SCIP panelA customer recently sent an excellent question regarding SCIP construction we had to share. If you’re looking to start a SCIP project read through this question and guide for a successful application from the beginning.

I’ve searched high and low for details on SCIP construction and have come up short. It seems that most manufacturers recommend a single coat application of shotcrete to the finished depth. Manufacturers aiming at the DIY crowd advocate using a stucco sprayer to apply a scratch coat to the depth of the wire mesh, allowing it to dry and adding a second coat to the finished depth. I have a few questions about the latter. 1) Does each coat use the same mix? 2)Doesn’t the wire mesh make it difficult to use a scratch tool on the first coat? 3)Does spraying a building in sections {as time and budget permit}cause problems with adhesion, cracking, etc?

Hello Adam,
Thank you for the great questions on SCIPs (one of my favorite building systems).
Yes, the same structural stucco mix is used for everything but the color coat.
Typically when applying the stucco to the panels, they are filled out past the wire mesh. When you get to the mesh, the stucco can hold without sliding off. Spray a little more so it can be knocked down with a rod without scraping the wire. Last, just before it sets, scratch the surface with horizontal keys.

One of my original customers (In the 90’s) was building a SCIP home. He had a sprayer and a mortar mixer and no help.  Every now and then I would receive an envelope of progress pictures. These were a real treat and detailed each step he was accomplishing. One day I received the last pictures of the finished home and a note. He had built the home by himself and it was the perfect spot on a beach to retire in.  From this I saw that one man with our tool cold build a perfect home. It was really encouraging to me.

My main concern about these long build projects is the sun beating up the Styrofoam. For both SCIPs and ICFs I like to rub my hand on the foam to check for Styrofoam dust. If there is the white dust, I power wash the foam on the day before I apply the stucco. That helps to get rid of a potential bond breakers and on a micro level gives a rough surface for mechanical bonding.

Have you selected the SCIPs for the project? I have been following the progress of www.aspillc.com . They are about to launch a new panel machine that will be the strongest  panels available without the need to add extra reinforcements for most applications.

Best regards,
Nolan Scheid

 

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