Formwork System

A formwork system is defined as ‘‘the total system of support for freshly placed concrete including the mold or sheathing which contacts the concrete as well as supporting members, hardware, and necessary bracing.’’ Formwork system development has paral­leled the growth of concrete construction throughout the twenti­eth century. As concrete has come of age and been assigned in­creasingly significant structural tasks, formwork builders have had to keep pace. Form designers and builders are becoming increas­ingly aware of the need to keep abreast of technological advance­ments in other materials fields in order to develop creative innova­tions that are required to maintain quality and economy in the face of new formwork challenges.

Formwork was once built in place, used once, and subse­quently wrecked. The trend today, however, is toward increasing prefabrication, assembly in large units, erection by mechanical means, and continuing reuse of forms. These developments are in keeping with the increasing mechanization of production in con­struction sites and other fields.