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Theres a Better Way

How To Form Small Concrete Projects The Easy Way

comments (0) December 10th, 2010 in Blogs
grateful.ed Chuck Miller, editor at large

For use with multi-clip THERE's A BETTER WAY BLOG posts only

Video Length: 1:51
Produced by: John Ross

When you're making small scale architectural elements out of concrete, you could use a stick to make sure that the concrete is compacted into all of the voids, but there's a better way.

We're making some pilasters for a concrete fireplace surround, but the same technique should apply to any small masonry project.

Here's how to do it:

  • Build a mold out of plywood assembled with drywall screws
  • For more detail, use pieces of trim or other found objects in the mold. We used cove moldings at the bottom to give a rounded reveal along the edge of our pilaster
  • Cover the inside of the mold with blue masking tape. This acts as a form release agent so your cured concrete should fall right out
  • When half the concrete is in your mold, run the shoe of your sawzall (without a blade installed) along the sides of the form. The vibrations will settle the concrete and get rid of the voids
  • Top the mold off with concrete, and wait for your project to cure before removing it

I heard about using a sawzall for this purpose on a jobsite one time; no one has ever sent it in. It's just a tip I've been using over the years and it really works well. Thanks whoever.


More on Small Concrete Projects

Building concrete-countertop forms

Removing concrete-countertop forms

Mixing concrete in a wheelbarrow

Concrete countertops FAQ

posted in: Blogs, concrete, saws, masonry