Fixing Up Old Jumps

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6/22/2016 4:38 PM

Hi everyone.

I'm getting back into BMX after a 15 year hiatus. Looking to spruce up some old dirt jumps near my house. There are a couple with decent launches, but they need some widening, smoothing and squaring, same with landings. Based on the condition of the area, it doesn't seem like anyone would have much of a case to be upset if someone tried to work on them.

I went out with a few buckets of water last night, mixed up some nice mud and started adding it to one of the jumps. Got a nice smooth transition and a good square lip on it. Went back this morning and saw that all the beautiful dirt I added was cracked and just coming off of the existing jump in big flakes.

How do I work on the existing jumps without this happening? Or do I have to knock them all down and start all over little by little? I live in So Cal, and don't really want to wait for rain. I'm willing to dig and haul water and do the work, I just need to know the right way to do it.

Thanks guys!

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7/10/2016 7:53 AM

I'd suggest roughing up the original dirt with a rake as it'll give the new dirt something to bind to. Also, in my experience, it's far better to hand pack a lip or face than to use a shovel. Takes a bit longer but the results are usually far smoother and last far longer as long as you pay attention to what you're doing.

Not all dirt is the same, for example, my dirt is mainly clay so I have to mix it with other brown dirt if I want it to stick and hold together at all. Comes out like concrete in the end so it's very hard to alter but extremely hard to damage.

It sounds kinda like you're adding too much water for the type of dirt you have or it's just drying way too fast. What kind of dirt is it?

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