Most of the time a fabricator will install the finished product they have created, but, occasionally, it is part of a larger project and must be turned over to a contractor. It’s a fear of many a fabricator…something out of their control goes wrong. The finished product becomes unusable; hours of hard work and the investment of materials are down the drain. This is NOT one of those stories, but there was a moment…
Advanced Surface Solutions of Charlotte, North Carolina, took on the task of making a rather large (about eight-and-a-half feet by six feet) custom concrete Compass Rose to be the focal point of a paver courtyard. Thus, the finished product would be turned over to the installer of the pavers to be precisely inlayed. First, though, here’s the process of creating the concrete Compass Rose. The crew at Advanced Surface Solutions relies on SureCrete Design Products durable Xtreme Series GFRC Systems (glass fiber reinforced concrete) for many of their projects and this one was no exception.
To create the two tone sections of each individual piece, they designed a split form using a combination of the foam rail forming system and three quarter inch melamine sheets. The recessed “B” was formed with a cut from a texture mat. To start, they placed Xtreme Series PreCast in one half of each piece. After about 45 minutes, they were able to remove the split form section and pour the contrasting second half, again using Xtreme Series PreCast. To achieve the needed strength and 1.5 inch thickness, Xtreme Series Backer over the three-quarter inch thick Xtreme Series PreCast material. The pieces were de-molded just six hours later and revealed a crisp line between the two colors! The pieces were cleaned with diluted Super Concrete Renovator
(SCR), slurry was applied to fill any pinholes, and EcoStain was used on half of each piece. XS-327 Hybrid Water Based Polyurethane was used to seal and protect the pieces.
Now, here’s the moment…after turning the finished concrete Compass Rose over to the contractor and it was installed, the Advanced team learned that he had used a plate tamp to pack and level the pieces! Nevertheless, the durability of the finished product excelled; even under that kind of abuse there was no breakage and only a few light scratches. Minor touch ups were easily made with the XS-327 Hybrid Water Based Polyurethane sealer and Advanced Surface Solutions was able to return the Compass Rose to its original condition.
Location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Project: Custom GFRC Compass Rose
Installer: Advanced Surface Solutions
Materials Supplier: Turning Point Innovations
Products Used: Xtreme Series PreCast, Xtreme Series Backer, EcoStain, SCR, XS-327 Hybrid Water Based Polyurethane