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  • new patio suggestions

    Hi all, Im in the process of designing my own Outdoor Kitchen and I have a question about the floor. We are planning on a stamped concrete patio approx 20x28'. The Kitchen area will be in one corner of the patio and will be 12x12'.

    Should I ask the concrete contractor to leave the 12x12 area flat/unstamped? We will be building the cabinets in this area. At this point Im not sure if we will build them with cinder blocks or salt treated wood.

    Or should I just have the whole area stamped? In other words, will it matter to a mason if the concrete patio is perfectly flat like a broomed surface or can he lay the first run of block on top of stamped concrete?

    Thanks
    Mark

    Life is too short to drink cheap beer

  • #2
    Re: new patio suggestions

    I'd never heard of stamped concrete, so I did a little web search. It seems that there are a lot of patterns, but none appear to be very deep. I can't imagine that it would be a problem for mortaring walls for your kitchen or oven on top of that.
    My geodesic oven project: part 1, part 2

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    • #3
      Re: new patio suggestions

      Stamped has gotten very popular lately. Lots of patterns and many colors to choose from. We are looking at an "English Cobblestone" pattern using 3 shades of gray color. It looks great.

      Another decorative possibility with concrete is acid staining. Im giving that some thought as well. I could keep a flat smooth broomed surface but have a splash of color. Its a thought.
      Mark

      Life is too short to drink cheap beer

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: new patio suggestions

        Hi and welcome.

        For the mason its not gonna matter one way or the other for him, if it does, get a new mason. seriously.

        As to the stamp as long as you are sure you will NEVER change your mind I would tell them to just broom it. One big reason, COST. We charge about 6.00 a sq' for regular flat work (side walks, driveways,etc) we charge 16.00sq' for colored, stamped. I don't know what the price difference in your area is but I'm sure its at least half as much more.

        Out here, we cant even GIVE away grey concrete, everyone wants colored or stamped and colored. A few words on stamping.

        1. It can go very wrong very quickly make sure your guys have done this before. GO LOOK AT THE WORK. If they have no reference for you to see find someone else, trust me there is NO learning curve on this stuff.

        2. Depending on the manufacture of the stamp, the cobblestone pattern can render the patio furniture completely unusable because of the unevenness of the pattern. If you haven't thought of this yet do so, a lot of customers don't think of it until its too late.

        3. Color- integral color (color they put in the truck) although it seem to make logical sense is NOT the best way to get vibrant color from concrete. We used to do it this way for years until the new trowel in colors came out. These formulas contain not only color but UV inhibitors (for fading) and color hardeners. Color hardeners actually increase the surface psi of the concrete and produce a much more vibrant color that lasts longer than integral colors. This is another caution area for the inexperianced..troweling in the color if done wrong can ruin the entire surface of the concrete and you will get massive spalling and or irregular color variation.

        4. The dust on release agent (some use spray on, no difference in quality) will go EVERYWHERE and I mean EVERYWHERE. this stuff smells horrible is toxic to breath and will stain any surface in comes in contact with so if you have anything in that area you do not want ruined make sure they cover everything and mask the house off at least 3 feet up from the patio, if its gonna be near the house..

        5. Again with the cobble stone pattern- It sounds like you really like it and I understand that but I want you to think about this as well. It is a huge dirt collector all those quaint old world joints fill up with dirt and sand and anything else that will fit. Sounds like I hate it hu? well honestly I like the look of real cobble stone and the stamp is not too bad but is just not that user friendly. Women have a hard time on it with heels kids rattle there brains out on the bikes or other toys.

        6. Last make sure when you look at their work you see how they put in their joints in relation to the stamp pattern. Nothing looks worse than a beautiful stamp job with say an ashlar slate pattern and every 10' you have a saw cut straight line right through the pattern...so much for looking realistic. I have seen hundreds of jobs like this it is almost the norm but we do not do it that way. It takes longer to integrate the joints with the pattern but it can be done.

        That should about do it... I may have gotten carried away but We take out so much bad stamp work its a shame. then again I see stuff that people are just nuts over that I feel like saying HELLO, um its supposed to look like the REAL thing. The colors and products are there now days that if your stamped concrete doesn't look like the real "whatever pattern you have chosen" it was not done right.

        Dmun- they even have a couple of stamps for concrete that look like wood plank flooring. Working with wood I thought you might get a kick out of that.. here is a pic. YEs thats concrete..
        Attached Files
        Last edited by Unofornaio; 09-06-2007, 11:15 PM.
        http://www.palmisanoconcrete.com

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        • #5
          Re: new patio suggestions

          Very good info. Thanks Uno

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          • #6
            Re: new patio suggestions

            Wouldn't the mortar fill in the cracks under the block anyway?

            If multiple patterns are a possibility you might consider using the cobblestone as an accent in a low traffic section and something more user friendly for the high traffic areas. I'd think a 'brick' pattern would be more used friendly since the real thing make usable patios - and you could always deliberately fill in cracks with sand if necessary since real brick patios are sealed that way.

            I'm thinking about stamped concrete myself but that would be a long ways down the road for me. I may try a few DIY small projects (like walkways) to see if I like it - and that are small enough to yank up if I don't.
            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

            "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
            [/CENTER]

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            • #7
              Re: new patio suggestions

              Originally posted by Unofornaio View Post
              ...

              Dmun- they even have a couple of stamps for concrete that look like wood plank flooring. Working with wood I thought you might get a kick out of that.. here is a pic. YEs thats concrete..
              Ooooooohhhh!!!!! Purdy!
              "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

              "Success isn't permanent and failure isn't fatal." -Mike Ditka
              [/CENTER]

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: new patio suggestions

                Mark, You mentioned you don't know whether you're going to build your kitchen out of concrete block or wood yet and I'm wondering if you're going to decide this before your concrete is poured. If you're using the block you may need the patio to be thicker there, depending on the weight. Unofornaio could tell you this. I ended up building mine out of wood because my patio is 40 X 30 and I had to cut costs somewhere. I already had so many areas that had to be much thicker because of my oven, bbq and hot tub. It all adds up quick. Concrete isn't as cheap as I thought. I just had a light broom finish and I'm acid staining and sealing it. Karen

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: new patio suggestions

                  Uno, excellent info. Thanks so much. I'll be contacting the stamping contractor and asking for a reference of an English Cobblestone job. Sounds like we really need to go walk on one before we sign a contract.

                  Im also talking to a contractor who does acid staining. Again, I need to go see some of their work and then I'll make the call. The price is better for staining so that has my attention.
                  Mark

                  Life is too short to drink cheap beer

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: new patio suggestions

                    Originally posted by Pannabecker View Post
                    Mark, You mentioned you don't know whether you're going to build your kitchen out of concrete block or wood yet and I'm wondering if you're going to decide this before your concrete is poured. If you're using the block you may need the patio to be thicker there, depending on the weight. Unofornaio could tell you this. I ended up building mine out of wood because my patio is 40 X 30 and I had to cut costs somewhere. I already had so many areas that had to be much thicker because of my oven, bbq and hot tub. It all adds up quick. Concrete isn't as cheap as I thought. I just had a light broom finish and I'm acid staining and sealing it. Karen
                    Karen, I may PM you and ask about your concrete and staining contractor and price per sq ft for staining if thats not prying too much. Let me know. Since we're both in VA I'm thinking the prices shouldn't be too far apart.

                    I may very well go with staining because of price. I would love to have the whole patio done in pavers but thats not in my budget.

                    I'm 99% sure that I'll get a mason in my church to help me and build the islands with cinderblock. I asked both concrete contractors about a footer for my islands because of the weight. They mentioned 3500 psi concrete and that I wouldn't need them. I really don't want to get 5 years down the road and see the counters and counter tops crack due to settling.
                    Mark

                    Life is too short to drink cheap beer

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                    • #11
                      Re: new patio suggestions

                      In our outdoor kitchen the concrete block is actually 2 feet below ground on all the structures, having said that the patio itself is blue stone over leveled and tamped ground not a cement slab.

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                      • #12
                        Re: new patio suggestions

                        Bacon, it sounds like you have footers for your counters. Thats what Im talkin about! You're setup is done very nice and simple yet elegant and functional. Did you have a contractor design it and build it all, or did you do some or all of it yourself?
                        Mark

                        Life is too short to drink cheap beer

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: new patio suggestions

                          With a new patio slab @ 4" thick with 1/2" rebar you should be just fine for the weight. There is no reason to use 6" block either they make 4" that will work very nice for the base of the cabinets and counter top. These will give you more usable space inside also.
                          I don't recall if you mentioned footings for the oven or not but this is a given.

                          If you are going to be really concerned about the weight regardless of who tells you what you can always have the concrete contractor make some "mini" footings in this area of concern. Roughly 6" deep total any more than that is a waste.. So the layout of the "mini" footings would be like tracing the outline of where the cabinets would be.
                          I'm interested in hearing the prices back there for stamp and also staining if you don't mind posting it I would appreciate it.
                          http://www.palmisanoconcrete.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: new patio suggestions

                            Uno, stamping seems to be going for $10-12/sq ft depending on the stamp. And that varies a little bit from contractor to contractor. Staining is going for $4-6/sq ft after the pour. So, if I pay $4/sq ft for a garage floor style finished unstained pour. Then it will add an additional $4/sq ft for the staining guy to come back and do a basic stain. It goes up from there.

                            This is what I'm being told. Does this sound about right or high?

                            Uno, are you saying that the 1/2" rebar should be just under the kitchen area or should it run throughout the entire patio? From what I recall, when I watched my basement slab being poured, all they laid out for tensile strength was what I call hog wire. It comes in a roll and is made from approx 1/8" wire making 5" squares.
                            Last edited by Brauma; 09-13-2007, 08:33 AM.
                            Mark

                            Life is too short to drink cheap beer

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: new patio suggestions

                              Everything you read tells you that an acid stain won't take very well on anything but a garage-finish floor. I asked my concrete contractor to do that for me so I could stain it and he went on and on about how slippery it would be. He told me he would do a very light broom finish and not expose much sand. To be honest, I don't think he was capable of doing a garage-finish. Even his broom finish is not good. I would never recommend this guy. Lots of low spots. Too bad Uno doesn't live nearby. That said, I have stained my sidewalks and they took the stain just great. I'm doing my own staining because I'm not having a pattern done and just want a mottled, more rustic look. I've done it before on my inside kitchen countertops I made and loved it. It's not hard to do if you like a marble-like uneven finish. I'm using two colors. The first time I used Kemiko brand stain and was very happy with it. This time I got stain from Direct Colors and it seems like I have to use more stain. Of course, I can't really compare the 2 because the countertops were indoors in controlled heat and my patio is out in the very hot sun and the stain dries way too quickly. Also it's two different finishes and mixes of concrete.

                              Good luck. Karen

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