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Concrete Countertop Series #8: Molds Removed - Top Surface is Exposed

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Blog entry by Siegel_KenEvil posted 12-10-2010 02:29 AM 6159 reads 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 7: Be Carefull, Cement Burns! Part 8 of Concrete Countertop Series series Part 9: Filling Small Pits and Repair Job »

It’s been 6 days since the first pour and 5 days since the back-splash and void fills. I was going to wait two weeks but seeing the undercuts gone, after chipping away a little every day, I got excited and removed the forms.

Things are starting to come together. Instead of drilling out the faucet hole after the concrete hardens, I inserted a 1-1/4” dowel and 2-1/2” counter sink. It works fine but here are some things I’ll change next time. First, the thru hole should have been 1-3/8” to be standard (I think). Second, I wish I had just drilled it to give me location flexibility. I based my dimension on my current sink but I don’t like how close this faucet is to the edge of the sink.

Drilling out does have a drawback I’ll have to resolve. The faucet threads are too short to be used on a 1-1/2” thick counter-top. The counter-sink is necessary unless the faucet can be refitted with longer threads.

The above image shows; the form before the pour, the chipping away after the pour, the plug removed, and the plug still in the concrete after unscrewing it from the rest of the form.

This image shows my biggest problem area. This confirms my fears mentioned in one of my previous post about flat out forgetting (panicking) to push concrete up in this area. I used my orbital sander to remove paint that preferred to stay on the concrete. Worked great but I didn’t like the slurry around a tool not intended to be wet.

I’m really happy with the results. The back splashes are ready to be polished. The pits in the counter-top and sink need to be filled. I was going to use contrasting white grout but after seeing how black the back-splashes are, I’m going to switch to black grout to tie in them in aesthetically.

Right now, I’m back to curing but with the top-side up. I think I’ll take a break for a while before I start mixing up my grout. Reason… see previous post.

One last thing. I think it’s important to reiterate the mixtures that gave the shown results.

The Sink and Counter-Top

Batch 1 – 1 80# bag Quikrete Counter-top Mix, a little more than 1 gal of water
Batch 2 – same as Batch 1 but add 1 Quikrete Charcoal Concrete Die
Gently fold together


The Back-splashes

1 60# bag of sand mix (sand and cement), 1 Quikrete Charcoal Concrete Die, 1 bottle of Acrylic Fortifier. (don’t know how much but there is only one size), Water.


-- Scott



7 comments so far

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

10939 posts in 1673 days


#1 posted 12-10-2010 03:20 AM

WOW i think that came out awesome. Good for you for trying something new im impressed

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View dakremer's profile

dakremer

2455 posts in 1758 days


#2 posted 12-10-2010 03:31 AM

it looks like there are a lot of voids/holes in the concrete. Did you vibrate it before letting it dry/cure? I’ll have to go look at the previous blogs.

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View sras's profile

sras

3856 posts in 1796 days


#3 posted 12-10-2010 03:37 AM

This is really interesting – I am ready to see how the finishing work turns out. You have a nice design going on here!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Siegel_KenEvil's profile

Siegel_KenEvil

114 posts in 1505 days


#4 posted 12-10-2010 04:15 AM

Dakremer – no I didn’t vibrate it enough. I had my daughter go around it once with a hex head bold inserted into a drill creating a hammering effect. It wasn’t enough but I’m not too surprised. If I had my heart set on filling all the voids, I would have used more water in the concrete mix and better vibrating techniques… like having a fully charged battery in the drill. I also heard palm sanders work well. I kind of did a hail marry and live with the results.

Thanks Steve and Chris. This is a fun project.

-- Scott

View Cantputjamontoast's profile

Cantputjamontoast

341 posts in 2099 days


#5 posted 12-10-2010 05:50 AM

The hard part of this is making the form.

Hell mix up 2 more bags of mud and try again if you are not pleased. I think it looks good!!!

Rent a horse __ (part of anatomy that you burned) vibrator and try again. There are whole books written on vibration and consolidation of concrete.

-- "Not skilled enough to wipe jam on toast!"

View dakremer's profile

dakremer

2455 posts in 1758 days


#6 posted 12-10-2010 07:02 AM

yeah, hindsight is always 20/20 huh?...but it looks great for a first try thats for sure! I really love concrete stuff. I really want to do a little concrete top coffee table, or something like that – just to try it. You definitely did an awesome job for a first time on a VERY complicated piece. Awesome blog! Awesome project!! Thanks a lot for sharing

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View childress's profile

childress

841 posts in 2209 days


#7 posted 12-10-2010 08:19 AM

Also, using melamine would have been better. The mortar won’t stick to it, it would’ve been a lot smoother surface, along with vibrating better.

But, this gives you an opportunity to do something cool with all those holes. which it looks like you’re planning anyways. As long as you’re happy, that’s all that matters…

EDIT: Sorry, I jumped the gun. Again, I failed to read all the other blogs in their entirety. I see now how you finished the form and think that was just fine. I thought I remembered you saying you use just plain MDF…

-- Childress Woodworks

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