Prefab DIY


Prefab and DIY are two things not commonly associated with each other, but it turns out they were a good fit in at lease one case. Confusion Magazine documented a renegade skate spot perpetrated by Skate DIY that required a quick install, with most of the work being done off site. Unfortunately, the spot came down almost as fast as the installation, lasting a mere 12 hours.

More pictures words of the “Skartable Spot” at Confusion Magazine.


  1. on December 2, 2014 - Reply

    Does anyone have any thoughts on painting cement ramps? Is this a good idea? Will it prolong the life of cement? Or is it a waste of time and money? If so only epoxy paint?

    • I’d say waste of time and money for sure. However, although expensive, a concrete densifier/hardener could be worth applying to the surface. (Warning: it’ll make it hurt like .007 of a percent more when you land on it.) Reacts with loose lime in the concrete to solidify micro-pores in – I think – the first 1/4″, and floor pros seem to be big on it. If I can talk a friend who I saved from building a kinky wood bowl (among other things, one corner transition, when leveled with a plumb line on it, was two and a half inches longer along the bottom than the other two until caught, which woulda been fairly ridiculously out of round in a small bowl) into having his kinky coping fixed (who does that? we’d already told him the relief cuts on the back half have to be three inches apart if you want it to home bend instead of home kink, and he’d even ridden one that we did that way after finding out for ourselves that more than three inches didn’t allow the front to curve… so he puts ’em eight inches apart and gets this ridiculously kinky metal coping that he doesn’t understand is going to slow down anybody who tries to pump it, and be no faster that way than a ramp plied with sideways 2×8’s would be to go back and forth upon). I figure if I cut the corner coping lengthwise from near the top, and also lengthwise a little out from the skatelite, I could use two and a quarter inch vinyl hose to hold in concrete that I’d pack what’s left over of the coping with. But that would leave a slower (than metal) concrete surface, which would kind of defeat the point of at least fixing the shallow (pump) end. When I finally heard about concrete densifier/hardener, though, that seemed like it might be just the ticket to make it grind faster, like (unkinked) metal would. Course I wouldn’t use densifier/hardener on the big hit end, if I were to re-do that one… but by that token, kinky metal instead of unkinky but nondensified concrete might be fine, on the big hit, rather than the build speed, end.

      And, come to think of it, on concrete RAMPS, maybe you’d only want to use densifier/hardener on the flats, since they’d benefit most from that sort of sealing.

      • on December 3, 2014 - Reply

        I already made the ramp the hardener can’t be applied, the flat is smooth, 5000 psi quikcrete has so much gravel in it that for a beginner like me I never worked w/ cement so it was a hard lesson. The paint is just a smoother. My mini ramp is done, it’s fun steep and a bit narrow but it serves it’s purpose, to give me a few hits in my back yard w/ out having to drive far. Thanks

        • You suggesting it could have been applied before you made the ramp?? Seriously, concrete densifier/hardener seems to be a watery solution that you put on cured concrete for twenty minutes or whatever, to let it soak in and chemically react with “loose” lime in the concrete, which replaces the pores with hardened solids. You can even put it on, wash it off, sand/grind the concrete smoother, and put it on and wash it off again and sand/polish it if you want it slick as a WalMart floor.

          • on December 4, 2014 -

            Dude that sounds awesome, again I’m new and clueless, it won’t flake off?

          • Shouldn’t; it’s widely used on concrete floors, in part, specifically to prevent concrete dust from forming with wear.

        • Not that you’d want or need it THAT smooth, so no need for the second, finer sanding “polish” mentioned below. But if the flat is already, as you say, smooth, and you just want to take the grain off, you could put some new grip tape (Silicon Carbide is a harder abrasive than just about anything but diamond) on a big block of wood, use that after the first treatment of ‘liquid hardener and densifier’, and then re-treat with the ‘h&d’ without then polishing as fine as you would a floor. And if you get real ambitious, just rebuild the damn thing with “Ultra High Performance” concrete, consisting of particulary clean sand, a good super plasticizer that allows you to use very little water, portland cement, pozzolite… and ‘alcohol fibers’ (no shit; get that PVA). Haven’t actually heard of UPC being used in skate structures, but, at 15k to 30k PSI, its got tremendous potential since it doesn’t need re-bar or even the usual thickness. And it’s actually probably easier for a DIY’er to implement, so far in this country. (The French and Iranians are big on it, and maybe now that we’re being so nice as to let the latter selectively bomb Iraq, maybe they’ll mellow out and try building skateparks, instead of maybe bunkers for ICBM’s. [In which case their Shia-asses would compare more favorably than ever to our pseudo-allies Israel and Saudi Arabia… take that, Boy Ipoh!!].)

      • on December 3, 2014 - Reply

        I’ve heard scaling can occur w/ full cured cement and a skim coat

  2. Cool.

  3. Paint won’t affect the longevity of your concrete’s life whatsoever, but if you have rough spot or inconsistencies, paint will blend them for a smoother riding surface. Look at fdr.

    • on December 3, 2014 - Reply

      Yeah that’s what I was thinking, I made a cement Mini ramp w / 5000 psi Quickcrete only, the amount of gravel in it was insane, I never used cement in my life, so it’s rough but rideable, very rough but I like huge wheels over 60 mm, anyway I may paint it just to smooth it out, thanks everyone for telling me.

      • You need a wooden float to push the rock down and shape the ramp, then move on to a pool trowel. smooth as silk…. NEXT TIME!

  4. Kilwag,

    Thanks for posting this up. Prefab is generally a four letter word in skateboarding but what else can you do when there is no time to build onsite. This build was actually inspired by one of your older posts, 2009 Matt Jones quarter pipes.

  5. poolpunx on December 3, 2014 - Reply

    clayton’s a concrete addikt. we applaud this activity and encourage this type of deviant behavior. urban skatification is at hand. stay out of the way.

  6. A great trick is a shovel full of Portland per bag of concrete no matter what they say the psi is. Also cheaper if you have a truck is buy bulk Portland bags bulk pea river wash gravel and regular sand. 3-2-1 one shovel of Portland two sand
    and three gravel

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