Spec Formliners, Inc. News

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Odds are good that Spec Formliners’ semi-elastomeric material, ElastoSpec Lite, is the perfect material for your project. With the practical balance between cost effectiveness and re-use capabilities, ElastoSpec Lite is finding itself requested and spec’ed into more and more projects.

In a time when raw material ABS is difficult to come across, ElastoSpec Lite shines as a welcome alternative. High in re-use, priced between plastic and urethane, capable of custom tooling and custom sizes, meets specifications for semi-elastomeric material–this product does it all.

Benefits to using ElastoSpec Lite in substitute of ABS or solid urethane projects:

  • ElastoSpec Lite gets multiple uses, often between 25-35
  • Used and applied like plastic, but wears like urethane
  • Easy to field trim
  • Lightweight. Most patterns range between 1-3 lbs/sf
  • Custom sized patterns near plastic pricing
  • Reduced shipping costs

Spec Formliners, Inc., welcomes you to the launch of it’s newest product: Spec Release!  Spec Release is a vegetable oil-based form release agent specifically engineered and manufactured to work with Spec’s form liners, GFRC, CRC, and composite reinforced concrete.  The release is 100% biodegradable and is non petroleum based.  Spec Release does not include emulsifiers nor is it diluted with water.  It will not fun off form liners in light rain or evaporate from the form liner.  It will maintain its release qualities for several days on forms placed awaiting casting.  This effective release is available for purchase in pails, drums, and totes for your convenience.

Spec Release Facts:

  • Spec Release is environmentally friendly and VOC compliant.  It is non-hazardous and doesn’t require hazard warnings or DOT regulation.
  • Spec Release will not separate and does not require mixing prior to use
  • Spec Release does not use emulsifiers or solvents, so it will stay on your forms once applied.
  • Spec Release will not stain concrete and paint and stain can be applied with no additional preparation.
  • Spec Release is easily applied by brushing, spraying, or wiping.

To view the complete Spec Release product write-up and MSDS, click here
For pricing and more information, please call us at: 714.429.9500 or e-mail us.

It’s not every day you meet a 12-year-old who not only knows what she wants to be when she grows up, but is also actively pursuing that goal. This January, Spec Formliners enjoyed the privilege of a visit from Sophie, a bright and focused middle-schooler who knows exactly what career lies ahead for her: Sophie is going to be an architect. Through help from her school, family, and friends, Sophie is taking amazing initiative in submerging herself into the architectural world, soaking up as much knowledge as there is to offer.

When we first heard she wanted to see architectural engineering in action, we couldn’t wait for her visit. Sophie had never before seen a full set of blueprints, and she was new to CAD software. The timing of her visit couldn’t have been better. We had just delved into the CAD/CAM layout of two complicated and beautifully artistic murals over 38 feet wide. Sophie had the opportunity to see from the very beginning what steps go into the production of a mural of this scale. With 6 inches of positive relief in the concrete, these strawberry and artichoke murals are going to make a big impression on Salinas Road Overcrossing, as they already have with Sophie.

The highlight of the visit for Sophie was when we produced her own 3D nameplate. Using the skills and techniques we had demonstrated in the CAD software, Sophie was able to create her very first design. We sent the data from the CAD software to the CNC machine to produce a physical part from her design. Seeing her name being carved out before her eyes on precision machinery from a design she created may have been the highlight for Sophie,
but it was the inspiration and excitement in her eyes as she held up her first masterpiece that made her visit most memorable and rewarding for us.

Thank you, Sophie, for brightening our day, and best of luck with your architectural career!

Spec Formliners, Inc., is excited to provide you with a sneak peak of it’s newest budding creation, Spec Release: Form Release for Use with Concrete Form Liners!

We have engineered a form release that is designed to work specifically with our form liners and will be offering it in pails, drums, and totes for your convenience.

Stay tuned for updates on the availability of Spec Release: Form Release for Use with Concrete Form Liners.

All projects have budgets. The difference between a profitable project and an unprofitable one can come down to the very first phase of the project: the planning phase. Without proper planning, items can be overlooked until a critical phase in the construction, at which point the only solution is to go over budget in order to get it done.

The cost, weight, lead time, and functionality of form liners are factors which often go underestimated or overlooked at planning and bid time, and that comes back to haunt contractors and project owners during production. Through active involvement in the early stages of planning a project, Spec Formliners is able to save customers both time and money.

Spec Formliners offers a unique service to help minimize unforeseen costs by working closely with architects and contractors during the planning phase to accurately account for the often-overlooked details.
Spec Formliners’ staff includes a dedicated engineer with years of experience in designing Form liners systems that meet the vision and design intent of the architect while achieving the engineering and production requirements of the contractor.

The Spec Formliners “Personal Engineer” service is here to offer you pattern and material information specific to your job, design suggestions, drawings, and specification information. Spec Formliner’s “Personal Engineer” is also there to help you with submittal information. Just call and ask what we can do to help you with your project, or send us an e-mail letting us know how we can assist you.

Plastic:

When attaching the plastic liners to the form, the first step is to identify the side to be poured against. The side facing the formwork has a smooth shiny surface; the concrete side has a slight “hair cell” appearance.

The most common method to attach the liner to the form is with screws or nails. Tek Drywall screws work well for this application and the nails or screws should be placed every 6″-12″on center around the perimeter and 18″-24″ in the center of the liner. Other options include pneumatic staples, which don’t hold as well so they should be applied closer together, and double sided tape. The recommended method for tilt-up application is wooden dowels inserted into the casting slab. “Formica top” adhesive is suggested for applying plastic liners to steel forms.

Urethane:

Urethane liners can be attached to the front or the back of the forms with bolts or lag screws. The head of the bolt can be screwed into the face of the liner and covered with a silicon or urethane caulking material. Or, for easy attachment, Spec Formliners can manufacturer your liners with T-Nuts according to your specifications where the head of the bolt can be screwed into the imbedded threads in the back of the liner.

For more information on the application process:
Plastic (PDF)
Urethane (PDF)

One of Spec Formliners’ specialties lies in the art of custom sign and letter making.

Letters and signs are a common artistic flare on many DOT, local, and even commercial projects. One of the main benefits to using form liner to create this look is that it allows us to detail the tool so that it can be easily dropped into and cast in a form. No dealing with numerous Styrofoam pieces, no aligning and centering in the form, and if you want, no dealing with individual letters.

Additionally, like the Lake Elsinore sign below, one of the advantages of making a sign as a liner is that the lettering can be cut through a texture pattern. Using this technique, letter panels can blend in with the wall pattern texture which gives the sign the striking look of a watermark in concrete.

Spec Formliners, Inc., likes to make sign-making easy.

Recently, we were asked to create a custom palm tree design for the Palmetto Expressway in Florida. The project awarded us the opportunity to implement some new tool making strategies that will increase our range of production capabilities for future projects.

We were able to use our CNC machine to rapidly create templates from customer drawings. Further, because the liner needed to match up to an existing wall, we were able to expertly match photos from the customer and tool our piece to be a direct match to the pre-existing architecture.

Because the extra large panel was designed to minimize seams in the wall, we had to get innovative with our shipping methods as well. To save the customer costly oversized permit fees on a flatbed, our production staff created a triangular brace that allowed us to tilt the panel onto a standard 8′ wide truck. This oversized 120″ x 112″ panel was a challenge from start to finish that allowed both our engineers and production crew to push boundaries and think on their feet!

View additional projects

The engineers at Spec Formliners, Inc., love when they get the opportunity to work on new ways to apply form liner on a project. So when we received the request to quote concrete fraises to simulate the wooden ones used to protect fortresses, our engineers were instantly intrigued and began working up plans.

This innovative tool (pictured on right) is packaged as a set that is pieced together to make the fraises. The 3 fraise tool allows the contractors to easily cast a manageable amount of fraises at once. Once completed, the concrete fraises will bridge the gap between aesthetics and practicality and will truly illustrate the vast breadth of form liner application. To make inquires about custom tools and applications, click here

Most of Spec Formliners’ plastic liners are shipped in 4’x10′ sheets. Because plastic contracts and expands with heat, it is often necessary for the material to be trimmed. The easiest way to trim the plastic liner is with a circular hand saw (skill saw) with a fine tooth, plywood blade. If the liner is going to be butted up against a rustication strip or a reveal, the blade should be set so it is cutting the liner at a complimentary angle to the reveal.

Temperatures of 140 degrees or higher will cause permanent damage to the elasticity of the liner. The size of the liner can grow or contract 1/16″ in 10′ with every 10 degree change from thermal expansion. Because of the temperature changes, form liners should be applied at the same ambient temperature expected during the placement of the concrete.

For more information on the application process:
Plastic (PDF)
Urethane (PDF)

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