For concrete construction and repair contractors looking for effective ways to cut overall costs, but not quality, shotcrete construction can offer a more effective solution than traditional cast-in-place or form-and-pour methods. We’ve got six reasons why you should consider making the switch to shotcrete to maximize your productivity and profits.
1. It’s cheaper than cast-in-place construction.
Choosing the dry or wet shotcrete process over form-and-pour can save contractors valuable time and money. Shotcrete places concrete material using a high-velocity compressed air stream, significantly reducing or even eliminating the time and effort spent erecting and maintaining forms. This method also reduces the amount of wood or other materials typically used in forming, which reduces the labor costs and environmental impact.
2. It’s faster than traditional concrete construction.
Shotcrete can be applied using both the wet or the dry process. It is considered structural at the point where the compressive strength of the material when set exceeds 2000 psi after 28 days. The process can be combined with steel and other structural elements to enhance the versatility. In almost every case, the shotcrete process will be much more cost effective than form-and-pour where applicable.
3. It makes it easier to build in hard-to-access areas.
One of the biggest challenges that contractors face today is accessing the concrete pour site. Unlike other processes, there’s no need to get heavy equipment right next to the pour site when using shotcrete. A skilled nozzleman can typically place concrete hundreds of feet away from the material source, allowing easy access to difficult-to-reach areas, including overhead and underground.
4. It’s ready to go when you are.
Success in the use of the wet or dry shotcrete process is directly related to the use of high-quality equipment and materials. There are many pre-blended shotcrete materials available. However, the use of a mixer-pump combination gives operators the luxury of having material ready when they are. The use of a mixer-pump requires the storage of raw materials such as sand, aggregate and cement onsite and access to a clean water source. However, the convenience of on-demand batching and mixing in close proximity to the pour area can save thousands of dollars by eliminating the potential for delays in delivery and wait time charges.
5. Combination shotcrete mixer/pump units cut equipment costs.
Beyond the application opportunities, shotcrete contractors can save money by choosing a single unit that mixes and pumps, rather than two separate units. Consider the RS180 Mixer-Pump, which cost less than two separate machines. It also saves money in transportation costs, requiring only one truck and trailer to transport.
6. Mixer/pump units save labor costs.
Aside from transporting the unit to and from the jobsite, combo units set up twice as fast as separate machines and require fewer operators. With the MX-20MT or Mason Mate Mixer-Pump, for example, a single contractor can quickly and safely get the machine set up and operational.
To further increase labor savings, choose a pump designed for easy cleaning and repair. This allows cleaning and repairs to be completed by operators rather than outsourcing, preventing downtime and saving you money. The MX-10 Mixer-Pump, like other Blastcrete models, features a swing-out receiving hopper, which allows easy access to the lower hopper for fast cleaning and maintenance.
Shotcrete might not be the solution for every application, but contractors across the country are realizing that — with the right equipment — they can increase efficiency and profits by adding wet and dry shotcrete services to their offerings. Contact us for more information on how adding a shotcrete mixer-pump can optimize your concrete construction and repair operation.