How Do You Read Grade Stakes?

Each grade stake offers three sets of information, and they are read from the top down. The first set of information offers the distance and elevation to the reference point, the second set from the stake to the station line and the third set of information indicates if it is a cut or fill to the next slope point.

The most important slope stakes are the ones at the top of the slope (called hinge) and the toe (or bottom) of the slope. These two stakes determine the location and grade of the slope and will be marked with a cut or fill, typically measured in feet, in order to instruct the operator how to continue.

Once the hinge and the toe are demarcated, the slope and distance information is provided. Information on the kind of grading point is referenced, and only the first set of information is from the slope stake point. The remaining stakes indicate distances from point to point.

A slope stake provides vital information to an operator in order to drop or raise the grade of the ground over a specific slope by providing on-site particulars. Slope stakes are lathes marked with a series of letters and numbers that share defined meaning. The numbers provide measurements and slope ratios.

It’s important to take into consideration that theoretical locations are used preliminarily as determined from the plans and cross sections, but the contractor has to determine the actual original ground.