It’s always nice to see well-designed creations built from relatively cheap materials. With a little ingenuity and (in some cases) a lot of hard work, you don’t need a fortune to craft something worthy of a showroom floor. Among others, master builder Mike Clifford recently proved this with his homemade white glass-fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) table.
Using a $10 piece of maple wood he bought on eBay as the focal point of the table, Clifford begins his build process by carving a casting box out of a sheet of melamine. Because the casting box is going to be the same size as the finished table, he also carves out an indention big enough to fit the maple slab.
After coating the maple in water sealant and building the rest of the box, Clifford covers everything in a paste finishing wax before applying silicon to the gaps. Doing so will result in clean silicone lines that won’t stick to unwanted surfaces.
Clifford then wipes off any excess wax before spraying the face coat of the table consisting of a thin layer of cement, sand, polymer, and admixtures. He uses a hopper gun (which is in no way a deadly weapon) to apply the mixture from the edges going inwards. He then uses a chip brush to work the concrete into the corners of the box manually.
After waiting 30 minutes, he then applies the back coat, which consists of glass fibers to give the table its sturdy structure. To make the mixture more fluid-like to get into those nooks and crannies, Clifford adds a plasticizer. With everything filled and leveled, Clifford leaves the mix overnight.
Once everything is set and dried overnight, he comes back to it the next day to begin the process of demolding and sanding. Once he achieves the desired finish, he applies a concrete sealant to reinforce and finish the table.
Find more of Clifford’s clever projects over on his YouTube channel.