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Cutting Pictures in Concrete with Diamond Blades

Engraved multicolored butterfly created with an artful eye.Discovering the right tools and techniques can make pictures in concrete very fun and rewarding.

How to Choose Abrasives for Polishing Concrete

The processes used for polishing concrete are quite possibly the most misunderstood piece of the business.The processes used for polishing concrete are quite possibly the most misunderstood piece of the business. A tremendous amount of sales propaganda is available that can either provide some clarity or add serious confusion.

Cordless Tools are a Must-Have On a Concrete Job Site

Cut the CordIf you’ve been ogling the new cordless tools but think they’re just for the do-it-yourself crowd, or wonder if they’d stand up to a full day’s work on a hot — or frigid — job site, it’s time to take another look.

A New Tool To Make Spraying Stucco Easier Than Ever

hand-held Stucco Sprayer by mortarsprayerBefore the hand-held Stucco Sprayer, concrete contractors who wanted to work vertically had to settle for one of two extremes – a large, costly pump, requiring a crew of four to six, or hand-stacking. The new sprayer fills a niche between the two.

Pneumatic Chip-broadcast Hopper Gun

mica chip broadcasting hand held tool. Pneumatic chip broadcasting tool.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.

Moisture Tests in Concrete: Calcium Chloride vs. Relative Humidity

When good floor coatings go bad, moisture is often the culprit. When good floor coatings go bad, moisture is often the culprit.

Even cured concrete can emit enough moisture to blister, cloud or delaminate a coating, especially when a slab with no vapor barrier sits on ground with poor drainage. The manufacturers of overlays, microcoatings, sealers and specialty coatings set moisture tolerance limits for their products.

Create Stronger Concrete with Consolidation Tools

The E-Screed is a precisionengineered lightweight wet screed for single operator strike-off of concrete. This high-frequency screed produces uniform vibration distribution over the entire blade length.Most decorative concrete contractors know that consolidating concrete is as essential to a quality finished product as mix ratio or proper finishing and curing. Consolidating forces air out of the concrete and encourages aggregate to rotate and fit together tighter, creating stronger concrete.

The Drive is On to Optimize Power Trowel Concrete Polishing

The Drive is On to Optimize Power Trowel PolishingBrad 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.

Concrete Mixers are Perfect for Mixing Small Batches

FRP Mixing machineAs you know, there are plenty of situations when you mix your own concrete rather than having it delivered from the ready-mix plant. Whether you are proposing stain, exposed aggregate or stamped concrete, a mixer is a great option for creating samples.

Which Portable Concrete Mixer is Right for You?

Whiteman plaster/mortar and concrete mixers are heavy-duty mixers from Multiquip that are reliable, easy to maintain, and offered in a full range of sizes and engine configurations for virtually any application.Modular, compact and sturdy in design; portable concrete mixers come in designs to fit all construction needs.

Magic Trowel Smooths Concrete Surfaces Without the Trowel Line

Using a Magic Trowel can help you achieve a smooth finish without trowel lines.Originally developed for finishing drywall, this magical tool smooths concrete surfaces without leaving any trowel lines. “We’re getting so many calls from concrete people,” says Joe Torres, president of TexMaster Tools, which makes the Magic Trowel. “The guys in this industry are going crazy!”

Plate Compactors and Rammers: Making a Choice Before the Concrete Pour

The most important factor in making that choice is the type of soil to be compacted. A rammer, which uses a piston set and springs to generate force, works best on cohesive soils, which are composed of clay and silts. Vibratory plates, on the other hand, are low-amplitude, high-frequency machines. They are most effective compacting granular soils, which are made up of sand and gravel.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.

Concrete Vibrators: The Hard Truth

The UMC-1 bracket mounts easily to any casting table with lag screws and can be easily moved. Concrete countertop contractors can place the vibrator in the best position to provide localized, powerful vibration, and then move it to the next spot for a perfect finished product.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.

What Considerations To Make When Purchasing A Vacuum

large vacuum with dust collecting featureThe philosophy behind purchasing industrial vacuums for controlling airborne dust is changing in the concrete industry, especially with new federal rules now in place concerning worker exposure to these particles.

Flatwork Forms For Placing Concrete

Placing concrete using flexible form edges.An overview of some of the different forms on the market and which might be the best options for your project.

How to Measure RH in Concrete

RH measurements in concreteHow valuable is 48 hours to you and your business? Can you put a price on it?

And does the price go up if you run into a moisture-related problem with a concrete slab in the later phases of a project?

Choosing the Right Diamond Polishing Pads for Concrete Countertops

Success With Concrete Countertops: Choosing the Right Diamond PadsThicker pads will last longer, but are stiffer and commonly prone to cupping when they dry out. Cupped pads don’t wear evenly, and often the outer area doesn’t actually make contact with the concrete. Photos courtesy of The Concrete Countertop Institute

Magnetic Stamps are Big Draw to Concrete Installers

Imagine you own a company that supplies concrete contractors with the tools for their trade. You offer a product that has been the industry standard for decades and is essential to most contractors in your industry. Your company sells a lot of them and they are a good source of income. Your company is a recognized industry leader as a provider of the product.

18V Brushless Compact Tough Hammer Drill/Driver Released by Bosch

A compact tool shouldn’t mean fewer features or less power. The Bosch GSB18V-535C 18V EC Brushless Compact Tough 1/2 In. Hammer Drill/Driver and Bosch GSR18V-535C 18V EC Brushless Compact Tough 1/2 In. Drill/Driver prove a small package can not only pack a serious punch, but deliver on next-generation jobsite technology. From Bluetooth connectivity to KickBack Control, these lightweight, compact tools promise to be go-to options in your tool bag.

enVisions Casting Mat from PreiTech Corp.

PreiTech mat laid out to show its shiny colors.It’s hard to describe enVisions using words alone. The plastic casting mat, which is laid into a countertop form before the concrete is poured, creates a genuinely unique, shimmering visual effect on a concrete surface.

Buying Diamond Tooling for Concrete Polishing

What are the comet trails looking things on a diamond tool for concrete polishing machines called.There are as many variables in manufacturing diamond tooling as there are diamond manufacturers. So which specific variables should you concern yourself with and why?

Trends in Concrete Curbing Equipment

The best concrete curbing machines on the market. Easy way to create concrete curbs.Keeping up with the newest trends in the concrete curbing market. Take a look at four awesome concrete curbing machines.

The Colorspreader from Triple Hard Tools Helps Contractors Stay Safe

As the tool floats, the vibrator distributes the product onto the concrete in an even and consistent manner. The slower you pull, the more material is distributed.Until now, contractors have thrown shake-on color hardener onto concrete mainly by hand. It’s tradition, and contractors love tradition. But by its nature, throwing the color can be inefficient, wasteful, and expose workers to possible health risks associated with inhaling airborne silicates.

How to Select Brushes and Brooms for the Ideal Concrete Finish

Contractors prize the aggressive texturing of a stiffer brush when slip resistance is more important than appearance, such as on a ramp. The stiffer the bristle, the rougher the surface, says Steve Cook, sales and marketing manager for Kraft Tool Co.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.

Protecting your Concrete Finishing Brush or Broom

The shallow, grooved texture left on the surface by a concrete broom or brush will help keep shoes and tires from slipping or skidding on a wet or icy concrete slab.A concrete finishing broom is an artist’s tool, and like any important tool, it needs to be treated with care.

How Does Moisture Move Through Concrete?

Understanding how moisture moves through concrete is critical to successful flooring. It helps you reduce the risk for future moisture-related flooring failure during installation. It also helps you identify and assess the cause of moisture-related issues that have already occurred.

World of Concrete 2019 Didn't Disappoint

The 2019 show, which marked the 44th time World of Concrete has been held, topped the charts as the largest show in more than a decade.The 2019 World of Concrete has been held, and it topped the charts as the largest show in more than a decade. The annual extravaganza for the concrete and masonry industries attracted 60,511 attendees and more than 1,500 exhibiting companies spanning 776,800 square feet of space in the Las Vegas Convention Center in January 2019.

An Overview on Some of the Newest Concrete Grinders on the Market

Eagle Solutions -- SP13A look at the various grinders on the market and their benefits for you and your decorative concrete polishing business.

Concrete Calculator

Quickly calculate your concrete pours by entering the length, width and thickness or height to find the number of cubic feet, yards or meters or bags of concrete needed for your project.  You can also calculate home, column or round concrete footings as well as circular concrete slabs or tubes. Once you have your amounts, you can give them to your ready-mix provider or to the person purchasing your bags and you will be ready to pour!

Understanding Measurements for Ground and Polished Concrete

What is the difference between polished and ground concrete? How to know what is the clarity and gloss measurement.What is ground and polished concrete? How do we determine the difference between a topical-polished floor, in which a product has been applied to the floor to seal it, and a mechanical polish with bonded abrasives?

New Planetary Grinders Offer More Choices to Countertop Fabricators

One of the biggest innovations in the concrete countertop grinding and polishing industry has been planetary technologyOne of the biggest innovations in the concrete countertop grinding and polishing industry has been planetary technology - machines that have multiple grinding heads, allowing fabricators to cover a large radius of material at a time and achieve an extra-flat result.

Advanced Tools for Concrete Coating Applications

Concrete coatingsA good set of tools goes a long way. When it comes to applying urethanes, epoxies and other concrete coatings, it’s a necessity. In a world where you have to constantly monitor moisture issues, pH, efflorescence, and constantly changing weather conditions, the last thing you need to worry about is an underperforming tool.

Forming in the rain
How to gauge grinders for polished concrete jobs

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.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.

Dust Containment Equipment for Decorative Concrete

TE DRS-B Dust Removal SystemDust control is a hot topic these days. We compiled a list of some of the dust control equipment on the market that can help on any decorative concrete job.

Trimtape Inc., Tapes Help With Concrete Layout, Cutting, Blasting

Trimtape Inc., Tapes help with concrete layout, cutting, blastingTrimtape 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.

Densifier prolongs concrete's life
Patriot Spraysafe System by Patriot Sprayer Systems Inc.

Patriot Spraysafe sprayer that uses carbon dioxide as the propulsion agent for the sprayer. What sets Patriot Spraysafe apart is carbon dioxide. The system uses carbon dioxide cartridges to propel liquid through its nozzle.

Cordless hammer drill made for speed
How to Excel at Concrete Countertop Sink and Edge Fabrication

A grinder smoothing the inside of a concrete sink.A review of tools and methods for sink polishing and edge profiling concrete countertops.

Are You Waiting Too Long To Cut Your Control Joints in Fresh Concrete?

Pacific Palette saw-cut joint tool made these lines perfect on this concrete slabDecorative 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.”

Match the Concrete Mix with the Right Equipment

Match the Mix with the Right EquipmentToo often mixing decorative overlays becomes an afterthought or path of least resistance process. This is the drill and paddle I have used for years, so it must be OK. Worse yet, and I am guilty of this, those of us on the training and manufacturing side default to whatever mixer is provided when we show up for a product demonstration.

Three Tips for Selecting the Right Molding Compound

The hardness of the rubber compound is what will determine whether the product is right for your project or not. Rubber's hardness is measured in durometers.There are many molding compounds available, so it’s important to get one that’s appropriate for the application at hand.

Proline Concrete Tools Flexible Concrete Stamps

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.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.

Border Tools and Designs

Horses stamped into concrete and stained a reddish brown color.Classic Native American patterns, wild horses, tropical fish: today's border-stamp makers are living on the edge.

Concrete Stencils from Universal Templates

Universal Templates stencil was rolled onto this driveway and creates a uniform patternUniversal Templates manufactures plastic adhesive backed templates/stencils for the decorative concrete industry. The company has 15 different patterns, which can be purchased in 250 sq. ft. rolls (3 ft. wide x 84 ft. long) or in 500 sq. ft. rolls (3 ft. wide x 168 ft. long).

Custom decorative concrete developed by Aggregate Industries US brings hockey imagery to life at new Boston Bruins practice facility

With a landmark 68-foot-high hockey stick, the new 75,000-square-foot practice complex of the Boston Bruins hockey team includes an ice rink with seating for 660 fans, a lobby featuring displays of Bruins accomplishments, a modern locker suite and team lounge and expansive training and weight rooms.

14 new products added to line
Soff-Cut X-150D Prowler Decorative Concrete Saw

Decorative cuts -- V-shaped or rounded radius cuts that are ground into existing grooves -- are this Prowler's specialty. Another concrete saw is used to make the rough first cut, and the X-150D follows to make it look good.Soff-Cut International’s X-150 Prowler early-entry concrete saw can be adapted to make decorative V-shaped or radius cuts. Concrete contractors loved that feature. But they found themselves making that adaptation often, and they got frustrated.

Quick Imprint Liners: Reusable Form Liners for Many Concrete Applications

The reusable concrete form liner seen here can be used for a variety of applications, tilt-up, down cast and even vertical precast pours.Quick-Imprint creates a reusable form liners — for tilt-up, downcast, and vertical precast pours — enabling an imprint finish on both sides of the walls.

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