Dry Installations

Installation Instructions – “Dry” Method

The following installation instructions have been developed to help ensure a blemish-free, high-quality installation.  While GraniteCrete looks similar to concrete, the installation of GraniteCrete follows a different procedure. For best results, follow the instructions below carefully.  For assistance, contact GraniteCrete, Inc. at 800-670-0849.

Installation Depth

For residential/pedestrian applications, GraniteCrete is installed as a 3-inch thick layer over a 4-inch subgrade of compacted Class II base rock. For commercial/light vehicular applications such as driveways, bicycle paths and cart paths, GraniteCrete is installed as a 4-inch thick layer over a 6-inch subgrade of compacted Class II base rock. Compaction rates for all applications are 88%–92%.

Measurements

An online calculator to assist you with estimating the amount of material needed to complete your project can be found here: https://www.granitecrete.com/job-estimator/

GraniteCrete:

Residential/Pedestrian Application – (2 bag mixture) One cubic yard of aggregate/decomposed granite and two (85 lbs) sacks of GraniteCrete admixture combined covers 108 square feet at a 3-inch thickness. Note: Aggregate/decomposed granite should be 3/8” minus material.

Commercial /Light Vehicular Application – (3 bag mixture) One cubic yard of aggregate/decomposed granite and three (85 lbs.) sacks of GraniteCrete admixture combined covers 82 square feet at a 4-inch thickness. Note: Aggregate/decomposed granite should be 3/8” minus material.

Class II Base Rock:

Residential/Pedestrian Application – After final compaction, baserock should have a 4-inch depth.

Commercial/Light Vehicular Application – After final compaction, baserock should have a 6-inch depth.

Mixing Ratios

GraniteCrete:

Residential/Pedestrian Application – (2 bag mixture) The aggregate/decomposed granite (DG) is mixed with GraniteCrete admixture at an 11:1 ratio (eleven (11) units of DG to one (1) unit of GraniteCrete, measured in volume.  This can be measured using “shovelfuls” or other measuring methods; maintaining the 11:1 ratio is what is important.

Commercial/Light Vehicular Application – (3 bag mixture) The   ratio for commercial applications is eleven (11) units of decomposed granite to one-and-one-half (1.5) units of GraniteCrete admixture.  

Note:  Depending on the mixing equipment available, it may be necessary to prepare GraniteCrete in batches. Batches can be measured using “shovelfuls” or other measuring methods; maintaining the appropriate ratio is important.

Installation

  1. Class II Base Rock: Moisten and compact base rock on entire installation area to an even depth of 4-inch or 6-inch, depending on residential or commercial application.  A vibratory plate can be used to compact the base rock; it should not be used to compact the GraniteCrete for residential installations.
  2. GraniteCrete: Wheelbarrow the prepared GraniteCrete/DG mixture to the installation site and place a layer of the mixture to one-half of the desired final lift.
  3. Lightly moisten with a hose end sprayer, avoiding puddling.  Rake the area lightly to evenly distribute water throughout the mix.  Walking on the area is perfectly acceptable; initial compaction can be performed by walking on the edges and corners.
  4. Install a second layer as above and screed at one inch above finish grade; when doing this, make sure to pay particular attention to the edges to ensure even material height, and lightly mist to dampen mixture throughout.  Proper moisture content can be checked by clenching your fist around the GraniteCrete, when the mixture just stays together and the color just starts to transfer to your hand, GraniteCrete is ready to compact.
  5. After proper moisture is achieved for compaction, hand tamp (with a 10” hand tamp) around benches, sign posts, corners, boulders, et cetera. Pay particular attention to corners and edges to ensure tight compaction.
  6. Make several passes with a 36” lawn roller (filled with water), or for larger installations, a 36” walk-behind or riding-roller in static position. Hand tamp out any imperfections with a 6” wooden masonry float.
  7. Make sure to keep your 10” hand tamp, lawn roller, and wooden floats clean at all times.  Fill in any divots with fresh, loose material (removing any larger stone) and hand tamp with the wooden floats to match existing finish.
  8. When laying GraniteCrete in batches, be sure to use the cold joint method below to ensure a blemish-free installation.
  9. If desired, lightly sweep finish surface with a medium bristled broom. Then make several more passes with the lawn roller until the desired surface texture is achieved.  With larger installations, a roller in static position can be used, making sure to keep drum clean at all times. Remove spoils off the surface.
  10. DO NOT ALLOW GRANITECRETE TO DRY DURING INSTALLATION. MIST LIGHTLY WITH A HOSE END SPRAY HEAD AS NECESSARY OR COVER WITH A PLASTIC TARP.
  11. The final step for a GraniteCrete installation is a dampening with water of all newly-installed and compacted GraniteCrete materials. Using a shower head/spray hose attachment, moisten the entire newly-installed GraniteCrete area – avoid puddlingFor best results, moisten all newly-installed GraniteCrete paving a second time the following 1 to 5 days, as practical.Slow curing of GraniteCrete is important to avoid cracking.

You may walk on GraniteCrete immediately after installation. However, like concrete, GraniteCrete gets stronger with time. Ideally, stay off the newly-installed GraniteCrete areas for at least one day; after that, foot traffic is allowed. Vehicular traffic should avoid newly installed areas for 5 – 7 days.

Newly installed GraniteCrete paving surfaces are fully cured in 28 days. At that time, the entire surface should be blown or swept off to eliminate loose surface materials. Minor cracking may take place.   However, over time, the aggregate fines will fill in the minor cracks and they should disappear. Occasional blowing off of the surface will help to minimize loose surface materials.

 

Cold Joint Methods:

Cold joints can be used at the end of the work day.

Method One:

  1. “Between pours,” stop at an area that makes the joint location look intentional. Take a chalk snap line just back from loose GraniteCrete into the compacted area and create a chalk line. Use either a masonry blade – or a square-nose shovel – and cut a straight line across the installation.
  2. Continue with installation. Place newly mixed GraniteCrete into area, being careful not to overlap existing compacted material.  With a concrete trowel or similar tool, tamp the new material at a tapered, 45 degree angle 1” above the finished grade and compact. If necessary, “feather” in with a medium-bristled broom.

Method Two:

  1.  Place a 2”X4” or 2”X6” piece of wood across the installation, stake it, and finish compacting the material.  Leave the board in place overnight.
  2. The next day, carefully lift the wood up and away from the installed GraniteCrete. Continue the installation process as per step 2 under Method One.

Installing for Vehicular Traffic

Installing for vehicular traffic is nearly identical to the method above, EXCEPT you will use a vibratory plate or static riding roller to compact the GraniteCrete, after final compaction by a lawn roller.

cross section of granitecrete installation

Recommended Equipment

Tools

Rounded point and flat edge shovels

6 cubic foot cement mixer or volumetric concrete mixer

Wheelbarrow

8” or 10” hand-tamps

Hose w/spray nozzle

Landscape and asphalt rakes w/flat edge

Iron garden rakes

Heavy lawn roller

Medium bristled push broom

(2) 6” Wooden Floats

(2) Steel Floats to keep hand tamps clean

Materials

GraniteCrete Admixture bags (85 lbs.)

3/8” minus aggregate/ decomposed granite

Class II Base Rock or Class II Permeable Base

Curbing or Header Board materials (if desired)

Water source

Important Reminders

  1. Do not allow GraniteCrete to dry during installation. Mist lightly with a hose end spray head as necessary – avoid puddling – or cover with plastic tarp.
  2. Non-compacted – or poorly-compacted – GraniteCrete top layer will result in loose and pebbled materials. Edge and corner compaction may require special attention with a hand tamp during installation.
  3. Non-compacted – or poorly-compacted – base rock may result in failure of top layer of GraniteCrete.
  4. Squeeze the mixture in your fist and open your hand. When the color has just started to transfer onto your hand and the mixture just begins to stay together in a clump, it’s ready for installation. Excessive moisture level may result in “sticky” materials complicating the quality of the finish surface or proper compaction. If the material is too wet, it may be placed on the bottom of the installation, with material that has a better moisture content on top.
  5. Aggregate/decomposed granite materials should meet the sieve specifications in our Specification Guide
  6. Recommended minimum slope for surface drainage is 2%.
  7. Compaction rates for all applications are 88% – 92%.
  8. Please Note:  3/8” minus aggregate comes in different colors.  GraniteCrete™ samples reflect the use of a Golden Granite decomposed aggregates.. Mock-ups using your local aggregate source is strongly suggested.

A large commercial project may require the use of a volumetric concrete truck.  

Please refer to our website for further information: https://www.granitecrete.com/installation/