Mark Womack with Monster Constructors was contacted by Mark and Dawn Petty. The Pettys were at a standstill as to what details they wanted to include and what choices were available to them for consideration, other than granite, for their outdoor bar area. Mrs. Petty had seen concrete tops featured in magazines and, during an online search, found Monster Constructor's gallery of concrete counter tops. The Pettys reached out to Monster Constructors to discuss the potential of a semicircle concrete countertop which could be coordinated with the existing color scheme of their home. During the consultation, Mark Womack observed the vibrant, multi-color tile being utilized on the base of the proposed outdoor kitchen. The conversation included the options of either precast or cast-in-place. Mr. Petty then asked if it was possible to cast-in-place the lower counters and top bar together, all of which would be seamless and monolithic. Hence the project perimeters were set. A seamless, monolithic, semi-circle, cast-in-place countertop utilizing matching tile inserts outlining the face of the arching backsplash.
The cast-in-place concrete mix used is a proprietary in-house, CSA-GFRC formula. The actual concrete pour was divided into three phases. The first phase was to “butter” the exposed edge faces of the countertops with the fiber-free mix. The second phase was the addition of a self-consolidating, fiber-rich reinforcement body of the concrete blend. This fiber body was leveled 3/8” from the top level of the counter and bar tops. Then, phase three was the addition of the remaining 3/8” with a fiber-free mix of which three separate colorations were used. The colors chosen were the natural color of buff, light gray and off-white. Upon randomly placing and hand-troweling the facecoat, the three colors mingled together creating a tri-toned concrete finish. The entire project was then honed with a 100 grit diamond in preparation of staining.
The staining goal was to achieve a brilliant, multi-colored surface that would complement the vibrant-colored tile base, while creating its own unique presentation. SS DYE-namic UV Formula by SS Specialties was chosen due to its UV stability and the versatile color pallet that allows custom blending options. The application of these semi-transparent dyes on the tri-tone underlying concrete surface allowed for a spectacular color transition not normally available from a single color underlying base. The techniques utilized in staining the project were similar to that of water-color art. This allowed multiple colors and hues of color to be developed.
The surface was then buffed with a green pad to remove any residue for the dye, washed clean with water and dried for the final sealing. Two coats of PPG PSX 700 Engineered Siloxane Coating were sprayed with a HVLP system to lock down the intricate color detail.
The Pettys were remarkably impressed with the work produced by Mark Womack, so much so that their emotions produced tears of awe; hence the project name, Petty’s Teardrop.
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