This article explains how various ingredients in concrete countertop mixes work, and how to use them. For an overview of the ingredients and to understand basic concrete countertop mix design principles, click here.
Where to Buy Concrete Countertop Mix Ingredients
Many ingredients in from-scratch concrete countertop mixes are available at your local contractor supply store, for example sand and cement. For some specialty ingredients, you may be able to find them at a local decorative concrete supply store or by calling your local concrete batch plant.
However, many specialty ingredients that are used in conventional concrete construction are not available in reasonably small quantities needed by concrete countertop makers, and vendors are unable to offer support for the countertop-specific uses of these products. For this reason, CCI sells the necessary specialty mix ingredients for precast and GFRC concete countertops. Click here.
Polycarboxylate superplasticizers are a very powerful type of high range water reducer. This video shows how adding a small amount of a powerful water reducer, instead of water, can take a concrete mix from dry and crumbly to flowable.
The video uses a powdered superplasticizer, BASF’s Melflux 2651, in order to demonstrate that it is not the liquid in the superplasticizer that causes the increase in slump. However, Melflux 2651 is very difficult to find in reasonable quantities for a concrete countertop maker. For that reason, we recommend and sell a dry superplasticizer, WR 310, from Buddy Rhodes Concrete Products, as well as their liquid superplasticizer, WR 420.
The following seminar excerpt explains what viscosity modifying admixtures do. VMAs are used to reduce the slump of concrete, essentially performing the opposite of a high range water reducer (superplasticizer). They also help prevent segregation in aggregate-based mixes.
|Fritz-Pak’s Super Slump Buster is an easy to use, powdered viscosity modifying admixture (VMA).
It is available in 8-oz bags, which is enough for dozens of average concrete countertop projects. VMA should not need to be used for every project, as explained below.
The manufacturer sells Super Slump Buster only in cases of 60 bags. We sell it by the bag.
More About Admixtures
For more about concrete countertop mix ingredients, as well as to get access to a free, 3-hour seminar on admixtures including viscosity modifiers and superplasticizers, click here.