Traditionally, when decorative or specialty flooring contractors wanted to broadcast decorative vinyl color chips or colored quartz onto a horizontal or vertical surface, they preferred doing it by hand.
As a child, who wasn’t thrilled to see the wood forms come out indicating a new sidewalk, driveway or even basement was about to be poured? Today, we know concrete can do so much more, and certainly the forms that helped shape it have changed, too.
Before purchasing a grinding/polishing machine, polished concrete contractors must determine what types of jobs they are seeking — smaller custom-design projects or larger-volume ones.
What sets Patriot Spraysafe apart is carbon dioxide. The system uses carbon dioxide cartridges to propel liquid through its nozzle.
A look at the various grinders on the market and their benefits for you and your decorative concrete polishing business.
Brad Obbink went all-in as a polished concrete contractor a few years ago, discarding the paint pot and brush and hitching his fortunes to the concrete grinder/polisher, for better or worse.
The material has crushed recycled concrete for aggregate and fly ash waste from coal mills for the base. Other industrial byproducts provide nanofibers for crack reduction and nanoparticles for surface density to reduce water penetration.
Keeping up with the newest trends in the concrete curbing market. Take a look at four awesome concrete curbing machines.
There are many molding compounds available, so it’s important to get one that’s appropriate for the application at hand.
Concrete countertops are a very hot item these days, and fabricating them can be much easier than you think — when you use the right tools and technique. This is the key to eliminating frustration and ultimately producing a quality product.
Turn your little concrete countertop shop into a that big business by getting your projects out the door sooner.
Classic Native American patterns, wild horses, tropical fish: today's border-stamp makers are living on the edge.
A review of tools and methods for sink polishing and edge profiling concrete countertops.
When raw soil or aggregate needs to be compacted before a pour, what do decorative concrete contractors use to pound the ground? Rollers are too much machine for smaller jobs. So generally, the choice is between rammers and vibratory plate compactors.
In this Tooling section, Concrete Decor magazine focused on walk-behind models, handheld models, edgers and other tools that can be helpful to decorative contractors on small and medium-sized jobs.
Decorative concrete contractor Tom Ralston has probably never met you, but even so, he suspects you’re waiting too long before cutting your control joints. “Saw-cutting concrete is usually done long after the concrete has been poured or has set up,” he says. “It’s kind of like locking the gate after the horse has left.”
Vibrators for concrete can be used to move air out of the mix come in all shapes and sizes from ultra portable to versions for the countertop.
Artists can use Quick Draw to create large and highly detailed designs comfortably from a standing position. For detailed drawing, the chalk-holder piece of the assembly, called simply Quick Draw, can be removed and used alone.
To get the look, Ralston scattered rock salt here and there on the fresh pour, along with drops of retardant. After washing away the salt and retardant the next day and attacking the concrete with an acid-water solution and a wire brush, his team had the aged, corroded effect they wanted.
Concrete contracting doesn’t usually lend itself to sweeping generalizations, but here’s a good one: If a contractor wants to give a curing concrete slab more slip resistance, the easiest, simplest solution is to drag a broom across it.
Since concrete’s makeup differs from region to region, it will vary in hardness and density. A pick set can be used to test both aggregates and cement paste to determine a concrete surface’s hardness.
Trimtape Inc., a Georgia company, is unspooling several sticky options for concrete contractors. Trimtape’s grout line tapes, which range in width from 1⁄4 inch to 1 inch, are laced with strands of fiberglass for strength. Layout marker lines appear every four inches of tape.
The Lightning Strike Roller Screed first made its name at the 2007 World of Concrete show, where it won the Most Innovative Product Expert's Choice award in the placement tools and equipment category.
Crete Master's smooth-as-glass countertop finish, a hand-held surface finisher that excels in finishing concrete counter tops, horizontal and vertical overlays, colored hardeners, edges on concrete slabs and many other applications that require a smooth finish.
Proline Concrete Tools Inc. isn’t in the winemaking business, but if contractors all over the country want to press its grapes, the company would be more than happy to make that happen.
Engrave-A-Crete, which manufactures tools and templates to engrave concrete, has come up with a state-of-the-art solution to help contractors help clients envision designs for their decorative concrete projects.
An overview of some of the different forms on the market and which might be the best options for your project.
In this world, there are two types of concrete: concrete that’s flat, gray and utilitarian, and concrete that’s been shaped, colored and/or textured — and is considered art.
A concrete finishing broom is an artist’s tool, and like any important tool, it needs to be treated with care.
The right mixer and paddle can be the pairing for success. Just as a good cook knows when to use a stand mixer with bread hooks and when to get out the hand mixer with a whip, there are a mixer— and a paddle or blade design— for just about every size job in the decorative concrete industry, as well.
Still struggling with how to meet the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s requirements on protecting your employees from silica dust? You certainly aren’t alone.
Let’s face it, working concrete is a hard job. It’s hard on the hands, the back and especially the knees. Fortunately, for some contractors there’s an option that allows them to stand upright and still complete their jobs.
If you’re using a 21st century form product, such as plastic, then it probably makes sense to use a 21st century form-release system, as well.
Riviera Brush Co. has been a leader in the concrete brush industry since 1989. They started out by developing their line of Orange-Crete wash brushes for the ready-mix industry. The brushes were designed to stand up to the harsh conditions inherent to the industry — lime, abrasives, muriatic acid and other cleaning agents. They were ideal for cleaning trucks and equipment.
There’s a grinder/polisher model available for just about every task, whether it’s prepping the floor
of a big-box store or finishing a basement or small office. Finding the right tool for the job can make a big difference in speed and efficiency, so know what you want before you go shopping.
It’s going to take the industry by storm. It’s a game changer. Revolutionary. In the case of polishing concrete with power trowel machinery, all those phrases might well prove true. Or, maybe not. Revolutionary? You could make that claim. Game changer? Yes, but….
People who work with concrete know that creative forming is essential for a high-quality finished product. It can sometimes be the most arduous part of concrete work, especially when curves and circles are involved.
Dispersing color hardener is a filthy job. You’re covered from head to toe. It’s in your clothes. It’s on your clothes. If there’s a little bit of wind, it’s that much worse.
Most decorative concrete contractors know that consolidating concrete is as essential to a quality finished product as mix ratio or proper fi nishing and curing. Consolidating forces air out of the concrete and encourages aggregate to rotate and fit together tighter, creating stronger concrete.
The new CM 3 Compact Modular Vacuum Lifting System from Vacuworx is changing the game for contractors who run compact equipment such as skid steers, track loaders, articulating wheel loaders and mini excavators on the job every day—now allowing them to handle materials such as concrete slabs, steel plates and pipe up to 6,600 pounds with ease!
The word "diamonds" is inevitably associated with the concept of "big bucks," but like many other things about diamond grinding, this is something of a misconception.