Formwork, Shuttering and Scaffolding are the most important construction tools sharing significant amount from project Cost.
During construction of reinforced concrete works as well as their maintenance, we need to support the structure as long as it is in its premature state or plastic state as it could not even bear its own load.
After the suitable duration of time, i.e. when concrete sets enough to take its own load, these temporary supports are removed systematically.
Here are some of the definitions that must be known to a construction engineer as well as civil engineer.
What is Formwork:
Concrete construction in the modern building works has achieved considerable importance, roughly speaking 80% of civil engineering works utilize concrete for their constructions. Concrete being plastic material in fresh state, has to kept within an enclosure (moulds) till it gain reasonable strength, this temporary structure which has to be built for any concrete member is called “Formwork”
Use of formwork in Construction
Formwork is thus a sort of mould used for pouring fresh or plastic concrete. It is closed from all sides and can carry the hydrostatic load of fluid concrete, additional load due to vibration, and load of men and machinery. Formwork should be such that it can be easily removed after hardening of concrete.
Timber, plywood panels or steel sheets are used for formwork. Timber is the most common material for formwork construction, it is easy to work with and it is also economical. However the use of steel forms thus gained lot of popularity in the recent years. They can be obtained for all types of structures. The initial cost of steel forms may be high but they can be repeatedly used for a number of times.
Now with the improvement in understanding the various building materials; lot new and innovative formwork systems have been introduced beside the traditional wooden and steel plate formworks. Based on requirements and size of the structure type of formwork system is opted.
Usually formwork system is also termed as Engineered Formwork System. Formwork system is actually built with prefabricated units or modules that have metal frames either of steel or aluminium. Inside these units are fixed sides for concrete surface depending on the type of finish desired. These sides can also be of steel, aluminium or timber etc. One of the significant advantage of using formwork system is that it can aid the speed of construction and thereby reducing the cycle costs.
Types of Formwork
Depending on the type of material the formwork is composed of the formworks are divided into following types.
- Timber Formwork or Wooden Formwork
- Steel Plate Formwork
- Plastic Formwork
- Aluminium Formwork
As per my experience steel plate formwork is mostly used in Mega Projects like Flyover project, interchange project or even hydropower Dam Project. Wooden formworks are preferred in low cost projects usually in house construction. Aluminium formworks are recently introduced and are getting popular as being low weight long lasting rust free.
Now deciding what type of formwork you should use in a project is a very crucial question during the planning phases of the project. There are alot of factors you have to keep in mind before arriving at any feasible selection. You have to survey local markets and while on the other hand you also have to follow the design standards of formwork.
Use of Shuttering in Construction
formwork is supported and ultimately pouring of concrete is done.
I have been recently asked to tell “What actually is Shuttering in construction“. In the concrete construction of all the members including columns, beams, footings from a small scale house project to a massive scale mega project of a dam; shuttering enjoys a major share of your project cost, time and resources. Shuttering also defines the quality of construction.
According to the Idc-online shuttering in construction acts as a temporary molds for concrete structural members. Shuttering can be considered as complete assembly of formwork fixed with supports to allow concrete to be poured in the desired shape and dimensions.
What is Scaffolding?
Scaffolding is a grid of bamboo, wooden planks or circular steel pipes by which labour can have access to any point of the structure to be constructed and further formwork and shuttering can rest over it. Steel scaffolding is most commonly used as it is easy to dismantle and reassemble.
What is Shoring?
Shoring is the temporary support given to the existing structure for repair purposes. When dismantling any central building, the surrounding building is also temporarily supported.