October 1989 Table of Contents

Features The First Steps in Building High-Quality Poured Wall Foundations

A basement wall is simply a retaining wall. But it won't work properly unless all the components are in place. Leave out some of the components or do the work poorly, and you've created a continuing source of aggravation for the homeowner and a series of headaches for the builder. A poured-wall contractor can help the builder avoid these headaches by using two skills: observation and communication. Read more

Features Soil Compaction in Residential Construction

It's not hard to spot some of the results of poor soil compaction around a house. Cracked foundations. Concrete steps that lean away from the house. A cracked and settled garage slab with one part higher than the other. Rain water running toward the foundation instead of away from it. All these flaws mar appearance and reduce resale value for the property but could have been easily avoided without spending a lot of money. Read more

Features Walls and Slab Lifted in Texas

The Zavala County Detention Center 80 miles north of San Antonio is making history. Its completion late in 1988 marked the first use in the United States of a unique construction system that permits both walls and building slabs to be cast at grade, then lifted into place. Read more

Features Precast Matches Old Marble

The Medical Education Center at Harvard University is a new building that completes a quadrangle started in 1906. Architects found that precast concrete could be detailed, colored, and textured to blend well with the old material and harmonize with other monumental buildings in the area. Read more

Features Losing a Key Person Sends You Back to Step One

Key people in a construction business are easy to point out. There's only one or two in a small- or medium-sized company. And in a large company, there aren't more than three of them. A company cannot function without them. Read more

Features IRC Section 2036 (c) Drops the Bomb on Family Businesses

On December 18, 1987, President Reagan signed into law the Revenue Act of 1987, and in so doing dramatically changed traditional estate planning. In the Act was a new Section 2036 (c). Read more

Features Permeability of Concrete

Concrete used in water-retaining structures, exposed to severe weather, or exposed to an aggressive environment must be virtually impermeable or watertight. Read more

Features Cut-Out Ribs Shore Water Tunnel During Repair

A custom-built waterblasting unit used for concrete removal shaved months off a tunnel repair schedule. Read more

Problem Clinic Expansion Joints Needed for Whitetopped Parking Lot?

I've recently been awarded a contract to whitetop an existing asphalt parking lot in Pennsylvania. One section of the lot is 80x200 feet. Should there be an expansion joint in a section of lot this large? Read more

Problem Clinic Pinholes in Polyurethane Coating

We're applying a two-component polyurethane coating to the walls and floor of a new concrete reservoir. It's a high-build, 100% solids coating sprayed 125 to 140 mils thick in one pass. We first sandblast the concrete surface and repair any bugholes with Read more

Problem Clinic Delayed Cracking of a Basement Floor Slab

We put in the foundation and floor slab for a house about 3 years ago. The floor slab performed fine for 2 years but then started heaving and cracking. Some of the cracks are up to 1/8 inch wide. Could water pressure have caused the heaving and cracking? Read more

Problem Clinic Load-Bearing Lawns

We need more information about the "grass plus concrete" load-bearing lawn, described in your September 1988 issue (page 863). Who is familiar with the system in Quebec? Who is the maker of the reusable plastic form unit? Read more

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