Broom finish, flagstone, color, texture, swirling, and more. All finishes to newly poured concrete. And all finishes anyone can do themselves. Any one particular finishes will give your patio or sidewalk something besides the same kind of look. The questions are, what would you do and how do you get it done? However before we get that far, I am assuming you learn how to prepare, form, mix and pour the concrete. If not, go to link resource box for information which will assist you. And should you, read on.
Let’s start with Broom Finishing. It’s fairly simple to do. When the concrete surface is sufficiently set drag a soft broom or brush lightly over the concrete. For only less texture wait until the surface has further hardened. With concrete the timing is important. If your initial brooming left fat a finish you will need to retrowel the outer lining to remove all traces of the first finish, wait a few (or more) minutes and rebroom. If you want the appearance of the broom finish, but think a little something extra in the brooming would look better. Try this. As you drag the broom across the outer lining of one’s concrete pad move it back and forth sideways only a little. A maximum of 2 – 3 inches in each direction. Doing which will put what is know as a wavy finish to your concrete sidewalk or patio.
Another way to give your sidewalk or patio an alternative appearance has been a shell or swirling finish. Each is completed with a wood hand float as the concrete continues to be fairly wet (again trial and error. The swirling look is completed by randomly moving the wood float across the outer lining in no apparent pattern. It will rough up the outer lining and give it a somewhat coarse look. The shell finish is completed in a similar fashion, but, instead of the swirling random strokes, a shell pattern is applied. For the shell finish you support the wood float on the surface of the concrete and move the the top of float from laterally while keeping the bottom of the float in one single place. Then move the float right next to your first shell and do another (again trial and error. Keep this up until the entire surface has been covered with your shell pattern. You almost certainly will need to make several attempts as of this until you are pleased with how it looks. Don’t get discouraged when it doesn’t look’right’at first. Just practice a few strokes and it will come to you.
Color is no doubt the quickest and easiest thing you certainly can do to give your concrete an alternative look. There are three approaches to color your concrete. The very first is to put color in the concrete mix before it’s poured to the forms. The next way is to utilize it to the outer lining of the concrete although it continues to be wet. And the third is staining.
You can buy color and stains for concrete at just about any lumberyard and do it yourself store. None of the three color methods are difficult to do. With the first you place the color in the concrete mix before it’s poured in your forms. In this instance just follow the directions given with the color. In the second method you spread the color uniformly across the outer lining of one’s concrete although it continues to be wet and then utilize the float to spread it around and to the concrete high rise façade cleaning. Then finish the concrete as usual. Staining is the last color method. There are two forms of stain. Regular and semi-transparent and both are applied to new concrete after it has cured. Regular stain is like paint. It continues and covers completely. Semi-transparent stain goes on the same way (use a paintbrush, a spray can, a roller, I saw one done with a mop and it looked pretty good), but there is a difference. It can be applied in layers. Since the stain is semi-transparent the prevailing surface of one’s concrete sidewalk or patio will show through the first few layers of stain. The more times you apply the stain to the outer lining the less the first concrete coloration below will show up. In this situation it’s all a matter of preference.
A flagstone pattern finish is a little trickier compared to others. Here you float as usual and then make the flagstone as the concrete continues to be workable. Get an item of 1/2 or 3/4″ inch diameter copper pipe and bend it into an S shape. Retain one end of the pipe and press one other to the concrete. Then just pull it over the surface. That which you are wanting to complete is make a falgstone pattern with random geometric shapes on the surface of the concrete. When you have finished with making the flagstone you will need to refloat the concrete. The final step here’s whether you will want boom finish on the top of flagstone or a smooth one. For a broom finish you follow the last listed instructions.
Finally there are many other effects you are able to give concrete. A leaf finish is certainly distinctive. After floating and troweling just press some leaves into the outer lining soon after troweling. They must be embedded completely, however, not covered. Leave them in position until the concrete is placed and then remove them. Other things may be pressed into concrete for patterns too. You may make round impressions in the outer lining by utilizing cans. Anything you genuinely believe that might will leave a stylish mark on the concrete may be worth considering. Give it a try.
One finish I didn’t discuss is exposed aggregate. I think it would be too difficult for anyone with limited or no previous experience working together with concrete.