Rüttelplatte or rammer - what you need for which work

Again and again there are occasions when you have to compact the soil or a specific piece of ground to increase its load capacity. Time and again, the question arises whether you can not use simple rammers instead of vibrating plates. You can find the answer to that in our article.

Equipment for soil compaction

Soil can be compacted in different ways and with different devices:

  • with a handstamper
  • with a vibration rammer
  • using a vibrating plate

All these devices have different functions and are also used in different areas. Therefore, let's briefly describe what is best used where.

hand Stampfer

The Handstampfer is only suitable for very small areas and can only non-cohesive substrates (such as sand or loose gravel) compact unevenly.

Handstampers work by their weight alone (usually around 5 - 10 kg). The compaction performance is correspondingly low (for comparison: vibrating plates bring between 1,000 and 10,000 kg weight on the plate).

A hand rammer is therefore used primarily for compacting concrete. The only exception is where you can not work properly with the vibrating plate or the vibratory rammer (for example, directly on the house wall or in places that are difficult to access).


Vibratory rammers are operated by a spring mechanism. A motor pushes the compressor plate downwards, through the spring mechanism, it returns back up.

Typical performances of vibration tampers (also called Wackerstampfer) are around 3 hp. This allows only the compaction of so-called cohesive substrates (such as clay soil) but only very limited the compaction of sand and gravel, as is necessary for example for substructures of concrete foundations or paved paths. You can not shake pavement with the vibratory rammer either.


The operation of a vibrating plate we have described in a separate contribution. Vibratory plates are particularly suitable for all purposes, newer models even have a control indicator, with which the degree of compaction can be controlled.

The disadvantage of the vibrating plate is its relative unwieldiness and its high weight (small vibrating plates weigh around 40 - 50 kg, while large ones often weigh up to one ton). In narrow or narrow areas, they can only be used to a limited extent. Here vibration rammers play their advantage, even if the compaction performance is slightly worse overall.

Tips & Tricks

As a rule, around 5,500 vibration beats per minute are already sufficient for most work on their own property with a vibratory plate. With 2 kW power they are in the lower power range, from 4 kW you can expect a good performance of the plate.

Video Board: Wacker Jumping Jack Springs, Erratic Jumping