The use of edge forms or hard screeds is essential in building flat floors. Precast concrete screed rails for this use in floor construction have recently been introduced in the United States. The rails remain in place after concrete placement and become a permanent part of the floor.
Resembling steel railroad rails, the precast members are produced with heights of 1 to 6 inches and standard lengths of approximately 17 feet. They can be cut to desired length on the job using a hand-held power saw. Holes cast in the sides of the rail permit dowels or tie rods to be inserted where needed. Labor savings in form setting and elimination of form stripping are cited as main reasons for the stay-in-place screed rails being cost competitive.