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A Brief Introduction to Formworks in Construction

A Brief Introduction to Formworks in Construction

What is a formwork?

In construction, forms or shutters are mold structures in which concrete is poured and waited to harden over time. When the strength of the concrete poured reaches the required levels to hold their own weight, the forms are taken out. So a formwork is a frame of a temporary or permanent structure into which hardening concrete is poured.

Characteristics of a good formwork:

A good and efficient formwork:

  • Must be strong enough to bear the dead loads and the live loads that come with the construction process
  • Formwork joints must be tough to maintain sagging, twisting and bulging due to load actions in the minimal level to prevent disfigurement on the concrete surface.
  • Formwork should be easy to detach for repeated use and minimize damage costs.
  • Lines in the formwork must be true and smooth so that concrete surface is neat after the removal of the shutter.

Formwork types:

1. Steel formwork:

Steel formwork allows re-uses of the shutter for many times and they are used in huge construction projects. Curved structures like chimneys, huge columns, tunnels, and water tanks are mostly built with steel formwork. They are strong and last for a long time. Steel formwork can be re-used at least 100 times. They are easy to install and detach, thereby allowing the quick and efficient process. The completed surface of the concrete also comes in smooth and neat.  The formwork used does not absorb water and also reduces the chances of honeycombing.

2. Aluminium formwork:

Aluminium formworks are similar in form and function to steel formworks. They are lighter because aluminum is less dense than steel. However, aluminum cannot handle tension and compression like steel beams. So it is advisable to use large sections of aluminum for formworks. Changes cannot be made to the formwork after fabrication.

For further read: Pros and Cons of MIVAN Aluminium Formwork

One of the upcoming aluminum formwork methods is Mivan Technology.  In this method cast, in-situ walls and slabs are made in a single continuous pour. Room-sized walls and floors are brought up at the site. They allow up to 250 reuses for cost-efficient usage. Frames for any kind of opening like doors, windows, and ducts are considered in the form before concrete is poured. Our flats for sale in Pallavaram are built using this method. The structure constructed with this method is durable and earthquake resistant to long lasting life. Galleria Residence’s flats in Pallavaram are designed to last for at least 99 years.

3. Timber formworks:

Timber formworks have been used for a long time and they are used in small construction jobs all around the world. The only condition for this formwork is that the timber used should be strong, treatable and durable to have strong flats in Chennai. They should be light and hold nails together firmly. Warps in timbers are not advisable and they should also be properly seasoned. Timber formworks are flexible and the same makes it easy to handle. With amazing insulating properties, it is great for construction works in cold places. Their flexibility allows them to be formed into different forms and sizes.

4. Plastic formworks:

There are different subtypes of plastic forms such as glass reinforced plastic, thermoplastic, fiber reinforced plastic forms and so on. These formworks are famous for their flexibility and are used for casting distinctive designs and patterns of concrete structures. Like other formworks, they also deliver a smooth finish and require no treatment on the surface. Flexible nature of the plastic allows the freedom to experiment with different shapes and designs. With proper handling, the formwork can be used many times for economic concerns. Like aluminum formworks, they cannot be fabricated at the field. Hence proper planning and design of the form should be concentrated on. Accelerated curing by heating is risky as that process can melt the plastic.