Concrete Patio Bar

We covered our patio this year and a bar with a sink was a MUST.
Since I had just replaced my old kitchen counters, I thought relocating the top, building a base and using concrete as the finish would be easy and inexpensive.

It was neither. However, it turned out great and we did enjoy the project.
Details below.

Here is the acid finish we gave it
Special fine sand counter top concrete mix
First, we found a local dealer who sells concrete specifically for counter tops. We figured up the square feet needed and I was told I would need about 11 bags. ($1100) Also, I needed to be sure to use a food grade sealant. Additionally, I was told I would need a special break of molding for the edges ($300). $1400 later I was out the door and my truck was almost scraping the ground.

It was heavy and expensive!
Z form counter system
We installed the z-form molds. Easy to attach and work with. We had some troubles with the corner and were afraid the mix would seep through so we did what all people in such situations do and used duct tape for the corners!
Z form counter system
We then cut the insert to the size of the counters. So far this stuff was earning it's cost.
CLEAN concrete mixer was a must
We have done some work with concrete before and we knew it would be best to rent a mixer at a cost of $75 for the day. We also had a friend who helped who pours concrete for a living, so he was a blessing and walked us through the hard stuff.
Pour one section at a time
We followed the instructions and poured one section at a time.
Add the screen first, NOT like this
On the top half, we put the screen down prior to the pour. On the bottom, we did not. We therefore have a line in the concrete where we stopped for a brief break to put in the screen. HINT: lay the screen before like it says.
Smoothing was key
We spent the rest of the day smoothing the concrete and working the bubbles to the surface.
Smooth bubbles from the concrete
It literally took about 8 hours to set up without the bubbles - smoothing out every 30 minutes or so.
Initial Set up
The initial set was very light.
Darkening as hardening
The concrete did get darker as it set up.
Once it was set up and dry, we pulled off the 'snap' off frames of the Z mold.
Worth every cent! Love the bullnose.
We let it set up for 10 days
We had more plans for this, but we had to let the concrete set up for the next 10 days or so.
Finished with phase one
This was our end result and I was very pleased.
We then decided to give it an acid finish. The link is above.

We certainly did not do it the easy way, or maybe even the correct way, but we are very happy for what we did.

Suggested materials:

  • Concrete mix  (Greenrose, Louisville, KY)
  • ZForm molding kit  (Greenrose, Louisville, KY)
  • Concrete mixer rental  (Home Depot, New Albany, IN)

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