The substantial weight of concrete and the need to level it has made screeding a time-consuming and laborious job for centuries. At roughly 4000 pounds per cubic yard, concrete requires great force from man or machine to move it. However, contemporary screeds make leveling less physically demanding than the simple tools that the Romans used in building the Pantheon. Rollers, lasers and vibrating trusses or handheld units offer contractors a variety of screeds that can meet any preference or job specification.


 1. Roller Screed Speeds Concrete Placement

Multivibe’s screeds incorporate the inventor’s experience in the construction industry with practical innovations in its line of equipment. A lift handle that sits above the center of weight provides leverage without effort or back strain, and parts that assemble without tools connect in seconds, not minutes. As a leader in design and development of concrete screeds since 1999, Multivibe offers equipment for million dollar jobs or simple backyard projects.

Roller screeds have practical applications on inclines and on pours of pervious concrete where vibration is unnecessary. With four power options, units can operate from wall plugs as well. Roller screeds allow contractors to pour wetter concrete and achieve a durable surface. Multivibe screeds save time by striking off, leveling and compacting in a single pass, and they work well on pervious or traditional concrete.

Owner and inventor of Multivibe, Joe Lindley, describes the operation of the company’s Roller Screed: “It does not vibrate; it spins in a direction opposite the screeding process. When it spins in this way, it pulls against you and digs its way down to the form grade. There is a person on either end of the screed, and it stays buried as you advance over the concrete to create the grade at form elevation.”

Lindley recommends a method that is the only one that the American Concrete Institute recognizes for grading pervious concrete. “Standing upright and using the body to knock down excess concrete is a method that reduces the need for multiple passes and is much faster than other methods,” he said.

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 2. Cutting High Spots and Filling Low Ones

Design by a contractor gives Spin Screed authenticity that reflects the influence of practical experience. The need to do back-breaking work that once exhausted workers resulted in slowdowns in production and increased labor costs. Increasing area coverage by a ratio of 4:1 with Spin Screed, pours require only a fraction of the time to lay down thousands of square feet. Reduced labor costs often allow for investment in equipment that uses smart technology.

An electric power head spins a hollow length of aluminum pipe that is up to 22 feet long. The turning motion of the tube causes the concrete to roll up ahead of a screed that rotates opposite to direction and provides material to fill low spots and level high areas. Without vibration, it allows the concrete paste to rise to the surface while leaving the aggregate immediately below it. The water to cement ratio produces a durable and high-quality surface.

Rails or edge forms support Spin Screed, creating flat surfaces and clean edges even on steep slopes. Working without limitations that require a slump of 3 inches or less, it creates durable surfaces. The lightweight tube weighs less than 100 pounds for a full-length of 22 feet, and it can change to a shorter length rapidly.

Easy to transport, the equipment requires only one man to load it onto a truck. The quiet operation of an electric power head and the easy clean up contribute to the practicality of Spin Screed’s efficient design.

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 3. Reducing Manpower and Increasing Productivity

Experience may influence success in some cases, but it matters not on flatwork concrete pours with Lura’s Lightning Strike. Excellent for flatwork of all kinds, it saves time and prevents arduous labor on parking lots, basement and garage floors, sidewalks and driveways as well as for pours of 100,000 square feet of concrete or more. With minimal instruction lasting only a few minutes, workers who have no experience can create a flat slab.

“When you have set your pour up right with screed pipes, screed rails or forms, you can have two boys fresh out of high school running the Lura Screed System, and they will deliver very, very flat concrete every time. This method dummy proofs the process,” according to Dennis Lura, president of Lura Enterprises, Inc.

Lightning Strike’s aluminum threaded axle system, a patented design, increases production on pours of any type or size. Its drive assembly and lightweight design make setting up by one man a task that is quick and easy. Filling the tubes with water supplies compaction that pervious pours require while preventing the need to transport heavy equipment. The efficient and intelligent design allows a two-man crew to screed a pour with professional results.

Incorporating the design preferences of its developer, an experienced contractor, it features versatility on the job. Circular, low slump, uphill and sloped pours that challenge some screeds are no problem for the Lightning Strike, a unique and award-winning roller screed. Faster to set up and clean up than truss screeds, the Lightning Strike is easy to transport as well.

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 4. Innovative Chameleon Offers Time Saving Technique

The finishing touch on a pour often creates a lasting impression, and the Chameleon series from Marion Brush gives contractors a choice of textures. Using a color code system to identify five different textures that range from super soft to super stiff helps contractors choose a brush that best meets the demands of each project.

The patented push-pull twin brush finishing tool incorporates an angled design that puts the bristle’s sides instead of the ends in contact with the concrete. Made of durable #612 Nylon resin, the brushes are resistant to wear. Boiling water can return kinked or bent bristles to their original shape. The push-pull brush design includes an aluminum extruded channel that allows for quick exchange of different texture options.

Jeff McCaughey at Marion Brush Mfg. Co. describes the Chameleon Trac II as a system that is “pulled side to side with ropes which eliminates excessive handle weight and gives a very uniform textured finish even under very restrictive conditions.” The company offers a versatile option for projects that limit the use of handles.

“The handleless concrete finishing brush system’s wide frame (available in 4’, 6’ and 8’) and rope pull design allows contractors to finish concrete 50-75 percent faster than conventional methods,” McCaughey stated. Capable of converting from a single handleless unit into two separate brushes with accessories, it offers flexibility on a job site where configurations present access challenges. “The company offers many concrete finishing brush products,” he said.

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 5. Wireless Remote-Controlled Booms for Maneuvering and Leveling Concrete

A boom-operated screed offers options that make pours stronger and more precise while providing faster completion times. Kevin Osland, vice president of Ligchine, states that “the Ligchine/Topcon 3D system brings machine control to the concrete screed directly from digital site plans.”

Emphasizing the accuracy that the system achieves, he states that “the mmGPS screeding system can produce exact thickness and slope automatically, with accurate 3D transition for both horizontal and vertical curves.” Replacing the need to set or reset string lines/forms “allows for a formless (“stringless”) construction site and increased production,” Osland stated.

Capable of using extremely low slumps, the Screed Saver II can lay stronger slabs with less moisture. Reports from owners indicate that the equipment has the potential to reduce labor costs by 30 percent and increase production by as much as 50 percent. Bringing an innovative and practical approach to laying concrete, it can produce as much as 125 square feet on each pass.

Wireless controls allow a worker to navigate the equipment from a position on the ground while maintaining visibility of the pour and the crew. With capabilities provided by a zero-turn drive train, it can maneuver in tight spaces to achieve an advantageous screed angle. At a weight of slightly more than 2 tons, it is within the pulling capacity of a light-duty pickup truck with a trailer for delivery to a job site.

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 6. Leveling Concrete from an Upright Position

Anyone who works with concrete knows the back-breaking effect of bending over for hours at a time. EZ Screed Tools changes all of that with a user-friendly finishing tool that delivers a precise and professional surface. Kelly Bohse, a partner in sales and marketing at the company explains that “using EZ Screed Tools in an upright position instead of the traditional bent over method for screeding concrete” produces better results.

“It will give you a more precise and better view of leveling concrete, you can reach out further, and continue to screed standing up at a much faster speed than bending over while exerting less stress on your back and knees which will allow for longevity for the concrete contractor,” Bohse said.

Lightweight aluminum blades replace the wood screed boards that are familiar to concrete contractors who have long experience in the business. The trend to decorative applications relies on the tools as essential for creating aesthetic effects on pool decks, sidewalks, patios and driveways. Unlike other screed devices, they do not roll or vibrate to produce structurally durable surfaces. One person can operate the EZ Screed Tool on small jobs, reducing time and labor costs, while the EZ Screed Pro Two requires two workers.

Both models are appropriate for use with wetter slumps, and they leave the aggregate in place just below surface level. Easy to carry in the bed of a pickup truck, they offer quick cleaning by disconnecting the screed from the handle.

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 7. Precision Leveling for Rigidity and Durability

Big jobs often require equipment that can meet any challenge, and the Allen Razorback Truss Screed has the credentials that prove its capabilities. The heavy-duty screeds deliver high tolerance floors when F numbers require them. Setting an industry standard for quality that includes flatness, rigidity, precision levelness and durability, Allen Engineering equipment has earned a long-standing reputation. Specialized designs in steel or aluminum can level the surface of any size job.

Features on the aluminum truss screed include hydraulic power winches and an adjustable end handle with rollers to expedite the placement of concrete for the best results. The lightweight aluminum screed is appropriate for industrial and commercial as well as residential pours. Screed blades of ten-gauge galvanized steel are features of the steel truss screed, along with precision-engineered piston vibrators.

High-tolerance concrete floors achieve excellent results with the Allen heavy-duty steel truss screed. The units have a quick uncoupling system for rapid assembly and take down. Capable of producing maximum tolerances for any large bay areas, the tool earns a high level of acceptance by contractors.

Allen Engineering offers a lightweight wet screed that completes a job quickly and with ease. The Magic Screed’s high frequency evenly distributes concrete over the entire distance of the blades that range from 4 to 16 feet. Powered by gas or battery, the units feature control of vibration that focuses it on the blades instead of the handles.

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