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View Full Version : Talk to me about concrete stamping


lovdasnow
03-27-2005, 03:26 AM
I am putting in a big driveway, and walkways to house(detached garage), and really really like the look of the stamping and color.
Is it difficult to do? where do you get the stamp thing, and the coloring.
If I don't do this I will do exposed agg, but would really like to stamp.
any input would be great. obviously I am oblivious to this side of concrete.
thanks guys....jon

lawnboy30
03-27-2005, 06:35 AM
Stamped concrete has its advantages, but I never recommend it over pavers because they lose their shape over time (the depth of the stamping wears down with traffic. Once this happens you lose the "lines" making it look like one big flat dyed area with no detail.

Pavers are the way to go. Not to mention, dying the concrete is something that is best to leave to the Concrete Company that would deliver the cement for consistency.

Good Luck,

lovdasnow
03-27-2005, 11:40 AM
thats good info, but dang! that would be a ton of pavers. Pretty big apron in front on garage. you would really do that instead of some sort of concrete?
I have never heard of the stamping wearing off, so thats good to hear that side of it...thanks

olderthandirt
03-27-2005, 12:17 PM
Its a driveway, the concrete will be long gone from other reasons before the lines are wore off. Most cement co sell the stamps they run about $200 a stamp depending on design. The cement Co will also add the dye once you figure out a color ,but be prepared for a diffent color from what you expected, its hard for then to mix up large batches and get exact color matching. If you never done it before sub the job out as theres more work to it than just the stamping, you need to go back over all the lines and define them and smooth them more than what a stamp will do.

lovdasnow
03-27-2005, 12:44 PM
so it sounds like a pain as far as defining the lines.

sub out just the stamping, or would the contractor want to do the whole thing? I'm trying to keep cost down because I'm trying to put all the sweat equity into my house as possible.
sounds like you guys have done it before, did you like how it turned out? or was it a nightmare?
thanks

DJD
03-27-2005, 12:47 PM
I do alot of stamped concrete in my area. It it pretty costly. We charge anywhere from $10-$14 a square foot. Just to form, pour, stamp, and seal.
I am doing my own driveway and will not stamp the entire surface. Big surfaces tend to take away from the technique. I am going to form a few diamonds and borders and pour the rest regular concrete.
The job,, it isn't easy. I have been stamping for 3 years now and am still learning.
The coloring,, DO NOT go with a color hardener. This is only worked in on the surface which is much more labor intense. I only use liquid pigment. My local supplier makes it for my needs by the cubic yard. We will pour say 6 yards in the morning then pour 7 yards in the afternoon. I will have a bucket for each truck to mix in. From my experiences anything over 8 yards should be added at the plant. I usually drop it off there that morning.
The costs to buy the stamps is expensive. For example one pattern 14 rigid and 2 floppy stamps almost $3000.
My local dealer is www.concrete-texturing.com
The owners name is Bart, he has the best prices on the net for delivery. If you call him mention my name (Dave Delicati), he will take care of you.

As far as it wearing,, it doesn't round or loose it shape. We have a local university here that has it everywhere and no difference 10 years later.
I have alot of pics from jobs that I did with different colors and patterns if you want, dave427@echoes.net

DJD
03-27-2005, 12:52 PM
Forgot to mention, you need a release. I usually go with a colored release to give it different shades and highlights. You can also use plain concrete with 2 different color releases. It will save you $$$ as the pigment runs from $20-$80 a cubic yard depending on color. And the concrrete company usually charges an extra wash out fee if you use colors. My area is $30 each truck. It adds up on a bigger job being that we usually never pour more than 500 surface square feet at a time.

lovdasnow
03-27-2005, 12:53 PM
thats a good shot, and thanks for the info, I will check out that site!
thanks

lovdasnow
03-27-2005, 12:58 PM
here are some shots of my buddy's house. he did this himself. I like the look of it, and thats what i was going to shoot for.
if these pics don't work, sorry this is my first time trying

DJD
03-27-2005, 01:07 PM
He did a great job. From what I can tell from the pics, he used an antique stain. That would definately be easier for you to do. Cheaper also.

DJD
03-27-2005, 01:11 PM
Is that actually stamped though?? What I mean, is we pour flat work. regular concrete with a trowel finish . Then a few days later cut joints through out to look like pattern stone and antique stain it to get the look he has.

olderthandirt
03-27-2005, 01:15 PM
so it sounds like a pain as far as defining the lines.

sub out just the stamping, or would the contractor want to do the whole thing? I'm trying to keep cost down because I'm trying to put all the sweat equity into my house as possible.
sounds like you guys have done it before, did you like how it turned out? or was it a nightmare?
thanks

I would sub out just the stamping part if you could but I'm not sure how that could be done since you need the color added and the stamps would need to be there and ready when you finished the screeding. So your probably gonna have to sub the whole job out. Or you can rent the stamps and talk to your cement co. and there usually pretty good at helping someone out that wants to learn to stencil/stamp cement. Its not a nitemare but its a lot of hard work! I am assuming that you have some knowledge of doing concrete work if not then sub it out :)

lx665
03-27-2005, 02:32 PM
In my area several of the concrete companies lend you the stamps as long as you buy the concrete from them.

John

Residential Recreation
03-27-2005, 08:08 PM
I would never recommend stamping over pavers. especially depending on your climate. any concrete job you do the only thing you can guarentee is that it will crack. if you live in a seasonal climate. cold warm cold like mich indiana maine. you get the picture over the years your concrete expands and contracts. if your control joints arent right you could be screwed. stamping is like mini control joints. i can guarentee within 10 years that stammped pad willl loose its original lustur and start to crack. try to repair a peice of stamped concrete. its not going to be fun. plus you will never get an exact color match five or ten years later.

sorry all of you stampers out there

mbella
03-27-2005, 09:28 PM
In our area, where we experience as many as thirty freeze thaw cycles per year, I can't imagine why somebody would install stamped concrete over pavers.

mbella
03-27-2005, 09:31 PM
For you guys that sell stamped concrete, what do you consider the benefits over pavers?

Residential Recreation
03-27-2005, 09:34 PM
In our area, where we experience as many as thirty freeze thaw cycles, I can't imagine why somebody would install stamped concrete over pavers.
thank you mbella :waving: :blob3: i have a guy that wanted a stamped slab called me to do the job. his neighbor has one and he likes the look of it. i simply stated that i would not recommend stamping in northern indiana. because of cracking. any ways i went to his house and looked at his neighbors stamped pad. its level with the house but not with the ground i should have taken a picture you would have laughed this pad is flush with the ground at the house but at the end of the pad it stick up 4" above the sod. also who ever installed this bolted it straight to the houses foundation using rebar. so now this guy has a 15x20 stamped pad attached to his foundation. i give it 2 years max before his neighbor calls me to remove the rubble and install some pavers.

olderthandirt
03-27-2005, 11:10 PM
For you guys that sell stamped concrete, what do you consider the benefits over pavers?
The benefits are that you have a little more color choice meaning you can match there siding, shutters, there cats fur, anything they want. But the biggest benefit is that it offers another option to the customer. And if its done right the lines are expansion joint that control cracking and heaving. If A drive can get 40 yrs out of concrete with 6-10 expansion cuts then you can imagine how a patio will hold up with a hundred or so smaller expansion cuts. I've seen patio and other stenciled concrete thats over 10 yrs old and it look great, maybe a little faded but that was only a minor thing that most would not notice. Its the same as pavers in that its all in the prep of the area before the actual installation.If that part is not done correctly then the job will not hold up for long.

JRSlawn
03-28-2005, 12:01 AM
DONT DO IT. My dad had his concrete crew come over to do some for us. It gets to hard before you stamp. Sub it out! OR RENT A NICE JACKHAMMER!

lovdasnow
03-28-2005, 01:54 AM
as far as freezing and thawing go, I live in western oregon(very mild climate) temps in the 20's are rare, and it wouldn't be for very long, just during the night. so I'm not sure the cracking thing is a big deal. mainly worried about ease of install, sounds like you guys are leaning toward subbing it out, thanks again for the info.
anyone else's info would be appreciated, thanks jon

DJD
03-28-2005, 05:32 AM
I am not trying to start a war here,,, I just think that the biggest problem is that most of you guys never stamped concrete, and didn't do alot of reading about it

Like olderthandirt said, the prep is important.

I am not knocking pavers, as I love the look of them and install them but stamped concrete (done right) will last a lifetime. As far as the freeze/thaw, if you have a good base of gravel that will keep water from laying, the whole problem of frost is eliminated. I live in a cold climate (northern Pa) and have been installing concrete for 15 years and yet to have a major problem. The products that are out there as far as sealers, confilm, pigments pretty much assure the concrete will last a long, long time.


Pavers are by far loosing the race in my area, I rip out at least 2-3 thousand square feet every year to replace with stamped or stained concrete.

Not saying stamped is better than pavers, but this is what the market is calling for.

lovdasnow
03-28-2005, 06:49 AM
well said...
I sure appreciate your guys info...