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How to Add Color to Concrete Overlays
How to Protect and Maintain Resurfaced Concrete
Overlay Tools: Seven essential tools for concrete resurfacing
Related Information
Concrete Overlay Videos, with Bob Harris
Decorative Concrete Overlays: A primer of the various overlay types and the decorative possibilities with each
Vertical Concrete Overlays: Lightweight cement-based overlays mimic stone, brick, and other wall textures

This is an excerpt from the new e-book “Concrete Overlays Today,” part of a series of reports from ConcreteNetwork.com on trends and insights about decorative concrete applications.

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Discover seven rising trends in the overlay industry from ConcreteNetwork.com’s new e-book. You’ll get insights and advice from veteran overlay installers that will help you find success in today’s market.

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Uniqueness is one of the main differentiating factors that separate decorative overlays from other hard-surface flooring materials. Often this can only be achieved by a craftsman and a meticulous application procedure. “I have not found a shortcut tool or application technique that replaces what we do,” says Chris Becker, managing director of the architectural concrete division of Stockness Construction, Hugo, Minn. He trowel applies all of his microtopping installations to create a one-of-a kind look. Each application is unique and handcrafted.

That said, equipment has been developed that can improve the process of mixing and applying overlays. When it comes to most decorative overlay installations, one of the limiting factors in being cost competitive to other flooring materials is the ability to get material mixed and applied in as short amount of time as possible without compromising quality. Larger mixers have been developed that help resolve this issue. “We are seeing larger mixers being used that increase the size of the batch being processed.” says Terry Grimble, director of technical services for Bomanite Company. Larger batch sizes also help reduce inconsistencies, especially when working with integrally colored material.

One tool that has an almost cult-like following in the decorative overlay industry is the Magic Trowel squeegee, manufactured by Tex Master Tools. This thin rubber squeegee, and others like it, have become a staple for overlay manufacturers. They allow installers to put down microtoppings without leaving trowel or roller marks and work out gauge rake lines and trowel lines in stampable overlays. Their ability to put the desired finish on almost any type of overlay has made it the tool of the trade. Trevor Foster, western sales manager with Miracote Products, has been using these squeegees for years in his product training classes. “The thin-blade squeegee is huge in the toppings world to achieve smooth finishes,” he says.

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Featured Products
Rapid Set Skim Coat Repairs, levels, and smooths concrete for applications.
Thin Micro-Topping Produces durable surface to color or stain
Self Leveling Overlay Find the overlay to meet your project's needs
Stamp Overlay Mix Allows 2 to 6 hours of working time for stamping and carving
T1000 Stampable Overlay For use with resurfacing concrete floors and hardscapes.
Broom Overlay Mix 6000 PSI Add water and mix - Grey or white
Flooring & Coating System Epoxy Flooring System designed for concrete
Microtop Concrete Overlay Can be sprayed or rolled on and accepts coloring
NXT® Level SP Overlay A pourable, high performing self-leveling concrete overlay, for interior concrete floors
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