From Prototype to Reality: Concrete Finishing Slicks Success Story

Saving Thousands of Dollars in Labor and Project Costs with an Invention That Solves an Age Old Problem.

After pouring thousands of tons of concrete to make a floor or platform, concrete finishers are called on to finish the concrete surface by smoothing out all surfaces. These artists are often frustrated, however, by marks made by shoes, boots, debris and more while floating the final finish on concrete pours. Removing these marks is time consuming and results in higher labor costs that are added to the overall cost of the job.

Concrete Innovations, Inc. came up with a product concept of a “rubber smoothing shoe” that acts like a finishing slick to address this problem. They needed to develop a prototype to introduce their idea to the world and contacted Protoplace Rapid Prototyping of Waynesburg, KY.

Protoplace had to go from concept to "Show Ready Models" in a very short time while developing specific parameters for the physical contruction of the prototype.

The first order of business was to find the right material for making the prototype.

1st Requirement; the rubber could not stick to concrete. It also had to be easy to use, easy to color and durable.

Protoplace contacted the Smooth-On technical help line and was soon up and running with Brush-On® 40 mold rubber and Plasti-Paste support shell material to make a mold of the original wood-carved model. The test and display pieces were then cast in Vytaflex® 50 urethane rubber.

Protoplace met their trade show deadline and Concrete Finishing Slicks were introduced to the world. They credit Smooth-On materials for allowing them to be agile in the design process and for saving them a lot of money in tooling costs.