1st November 2021
What Is Formwork?

In an ideal world, buildings could be made from pre-fabricated structures that are able to defy the laws of physics during construction, allowing for all sorts of odd shapes and sizes that would typically require extensive supports and framing to be constructed the conventional way. In this world, though, physics must be respected at all times, which makes pouring concrete much harder than it could be. To make that process easier, construction teams developed formwork, which allows them to pour concrete via much easier methods. If you're not currently in the construction industry, however, name isn't particularly self-explanatory, but that's something our team can help with.

Giving Shape To The Shapeless
Formwork is a type of temporary mold that you use to cast concrete into the correct shape. Typically, formworks are crafted from either steel or timber, though the material that is actually in touch with the concrete differs depending on the desired finish. This formwork is designed to ensure that the weight of the wet concrete will be entirely supported, which will prevent any distortion from appearing once the concrete dries.

Putting A Solid Support System In Place
Once the concrete has begun to dry, the formwork is typically removed, though that can change depending on the circumstances in question. If the formwork is not removed from the concrete once it's dried, it is referred to as 'permanent formwork', though this will generally only occur for specialist applications. Similarly, while timber and steel are the most common building materials for formwork, specialist tasks can call for all sorts of materials, including plywood, plastic, and aluminium, and each of these materials will provide a unique finish on the surface of the concrete.

A Bridge Over The Abyss
Considering it's role in the construction process, it's easy to see why formwork is one of the most essential elements of working with concrete. Whether you're using reusable or disposable formworks, the overall cost is generally quite low, and these structures are typically quick to assemble. Formwork structures can even help make the worksite safer, providing excellent base points for scaffolding to be installed and increasing overall scaffold safety for your workers. Most importantly, the majority of formwork structures don't require any additional weights to help the concrete hold it's shape, making it much safer than loading large weights onto a structure that has only been half-finished and is currently in a precarious state.

You'll Need To Work With The Right People, Though
Despite how integral formwork is to the construction industry, it remains a specialised skill that requires a dedicated professional. Fortunately, when you need labour hire to perform formwork for your construction project, you won't need to look any further than Abi Civil. Our team has years of experience performing civil construction, including installing guard rails, providing general utilities access, and performing formworks. To speak with our team of civil contractors in NSW about what we can do for you, call us on 1300 402 510.