Many of us have considered replacing counters with strong countertops. In this case, it is possible for us to build usable countertops from scratch. Countertops should leave a lasting impression, as well as long term usages. In modern building and housing, concrete is a common material. It can be used to replace natural stone, clay and even wood. These days, designers have taken this one step further. Concrete can be used to create very unique counters that we use in bathroom and kitchen. We only need to add the right texture and color to get great finish. Some people may argue that concrete is more difficult to install than typical countertops in the market. We know that pouring heavy mixture of concrete is hard work and messy.
With enough practice, the surface should look great. The payoff can be quite immense and the material costs are very low; while the strength and appearance is impressive. This can also become a great conversation piece. However, when we plan to do this, we should start with smaller projects. We need to practice our techniques. Once we have mastered it, we should be able to play with colors. The first thing that we should do is to make the form. To build a form, we can use the ¾-inch melamine wood. It is preferable to use plastic finish, because we are able to slow down the rate of drying for the concrete and this will increase the overall strength. The concrete will not stick easily and when we do this, we should be careful not to split the wood.
After we have built the form, we shouldn’t cut or drill the slab. Particle boards shouldn’t be used for this purpose, because it will absorb water. After the form is strongly built, we can pour the concrete. The slab can be fortified with polypropylene fibers and reinforcing rod using the diamond lath. This is an important thing to consider if we want to have strong countertop. We should use snipes to cut the diamond lath about 1-inch short of the edge. Around the sink cut-out, we can install the No.2 rebar. We should make sure that we properly do all our cutting and measuring, before we mix up the concrete. If we want to get an overall better result, we need to pour the mixture of concrete in layer.
The preparation of the concrete mixture determines the durability of our countertop. We should be able to blend any dry ingredient with the mason’s how. Liquids should be measured carefully and they need to be mixed carefully. Ingredients of the mixture should be added in stages. For every 60lbs bag of concrete, we may add two quarts of white Portland. It’s normal for concrete to cracks in microscopic scope as it cores, but the rod, poly fibers and diamond lath should be able to minimize that. Along the edges of the concrete countertop, we need to pack an inch of strip concrete.