Concrete Bench

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Moderator: Michael

Concrete Bench

Postby Michael » Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:37 am

Image

Ok, I finally am getting around to posting some images in here.

I am starting with this concrete and cherry bench. Benches can double as tables as well, and here it is being used in such a way. I have had 350lbs of humans on these benches without issue.

I have worked with concrete quite a bit and have used thin slabs rather successfully in a variety of applications. The slab is attached to the wood by 2 hanger bolts. The "washer" that I use is a 2"x 12"x 1/8" plate to increase the surface area. Square nuts secure the system.
Image

Joints made long before KM-1 was in existence.

Proportionally, I need to increase the length of the bench. It is a bit too cozy. This started out as an experiment from an extra slab left over from another project so the length was already dictated to me. I ripped it down to this width and made the wooden hoops. I ended up making 3 of them.

As far as weight goes; well, it is concrete. :D
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Postby ForumMFG » Fri Apr 23, 2010 5:37 am

Nice work Michael.

I really do enjoy this piece but the only thing I don't like is that when you cut the concrete you can see how it chipped away. I feel that the look of that chipping takes something away from this piece.

Other then that, I wouldn't mind having this bench or table in my living room. I like the almost modern look to it.
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Postby flairwoodworks » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:50 pm

Michael,

Nice, contemporary bench. It seems, at first, an engineering feat, suspending a concrete slab from the frame. Just the fact that the concrete is "floating" draws attention to the bench. I agree with the other poster about the chipping - that's too bad. Is it just my eye playing tricks on me, or is there a slight - and I mean SLIGHT - upwards curve to the slab? Probably just me, as it's pretty hard to pour a slightly convex slab, though, with the right mold...

Did you drill or form the holes in the concrete for the hanger bolts? And what are the dimensions of the bench?
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Postby PFranks » Sun Apr 25, 2010 11:03 pm

Nice, Michael. I like the contrast of textures and colors of the concrete and wood, and the simplicity of the design. Very clever - and appealing - to hang the concrete from the leg frames.

It might be cool to contour the top of the bench by making a mold - some butt prints or a gentle curve from front to back. You could put the negatives in the bottom of the mold, and then make that surface the top of the bench. I have no idea if that's technically feasible, but it might be fun to experiment with.
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Postby Michael » Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:19 pm

Thanks for the replies!

There is tiny bit of chipping in the concrete with this one, though with these crappy photos, the chipping I think is actually worse in the photo than in reality. The slab is flat, my photo is deceiving you, Chris.

This version is 42" long. I really think that making it 48" would be more functional as a two person seat. To strengthen the slab, I would add rib underneath length-wise that thickens in the center. It would not be visible unless you got on the floor.

I drilled the holes in the concrete for the hanger bolts to go through. I would cast the holes next time around now that I know the spacing.

Concrete is versatile stuff. There is a lot one can do, it is just a matter of making the form. A formed seat would be interesting. It is a lot more work too! Next one I do will be blackened concrete which really transforms the material.
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Postby rwest » Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:02 pm

Michael,

Nice bench!

Did you add any re-bar or mesh to reniforce the slab, or is it strong enough on it's own?

A black slab with Cherry will be stunning, cherry and black are a perfect contrast in my opinion.

-Rutager
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Postby Michael » Mon Apr 26, 2010 4:21 pm

I use all sorts of reinforcements:
Acrylic polymer, pvc fibers, and 1/8" steel rod mesh grid.

I agree, black detailing goes well with cherry.
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