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Swales on slope

 
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Hi all I’ve been doing some research but keep seeming to run in to different answers. Are swales not recommended on slopes above 17% grade or 17 degrees? I understand this can vary depending on climate but I keep seeing degrees and slope used to answer the question and wanted to at least figure this out as a starting point.

Thanks all!

Natalie
 
pollinator
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Your question is confusing, can you clarify it a bit please?
 
Nat Kadziel
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Is the steepest a slope should be 17% grade or 17 degrees?
 
John C Daley
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What you have written is confusing.
I think the expressions have been muddled up.
I hope this information helps.
What is the difference between degrees and percent slope?
The difference in elevation between points is called the rise. The distance between the points is called the run. Thus, percent slope equals (rise / run) x 100. ... Since degree of slope is equal to the tangent of the fraction rise/run, it can be calculated as the arctangent of rise/run.


Slope - Degree, Gradient and Grade Calculator

Engineers Box of tricks
 
Nat Kadziel
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Sorry I’ll try to explain one more time. I am trying to find out what the is the steepest slope that swales can be utilized safely. When I read posts people have mentioned both 17% and 17 degrees but they are very different units. I am asking is 17% the steepest slope recommended or 17 degrees?
 
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17% is majorly steep so I’m gonna assume it’s 17degrees
 
Joe Hallmark
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Wait I may have that backwards
I’m confusing myself now haha
41899AB5-27A4-4490-A4F3-D19A6E381990.png
[Thumbnail for 41899AB5-27A4-4490-A4F3-D19A6E381990.png]
 
Nat Kadziel
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Lol yeah 17 degrees is much steeper that’s why I am trying to find clarification for the steepness rule of thumb.
 
John C Daley
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Look at the Engineers Box I gave the link to, it explains it clearly.
Also, think about deleteing the incorrect post so others dont get confused.
 
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Nat, it's still a good question. :) This answer is from the Permaculture Research Institute. Maybe it will help(?)

Swales are not appropriate on steep landscapes. Any area with more than a fifteen-degree slope (about 1:3.75) isn’t appropriate for installing swales, as the water saturation may cause slides, which could be dangerous

 
Nat Kadziel
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Yes thank you! Seems like a legitimate source I’ll go with 15 degree slope as max.
 
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