The Different Sizes of Rip Rap and Their Uses

Rip rap is a rock or other material that’s used to bolster shorelines in the Rochester, MN, area against erosion due to water and ice.


Rip rap comes in a variety of different sizes, and our team at Olmsted Aggregate stocks a number of different stones that are appropriate for a wide range of uses. Keep reading for a breakdown of common rip rap stone sizes and their ideal use cases.


4-5 Inches: Rip rap that’s 4 to 5 inches in length is typically the smallest type that’s used. It’s best for preventing erosion in smaller streams or placed alongside small drainage ditch. Rip rap this small will flow away when placed near a fast-moving or large body of water. Rip rap that’s 4 to 5 inches in size is also often used in driveways and parking lots since it’s effective at choking out weed growth.


6-9 Inches: This size of rip rap is some of the most common that’s bought and sold. Stones of this size are effective at preventing erosion across a wide variety of streams, ponds, and lakes, and are large enough to prevent foot traffic from crossing or walking too close to a bank. Rip rap that is 6 to 9 inches is also used in railroad ballast or to help create retaining walls close to bodies of water.


9 Inch+: Rip rap that’s larger than 9 inches might not be the most common, but is very effective at protecting shorelines from erosion. It’s often used to fill in large holes, ditches, and to restore shore banks that have suffered due to the effects of rushing water and soil erosion.


When figuring out how much rip rap you need, understand that larger stones will cost more than smaller ones. Rip rap that’s used as a base material, as opposed to being placed on a shoreline to reduce erosion, requires a different volume and size of the material.


These factors can greatly influence the total cost of the rip rap order. Olmsted Aggregate stocks rip rap three different classes of rip rap: 6”-12”, 9”-18”, and 12”-24”. Our team is more than happy to discuss your project to ensure you get the materials you need.


Some suppliers stock poor quality materials that contain various other debris and substances. This does not happen at Olmsted Aggregate. All of our rip rap is of the highest quality and is screened before being sold to our customers. Let us help you with your next project in the Rochester, MN, area. Feel free to reach out at (507) 775-6657.


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