1. How to prepare the surface for shotcrete?
Ensure that there are no stains, paint, grease stains, and detached concrete on the surface, then smooth out the surface with sandblasting, hydrodynamic, or hydroabrasive method. For good adhesion of the surface, it should be roughened. Immediately before concreting, blow and rinse the surface with water at a pressure of 0.2–0.3MPa.
2. Does it matter the water/cement ratio in the mix?
Yes, it does. This directly affects the strength of the coating. The optimal ratio, as practice shows, – from 0.4 to 0.45.
3. Is it possible to use shotcrete concreting at home?
Yes, it is. To do this, you need a hopper-ladle, for which you do not need to be a professional at all; the main thing is to keep the optimal proportions of the mix.
4. Are there any differences in work with slow-setting and rapid-hardening mixes?
Yes, there are. When working with rapid-hardening mixes, the mixing chamber in the machine must be located directly in front of the nozzle, and when working with slow-setting mixes, it should be located 2-3 meters from it, which will lengthen the transport of the mix.
5. How should be monitored the layer applied during the shotcrete?
This is done using special beacons or probes. On average, the value of one layer should be at least 5-7 mm, maximum – 20-50, depending on the type of the mortar, the location of the surface to be treated, and the method of shotcrete.
6. How soon after the first application the second layer of the mix can be applied?
If you use a clean concrete mix, then you can start about two hours later on both horizontal and vertical surfaces. If accelerators and plasticizers are added to the mix, then the second layer can be applied after 20 minutes to horizontal, and after 40 minutes to vertical surfaces.
7. Can we re-apply the bounced mass?
No, you cannot. This will lead to deterioration of adhesion and other coating properties.
8. How can we care for the finished shotcrete?
If the air temperature is above 5 degrees, then in the first week, it should be periodically moistened, and the first time—24 hours after application.
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