Decorative aggregate is now ready to be revealed when the concrete has been placed. Only the top of the stone will be exposed whereas the rest will remain permanently embedded in the concrete. Removing the surface mortar to a depth of not more than 1/3 the diameter of the aggregate particle is the general rule of thumb.
3 Exposure Methods Contractors Can Use
- Brushing & Washing – This is considered the oldest and simplest since it won’t require special tools. All you have to do is to wash away the thin layer of surface mortar which covers the aggregate. What is critical is the timing of the operation. Work must start as soon as the surface mortar can be removed without dislodging the aggregate.
- Application of a chemical surface retarder – Consider doing this onto the slab surface right after placing and finishing. Experts say that this will delay the set and will provide them with flexibility to eliminate the cement paste up to a day through pressure washing or scrubbing.
- Abrasive blasting – This method is being used after the concrete has set and hardened. It is also known as sandblasting or shotblasting. However, this is not recommended if you want to preserve the shape and hue intensity of the aggregate. Moreover, most contractors don’t use this since it can fracture the aggregate as well as dull its appearance.
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