Applied Flooring’s Polished and Colored Concrete Success in Troy, MI

Last week one of our customers, Applied Flooring, had a job in Troy, MI at a Nordstrom store. Along with the Applied crew, the Nordstrom GC and technicians from CTS Rapid Set and Metzger/McGuire helped complete this floor. Below are the before pictures, showing the extensive structural damage. Because of so many cracks breaking up the surface, the crew wasn’t able to polish first thing. Instead, the first step was filling the cracks. Then, once the concrete floor was repaired, an overlay was applied, the control joints were cleaned and recut and the concrete was colored. Below you can see the process from initial pour to finished look.


Concrete Overlay and Color Application

Applied Flooring used CTS Rapid Set’s TRU self-leveling overlay on the floor, and colored it with AmeriPolish OS dye. The crew worked in 20-degree weather and wrangled both the water and pump hoses from outside in the parking lot up a flight of stairs to the work area. The 300′ water hose and 400′ pump hose were at their maximum lengths. Applied made it work though, and after the overlay was laid they moved into the color application stage.

One of the biggest takeaways from this particular job revolved around the importance of color intensity. Initially, OS integral color was used, but the pigment wasn’t strong enough, so the dye was applied after the fact to accommodate the time-sensitive nature of this project and to best utilize resources.

Below you can see the floor after the second pour of TRU, the floor after 3DHS densifier was applied and finally, the polishing stage.


The Finished Look

Although there were a few unexpected surprises throughout this process, as is common with any job, Nordstrom was incredibly satisfied with the final polished floor. You can see below how reflective and high-end this space appears, especially after the merchandise was moved back in.

 

As always, if you have any questions about the products or the processes used for this particular job, please feel free to reach out via our website or in the comment section below. We would love to hear from you! And if you ever need additional support at a job, feel free to reach out to our technical support team and we will assistant in any way possible, even if it means flying to you!

A Decorative Concrete Success at World of Concrete 2014

World of Concrete was a huge success this year! Our concrete slab came together really well with the help of our manufacturers and customers. It was a 5 day process to complete all the steps — applying the epoxy, laying the terrazzo, applying the overlay, grinding and polishing, applying intricate stencils and protecting and sealing the surface. With this said, we would love to give you insight on how we accomplished this feat. See the photo gallery below for the final result, and continue reading for more information on products used. Also, check out our YouTube channel for step-by-step videos.


Theme Inspiration

The Super Bowl/football theme for this year’s World of Concrete booth was the brain child of both Wendy Runyon-Ricker and her brother Jack Runyon – figureheads in the company, and creative ones at that. The idea initially stemmed from a general football field slab to the incorporation of Super Bowl team logos in the middle of the slab, then to the tailgates, and from there the featured customer hall of fame stories and booklet, all the signage, etc.

Products Used During Each Step of the Process

Epoxy Overlay:

Concrete Overlay:

Grinding and Polishing:

Stencils:

Protecting and Sealing:

Our Featured Artist: Floormap Stencil Designs

As mentioned, Floormap Stencil Designs did the Seahawks and Broncos stencils in the middle of our slab, and they did a fabulous job! Each stencil was three layers — making for an incredibly intricate pair of logo designs. Rachel Bruce is the artist who designed the custom stencils, and she was the one who actually applied them at World of Concrete.

It has been an exciting year for Floormaps as it enters its fifth year in the decorative concrete industry. It has tackled new products, such as vinyl stencils, as well as new surfaces i.e. polished wood floors, walls, ceilings, murals, banners and signs. New training courses will be issued quarterly to demonstrate the wealth of knowledge accumulated from hands on installations and experimentation. Floormaps is also proud to announce the opening of international sales to Europe, Asia, the Middle East and South America.

Be sure to check out the photo gallery on our website as well, which has pictures from the whole event. Also, be sure to watch the videos on our YouTube channel. And, if you never saw the customers we featured in our hall of fame, find their stories here. We hope to see you next year!

M&C Concrete’s Wide Array of Contracting Opportunities and Specialities

Concrete creates an incredibly durable surface, and rightfully so considering how common it is in many industrial and commercial environments. Look around any mall, government building, doctor’s office, or really any business and you’re likely to find concrete floors. Due to its incredible wearability and resistance to stains, foot traffic, etc. (when maintained properly that is), it’s no wonder that polished concrete is quickly taking the place of carpeting, tile or hardwood in commercial floor settings. M&C Concrete is a local Indianapolis contracting company that realizes this fact, which accounts for its wide array of clients, as evidenced below.

Brief Overview

1. Local car dealership: M&C laid the concrete, ground and polished

2. Fire station: CTS RapidSet TRU self-leveling overlay with integral color and AmeriPolish dye used for the logo

3. World of Concrete 2013: M&C helped us lay the concrete slab, grind, polish, etc.

M&C At A Glance

M&C Concrete is a leading concrete contractor in the greater Indianapolis market. Established in 1982, it has successfully completed over 10,000 projects in both residential and commercial sites. As a leader in the industry, M&C strives for customer satisfaction, on-time project completion and being at the forefront of the latest concrete design and construction.

For more information about M&C, the products, the process, etc. please feel free to contact us or leave a comment below. Also, be sure to check out our other customer features!

Rejuvenating JCPenney’s Floors to Polished Concrete Perfection

Retail stores receive a large amount of foot traffic, which inevitably means their concrete floors wear down and the quality of them diminishes over time, especially if not maintained properly. Such was the case at a JCPenney store in Madison, WI at the West Towne Mall. Thus, Hunter Advanced Concrete Polishing was tasked with rejuvenating the concrete floors to their former polished glory.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

What They Did

First the Hunter ACP crew shaved the floor to rid it of the tile that was previously covering the surface. As evidenced in the slideshow, the concrete underneath was in really rough shape. After removing all the tile, epoxy was poured and spread, then sand was broadcast over top to rejection. The next day all the sand was swept off and RapidSet TRU was mixed with AmeriPolish integral color in a CS Unitec Hippo mixer and poured and spread using spiked shoes and a porcupine roller. The floor could be walked on after 4 hours, but it is ideal to wait until the next day before grinding and polishing. After polishing to at least an 800 grit, the floors were shiny enough to protect and seal (the final step). You can see the finished result at the end of the slideshow — it looks much better now!

What Products They Used

If you have additional questions or comments, please let us know by contacting one of our Runyon Surface Prep team members, or utilize the comment section below. And for more customer highlights, visit our featured stories page.

A Prime Example of Preparing and Executing a Concrete Overlay

Arguably, the core foundation and integral measure of quality for any concrete slab is determined by the overlay. Without a properly mixed, poured and spread concrete overlay, every other step in the concrete polishing process may suffer. ModernCrete is intimately aware of this fact, which is why their crew is so adamant about laying concrete floors that are well-prepared and executed. It’s safe to say they excel at it, with an average overlay installation rate at 250,000-400,000 square feet per year. ModernCrete’s attention and devotion to quality flooring inevitably results in beautiful, finished surfaces, as captured in the images below.

 

Project Details

The photos above were actually taken from 3 different projects, but they aptly display the steps of a typical concrete overlay application.  The photos with hippo mixers were taken at a 5,000 square foot overlay in Houston, TX. On this job site the ModernCrete crew used 450 bags of Ardex PCT and AmeriPolish integral color.  They then used HTC grinders with the Fenix system to polish the floor to a 3000 grit polish.

Rules-of-Thumb

ModernCrete has perfected its concrete overlay process, with standard methods and products used on any concrete flooring application. They are outlined as follows:

  • Hippo mixers are crucial for projects that call for a self-leveling floor installation
    • Self-leveling compounds include: CTS RapidSet, Mapei, Ardex and Ultraflor PC-5614
  • Hippo mixers allow you to mix up to 5 bags at a time, drastically reducing the amount of time and worker fatigue, as compared to traditional hand mixing
  • AmeriPolish integral OS color adds color for clients who want it
  • The Fenix polishing system from HTC is used to diamond polish most overlays
  • During installation, steel porcupine rollers from CTS RapidSet are used to level the floor and release air entrapped by surface tension at the skin of the overlay
  • Spiked shoes from Shoe-In Pro Finish make getting on and off spikes simple
  • For floors that need to be taken down more than 1/4″ in order to prep overlays, a concrete shaver is ideal

More About ModernCrete

ModernCrete Concrete Design is a full service decorative concrete firm. It is headquarted in Austin, Texas – an environment perfect for the energy and artisanship operations vital to decorative concrete. Making concrete floors beautiful has been ModernCrete’s passion since 2001. It uses state of the art techniques and tools for superior results. Pride of workmanship is a hallmark of this company and its employees. And above all else, customer focused quality is integral. ModernCrete is committed to understanding your needs and making your concrete vision come to life.

For more information about how to properly apply a concrete overlay, the prep work involved, which products to use, etc. please contact us or write us in the comment section below. And to see more “real life” projects, visit our customer highlights category.

Glass + Concrete Overlay: A Colorful and Dynamic Combination

Glass AggregateShiny, yet bland concrete floors are not suitable for every business, which is why the trend toward decorative concrete flooring is so prominent. Decorative concrete is especially helpful for company branding purposes, or to make a bright and impactful statement in an indoor or outdoor space.

One of the main ways to achieve a colorful and dynamic polished look is by incorporating glass into concrete overlay. There are two recommended methods with which to accomplish this – either by mixing integrally or by broadcasting. And throughout both processes, it is recommended you use CTS Rapid Set’s TRU Self-Leveling overlay, glass from American Specialty Glass, integral color from Ameripolish and CS Unitec’s HIPPO Porta-Mix.

Mixing Integrally

For the first option, it is recommended you mix the overlay initially. If you are using Ameripolish’s integral color, the water and dye are mixed together before the overlay material is added. Next, screen the product with a 1/8” classifier to remove any unmixed material or clumps. Lastly, mix the glass with the overlay. This technique is ideal for a 50% load using size 0 or size 1 glass. You want to use smaller glass because then it has a better opportunity to stay close to the surface when placing it on the floor.

In terms of the finishing technique, you can generally gauge the rake depth at 3/8” depending on the load. Be sure not to use a spiked roller – it would only succeed in pushing the glass around. Rather, for mixing integrally, the preferred finishing method is with a smoothie.

Broadcasting Glass

Glass-Infused Concrete OverlayChoosing to broadcast is a much more delicate process than mixing integrally, the primary reason being that this option really depends on the set time of the overlay. If you throw the glass too early, it will all sink to the bottom, meaning it isn’t visible. Conversely, if you wait too long, the glass will sit on the surface, not penetrating, and could be pulled out of the overlay during the initial grind.

The size of the glass influences when to broadcast since the weight of the glass is relational to the size. You can use up to a size 2, but generally size 1 is best. If the glass is larger, thus heavier, then you should wait longer. Whereas, if the glass is smaller and lighter, then broadcast sooner. Again, keep in mind: this is a delicate process, so time this as accurately as possible.

When you do the initial grind, be sure to grind the surface enough to where there is not a void between the glass and the TRU – you want the two to bond or else the polish will be diminished. Also, be aware that when you broadcast, it is difficult not to have pull-out. We have used a grout coat from Husqvarna and Metzger/McGuire to fill the pit left behind when the glass is removed.

For the broadcast finishing process, here are the steps:

  1. Place the product
  2. Gauge rake to set depth
  3. Purge any air pockets with a spike roller
  4. Soon after the product begins to set, broadcast the glass

When you get to the third step, consider using a new porcupine roller on the market, one that Joe Zingale from CTS Rapid Set recommends. The spikes are stainless steel and are 1.25″ in length. The advantage to this new roller – it doesn’t leave spike marks in the TRU like plastic spike rollers do. This new metal roller has pin-like spikes, meaning they aren’t as thick.

Once the four-step process is complete, and the initial set of the overlay occurs, do not use a trowel or any other tool to press down glass that did not fully penetrate the overlay. Doing so will leave an impression, which could be difficult to get out.

Finished WOC Concrete FlooringThe Hybrid Approach

While not usually a common method, it is possible to combine the above two techniques into a hybrid approach. Meaning, you would first mix the glass integrally, and then you would broadcast after the product is placed. However, bear in mind that this is only effective with a load less than 50%.

This is really only a surface level understanding of the glass-infused concrete overlay process, and after mixing integrally or broadcasting the final step is grinding and polishing. If you would like to learn more about the next step, or how to implement the above listed techniques, then contact a Runyon Surface Prep sales rep, or for more on the products needed during this process visit the Runyon Surface Prep website. To view this post in its original article form, see the Concrete Decor post here.

[INFOGRAPHIC] How to Use Glass in Decorative Concrete

You may wonder how to most effectively integrate concrete overlay and decorative glass, well this infographic shows you how via two methods: broadcasting or mixing integrally. Each method has its respective steps and quick tips to walk you through whichever process you choose. And depending on the look you want, one may be more desirable than the other. Broadcasting is the most common, but mixing integrally is also a traditional alternative. Use this infographic as a guide, and good luck creating your gorgeous glass-infused decorative concrete surface!

ASG Infographic

If you would like more information about this infographic, specifics on either process, buying product, etc. please visit our website or contact us. We would be delighted to assist you!