Textured Concrete, Hawaiian Style
By David Schwartz, Rockmolds.com
The general contractor of this new home in Makena, on the island of Maui, Hawaii, decided to use textured concrete that resembles Hawaiian stone for their hardscaped areas. RockMolds.com provided the concrete stamps, and the installation was a combined effort of their install division and Masons Creations Maui, a local contractor.
RockMolds.com of Boise, Idaho manufactures and distributes tools for textured concrete applications. They specialize in stamps that give concrete the look of Hawaiian stone. Recently they were asked to lend their expertise to a project on the island of Maui.
At a home being built in the town of Makena, the general contractor Haven International chose RockMolds LLC, the installation division of RockMolds.com, to create the driveway, a stepping-stones path and a set of stairs. Masons Creations Maui, a local contractor, was also enlisted to help.
David Schwartz, the founder and president of RockMolds, takes us step by step through the construction of the driveway.
#1 - Site prep: Determine layout of entire paver area. Remove 8'' of soil inside all square footage of new paver area. Tip: Keep in mind the finished elevation of concrete against all grades, including walkways and the garage.
Run 2''x4''s along the outer perimeter of the entire driveway location to establish grade before starting to place forms for pavers. This gives a constant guide to run string lines, ensuring pavers are flowing from surface to surface.
Install 4'' minimum of road-mix over the desired concrete paver area. Compact with a plate compactor every 2" of lift to ensure proper compaction. Lightly mist the road-mix with water on each lift before compaction.
#2 - Spray out the paver forms with marking paint. Tip: Mix in large and small pavers to avoid repetition in form and size.
#3 - Install the individual forms, ensuring stability with plenty of form pins. For this project we wanted the pavers 6'' thick, so we utilized 6''-wide, 24-gauge galvanized sheet metal to create sharp angled corners, and 6''-wide strips of 1/8'' Masonite for the more rounded edges. Tip: Short pieces of 2''x4''s placed between the paver forms provide support, while providing consistency of spacing.
#4 - For strength, aggregate is important in the mix, and a reinforcing stealth fiber is also wise. We used standard flatwork concrete with 1/2'' aggregate. Tip: Always have an integral color in the concrete mix, which will be the base color.
Initiate the first pour (as many pavers as you are comfortable with, depending on experience and man-power). Screed off the concrete, and float to knock down the aggregate.
#5 - Trowel the edges and then hit the surface with a 14'' pool trowel to prepare for stamping. Tip: Trowel down the edges at a 45-degree angle, 1'' below the form. This will give a more organic edge to your pavers, and allow stamping of this area.
#6 - Tip: Do a thumb test to determine if the stones are ready to stamp. Press your thumb onto the surface; if it is firm enough to keep your thumb from breaking the surface but soft enough to take your thumb's impression, it is ready to be stamped.
After a confirmed thumb test, apply a liquid release agent. Firmly press a RockMolds.com floppy stamp onto the surface and sides of the concrete, transferring the natural rock impression. For stones larger than the stamp, overlap as necessary, while feathering onto the previous impression. Tip: Using multiple stamps in different patterns is preferable to avoid repetition of texture on the stones. LS301F, LS302F, LS303F, LS304F, and LS305F are the stamps we used for this project.
#7 - This project took three pours to complete, one of which was interrupted by thundershowers.
#8 - Let each pour cure at least 24 hours. Remove all forms, hose down the paver surfaces and allow them to dry. Tip: A reciprocating saw is useful for removing forms that are tight between pavers.
#9 - Color the pavers with three TruTint water-based stains, starting with lighter colors. Tip: Predetermine the final color scheme on a test piece of cured concrete.
#10 - Layer in the darker colors until final color was obtained. Seal the pavers with an exterior water-based sealant that is non-yellowing, in this case Heal & Seal Deco sealant. We prefer a matte finish to give the stones the most natural appearance. Tip: Seal every 2 years to refresh the color and protect the work.
#11 - The stepping-stones covered an area of 1,000 square feet.
#12 - A set of 8' wide stairs.
#13 - The 1,200-square-foot driveway used about 28 yards of concrete. Zoysia 'El Toro' sod was installed around the slabs for the final look. The project's completion date was Nov. 2014.
3,500 psi concrete with 1/2'' aggregate
TruHue integral color
14'' pool trowel
TruImpressions liquid release
TruTint water base stains
Heal & Seal Deco sealant