I am about to build two concrete slabs to support my two decorative outdoor fountains in our front garden area. I am wondering if I can get the best advice for thickness of the slab, PSI for the concrete itself and any other useful information I can get to make this process go as smoothly as possible. First off, here is what one of my fountains looks like:
It's the bigger of the two and weighs 310lb before I fill it with water. The reservoir looks to hold about eight gallons. I'm assuming we can just round off that this will be a total weight of approximately 400lb once set in place and filled with water. I also live in the desert and it doesn't get colder than 50 degrees. So I won't have to worry about freezing temps in my area. I think that matters in determining the type of concrete you use?
So here were my thoughts and questions:
I want the slab to be approximately 5ft squared (depth and width) so that there is a bit of a ledge all around the sides of the fountains after I center it on top. Would using 2x6 studs as my form to make this 6" high be overkill or advisable? For my application I'd actually like to make it higher off the ground by using 2x6 studs for my form but this is going to require a lot more materials which I find a bit daunting. But I'm will to do it. Otherwise, for the sake of learning, can 2x4 studs to used to frame a fountain that weighs 400lb?
I plan to use 3/4" minus gravel as a base at 3" compacted with a tamper. But this is for 2x4" stud forms. What should it be if I use 2x6 studs instead?
I plan to use the appropriate wire mesh to place inside the concrete as a way to create reinforcement for added strength. I'm hoping to avoid using rebar because it takes forever to cut with a hacksaw for metal. The mesh is easily cut with my lock cutters so I prefer to use that if I can.
Lastly, what PSI should I use? Is 5000 sufficient or overkill?
Any other important suggestions?