What is curbing?
Features & Benefits
The Curbing Process
as well as sample photos to help inspire your curbing plans.
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The curbing process can be broken down into five major steps:
1. Ground Preparation:
The pathway your curbing will follow is measured out and marked using a chalk line, string or spray paint.
If sod is already present, a bed measuring two inches deep and 10 inches wide is stripped by a specially-designed sod-cutter, creating a surface on which to extrude the concrete. The equipment removes the sod in fully-intact strips, allowing you to fill in any remaining bare space along the curb's edge if necessary once the cement is cured. The Cement Shop can also use this same sodcutter to quickly and neatly create a brand new flowerbed for your property.
2. Product Preparation:
The precise cement mixture is mixed on-site in a drum mounted on a trailer designed specifically to meet industry needs. The mixture includes GU Portland Cement (the ideal formulation for Winnipeg's extreme climatic conditions), medium-coarse sand, Efflor-Guard to prevent efflorescence or whitening of the surface of the cement, fibre-mesh for added strength, and a small amount of water.
Integral colour in the form of a powder can also be added to the mix.
3. Curb Creation:
Once mixed to the proper consistency, the cement is transported to the curb extruder, a specialized piece of equipment that resembles a snowthrower, and poured into its hopper. The operator moves along the delineated shape to lay the curb, at which time our 1/8" braided wire cabling is extruded into the centre of the curb.
While the curb is extruded, the next batch of concrete is prepared, and so on, until completion.
The curb is first hand-troweled for ultimate smoothness.
A roller or stamp may be used to apply a unique pattern or to emulate a particular hardscape such as brick, slate, etc.
Depending on the style of the curb, one or more additional coloured powders may be hand-broadcasted onto the surface, followed by a reactionary chemical release agent. This optional process generates additional shading, creating an antiqued look that mimics the multiple tones of natural rock and brick.
Expansion joints to control cracking are cut approximately 40 per cent into the curb while still wet at two to three-foot intervals.
A final protective sealer is applied to the curb for preservation.
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A: Curbing is unique because the design possibilities are virtually limitless, and because it can contour the existing shapes and features of the land! Choose a curb profile that suits your personal taste and highlights the unique elements of your property. Combine that with eye-catching treatments or textures including rich integral colour available in 18 shades; antiquing agents; and protective sealants, and you've got a product that is as stunning as it is strong. Follow the soft, flowing curves of any landscape design, from undulating kidney-shaped flower or gravel beds to meandering grass walkways. Encircle a single tree or lamp post with a tight ring, or create a new or larger garden to decorate the front of your home with impact. Or, install curbing in linear applications alongside pavers, stone or poured concrete for a clean, finished edge with 90-degree angles. In fact, curbing works great as a line to guide brick installation or cement pours!
Q2) Is this product not just like bricks?
A: No! Continuous concrete curbing is not like any other landscape border system available. Because it is made of cement extruded in one solid pour, it is similar in form and function to commercial curbing such as that used in parking lots, along city sidewalks, in parks and golf courses, etc. There are no sections or segments in curbing, which means that grass and weeds cannot grow in between, invading your beds. The solid concrete pour also means that curbing will not shift out of place like even properly installed-bricks can. Curbing is laid at the root-bed level, which means that it shifts with the ground.
Q3) Why are forms not used?
A: Traditional concrete forms are not needed in the curbing process. Instead, we use a specially-designed curbing machine similar in size and appearance to a snow-thrower. This piece of machinery is equipped with a cement-hopper, plunger and metal mold attachments, enabling it to expel concrete in the selected shape. Plus, because the cement mixture is similar in consistency to mortar, the curb retains its shape when extruded despite the lack of forms.
Q4) Why is curbing such a durable, long-lasting solution?
A: Curbing is an excellent landscape border solution because of the materials used to create it. Concrete is an extremely durable product, used in virtually all construction applications and climates. Plus, The Cement Shop uses fibre-mesh, an additive which acts like rebar to strengthen the curbing, as well as an innovative CurbCabling System. As the curb is extruded, 1/8" braided and galvanized wire cable is fed into the centre to add even more strength. Instead of replacing rotten wooden railway ties, or cracked, black plastic edging every couple of years, you can install concrete curbing and enjoy it for as long as you own your home, particularly if you opt to re-seal it every couple of years.
Q5) What is the process for colouring and texturizing the curb?
A: The Cement Shop uses integral colour mixture, which means that powdered colour is mixed right into the drum along with cement and sand at the time of installation. As for patterns, we create these looks by applying specialty stamps and rollers immediately after the poured and still-wet curb has been hand-trowelled for smoothness. For a final original look, we can also add "antiquing agents" to the surface in the form of additional powdered colouring tossed by hand. The resulting uneven shading and highlights effectively emulate the look of various natural stone products and brickwork which typically possess a multitude of beautiful hues.
Q6) Won't curbing crack in the cold or fade in the sun?
A: Continuous concrete curbing is treated with expansion joints, a process which cuts into the curb about 40 per cent every two to three feet. These cuts enable the curb to withstand expansion pressure, but should small fractures occur, they should occur within the joint. Our cabling system also works to prevent separation. As for fading, because the curbing is coloured throughout and treated with powerful sealing agents, its colour should not fade. However, The Cement Shop recommends re-sealing every two years to restore brilliance and shine to the surface and provide protection.
Q7) How long does installation typically take?
A: Most residential curbing installations take just one day! The crew arrives first thing in the morning to prepare the bed, and begins to mix the cement on site. Customer-provided access to power and water is recommended. By the end of the day, the curbing job is typically complete, and your property value-enhancing landscaping will be ready for display! Best of all, other than the beautiful new curbing we've left behind, you won't even know we were there!
Q8) Why should I choose The Cement Shop?
A: The Cement Shop Curbing is a locally-owned, operator-run family business, and we pride ourselves on quality, professionalism and industry leadership. We are liability-insured and covered by the Workers' Compensation Board. We believe that ethics and integrity are key ingredients in the success of any business, and will conduct ourselves according to the following values:
- Sourcing top-quality materials and equipment to ensure a quality product;
- Acquiring thorough product knowledge and providing honest recommendations to assist buyers in making informed decisions;
- Setting competitive pricing; and,
- Standing behind our work with a solid, reasonable guarantee.
Q9) Is there a warranty?
A: Yes! The Cement Shop guarantees each installation against defects in workmanship for one year from the date of installation.
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