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Old 09-30-2012, 05:35 PM   #16
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


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Originally Posted by shinyhalo View Post
Ahh, I suspected something like that was happening. Using plasticizers to increase the final strength and then cutting back on the expensive cement used to maximize profit. Thanks for confirming it.

The stonemakers video actually mentions they use 9 bag mix.

Ok. Now I have more specifics that I can take to the local retailers of ready-mix.
Thanks.

Well that makes sense because there's no coarse agg in the mix and they are only using sand you have to increase the cement content to attain proper strength,didn't realize they went that high on cement,but i'm sure they know what they are doing.

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Old 10-03-2012, 09:09 AM   #17
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


Here are some more quotes from people who seem to know what they are talking about. The second one teaches a course so no specific admixes are mentioned though it is stated that the properties are what matter and that the 3 components added to the mix can be gotten at any ready-mix supplier...

Quote #1 "And if you watch the video on their website stonemakers.net, you'll see its an ingenius technique - yet very, very simple - stacking 2 slump concrete, shaping with shovels, then trowels and carving all in 1 day.
But the mix isn't really concrete. There is no stone aggregate. Which in my opinion is a grout mix - a very rich (high portland content) grout mix with probably some water-reducer and a ton of fiber.
Even if there is some magical pixie dust additives, I know I can do the same thing with the mix I described."


Quote #2

"Component A added to the mix offers
■Lower (w/c) water to cement ratios
■Easier placement ... open time
■Shrinkage control
■Easier finishing
■Color consistency
■Composition ... no calcium chloride that promotes corrosion of reinforcement of steel

Component B offers
■Extended work time
■Bleed/Segregation control
■Shrinkage control
■Easier finishing
■Easier Placement
■Decreased Permeability
■Improved Surface Appearance, mix stability and composition

Component C " Easy Slick " ( sprayed )
■Surface Viscosity Modifier
■Easy reconstitution and trowel-ability of surface mix
■Concentrated or ready to use"


What I don't understand is how Dave Montoya repeatedly asks concrete experts in his videos "In all your years, have you ever seen concrete like this?"
So, if all he is adding is a water-reducer and a set-retarder then why wouldn't every concrete worker have seen consistency like this?

Last edited by shinyhalo; 10-03-2012 at 09:12 AM.
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:15 PM   #18
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


shinyhalo -

There are thousands of possible different cementitious mixes used for "concrete" applications. Even the size and shape of the sand is critical.

There are very few that are available or used by ready-mix producers because of the low volumes and high delivery costs (delivery is one of the main costs -often much more than cement, aggregates/sand/rock and time involved in unloading). The larger producers are aware of all the admixtures (accelerators, retarders, water reducers, plasticizers, super plasticizers, etc.), the dosage rates and the timing of dosing versus the use/finishing times), pigments and other factors, so many choose to ignore many products and customers since they are in a volume-oriented business and let those products go to smaller producers or encourage DIYers to buy materials elsewhere. Many concrete suppliers are not aware of the combination of admixtures and timing because of the lack of experience.

In your case, if it is a DIY project or learning curve to become a contractor, you would be best off to get a cheap mixer, buy raw materials, plays with your knowledge and more importantly, the ultimate use and requirements for durability. That is the best learning experience based on the changes you make for the type of product application. The use, experience and techniques are the critical items for use like you propose.

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Old 10-03-2012, 12:42 PM   #19
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


If I could just find an online retailer of these admixes then I would definitely buy small quantities and experiment.

These guys make tons of different additives, but I can't add any to my shoppong cart lol.
http://www.na.graceconstruction.com/...e=c&id=2&did=1
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Old 10-03-2012, 01:14 PM   #20
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


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Originally Posted by shinyhalo View Post
If I could just find an online retailer of these admixes then I would definitely buy small quantities and experiment.

These guys make tons of different additives, but I can't add any to my shoppong cart lol.
http://www.na.graceconstruction.com/...e=c&id=2&did=1
I doubt very much you can buy any admixtures on line,and W R Grace is the largest supplier in the country,and only sells and delivers in high volume to legitimate ready mix producers and some contractors with their own portable mixing plants,as i said before your best bet is with your local supplier.
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:37 AM   #21
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


shinyhalo.

How did your project turn out? I'm considering doing the same type of project for a retaining wall.
What was your final concrete recipe? Where did you get the rubber pieces to make the stone impressions? And where did you get the staining & sealing materials?
Do you have any other pointers you can give from what you have learned??
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Old 02-20-2013, 05:44 AM   #22
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


as i recall, the mix design did NOT incl flyash,,, fine aggregate is sand & there is some coarse aggregate ( crushed stone ),,, talked w/developer @ world of conc,,, decent product BUT final appearance depends largely on finisher's skills,,, like it or not, its a proprietary mix design,,, you might consider ferrocement as an alternative
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:38 AM   #23
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


Being in no hurry since it's my property....
I went another route.

I built a form out of plywood 30" high
I built rebar reinforcements

I had 3" slump ready mix poured in for 1k
I bought real stones and just cemented them to the structure $600
The price to have stonemakers do a 75foot wall I'm guessing would have been 6k
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Old 02-20-2013, 05:27 PM   #24
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depends where you are - our $ would've been approx $ 4 K
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Old 05-06-2015, 02:56 PM   #25
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


After doing a STRENOUS AND LONG EXHANUSTING research on trying to find out how stonemakers uses concrete the way they do I found a very similar (if not the same exact) method/recipe for their concrete.

Its called a Fly-Ash Scuplting mix:


Dry ingredients:
1 part cementitous mix: ( a comcination of 65% Portland cement and 35% fly ash).

4 Parts torpedo sand


Wet Ingredients:
18 to 24% Total Liquids - (water containing 10 to 20% combination latex or bonding agent mixture). Keep water as low as possible for a stronger bond/mix. Admix adds a little stickiness and helps in bonding layer to layer.

OTHER ADDITIVES:
Retarder/Optional: Used to delay the initial set and allow extended workability (NOTICE ON SOME STONEMAKER VIDEOS THEY SPRAY WHITE LIQUID ON THE CONCRETE. THAT IS THE RETARDER)

Superplasticizer: improve workability t low water content levels. (Be careful when adding. A little goes a LONG LONG WAY.




I hope this helps. It took me several months to get this recipe.

Last edited by vlorniversity; 05-06-2015 at 03:24 PM. Reason: mis spelling
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Old 05-06-2015, 03:45 PM   #26
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


FYI, here is a good place to buy small quantities of pigments, additives and all things concrete:

http://www.blueconcrete.com/
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Old 05-06-2015, 05:28 PM   #27
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


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Originally Posted by vlorniversity View Post
After doing a STRENOUS AND LONG EXHANUSTING research on trying to find out how stonemakers uses concrete the way they do I found a very similar (if not the same exact) method/recipe for their concrete.

Its called a Fly-Ash Scuplting mix:


Dry ingredients:
1 part cementitous mix: ( a comcination of 65% Portland cement and 35% fly ash).

4 Parts torpedo sand


Wet Ingredients:
18 to 24% Total Liquids - (water containing 10 to 20% combination latex or bonding agent mixture). Keep water as low as possible for a stronger bond/mix. Admix adds a little stickiness and helps in bonding layer to layer.

OTHER ADDITIVES:
Retarder/Optional: Used to delay the initial set and allow extended workability (NOTICE ON SOME STONEMAKER VIDEOS THEY SPRAY WHITE LIQUID ON THE CONCRETE. THAT IS THE RETARDER)

Superplasticizer: improve workability t low water content levels. (Be careful when adding. A little goes a LONG LONG WAY.




I hope this helps. It took me several months to get this recipe.



Since this thread started on Sept 2012 I''d guess their project is finished.
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Old 05-06-2015, 05:30 PM   #28
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


must be 1 of YOUR friends :-)
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Old 05-06-2015, 08:04 PM   #29
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


Wow, re-reading this post makes me amazed about how little I knew about concrete back in 2012. An awesome technology that has been around for over 2000 years. Since this project I have built another 100 foot long retaining wall and also put a natural stone veneer around my fireplace.

Since others will want to build nice looking retaining walls in the future, more knowledge is always welcome. Thanks vlorniversity.

I'm not sure if you can request "2 inch slump Fly-Ash sculpting mix" from a concrete company, but it's worth a try. Like I said before, I just stuck natural stones to a regular ready-mix concrete wall. I chose this method because stadry and another wise person really hit the nail on the head when they said the final result depends on artistic skill.

The only thing I can add regarding sculpting this type of mix is that local stores sell strong plastic forms shaped like natural stones for walkways and this could be jammed into the surface for a quick outline to carve out.
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Old 05-07-2015, 11:49 AM   #30
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Concrete Retaining Wall made to look like Natural stone - Stonemakers


"I'm not sure if you can request "2 inch slump Fly-Ash sculpting mix" from a concrete company, but it's worth a try"



Good luck with that request, most small producers don't even have fly ash stocked since there are no calls for it, in fact most people don't even know what it is.

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