This is The Atypical Hustlers. Thank you for joining us for this fun, cheap, and very satisfying project. This entire project start to finish doesn’t require that much work. However, you will want to leave yourself a couple of days to allow for drying and setting times. The most satisfying part of the project is the lack of money that will be spent on it. The list of materials and supplies is somewhat lengthy but please don’t let these intimidate you as most will already have the items around the house.
- Putty Knife
- Paint or Concrete Mixer
- 50lb Bag of Concrete
- Concrete Screws (3/16″)
- Masonry Bit (5/32″)
- Hammer Drill
- Polyurethane and/or Epoxy
- Melamine Board (Size depends on your project)
Making The Mold
Begin by building yourself a mold template for the size of table top you are wanting poured for the concrete top. I like to pour the concrete at least 2″ thick. So make sure you cut yourself side rails for the form that are about 2 1/4″ tall. The form will need to have the corners caulked with a silicone to make sure they are sealed. Next you will want to spray WD-40 or similar all inside the mold that way the concrete will release from it when its time to remove the mold. Another add-on fun thing to do to make the concrete look like granite is to take some tile grout and make lines in the bottom of the form.
Next step is mixing the concrete. You will want to make sure you mix the concrete with a little a small amount more of water then is called for on the bag of concrete. Once you get it mixed to the point of it being almost like a pancake batter, Then its time to pour the mixture into the mold. You will want to take a spray bottle of water and keep the surface of the concrete wet as it is drying. This should prevent cracks. Let the concrete set up for around an hour.
Removing The Concrete
Remove the concrete from the form by hammering softly around the edges of the wood. Then turn the entire project upside down and carefully pull the mold up off of the concrete.
It is time to start getting this project wrapped up. We will actually flip the mold upside down and put it back inside the mold with the concrete inverted from the original position. You will have about a 1/4″ gap between the top of the concrete and the side walls. This will allow for a barrier to hold the sealant coat into place. We will put polyurethane as the next coat. It should go on thick. Once it dries you can decide if you would like to put epoxy over that coat of polyurethane. This is what we did b/c we already had the epoxy. The polyurethane will also leave a nice finish.
In many cases this is the final product once it dries. But for our specific project we decided to mount the counter top to some galvanized pipe fittings that we felt would leave a neat flare.
For those that are still reading, we will take an inch and a half by 3/16″ tapcon concrete screw to anchor the galvanized pipe flange onto the bottom of the concrete. We drilled a 5/32” pilot hole with a masonry bit to pilot it out. You will most certainly crack or bust the concrete if you do not do this. We used a hammer drill to pilot the holes out. Then we screwed the base onto the counter and we have ourselves a finished product.