Formworks are the used to retain the shape of concrete prior to hardening. It is the mold that holds the poured concrete till it gets its initial strength. There are different types of forms used in construction industry depends on material type, fabrication, and usage.
In construction today, we normally need forms for the construction of the foundation, column, tie beam, suspended slab etc. The project without this will stock you from proceeding works on site and may even cause delays if there is no immediate supply of this formwork.
Extra care of using formworks because it can cause cracking of concrete after pouring.
Here are 8 types of formwork that you can consider so that you can prepare for running your project.
1. Timber Formwork
Timber formwork is traditional formwork used all over the world due to the reason of being flexible and economical. Well seasoned timber is used as construction formwork. Timber panels are available in different thicknesses depends on the construction type. These panels are connected and arranged at site. It is not preferred for fast construction. It does not give a finished surface of the concrete unless it is sawn properly.
2. Plywood Formwork
Plywood sheet is available in large sizes. It can be easily cut and shaped as per construction requirement. It saves the cost of labors and workmanship. Plywood form gives a relatively finished surface as compared to the timber forms.
3. Steel Formwork
Steel Forms are suitable for a large project and rapid constructions. Apparently, it looks little uneconomical as compare to the wood form, but it saves cost of finishes and plaster. Steel forms can be reused thousands of time without deteriorating. Steel plates are connected by means of steel keys or pin. It can be easily installed and dismantled. Steel forms are good from the structural point of view. It does not absorb moisture from concrete resulting into well-cured concrete with no cracks.
4. Aluminum Formwork
Aluminum formwork has all the advantages of steel form plus it is light in weight. Different manufacturer is also providing molds with steel and aluminum. These types of formwork are categorized as Engineered Formwork System.
A Malaysian company Mivan is successfully providing aluminum mold profile for walls and slab system. With this system of construction, a complete story of a building can be poured at a time. This system eliminates beams and columns, thus a type of box construction system.
5. Plastic Formwork
Plastic Forms are light in weight and required less workmanship. It is generally used for vertical form of walls or slab ribs. A plastic form does not stick with concrete and can be removed easily. It gives finished surface of the concrete. It is not prone to termite and corrosion. It can be reused and recycled.
6. Fabric Formwork
Fabric formwork is also named as disposable formwork and fiber formwork. It is used where flexibility in construction is required. Such as curved or rounded shaped can easily be achieved by fabric forms. It shaped the concrete in aesthetical shaped required by architecture. These fabrics are tested for the applied force and stresses using a computer program.
7. Coffor Formwork
Coffor Form is actually reinforcement grating in which bars are closely spaced. It looks like the reinforcement mesh of a wall. It is light in weight and foldable. It does not need to be removed after pouring of concrete. Coffor form act as the structural reinforcement of the member. Coffor form is used by the engineers in India.
8. Slip Formwork
Slip forms are moving forms used for large and uniform construction. It is used for the construction of towers, chimneys, elevators, shear walls, bridges, highways, and dams. It gives rapid construction with the lesser workmanship.
But most of the projects I’ve seen were using wooden formwork maybe due to its availability and inexpensive.