Concrete is a durable product and is used in major structures such as dams, tunnels bridges and high rise buildings. Its strength and durability are inherent properties of the product. When it is transformed into one of our products it becomes a feature that is uncompromised for quality, durability, strength and beauty.
Concrete is an extraordinary material that is practical, expressive, and aesthetic all at once. From primal and formless slurry, you can transform it into virtually any shape that becomes a solid mass. The possibilities for creative expression are endless. You can grind, polish, stamp, or stain it. You can embed meaningful objects within it. The biggest advantage of concrete is that it is completely customizable; you can sculpt, mold, and texturize it to your own desire.
Quality - With precast the finished quality exceeds that of on site concrete as the product is created in a controlled factory environment. 2barrows only source premium raw materials combined with accurate weighting systems and proprietary mix designs and casting equipment that can ensure a high consistency and quality of our precast.
Less mess – we are able to grind and seal the precast element at our factory eliminating on site sludge and mess.
Time flexibility – with the precast being fabricated off site other trades can complete their work without interruption and the precast can be installed days after the cabinet work is complete.
With our streetscape products, these are replicated in production techniques in low or high quantities that provide practical durable low maintenance products.
Our feature art products are unique and provide the leading edge in architectural design or as centre pieces in zoo’s, parks, and corporate environments.
What dimensions can you cast?
We can cast as thin as 45mm, our common bench top thickness is: 50, 60 and 70mm. The supporting cabinet will need to have the capability to carry approx. 150kg/m2. We use over 60 oxide colours to choose from and can be combined with , a multitude of aggregates and sands .
We can cast voids for sinks , cook tops, barbecue’s and taps.
The bench can be cast with no joints eliminating joint opening problems that can occur with other bench top products.
What finishes can I have?
Infinite varieties are created by the mixing of aggregate, stones and colours to start, then the depth of the polish can determine how much “stone” is exposed adding character or a shallower polish is more suttle letting the chosen colour dominate the product. Multiple Finishes are available, either rustic or polished to a high reflective mirror sheen and all the way in between. These are all provided so each piece is individual and never identical unless they are a matching set.
What sealers do 2barrows use?
2barrows is constantly testing and using sealer products to determine their effectiveness and application. From this testing and from discussion with designers and architects we know that each application may vary the requirements of the sealer to be used. We primarily use a semi impregnating topical sealer for most kitchen and bathroom applications this has stain resistance. There are also waxes, or our own secret sealer that has her precast supplier.
What is involved in the installation process?
At 2barrows we always review the install locations to determine the best access to install the precast.
We coordinate closely with Architects and Builders for check fit, instillation and to ensure that there is adequate engineering to support the product.
A typical installation will take 2-4 hours. (Based on an island benchtop with sides)
2barrows has a series of trolleys, hoists , carpet runners (to protect flooring) and safety equipment o place the product We do review with the client the location and installation method prior to install.
What maintenance do I have to give concrete?
Concrete similar to other materials and does require some care
Concrete is commonly used in high heat and wear environments so the base product is tough and durable. Polishing gives our product a very hard and durable surface combined with our proprietary mix designs achieve higher strengths than average concrete.
These factors make for a very durable base product. The only maintenance required is dependant upon the chosen sealer, some are designed for the life of the product and others may require resealing after 4-5 years, at 2barrows we can advise you on all the finishes and sealers to suit your preference.
After the Concrete has been installed and sealed, soils and Dirt and grime should be removed daily with a Dust stick or damp cloth to maintain the appearance and cleanliness of the product. A neutral cleaner (or equivalent) should be used this is a mild cleaner not containing bleach or peroxides eg use soap and water. We use a coating type sealer to protect the concrete can be scratched if used as a cutting board.
DO NOT Clean with CITRUS, AMMONIA, PEROXIDE CHLORINE or ACID based cleaners
Also note any spills of liquids such as red wine, lemon juice, hair dies etc should be cleaned off immediately and not left to stand on the top for any period of time.
Concrete is like granite and stone it is porous and can absorb fluids and stain
The sealer used to protect your bench top has some scratch resistant; but if abused it will scratch. We recommend you always use a cutting board for cutting of any kind on top of your bench tops. Scratches can be repaired with polishing and deeper scratches can be removed with further polishing and resealing
Our bench tops have been designed to have shrinkage taken up during curing and are reinforced. This reduces the likelihood of cracking. Hairline cracks (micro cracks) can occur over time primarily around penetrations and are not considered a defect in the product. With the concrete being reinforced any hairline cracks will not open up and fail like stone.
Can you do cut-outs and form-outs?
Holes for sinks, cooktops and taps, sloping draining boards and edge profiles are all cast in the form work to exact specification.
Can I colour the concrete?
Yes you can. Please Click here to download the colour chart.
Does concrete chip?
Unlike natural stone, concrete doesn't have a grain. If struck hard it won't ripple-shatter a large circle or cleave off. The damage would be contained to the point of impact and can be easily repaired.
Can I put a hot pot directly onto a concrete kitchen counter?
Concrete is heat-resistant but is subject to thermal shock if a red-hot object is placed directly upon it. Like granite, the exposed area may flake or chip away if too much heat is applied. In addition, the heat could damage the sealer and wax applied to the surface. We recommend using trivets for hot cookware.