Concrete & Plater Render
Solid rendering is when a craftsman applies a coating on a surface to achieve a plaster or cement finish. This coating is applied by hand in contrast to the off-the-shelf sheets that may be installed on a surface. A surface that is finished using solid rendering can further be coated with other finishes such as paint or hardwall plaster. Solid render requires meticulous skill in a craftsman and must be hand-applied by the craftsman. Typically, rendering material is composed of lime gypsum, sand, water and cement. It is usually applied to exterior surfaces where it serves as a highly durable and weather-resistant finish. Although often used alongside plastering, solid rendering is different in that its composition includes a significant amount of cement.
Different types of surface finishes can be achieved with solid rendering. These include Render and Set, Sgraffito, Bag Finish, Glass Cement Finish, Sand Finish, Corbel Finish, Stone Finish and Tyrolean Finish. Render and Set is a type of finish that is particularly popular in Western Australia. However, it is mostly suitable only for interior applications. Other types of finishes are used to achieve different aesthetic and practical uses.
Why use solid render?
Solid rendering is used for a variety of benefits it offers. Exterior surfaces are directly exposed to weather elements such as rain and sun. In bushfire-prone areas, the exterior also faces fire-related hazards. This is where solid rendering is a highly preferable finish for the sheer durability it offers. As it contains a significant amount of cement, a render is virtually waterproof. Any water on it will wash away without being absorbed by the finishing material. Solid rendering is also completely fireproof and able to withstand fire hazards quite well.
Modern Uses of Solid Render
Solid rendering is used for both interior and exterior applications today. Finish types like Render and Set or Stone Finish are typically used for interior surfaces. Such rendering finishes work perfectly well with concrete walls, plain brick walls and other interior surfaces. More durable finishing types such as Corbel Finish are used on exterior surfaces. When applying rendering on an exterior surface, a greater amount of cement and bonding ingredients may be used to make sure the finish is waterproof and fireproof.
The Process of Solid Rendering
Solid rendering involves a layered application. The render material is first applied to the walls in sheets. The craftsman then uses a variety of tools to apply the material evenly. Depending on the type of finishing you want, the craftsman then uses other tools to achieve that finish. In Sgraffito, for instance, a mural is traced onto the surface of the render and the surrounding area is scraped to create a design. For a sand finish, the craftsman uses a sponge and a float. Hand-operated machines may even be used to achieve some render finishes such as the Tyrolean finish. In a Tyrolean finish, small portions of the material are tossed onto the wall which creates a sort of 3D texture.