The Ultimate Guide to 6A Gravel - Sizes, Uses, Costs and More

The Ultimate Guide to 6A Gravel - Sizes, Uses, Costs and More
Table Of Content

What is 6A Gravel?

6A gravel gets its name from its size. It falls in the range between 3⁄8 inch to 3⁄4 inch in diameter. Some key properties and characteristics of 6A gravel include:

Particle Shape

6A gravel particles are typically more rounded and smooth since they are naturally weathered river rocks.

Particle Hardness

Since 6A gravel comes from natural rock, the particles tend to be quite hard and do not break down easily under pressure.

Particle Porosity

6A gravel particles are often more porous than other types of gravel due to their high exposure to water erosion.

Uniformity of Particle Sizes

6A gravel features a relatively uniform size distribution, with at least 85% of particles falling in the specified diameter range.

Production of 6A Gravel

6A gravel originates from quarrying deposits of sand and gravel, also known as aggregate. Extracted aggregate is processed through various crushing, washing, screening, and sorting mechanisms to separate the particles by size. Modern aggregate processing plants use advanced equipment like McCloskey screening devices and Komatsu excavators to efficiently mine and process large volumes of aggregate at high standards.


Larger stones and boulders are initially crushed to break them down into smaller sizes. This allows easier handling and separation of particles.


Washing separates fine clay, dirt, and organic particles found mixed with the aggregates. This cleans the material.


Screening sorts particles based on size. Different mesh screen sizes are used to classify gravel particles into groups from small stones to coarse rock.


Once sized and cleaned, the sorted aggregates are transported to stockpiles where they await transport for construction use.

Common Uses for 6A Gravel


The medium particle size and hardness of 6A gravel makes it an excellent choice for driveway installations. Its pore spaces allow water drainage while still providing good traction and support for vehicles.


6A gravel works well in gardens and yards to create walkways, accent areas, or drainage areas. The smooth rounded stones provide an attractive, natural look with muted neutral colors.

Decorative Gravel

6A gravel's appearance makes it popular as decorative groundcover in gardens, drainage swales, rock beds, borders, planters, and more.

Road Base

The gradation and hardness of 6A gravel is suitable for the base layer of roads underneath the pavement or asphalt driving surface. As a base, it supports vehicle loads with proper water flow.

Drainage Fill

6A gravel serves excellently as drainage fill material. The pore spaces between particles allow water flow while preventing erosion issues. Drainage gravel helps manage runoff and pools of surface water.

Construction Mixes

Combined with cement, sand, or additives, 6A gravel creates solid bases and surfaces for driveways, slabs, and pavements through mixes like cement stabilized gravel or aggregate concrete.

6A Gravel Costs

Gravel prices vary regionally based on local material availability and transportation costs. On average, expect to pay $15 to $30 per ton or $30 to $60 per cubic yard for 6A gravel material and delivery. Costs depend on factors like:

Location and Distance

Areas further from aggregate sources pay higher delivery fees, impacting overall prices. Delivery distance is a key cost driver.

Supplier Reputation and Rates

Material costs and quality can differ between aggregate suppliers. Compare vendors. Large quantity or frequent purchasers may qualify for bulk discounts.

Current Fuel Prices

Fuel and transportation expenses make up much of the cost. Expect prices to rise with fuel costs and vice versa.

Order Quantity

Per ton pricing incentivizes large aggregate orders by lowering unit costs. Small projects pay more per cubic yard.

Gravel Processing

Enhancements like prescreening to specific size distributions or additional washing and cleaning increase processing costs.

Delivery and Labor

Have the supplier deliver and offload the gravel. Or save cost and do it yourself. Remember that installation and shaping labor costs extra.

How to Select Quality 6A Gravel

Not all 6A gravel options perform the same. Here are tips for sourcing premium gravel product:

Supplier Reputability

Source from established quarries with strict quality control and processing standards to ensure consistent sizing.

Size Testing

Ask the quarry to sieve test and provide gradation reports showing percentages of particle sizes. Look for minimal dust and uniformity.

Previous Installation Success

Check out completed projects that used their 6A gravel. Were customers satisfied with the results?

Rock Hardness

Inspect and handle sample gravel particles. Quality 6A gravel feels hard, not soft or easily cracked.

Previous Weathering

Prefer rounded 6A gravel rocks that show evidence of river transport and erosion over freshly crushed faces.

6A Gravel Installation Tips

Follow these recommendations for best results with your 6A gravel project:

Proper Base Preparation

Excavate, grade, and compact the base soil thoroughly before applying gravel to prevent settling issues.

Geotextile Fabric Lining

Install non-woven geotextile barrier cloth over soil to limit weed growth and stop migration of fines up into the clean gravel.

Purchase Extra Gravel

Get 5-10% more gravel than you estimate needing to allow for error, later touch-ups, and settling over time.

Deep Enough layers

Gravel loses stability when spread too thin. Driveways typically need at least 4 inch depth. Landscape gravel performs best at 2-3 inch depths.

Set Sidewalls or Borders

Prevent gravel wandering by setting clear borders with header boards, metal edging, large rocks, or concrete mowing strips around the perimeter.

With this helpful guide, you now know what 6A gravel offers, how it is produced, popular uses, what it costs, and the best practices for choosing and installing this versatile medium 3⁄4 inch gravel in your project!


What size is 6A gravel?

6A gravel ranges from 3⁄8 inch to 3⁄4 inch in diameter. At least 85% of the particles must fall within this size range to qualify as 6A gravel.

What is 6A gravel best used for?

6A gravel works extremely well for driveways, landscaping, decorative groundcover, drainage fill, road base, and construction mixes. Its versatility makes it one of the most popular gravel sizes.

Is 6A gravel angular or rounded?

Most 6A gravel consists of rounded, smooth river rock. The natural weathering process over time erodes their edges and gives character.

Does 6A gravel compact well?

Yes, the granular composition combined with the variety of particle sizes allows 6A gravel to be compacted thoroughly. Compaction provides added stability.

What equipment is used to produce 6A gravel?

Modern gravel operations use advanced screening plants (ex. McCloskey), crushing equipment, and heavy-duty excavators and loaders (ex. Komatsu) to efficiently mine, sort, and stockpile large volumes of 6A aggregate.

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