Sand-Set Slab Installation Instructions

The following are standard installation guidelines for Architectural Slabs in a sand-set application. NOTE: Architectural Slabs cannot be used in a vehicular application. For pedestal-set guidelines, please refer to the Architectural Slab Tech Sheet.


Step 1: Excavation

Mark area to be paved with stakes and string lines at the desired finished elevation. Locate stakes outside the project area by a minimum of 12″. This will allow room for the edge restraint system.

Excavate a minimum of 7″ below final pavement elevation. Allow 1⁄8″ to 1⁄4″ per foot
slope for correct water runoff. Slope can be in more than one direction depending on jobsite circumstances. Water will not penetrate joints unless it is allowed to puddle or remain in an area.

Remove any loose soils after excavation is complete.

Step 2: Base Preparation

Add a dusting of 3⁄4″ minus rock to the excavated area. This will allow the plate
compactor to glide across area without sticking to sub grade. Compact entire sub-grade soil with plate compactor.*

After compacting subgrade soil, add 1″–2″ of 3⁄4″ minus rock,rake smooth and compact. Base rock should have a certain amount of moisture content.

Repeat steps until final base elevation is achieved.

For a standard 1 3⁄4″ architectural slab, the final base elevation should be 2 1⁄2″ below final pavement elevation.

Remember, the final product will mirror the base elevation. Any deviation in base should be corrected at this time with base rock (not sand).

Step 3: Bedding Sand

Bedding sand should be screeded at a depth of 1″.
Place 1″ rigid pipes below elevation lines and measure down 1 1⁄2″ to top of pipe.
Place pipes parallel to each other and almost as wide as the strike board (2 x 4).
Place sand in between pipes and pull strike board across both pipes. This will allow
approximately 1″ of sand screeded between the two pipes.

Pull pipes out of sand; fill pipe voids with sand and trowel smooth. Do not compact sand bed.

Step 4: Install Slabs

Depending on the size of slab and pattern, starting points and direction of installation will vary. More times then not, opt for the easiest access with the longest run where no
cutting will be made. Also consider more visual areas (i.e. in line with windows, doors, water features, etc).

Slabs should be placed gently onto the sand bed and not pushed into it. Setting a string line 3″ above setting bed will allow the installer to maintain straight pattern lines.

After installing a larger area, place plywood on top of slabs to walk around on. This will distribute weight so individual slabs will not get embedded into sand before adjustments and final compaction is done. Slight adjusting can be accomplished by moving slabs to desired spot by inserting a flat head screwdriver in between slabs and pushing them.

Cut slabs can be used to fill any voids in the pattern along the edges. Be sure to mix slabs from multiple pallets to achieve a consistent color blend.

Step 5: Edge Restraint

Any edge not retained by a solid, rigid structure (i.e. concrete, asphalt, etc) should be contained with a plastic edge restraint system. These are easier to install after the
slabs are laid.

With spray nozzle, carefully moisten sand bed around perimeter of pavement area. Remove excess sand around the perimeter with a trowel without disturbing the base.

Place edge restraint system against slab/bedding sand and on top of compacted base rock. Install 10″ spikes every 8″–12″. Make sure that all edges are contained before compaction of slabs.

Step 6: Compation

Compact first to achieve proper interlock and then sweep joint sand over entire area to fill slab joints and lock up pattern lines.

Sweep excess joint sand off of slab surface.

Place sheets of plywood over the pavement. Place plate compactor on plywood and run compactor, making sure not to leave compactor in one spot too long as it will
crack or chip the slab below.

Make back and forth runs, slightly overlapping the previous run.

Compact pavers in perpendicular runs to first compaction. When finished, sweep
joint sand into slab joints until they are completely full.


—— Note

* Plate compactor can be rented at most rental outlets.

** To achieve a consistent color blend, it is important that you mix
slabs from multiple pallets together as you lay your design.