, you’ll be better off using an alternative earth retention wall system. Soldier beams only work best when installed in compact or dense soil.
Another factor to consider is that soldier beam and lagging can horizontally extend as far as you need it on any appropriate piece of land but its stability decreases if you try to build it higher than the standard four to six yards above ground. You could always add more soldier beams at closer regular intervals but that would then remove its cost-effectiveness, causing you to spend more on materials and supplies.
The Soldier Beams and Lagging Solution
The application of soldier beam and lagging earth retention wall systems can be used in a variety of different building plans and for temporary and permanent solutions in both residential and commercial applications.
For short-term solutions, soldier beam and lagging will support excavation during various phases of any construction project using cost-effective materials, which allow for expedited project completion. For long-term solutions, you simply change the construction materials as well as the installation techniques and methods.
Whether you’re doing home construction, foundation repairs, or even archaeological digs, soldier beam and lagging can be your temporary or permanent installation solution.
Company & Overview
Blue Iron Foundations & Shoring, LLC, has been trusted for over a decade to install design build & pre-designed sheet pile systems including temporary earth retention, floodwalls, and cut off walls. We have an extensive equipment fleet that gives us flexibility to install sheet pile using vibratory, impact and/or vibration free methods to suit any project need. Sheet pile is widely used for shoring systems in high ground water, seawalls, retaining walls, floodwalls, basement walls for parking structures, cut off walls and drainage canal walls. Sheet pile are capable of cantilevering but can also include bracing and/or tie backs to allow retention of deeper excavations.