Gregg Hensley here again for another exciting set of Tips and Techniques from the Field!!
Just like my last post…I am still amazed at how many tips, tools and techniques we learn from our students.
Obi-Wan Greggobi is sometimes schooled by Luke! And when it happens…I like to collect these new techniques, practice with them myself, and then pass them on to you during our training classes or in my blog posts.
So here is another round to go with my last post!
Detail Skins & Tools: Other great items for stamping concrete are detailing tools like small texture skins for tight places as well as S-Tools, Convex Jointer tools, margin and tuck trowels, and thin finishing trowels. There are also grout rollers, and carving and grout removal tools which can be used to finish-out lines, create better grout joints, and fix overall blemishes that may occur in the application process.
There are times where small skins and tools come in handy, especially when someone begins stamping too early leaving deep blemishes or when too much liquid release is used, which can leave an unpleasant texture on the surface that some call elephant skin, orange peel, or a topographical map look. These textures and blemishes can be easily eliminated early with items listed above, and after the initial curing process, you can even take a leather glove and rub the effected area to a smoother textured type surface that will color much easier.
Floor Color Enhancement Technique: There are times when you want to take the floor accent coloring process a step further and add accents or give it a unique or more realistic mottled look. For this we have our color enhancement product, usually used on vertical surfaces, called Accent Enhancer.
You can use Accent Enhancer horizontally just as soon as you can get on your project without blemishing the surface. You apply Accent Enhancer very sparingly using a counter clockwise and clockwise circular motion with a small amount on a cellulose sponge (you don’t want to leave streak or swirl marks), and mainly hit the high spots.
This will create a mottled effect when you apply the coloring over the whole surface, just like it does when used on a vertical surface.
How to Hide Splotch Areas that Appear While Coloring: There are times when you are applying color to the entire surface of your project and you see a few splotchy areas that were caused from spraying. You can try spraying an antiquing mixture of a 1-5-5 (1-part color to 5-parts Pro Seal to 5-parts Water) or a 1-5-10 (1-part color to 5-parts Pro Seal to 10-parts Water) mixture which will help blend all the splotchy areas to create a subtler blend that is more realistic in detail.
Scuffing The Surfaces Of Your Finished Overlay for Realism: When it comes to scuffing or using sandpaper on the high spots of your finished vertical project to add a weathered look, some prefer a lot of weathering while others prefer a cleaner less weathered look. Whichever way you choose…always remember that less is more, and not to sand all parts of the stone. Too much sanding can remove too much color and make the surface look un-appealing. It’s always better to start with a light to moderate scuff or sanding, concentrating around the edges of the stones, high spots and ridges to create the most realistic look possible.
Special Precautions for Interior Vertical Jobs: When working on interior walls, fireplaces, etc., where there may be carpet, hardwood, or tile (Hopefully all Stone Edge Surfaces Horizontal Products HA HA), please make sure to properly mask off the bottom areas properly and maybe even place an absorbent material at the base of the wall, like fine gradation sand or kitty litter, that can soak up any drips or dropped wet material that may accidentally run down onto the masked off area. This will maintain cleanliness and protect the flooring surfaces and make for easier clean-up.
Always Offer a Maintenance Plan: A business building vital tip that I like to give everyone that goes a long way in customer relationships and satisfaction…and can help give you winter work… is to always bring up and offer a maintenance plan and ask for referrals. It really helps with overall customer satisfaction, gets you referral business you don’t have to work hard for, and gives you more opportunity to interact with your customer and even pick up more jobs at their place. With a maintenance plan you can set it up to periodically return to reseal and clean the project every so many years, depending on if it’s a horizontal (more often) or a vertical job. The power of Word-of-Mouth!
Thanks again and may all of your Stone Edge Surfaces experiences and applications be successful and rewarding.
Email any time with your questions or if you need technical help with your Stone Edge Surfaces products and application procedures.
VP Training and Technical Support