Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    86

    Staining Concrete Pavers for Armoring

    We have a project where we will be using TurfStone permeable pavers to armor a few sections of fall line trail where a reroute is not possible. The pavers are the standard gray concrete color and, I think, will stick out in a natural setting. Has anyone had experience staining concrete pavers to blend in better with the environment? What products did you use, did it hold up well with use, is it worth the trouble?

  2. #2
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
    Reputation: shiggy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Posts
    47,992

    Staining Concrete Pavers for Armoring

    Quote Originally Posted by aero901 View Post
    We have a project where we will be using TurfStone permeable pavers to armor a few sections of fall line trail where a reroute is not possible. The pavers are the standard gray concrete color and, I think, will stick out in a natural setting. Has anyone had experience staining concrete pavers to blend in better with the environment? What products did you use, did it hold up well with use, is it worth the trouble?
    I would not bother staining them. You need to figure out how to anchor them on the steep slope. The minimal depth does not keep them in place. The pavers used around here have all shifted, tipped and/or broke and many are now bypassed.
    mtbtires.com
    The trouble with common sense is it is no longer common

  3. #3
    Zach Attack
    Reputation: zachi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    168
    Staining these and any other concrete stuff is pretty easy. Look up concrete patina. I use an organic hydrocloric acid made by QC QC Construction Products. Use a hudson sprayer to apply full strength or diluted. Color options range from browns to greens.
    This process etches the concrete and is not a pigment like paint. Very hardcore. Good idea. It will bring a nice touch.
    Learn to love it[SIZE="4"][/SIZE]
    www.foresttrailsalliance.org

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    86
    Thanks for the info. As far as securing these pavers, they will be used on slopes up to 25% with a total length of 25-35'. Our soils are pretty robust (silt/clay loam) and I have a hard time seeing them coming loose once they are buried 3" below grade. I am guessing placing a paver vertically in the soil as a keystone at the base and at intervals along the slope would be the best way to anchor them? I would prefer to stay away from rebar or other stake like anchors.

  5. #5
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
    Reputation: shiggy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Posts
    47,992

    Staining Concrete Pavers for Armoring

    Quote Originally Posted by aero901 View Post
    Thanks for the info. As far as securing these pavers, they will be used on slopes up to 25% with a total length of 25-35'. Our soils are pretty robust (silt/clay loam) and I have a hard time seeing them coming loose once they are buried 3" below grade. I am guessing placing a paver vertically in the soil as a keystone at the base and at intervals along the slope would be the best way to anchor them? I would prefer to stay away from rebar or other stake like anchors.
    You are going to need the vertical keystones, the deeper the better, and fairly often. Three inches is nothing and you would find the pavers "surfing" down the hill in a season or two. You need to address erosion next to the pavers, too.

    Pavers are designed to be used with prepared subgrades, like a roadbed. Layers of rock, then gravel, then fines, and filled with fines, and on relatively flat terrain. A cobblestone paved path will use all stones 3-4 times as deep as the exposed faces to anchor them.
    mtbtires.com
    The trouble with common sense is it is no longer common

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    86
    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy View Post
    ... You need to address erosion next to the pavers, too.
    From people bypassing the pavers or erosion from water? Could you elaborate on some strategies for addressing this? In these areas the erosion we are seeing is primarily from skidding tires. Water isn't the issue since the slopes are not very long, are not yet incised enough to collect a "critical mass" of water, and there are good drains before/after the sections.

  7. #7
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
    Reputation: shiggy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Posts
    47,992

    Staining Concrete Pavers for Armoring

    Quote Originally Posted by aero901 View Post
    From people bypassing the pavers or erosion from water? Could you elaborate on some strategies for addressing this? In these areas the erosion we are seeing is primarily from skidding tires. Water isn't the issue since the slopes are not very long, are not yet incised enough to collect a "critical mass" of water, and there are good drains before/after the sections.
    Both. Plus settling/movement of the blocks from traffic.

    The armoring techniques are the same as for using rock. The IMBA Trail Solutions book covers them well
    mtbtires.com
    The trouble with common sense is it is no longer common

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    86
    Update: I chose to go with a Rustoleum concrete stain in the Earth Brown color. Cleaned/etched the pavers before applying the stain with a garden sprayer. 1 gallon of stain allowed 1 coat on ~50 pavers. A lot of the stain was wasted because of the holes in the pavers. Painting or rolling on the stain probably would have produced better results and been a more efficient use of the product but would have taken much longer.

    Overall I wasn't too thrilled with the results. I was expecting much better coverage from the product and a much darker color. It is almost too thick to use with a garden sprayer. It seems like 2-3 coats would be required to tint the gray concrete into a color similar to most soils and at $30 a gallon that will get expensive fast.

    Anyways here are a couple photos showing the difference between an unstained and stained paver.

    Name:  unstained.jpg
Views: 228
Size:  35.1 KB
    Unstained

    Name:  stained.jpg
Views: 265
Size:  39.0 KB
    Stained (1 coat)

  9. #9
    Zach Attack
    Reputation: zachi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    168
    FYI... stain and paint topically coat the concrete vs concrete reactive acids permanently etch the gravels by reacting to the free lime that is produced through the curing of the concrete.

    Oak leaves(soaked in water) or iron sulfate (found in lots of fertilizers) also will etch concrete in a dark coke color or rust color for the sulfate.

    Here is a house I am just finishing where we used a combination of QC Kodiac and iron sulfate. https://www.facebook.com/CasaDiTerra?ref=hl

    For a paver that will be buried...you are dialed.

    z
    Learn to love it[SIZE="4"][/SIZE]
    www.foresttrailsalliance.org

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    86
    Zachi, good to know. These were installed in a location with a lot of oaks. Might have to give the oak leaf tea coloring a try.

    I wish they made these in a color other than gray. We have used retaining wall block before that was a nice dark dirt color throughout.

Similar Threads

  1. Armoring using pavers?
    By SoWal_MTBer in forum Trail Building and Advocacy
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 10-22-2012, 03:29 PM
  2. Anything near Concrete, WA?
    By Borneo in forum Washington
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 09-01-2012, 06:47 PM
  3. Concrete Circus
    By LMN in forum Passion
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-12-2012, 08:28 PM
  4. Best armoring I've seen
    By cjohnson in forum Trail Building and Advocacy
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 06-06-2011, 07:06 PM
  5. Trail Armoring
    By kevmortensen in forum Trail Building and Advocacy
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 02-15-2011, 06:37 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •