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I'm doing research for a project I'm asking for bids on and I'm wondering how much you can mix decorative concrete treatments. I want a large exposed aggregate patio, but in order to break up this monolithic slab, i want to add a border. I have seen plenty of examples of a stamped border around exposed aggregate but I'm wondering how it was done. Is it done with separate pours - one for the exposed agg, and then another for the stamped border? Or is it more generally done with a single pours, stamping the border and then taking care not to hit that border with the retarder used to stop the cement from hardening? If the latter what care must be taken. In the former (two pours), what is typically done to lock together the two sections and/or why are two pours preferred?

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  • Exposed aggregate is done several different ways. The high end way to pour the slab quick float and sprinkle the color of rock or colors on top then tamp them in finish the slab and use water to wash the surface, this provides the colors and or patterns that really pop over just washing the surface and exposing the aggregate. So the stamping can be done on the premier but that would take a much larger crew and cost quite a bit more. Check out glow stones if you entertain at night we have interlaced patterns of glow stones and they make an awesome night feature but not much in daylight. – Ed Beal Apr 29 at 23:10
  • thank you @EdBeal. The part I want to clarify here is that are you suggesting that UNLESS they use the method you are suggesting sprinkle pebbles and wash), than yes, to pours are the most economical. I guess my question can be boiled down to can you stamp concrete where the aggregate is pebbles instead of limestone? I suppose in that case, the stamp might expose the pebbles thus ruining the illusion of stone with the stamped? – b_levitt May 3 at 23:15
  • Actually in either case you may need a larger crew, the conditions, “mix” temp, humidity. All enter into the equation then add stamping With exposed is a lot to try to get done in 1 pour. – Ed Beal May 3 at 23:42

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