Am I doing this right?


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Old 01-27-21, 12:25 PM
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Am I doing this right?

Hi Folks,
Our plumber cut a slot in my basement floor to replace a drain pipe that connects from our kitchen drain to the soil stack. He’s a great guy, offered to make a second trip to fill it but me being el cheapo decided I’ll give it a try. I bought 2x40lbs bags of quickcrete (yellow bag) and learned pretty quickly that I probably needed about 5 bags. Also, couldn’t smooth the concrete out with a 2x4 as nicely as concrete pros do. (See photos)
Questions:
  1. when trying to smooth the concrete out, the rocks made achieving a smooth surface very difficult. How to the pros get that smooth surface with all those rocky bits in there.
  2. on the section that I poured, it could still use about a half inch more. Can I pour another layer of quickcrete on the top or will it not bind?
  3. Or, since there is space to add more, would it make sense to finish it off, perhaps with a lighter color material like some type of mortar (or similar)?
As you can probably tell, I’m a complete noob with all things concrete and masonry. Any and all answers are welcome.. Thanks so much in advance.
Greg


 
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Old 01-27-21, 03:04 PM
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No, you can't put a thin layer of new concrete on top of the old. 1/2" is too thin for concrete though you could use a surfacing compound. You would have been better off to completely fill the portion of the trench you could and just leave the rest with no concrete.

As for how to get a smooth finish there are books, websites and videos that will show you how. Seeing it in a video might be helpful. When finishing you trowel the surface which will bring the cement to the surface. You need to do it enough to bring a workable layer to the surface so you can get the smooth finish. But, if you go too far the surface will get watery which weakens the surface layer.

You can measure your trench and calculate it's volume. Then look at the volume in a bag of concrete. Most bag mixes have the information on the label. If in doubt buy more than you need and return any that you don't open. It's better to have it and not need it than to come up short.
 
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Old 01-27-21, 03:31 PM
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Don't know how deep that is. But the other method would've been to put a layer of crushed stone to about 1/2" from the floor surface. Then using cement, not concrete to smooth over the stone. Cement (not having aggregate in it) is easier to smooth out without over working it.
If it's not a traffic area you could try putting a layer of cement over it and see what happens. It may hold up enough to look good.
 
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Old 01-28-21, 08:23 AM
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Thanks for your replies. Ok, Iíll fill the rest of the trench then. I think this was a dirt floor initially and the concrete was added in the 40ís (into a 1920ís house). Not critical that itís perfect but it would be nice to roll things like gear (woodworking) over a smoother surface. Maybe an epoxy mix to finish off the surface since I messed with the concrete? Or cement? Thanks again.
 
 

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