For thousands of years, people have used a wide variety of materials to build homes, buildings, and other structures. At first, they used wood since it was plentiful and easy to work with. Then came steel, since it was strong and could be used for a variety of purposes.
One material that has been used for a variety of purposes over time is concrete. As concrete has evolved over the years, so have the methods of keeping it in its form while drying. These have run the gamut from simple timber or plywood to a Concrete Deck Shoring System. This article will explore the primary types of formwork and their uses.
Timber or Plywood
Timber or plywood formwork is perhaps the oldest of its type. Wood is not only easy to use, but it is also easy to form in many different shapes. Therefore, it is still used in a wide variety of work. It is also inexpensive to use.
Timber or plywood formwork is often impractical when large structures are being constructed, but for smaller, precision work, it is still very useful. Timber or plywood can still be seen on construction virtually anywhere, especially in areas where labor costs are low and a great deal of flexibility in the formwork is required.
Engineered formwork is built with prefabricated modules that are constructed offsite and hauled to a job. It is usually made of steel or aluminum. Compared with traditional timber formwork, engineered formwork is much easier and faster to construct. It is also far less expensive to use than conventional timber formwork. Engineered formwork can also be reused many times.
Closely related to engineered formwork, but different, is formwork made from robust, lightweight plastic. Plastic formwork is constructed in modules with interlocking pieces. Plastic formwork is an excellent choice for use with small, repetitive construction jobs, such as low-cost housing.
Concrete Deck Shoring Systems
This type of formwork could be easily confused with engineered formwork since it is often made of metal and is made in a modular method. However, the difference is that it is used to suspend concrete platforms overhead instead of supporting them from their sides.
As many different types of formwork are available, some are made to stay in place instead of being removed after concrete has cured.Permanent formwork is designed to remain on the structure instead of being removed. This is since it provides additional acoustic, thermal, rodent-resistant, and fire-resistant properties. Permanent formwork is sustainable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly.
Permanent formwork is usually assembled on-site and is made from prefabricated materials such as plastic forms. It looks much like plastic tubes, and typically stays in place after the concrete has cured.
Concrete is used to build all sorts of structures. They vary considerably to fit different purposes. Fortunately, due to the wide variety of available formwork choices, the jobs that need to be done can be built more affordably, durably, and sustainably than with other types of materials. As a result, finding the most suitable formwork for a project is often a key to successful completion and profitability. Given the number of products available, it’s easy to determine which forming system is best for your project. Contact an expert today to get any questions answered.