Guide to Rip Rap Sizes and Uses

Rip rap is large — nearly boulder-size — crushed stone. It is mainly used in applications by bodies of water, which is why you commonly see it along streams, rivers and similar locations.

These stones have a variety of commercial and residential applications. Understanding the various rip rap sizes and how to choose the best stone for your projects can ensure you meet design specifications. Learn more about the sizes and uses of rip rap in this guide.

What Is Rip Rap Gravel?

The rip rap aggregate is a crushed stone that performs in the harshest outdoor conditions. It stands up to erosion and maintains slope stability and channel flow, which can help protect public safety and commercial or residential properties. Due to its size, rip rap stone will not compact. The rip rap from York Building Products includes mined limestone, a rock that will endure during the severe tasks you need it to do.

Rip rap also serves as structural support for sloped areas that need protection from both erosion and water. Erosion protection is crucial because it can prevent damage to infrastructure and make the area safe for vehicles and pedestrian traffic. Rip rap minimizes the erosiveness of waves on the shoreline or water on the outer bank of a river bend, and it protects bridge structures near waterways. Additionally, rip rap is very natural looking, empowering you to address structural needs without impacting the natural appearance of the surrounding area. You can maintain aesthetics without sacrificing performance.

If you live in the Central Pennsylvania area and are looking for rip rap, the experts at York Building Products can help.


Rip Rap Stone Varieties and Sizes

Rip rap is among the largest crushed stone available. Their size makes them suitable for heavy-duty tasks, such as protecting shorelines from erosion. Not all rip rap stone sizes are the same — there are many varieties available that vary by size and intended purpose.

Rip Rap R3 and Rip Rap R4

The aggregates in the R3 variety range from 3 to 6 inches. Aggregates in the R4 variety range from 6 to 12 inches. Though they are some of the smallest varieties available, they are still effective in small drainage or minimal slope areas. However, rip rap R3 and R4 are not the best options for areas with heavy water flow. You can also use these rip rap sizes to create driveway bases or gravel parking lots. R3 and R4 are also dense enough that they will prevent weed growth.

Rip Rap R5 and Rip Rap R6

R5 aggregate is 9 to 18 inches, and R6 aggregate is 12 to 24 inches. R5 and R6 are the most versatile varieties, making them some of the most common. Their heavy weight and mid-range size work well at reinforcing the edge of ponds, rivers, streams and lakes, as well as deterring pedestrian traffic. Apart from water applications, you can also use R5 and R6 in retaining walls or as railroad ballast.

Rip Rap R7 and Rip Rap R8

R7 and R8 aggregates are the largest varieties of rip rap — R7 is 18 to 30 inches, and R8 is 24 to 42 inches. In bigger bodies of water with rapid currents, R7 and R8 provide the best erosion protection. These varieties are the best options for restoring a bank that has already started to erode. You can also use them to fill in large ditches and holes. Because of their size and weight, you may need a machine to place these stones.


Uses for Rip Rap

Rip rap is suitable for a variety of applications in residential and commercial settings. You can use these stones to control erosion, decorate spaces, create a gravel base and more. There are many practical uses for rip rap, including:

  • Erosion control: You can use rip rap for slope stability, runoff protection and erosion control. The rock size for this purpose can vary depending on the speed of the water flow and the steepness of the hill. Rip rap can blend in with the scenery, making it an excellent solution that will enhance the area's natural appearance. You can use these stones for erosion control on bridge foundations, shorelines, steep slopes and other areas with exposure to flowing water, including residential areas that could experience property damage without a flow barrier.
  • Pedestrian safety: As a crushed stone, rip rap is naturally jagged and challenging to walk on. You can place these stones along shorelines to signal pedestrians to avoid the water's edge, especially in areas where the water has a strong current.
  • Roadways: Rip rap, especially the R3 and R4 varieties, acts as an effective base for gravel parking areas and driveways.
  • Landscaping and architecture: You can use rip rap stones around residential or commercial properties. These stones are typically best suited for embankments and hills. You can also use them to decorate yard spaces. Although a less common application, you can use rip rap stone in flat landscaping areas, surrounded by shrubbery.
  • Gabion Baskets: These baskets are made of galvanized wire and rip rap, and you can place them along shorelines with vegetation inside. This anti-erosion technique is useful for narrow banks and steep slopes.


Where to Find Rip Rap Stone Near You

Rip rap acts as a protective barrier along waterways that minimizes the effects of erosion while adding stability. It is essential for shorelines of rivers, lakes and other bodies of water. For peak effectiveness, you need rip rap material that is reliable and long-lasting to do the job.

York Building Products has rip rap stone near you made of durable limestone and available at affordable prices. We are the trusted seller of aggregates, asphalt and ready-mix concrete in Central Pennsylvania. When you buy your rip rap supply from us, you will receive a quality product that will appear and perform as you expect. We deliver throughout locations in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware.

In addition to our outstanding products, we offer the best customer service. Get in touch with one of our representatives today, and they will answer all of your questions and direct you to the best aggregate solution for your needs. When it's ready, we'll go the extra mile and deliver your rip rap to your job site.

Contact us for more information about rip rap or to order stones for your next project.