THE TRUTH ABOUT FIBRES: PART ONE

THE TRUTH ABOUT FIBRES: PART ONE

The Challenges

The expectations and demands asked of concrete are daunting.  Maintaining the structural integrity of concrete in multiple situations is a constant challenge.  And New Zealand presents its own unique set of challenges.

Today form and function are redefining how we think about concrete and its use.  Traditional options for strengthening and reinforcing concrete aren’t always the only solution.

Concrete, by virtue of its nature, wants to ‘open up’ when it is curing and drying.  So, how do you deal with that?  Steel mesh has its place but it does not stop concrete from cracking.  At best, all it can do is hold the cracked pieces together.  The stark reality is that random cracks can occur beyond the imbedded mesh. If that is not enough there are inherent problems associated with large areas of concrete, greater loads and the shapes of pours.  So, if traditional strengthening options can be untrustworthy what are the options?

Fibres: A Viable Alternative

Modern day fibres have been around for over 30 years, but there is still a lot of misunderstanding about fibre reinforcement – and, let’s be honest, some fibres are better than others. 

Fibres engineered for use in the highly alkaline environment of concrete are manufactured from 100% virgin polypropylene and designed to incorporate into the concrete without affecting the chemical nature of the concrete – and they are certified as such.  Wire mesh and rebar only reinforce concrete in one plane, whereas synthetic fibres employ thousands or even millions of fibres per cubic metre of concrete to reinforce it on a small scale.  They end up in every centimetre of the concrete resulting in composite, multidirectional reinforcement throughout all of the concrete – regardless of the thickness or shape.  Unlike steel fibre reinforcement, synthetic fibres intercept micro-cracking and provide early-age strength to the concrete as it begins to cure and shrink from the time it is poured.  These micro-cracks are prevented from becoming large cracks. There are other benefits and we will cover them later.

Product Catalogue: 
Product Catalogue: 

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