We live in a time in which there’s a plethora of options when it comes to falsework systems for supporting concrete during construction in the UK. This means that there’s plenty of choice when it comes to picking out a falsework system.
Back in our July 2017 article, we talked about temporary works and the key things to be considered when designing temporary structures. These points are especially relevant when selecting a suitable falsework system.
So what is falsework? People outside of the industry sometimes get confused between formwork and falsework, so let’s take a look at a couple of definitions:
Falsework involves a temporary structure used to support other permanent structures until they can support themselves. There are a number of falsework systems such as Peri Mutiprop, GASS props, RMD and Acrow props.
Formwork is the temporary structure used to retain fluid concrete in its designated shape until it hardens. We will discuss formwork in more detail in a future article.
These systems can be used in a wide variety of scenarios which we here at LSY are familiar with and work with on a daily basis. The most common use cases include:
- The support of newly constructed concrete
- Needling beams
- Façade retention
- Horizontal support of existing walls
- Back propping
These systems are usually designed by suppliers, but we here at LSY undertake the designs with our in-house team. We generally ask the contractors who work on our various projects which systems they prefer to use before proceeding with the final designs.
Falsework designs are temporary works and not permanent works, so detailed design checks should always be undertaken. Falsework is generally highly stressed over short periods of time and the components are often reused throughout construction projects.
Factors to look out for include:
- Structured strength of systems being specified
- Analysis of strength and stability (this is often identified as the main cause of collapse)
- Appreciation of the construction methodology
- Ability to transfer loads from permanent to temporary
After falsework has been designed, the workmanship on site and ongoing maintenance (including undertaking regular inspections of installed systems) is vitally important.
We here at LSY Engineering Consultants Ltd are involved in projects throughout the UK using various falsework systems, so if you want to learn more about your project then be sure to get in touch. We look forward to working with you!