One of the common and popular construction material is concrete. It has many special properties when compared with other construction materials. For constructing a building using concrete you need a custom-designed mold. The construction mold is called as shuttering or formwork. Formworks are available as both permanent and temporary molds. Till the concrete get hard it is kept on the mold. Once it becomes hard the concrete material will achieve its strength. Formworks are classified based on the material type used, support of the concrete element and permanent or temporary type.
Based on the structural support, concrete formwork is divided into four types. They are wall formwork, concrete column formwork, foundation formwork, and beam formwork.
Formworks are mostly used in the construction industry. Concrete formwork can withstand all types of construction load and also hold the concrete shape.
Some requirements of good formwork:
Concrete formwork is widely popular and available easily at a reasonable price. Formworks must meet the below-mentioned features to perform better in the construction industry.
- Concrete Formwork must withstand both live and dead loads.
- Joints of the formworks must be leakage proof
- It must retain the shape using braces and props
- If you are using temporary formwork then it must not damage the concrete area.
- It is always better to use reusable material. It can save money.
- Try to use lightweight formworks.
- The material used for making formwork must not distort or warp.
Select the formworks based on the pouring temperature and concrete type because both these factors affect the exerted pressure of the formwork. Formworks must withstand both wet and dry concrete loads. Formworks require different structures like stabilizers and pole to prevent the movement of formwork during the construction process and this process is called falsework. Use qualified workers and regular supervision to ensure the quality of the work.
Now let us discuss different types of material used for making formwork:
1. Timber formwork: This type of formwork is flexible. It can be fixed and removed easily. Timber formworks have lightweight when compared with metal formwork. It is available in different height, sizes, and shapes. It is affordable for all budget and you can also use local timbers. The condition of the timbers must be checked before using it.
2. Plywood formwork: It is used with timber formwork. They are made up of wooden materials. So it can be made in different sizes and shapes. They are mainly used for form lining, decking and sheathing. It is similar to timber formwork.
3. Metal formwork like Aluminium and steel: One of the popular formwork types is steel formwork. It can be reused for many years. Steel formworks are durable and strong. They are waterproof and creates a smooth concrete surface. They are easy to install and remove. It can be used for curved structures also. Aluminium formworks and steel formworks are similar. But the density of the aluminium formwork will be less. The strength of the aluminium formwork is less when compared with the steel formwork.
Some of the other formwork types are plastic formwork, fabric formwork, insulated and permanent formwork and stay in place formwork.