CRMX 3-Step Polishing System: Time Saving, Cost Efficient Wet Polishing Solution

When your next concrete polishing job can benefit from a wet polishing method, consider the CRMX 3-Step Polishing System.

Advantages of Wet vs. Dry Polishing Processes

The water used to cool diamond abrasives in a wet polishing process:

  • CRMX Concrete Polishing SystemEliminates grinding dust
  • Reduces friction
  • Lubricates the polishing abrasives, extending their life

Machines used in the dry polishing process:

  • Require no water to cool the diamond abrasives
  • Eliminate virtually all of the mess usually associated with a wet polishing process that a crew must clean up, which slows productivity

During concrete polishing jobs, contractors can opt to use both processes for different stages of grinding. Dry polishing can be used for the initial phase, to remove the most concrete. To achieve the smoother stages of polishing, crews can shift to the wet polishing process.

Advantages of the CRMX 3-Step Polishing System

When this system process is followed concisely, GMI guarantees the results are “perfect” every time:

  • Works the same on all concrete floors regardless of hardness
  • Used for every stage of concrete polishing
  • Virtually dustless polishing process
  • Eliminates the need for topical polish guards
  • Reduces tooling inventory
  • Simplifies diamond selection process
  • Reduces labor costs by as much as 45%
The CRMX Polishing Process

Following proper steps and procedure is critical to achieving perfectly polished concrete every time. Each step includes instructions for tooling and chemicals. Here is how the process works:

Floor Preparation – move directly to Step 1 after floor prep unless a PCD tool is used. Then follow floor prep with the appropriate metal bond tool to mitigate the scratches before proceeding to Step 1.

STEP 1

Tooling Component: The 10-Segment Canvas “Setting” Tool is designed to operate in conjunction with the CRMX™ Surface Refining Agent, removing the most difficult scratches on the hardest concrete surfaces. In one fast step, reduces labor and additional tooling costs because it can follow 6-, 16-, 20-, 30-, 50-, 80- or 100-grit metal bonds

Chemical Component: Uses with tools in both Step 1 and Step 2, the CRMX Surface Refining Agent helps in removing scratches quickly, eliminating the need for lengthy grinding steps to achieve high levels of clarity.

STEP 2

Tooling Component: Made from natural earth materials, the 5-Segment Canvas “Refinement” Tool will not transfer spent resins in the concrete surface that cause contaminated finishes and provides a scratch-free surface that can be sealed as is. For a higher refinement, continue to Step 3.

Chemical Component: The CRMX Densifier hardens and increases density in one, ready-to-use formula, dust-proofing concrete with nano-sized particles. Once properly applied, the densifier significantly improves the durability of the surface, resisting moisture and topical water spills. The densified floor has to be completely dry before proceeding with the polishing tool.

STEP 3

Tooling Component: Developed to produce the cleanest finishes in the industry, the 3-inch Canvas “Polishing” Tool is constructed with the highest grade epoxy resins available, producing average gloss ratings of 70 and frequencies in the single digits.

Chemical Component: The CRMX Acid Blocker is formulated to perform in high pH environments and high traffic settings such as retail groceries, commercial facilities and industrial floors, rendering a high performance, ultra-hard, water tight, dust-repellant surface that is resistant to chemicals and acid staining. It provides a 60% increase in light reflectivity from untreated concrete surfaces without decreasing the coefficient of friction on surfaces. Burnish with a non-diamond high speed burnishing pad after the chemical has completely dried.

*Information for this article provided by GMI Engineered Products, LLC
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3 Methods of Decorative Aggregate Exposure for Beautiful Polished Concrete

A growing trend in versatile, beautiful flooring solutions that can also last a lifetime is the use of polished concrete. To attain such visual aesthetics, contractors first look at the concrete itself.

Working with Concrete

There’s a time-honored adage about concrete, whether processed or not, that it is consistently inconsistent. Every single pour will be different from the next, with variations in color, cracking and overall flatness. However, the general goal is for the floor’s flatness to be as even as possible while pouring a new slab, as well as preparing the surface of an existing slab for finishing.

This being said, when pouring a new concrete floor, it’s a good idea to look at a polished finish as part of a total flooring system that includes 1) a concrete mix design, 2) curing, 3) a finishing method and 4) the actual polishing process. A concrete slab that’s poured with the polishing process in mind will greatly enhance the end result.

Working with existing concrete slabs, results are determined by the quality of the existing concrete. Color variations, contaminates, cracks, patterns left by previous floor covering, stains, nail holes, patched areas and flatness all affect the newly polished appearance.

3 Concrete Polishing MethodsThe polishing process usually includes grinding down the surface to reveal different levels of aggregate within the concrete or the addition of decorative aggregates, such as recycled glass, landscaping stone, nails, nuts, bolts, sea shells and others, seeded into the surface for decorative purposes. There are three common aggregate choices to consider when it comes to polished concrete floors:

1. Cream Polished or Surface Cream: the top layer of the concrete is made from troweled cement paste that contains the cement fines of the mix. Only 1/32 – 1/64-inch is removed from the slab surface, resulting in little or no aggregate exposure. This is a popular, economical style; the cream is the purest, most consistent in color, has the fewest imperfections and can be stained any color.

2. Salt and Pepper: the layer just below the cream made from fine aggregate – sand and very small stone that gives the concrete a “salt and pepper” look. To achieve this look, 1/64 – 1/8-inch of the cream is removed by grinding the surface, exposing small amounts of medium aggregate randomly throughout. The ideal time to start the grinding process is within 7 days of pouring the concrete slab, which helps to expose just the right amount of aggregate.

3. Exposed Aggregate: the layer below the cream and salt and pepper made from coarse aggregate within the concrete mix. To reach this layer, 1/8 – 1/4 -inch is ground from the surface, removing the top two layers. This process should start almost immediately after a concrete slab has been poured to within 3 days of pouring to achieve the aggregate exposure desired. Course aggregate comes in three sizes: small, medium and large.

After achieving the type of aggregate exposure, the concrete is polished to a desired clarity of reflection. 1) ground to a flat shine, 2) honed to refined even appearance, 3) semi-polished, for crisp, smooth look or 4) highly polished, for a mirror effect.