There's a good market for concrete curb and gutter work in many areas of the country. Subdivisions for single-family dwellings, commercial developments and city street improvements all offer profit opportunities. Contractors already building curb and gutter agree that slipforming is the most economical construction method if there's a significant volume of work involved. For small jobs, though, stationary forms may be more cost effective. Regardless of whether slipforming machines or stationary forms are used, careful attention must be given to preparing the subgrade, placing reinforcement when needed, jointing and finishing.
Advantages of stationary forms, whether metal or wood include: low initial cost; simplicity of use; low maintenance; easy access for reinforcement placement. There will always be some curb and gutter which is uneconomical or impossible to slipform. As a consequence, slipform paving contractors will also need to have some stationary forms.
Slipform machines are versatile and can be used to produce a number of different concrete cross-sections. Subgrade preparation for slipforming is no different than for stationary forms. Automatic sensors connected from the paver to a reference stringline control the line, grade and slope of the curb and gutter. Once the subgrade is prepared, the stringline is up and sensors are connected, slipforming begins. Ready mix trucks deliver concrete to the slipform hopper where it is gravity fed and vibrated into the curb and gutter form.
FACTORS TO CONSIDER IN CHOOSING A SLIPFORM PAVER
Answers to the following questions should help you to choose the right paver for a job or to purchase the paver that best fits job needs.
- What is the paving speed?
- How fast can a paver move from pour to pour?
- What is the minimum turning radius?
- Will the paver travel backwards?
- What other capabilities does the paver have?