Thursday, May 5, 2011
Correcting Construction Errors - Episode 4
This whole project was correction of construction errors, as the building was originally a laundromat, had probably half a dozen cold joints, plumbing trenches, and holes and was a generally haggard 50-some-year old slab. It was the Keith Richards of concrete floors. The worst part was a combination of slabs in the floor with about a 2" ridge. More on that later: let's start at the front door.
Months after the interior floor was finished, I got a call from the builder about an issue with the front door. Apparently, the doors couldn't open right, and the ridges between the three slabs in 5 feet ahead of the front door (just past where we finished our work) was flagged by the inspector for not being wheelchair accessible. Now, grinding an inch of concrete off is no small task. It usually doesn't look too great, either. So to deal with all of that, I cut a leafy, barley-inspired (It's a brewery after all, and the idea struck me about three beers into a night of celebrating April 2011 as the best month in our company's history). I acid stained it green, then installed a thin, stamped overlay to mitigate the ridges and half covered the leaves with the brown polymer-modified mortar and distressed it back for a good gradient of colors. Really representational art generally looks cartoon-ish to me on a floor, so I try to keep it a little abstract and variegated. I sealed it with a solvent based acrylic sealer and took the photo above moments later. It should mellow a bit over time.