suspended floor panels

billshurv

Member
Paid Member
2014-03-01 11:53 pm
Noticed the skip at work today was half full of floor panels from some work that had been done in one of the offices. These are the steel clad ones so no idea what was inside them, wood or cement, but certainly heavy.

As I am a cheapskate I thought these might be an interesting starting point for making a high mass plinth as the price (zero) is right and the thickness allows for a layered approach.

Anyone else ever tried hacking these about?
 

Mr_Zenith

Member
Paid Member
2009-08-20 3:16 pm
KC Metro
The ones I'm most familiar with are those 2' x 2' precast concrete panels that lay over a gridwork in the floor. No, I haven't had much experience with them but I suspect any difficulties you might experience in hacking them will come in trying to cut through the steel reinforcement. It wouldn't seem so, but cured concrete is relatively easy to cut and shape on its own with relatively simple tools. Add steel to the matrix though, and things get more difficult. Part of the field work for my master's thesis involved boring ten 4" holes through a 6" bridge deck (over live traffic, no less!). The wet diamond core bit cut through the 50-plus-year-old concrete like butter - until it hit reinforcing steel. The bit still cut, but at a much slower rate.

One idea that may appeal to you is one I've often toyed with myself: casting my own concrete plinth. The hard part would be designing and building the mold. It'd be much like building a concrete countertop, and probably cheaper and cleaner, too. In addition you can select the finish you want (cobalt blue terrazzo, anyone?), and the mold would be reusable if you screwed up or simply wanted another.

Parenthetically, I've always pictured the removal of those floor panels to be somewhat like that scene in one of the Star Trek movies, where the "red shirts" manning the photon torpedo room remove the floor grates in a dramatic, systematic pattern just prior to firing...