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Posted by Shaun Mc Daid on March 30, 2017

Benefits and Advantages of Hiring Plant & Machinery from McDaid’s

Contact us - Mc Daid Brothers
The popularity of construction equipment rental around the world goes from strength to strength. The attraction of being able to use the exact piece of equipment you need, but only for the length of time you need it without having to worry about a long-term financial commitment, is highly attractive.


Most types of heavy industrial equipment are not cheap. Buying a dumper or a digger is a big investment, and it may not always be possible to make the investment when you need the equipment. The clear advantage of hiring a piece of equipment is that you do not need to pay the money upfront in order to use the machinery.


Owning a piece of construction machinery is also a long-term investment in terms of maintenance and repairs. When you hire your equipment you cut the risk of expensive breakdowns and you know you will not be called upon to pay for regular maintenance checks. Aside from saving money, this gives you better peace of mind knowing that you will always have a piece of equipment that works well and is up to date in terms of technology. Because you are only paying for the time you actually use the equipment, you can save a great deal.


As the construction market is changeable and affected by many factors that are largely outside of the control of industry participants, it makes sense to hire equipment that can be returned if conditions in the market deteriorate, or added to as new projects are won and new work taken on. Hiring equipment is a flexible solution that can help companies cope with the ups and downs of the market.


When you buy an expensive piece of kit you’re always going to be thinking about when you should sell, and how much you can expect to get from the sale. The fact is, the value of a piece of machinery drops considerably as soon as you pay for it, and you will never get back exactly what you paid. If this is a concern for you, equipment hire is the natural solution.


You can never be exactly sure what your next project will be. Perhaps it will require some specialist machinery you don’t own. Cut down on your outlays and reduce the risk of ending up with an unused piece of machinery in your factory by hiring the specialist equipment instead of shelling out to buy it. Every project is likely to be a little different, so the equipment you use will alter, too.

For a full list of our Plant Hire equipment click here or call +353 (0) 74 93 60585

Posted by Shaun Mc Daid on March 29, 2017

How can I grow a lawn easily

McDaid's Topsoil

How can I grow a lawn easily?

At McDaid’s, we are asked year on year by homeowners, if it is difficult to grow a lawn easily without having to bring in a landscaper.  The answer very simply is yes!!

We asked Michael from McDaid’s Brothers to give us some tips on growing and care for a lush green a lawn easily.

Everyone wants a perfect lawn. What’s better than looking out your front door and seeing lush, green grass? With the right products, quality sand and topsoil and a little patience, you can learn how to grow a lawn easily.

Whether you start from seed or sod, it all comes down to proper planning and good soil.

Firstly, prepare your area and calculate the amount of topsoil and sand you may require.  If you are unsure, please contact us and we will be happy to help.  At McDaid’s, we have different grades and quality of topsoil and sand available, depending on your budget and your requirements.

Prepare your area:

Depending on the size of your garden, you may need to hire diggers, dumpers or rollers. Investing in the hire of machinery will, in the long-run, save you time and money and help you to grow a lawn easily.  We can also provide you with all the plant and equipment you may need to complete your project.

Plant your seed or roll your turf:

Turf must be rolled out immediately in spring/summer and within 24 hours in the autumn/winter, therefore you should ensure the site is fully prepared before arranging for the turf to be delivered.

The ideal times to seed a lawn or overseed an existing lawn are spring and autumn, with germination taking 7 to 21 days depending on growing conditions.

Enjoy your hard work!

Posted by Shaun Mc Daid on March 24, 2017

ready mix concrete

Why Use Concrete?

Stonehenge in England, the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Peruvian citadel at Machu Picchu—three wondrous examples of how stone structures can last hundreds or even thousands of years. But though stone is one of the oldest and most durable building materials, it isn’t exactly easy to work with. It’s heavy, hard to transport, and usually comes in giant chunks, which have to be laboriously cut to shape. Wouldn’t it be great if there were a recipe for stone—a kind of gooey cake mixture we could throw together wherever it was needed, simply pressing it into molds to make buildings and structures of any shape or size? Well that kind of “liquid stone” really does exist: we call it concrete. Although it sometimes gets a bad press, because many people associate it with brutal urban architecture from the mid-20th century, this dynamic material is the great, unsung hero of the modern, material world.


McDaid's concrete, Donegal
McDaid’s concrete

From the Hoover Dam to the Sydney Opera House, you’ll find it in the world’s tallest skyscrapers, biggest bridges, longest highways, deepest tunnels, and quite probably even under the floor in your own humble little home. Concrete is pretty amazing stuff, but what is it and how exactly does it work? Let’s take a closer look!

What is concrete?

The word “concrete” comes from a Latin word, concretus, meaning to grow together—and that’s exactly what it does when you combine its three ingredients, which are:

  1. A mixture of coarse and fine aggregates (sand, gravel, stones, larger bits of crushed rock, recycled glass, bits of old recycled concrete, and pretty much anything equivalent)—typically 60–75 percent.
  2. Cement (the everyday name for calcium silicates and aluminates)—typically 10–15 percent.
  3. Water—typically 15–20 percent.

Thrown together and mixed well, these simple ingredients make a composite, which is the name we give to a hybrid material that’s better in some important way than the materials from which it’s made. In the case of concrete, the “important” thing is that it’s strong, hard, and durable. Thinking of concrete as a composite material, the cement hydrate is the background, binding material (technically called the “matrix”) to which the sand and gravel add extra strength (the “reinforcement”).

How does concrete form from ingredients that are nothing like the final product? When you add water to cement, crystals of cement hydrate (technically, calcium-silica-hydrate) start to grow, which lock the sand and gravel tightly together. It’s this gradual crystal formation that gives concrete its strength, rather than the simple fact that it’s drying out. Indeed, the reason you have to keep wetting concrete for several days, as it sets, is to “power” the chemical reactions that hydrate the cement. The mushy slushy mixture that tumbles from your concrete mixer gradually turns much harder than the materials from which it’s formed. “Liquid stone” becomes stone for real—well, artificial stone, at least. And by “gradually,” I really do mean gradually: concrete hardens in hours, gets properly hard after about a month, but continues to harden and strengthen for at least five years after that.

An interesting fact, from recent scientific studies of concrete, is that the “crystals” inside it aren’t really crystals at all: they’re not well-ordered and perfectly regular, as crystals are supposed to be, but actually have some of the random structure you find in materials like glass (scientifically known as amorphous solids). Concrete contains quite a bit of trapped air (as much as 5–10 percent) because there is some space around the open, three-dimensional structure of cement hydrate crystals and the sand and gravel trapped between them. And that, in turn, explains why concrete can bend and flex, stretch and compress (just a little bit, anyway).

Just like any recipe, you can vary the mixture for concrete somewhat (more water, perhaps, more aggregates, or even chemicals of different kinds) to produce concrete that flows faster, sets harder or more quickly, weathers better, or has a particular colour or appearance. Adding a pigment called titanium dioxide, for example, is a simple way of making concrete bright and white—a million miles from the drab grey stuff that gives concrete car parks a bad name. Another variant is aerated concrete, which looks a bit like a very hard sponge with masses of tiny air pockets inside. These allow the concrete to expand and contract in hot and cold weather without fatally cracking and also make it an excellent heat insulating material.

McDaid’s have been involved in the quarrying and construction industry for over 50 years. We can provide a huge range of concrete to meet your individual needs www.mcdaid.ie/concrete.