Providing such benefits as easy handling, multiple reuses and smooth surface finishes, GFRP forms are a popular choice for architectural concrete. A combination of about one-third glass fibers and two-thirds polyester resin, GFRP forms are typically used to form columns, beams and slabs (typically waffle or one-way joist systems). Other GFRP products used in forming concrete are form ties and patterned form liners.
The principal advantage of GFRP forms is the smooth, high-quality concrete finish they can achieve. The forms are also lightweight and can usually be handled by workers instead of by cranes. A standard 8-foot-long, 16-inch-diameter GFRP column form weighs only 89 pounds. Relatively impervious, GFRP forms effectively retain moisture for curing the concrete while they remain in place. However, the impervious surface may cause more bugholes in the concrete surface than would be expected with absorbent form faces. Careful selection of release agent and good consolidation will minimize potentially undesirable effects.