Centering and Shuttering / Form Work


Shuttering or form work is the term used for temporary timber, plywood, metal or other material used to provide support to wet concrete mix till it gets strength for self support. It provides supports to horizontal, vertical and inclined surfaces or also provides support to cast concrete according to required shape and size. The form work also produces desired finish concrete surface.   

Shuttering or form work should be strong enough to support the weight of wet concrete mix and the pressure for placing and compacting concrete inside or on the top of form work/shuttering. It should be rigid to prevent any deflection in surface after laying cement concrete and be also sufficient tight to prevent loss of water and mortar form cement concrete. Shuttering should be  easy in handling, erection at site and easy to remove when cement concrete is sufficient hard.  

Steel plates for Steel Shuttering

Generally there are three types of shuttering. 

  • Steel Shuttering
  • Wooden Planks Shuttering
  • Temporary Brick Masonry Shuttering

Steel Shuttering
Steel shuttering plate is the best type of shuttering because this is water tight shuttering which can bear the load of cement concrete placed on it. This shuttering can be used for horizontal, vertical or any other shape required for the work. It gives leveled surface which has good appearance. This shuttering gives good appearance and pattern work according to architectural drawings.  If the plaster is required, the thickness of plaster will be less. Being water tight shuttering, the strength of concrete with steel shuttering is comparatively higher.   

Shuttering with the help of Steel Plates.


Note: As this is water tight shuttering, it is considered the best shuttering.

Wooden Plank Shuttering
Generally wooden planks shuttering is used by contractors because this shuttering is cheap and easily available. But this type of shuttering effects the strength of concrete and have some disadvantages which are given below.


  • This is not water tight shuttering as the size and thickness of planks differ and are not of same size. Due to this difference the water and cement flow to the ground from joints and reduce the strength of concrete.
  • Bottom level of RCC slab is not in straight line and the surface being uneven, the thickness of plaster is more which remains weak.
  • Due to leakage of cement slurry through joints, earth work below ’'Ballies’ may settle and create problems.
  • In some cases wooden planks can not bear the weight of concrete. Due to low strength there is bending or deflection in wooden planks. Sometimes the planks may break.

Shuttering done with the help of  wooden ballies and batten.

Temporary Brick Masonry Shuttering
In some cases labor contractor uses Temporary Brick Masonry in mud for vertical support of sides of beams, fascia etc. This shuttering should be avoided. This type of shuttering reduces the strength of cement concrete by soaking cement slurry. Also no proper compaction is made as this shuttering does not bear the pressure of vibrator. The surface of cement concrete given by this type of shuttering is uneven and the thickness of plaster is increased.

Precautions for Vertical Supports for RCC Beams, Slabs etc

  • The ’'Ballies’ used for vertical support should not be less than 6'' dia and these should be in one length without joints.
  • Never allow bricks support of more than one or two bricks below a 'balli' to make required height.
  • Cross Ballies or bracing should be done for better support to beam as well as slab.
  • The wooden batten used below the plate should not be less than 5'' in height.
  • At the time of concreting one carpenter with helper having spare ballies, nails etc. should be deputed for watching any disturbances in ballies under shuttering.

Precautions for Cantilever slabs and Beams

  • While doing shuttering of a cantilever part, outer edge of shuttering is 1” to 2'' higher than inner edge with the wall.
  • The bracing of vertical supports for cantilever portion should be tied to vertical supports of internal slab.        
  • The concrete should be laid on cantilever portion very gently.
  • The shuttering should be removed after 28 days.

Recommended Period for Removal of Shuttering

  • 48 hours for sides of foundations, columns, beams and walls. 
  • 7 days for underside of slab up to 4.5 meter span
  • 14 days for underside of slab, beams, arches above 4.5 meter up to 6 meter span.  
  • 21 days for underside of beams arches above 6 meter span and up to 9 meter span.
  • 28 days for underside of beams arches above 9 meter span.  

 Defects Found In Shuttering/Form Work

  •  The supports of form work are not in plumb and are not cross braced. 
  • The ground supports of ballies are poor and therefore settle the form work. 
  • There is insufficient thickness of shuttering plates/planks unable to bear lateral pressure imposed by wet concrete especially in columns.
  • Shuttering plates are not cleaned and oiled or oiled with dirty oil.
  •  There are many insufficient and loose connections in centering and shuttering.
  • The form work is removed before time.  The work is not planned and designed properly.
  • In case of beam shuttering proper provision for retaining side is not made. Hence the side of beam is not in proper line.
  •  The shuttering is poorly made with cracked and warped timber planks having lots of holes and knots.
  •  Through bolts for RCC walls form work for an underground tank is used. Later these holes made by bolts are not plugged.
  • ‘Ballies’ are resting on bricks or brick pillars
  •  Ballies are not in one piece. Small ballies are used and these are not properly jointed. Also no additional cross bracing is provided at the joint.
  • The supports under shuttering plates are not properly tight.
  • The earth work under supports is not properly compacted before starting shuttering work.
  • The bottom of ‘ballies’ are in wedge shape, not having proper base.
52  Comment(s)
12Next  >>
By Anonymous - On 2/9/2014 1:54:57 AM
very helpful.... keep it up.
By Anonymous - On 1/4/2014 2:54:09 PM
Really it is very useful
By Anonymous - On 5/18/2013 12:10:50 PM
send supplier details at chennai
By Anonymous - On 5/15/2013 1:24:12 PM
First tnx 2 u. Its realy gud and helpful.
By Anonymous - On 4/27/2013 9:17:49 PM
Information for shuttering is fine. My house is under construction and form work is yet to be done. I am willing for steel shuttering, but some of my friends are recommending for wooden planks shuttering. The reason for wooden planks given by them is that plastering of roof is more stable for pop work. While steel shuttering is not so due to oily surface as well as much plane and plaster work on roof is weak. Some one may please clear the doubt and procedure for better plastering and roof p-o-p work after steel shuttering.
By Anonymous - On 9/10/2012 5:18:32 PM
it is very helpfull
narendar choudhary
By narendar choudhary -  On  7/1/2012 5:46:50 PM
realy wonerfull knowlege
By Anonymous - On 6/11/2012 3:06:53 PM
The above articl ws vry important 4 me.
Thank u.
By Anonymous - On 5/18/2012 12:38:25 AM
its very helpful
By Anonymous - On 4/20/2012 12:38:44 PM
This is good approach one can understand the thing in mush more easy way.
By Anonymous - On 4/11/2012 8:49:59 PM
By Anonymous - On 2/1/2012 11:15:34 AM
lots of information thanks
By Anonymous - On 1/13/2012 4:08:25 AM
Very informative
By Anonymous - On 1/12/2012 9:29:37 AM
Very helpful
By Anonymous - On 12/28/2011 11:24:29 PM
this article was helpful.
it was easy to understand
By Anonymous - On 12/27/2011 11:20:37 AM
No doubt the article is very good and quite informative but I want to know that through which reference/IS code you have posted this article.
By Anonymous - On 12/3/2011 10:45:48 PM
By gagan -  On  10/16/2011 11:50:00 PM
very good and informative article.
By Anonymous - On 9/25/2011 1:41:27 PM
Thanks alot to the author of this site. it helped me as a young civil engineer to prepare my industrial training technical report. Try and make more diagramatic sketches
By Anonymous - On 9/25/2011 1:40:06 PM
Thanks alot to the author of this site. it helped me as a young civil engineer to prepare my industrial training technical report. Try and make more diagramatic sketches
s r paandiyan
By s r paandiyan -  On  8/9/2011 9:28:07 PM
i am interested in buying centering ms sheets in bulk
By Anonymous - On 7/28/2011 6:37:39 PM
very helpful
By Anonymous - On 6/6/2011 5:13:50 AM
Thank you so much. This article have most valuable informations and helped me a lot for my Construction Technique exam under Anna University Chennai. Am a Civil Engineering student from Kamban Engineering College, Tiruvannamalai. INDIA
By Anonymous - On 3/28/2011 8:28:53 PM
It is very helpfull.
Can any send me how can wastage of plywood can be minimised and how can we measure the wastages of plywood in shuttering.
Anirudha Andani
By Anirudha Andani -  On  1/30/2011 1:24:57 PM
yes this artical is ver much useful. thanks for that and please give more images of form-work. and also give details about suppor use such as acrospan and jack
Anirudha Andani
By Anirudha Andani -  On  1/30/2011 1:24:40 PM
yes this artical is ver much useful. thanks for that and please give more images of form-work. and also give details about suppor use such as acrospan and jack
By Anonymous - On 1/4/2011 10:15:33 AM
what is the different betwen centering shuttering
By Anonymous - On 12/13/2010 6:24:19 PM
certainly this article is giving a sort of knowledge about shuttering but its definitely a very brief one. more information should be added.
By Anonymous - On 11/13/2010 10:31:18 PM
very helpful to clear the doubts. thanks
By Anonymous - On 11/10/2010 7:03:37 PM
I first time visited this site in search of some matter for my project. I find it very helpful.Thanks a lot & .If possible please IS: code provisions may also Incorporated because it not possible for every one to keep all the code with him
By Anonymous - On 11/7/2010 6:53:20 PM
Excellent Article. Very informative and to the point.
By Anonymous - On 10/30/2010 11:20:42 AM
I want the Shutterin material cost for Building.
1) M.S. Plate= Cost/each
2) M.S. Props=?
3) M. S. Span=?
4) Shikanja=?
5) Cup Locks=?
By Anonymous - On 10/15/2010 9:27:31 AM
send me more information about shuttering
By Anonymous - On 10/2/2010 9:04:51 PM
Explain some more about plywood shuttering
By Anonymous - On 9/20/2010 11:11:48 AM
This is a very good article to clear the concept of centring and shuttering. Please send all the information related practical civil engineering on my mail.

Narukurti Himabindu
By Narukurti Himabindu -  On  9/3/2010 11:35:04 PM
Yes this article is quite informative , also seek market rates for the different items
By Anonymous - On 8/24/2010 12:55:01 PM
Please to read this useful information....please send me such more Technical mail.... Thank you....
vandana jain
By vandana jain -  On  8/24/2010 12:09:13 AM
very good article .....can you pls eplain how slab and beam cement concrete is being laid ...
By Anonymous - On 8/21/2010 6:15:53 PM
i am civil engineering student.this is very useful to me.please send me latest news and updates to my e-mail id.
By Anonymous - On 8/12/2010 5:12:54 PM
very very good.
i feel very happy to read this article. very useful to me thanks
More Articles on

Cement Concrete


Ready Mix Concrete
corner corner
Was this article helpful? Let us know how can
we improve it. We welcome both negative and
positive comments.
Your name   :Anonymous
corner corner
Discuss in forums
Do you need more information? Discuss
with other community members in the
Forums area of the site. Enter details below!
Login or register yourself on GharExpert to
click here
corner corner
Kitchen wall cabinet with etched glass shutter
Kitchen wall cabinet with etched glass s...
Wardrobe with profile shutters & lacquered glass
Wardrobe with profile shutters & lacquer...
Wardrobe made with aluminium profile & laquerred glass shutters with sensor lights on top pelmet
Wardrobe made with aluminium profile & l...
Wardrobe with panelled shutter & sensor lights
Wardrobe with panelled shutter & sensor ...
Steel Shuttering
Steel Shuttering
Plywood Shuttering
Plywood Shuttering
Plantation Window Shutters
Plantation Window Shutters
Teakwood center table
Teakwood center table
Center Table concept design 1
Center Table concept design 1
living room center tabil
living room center tabil
Bronze and Glass Center table
Bronze and Glass Center table
Wall shelves and center table design
Wall shelves and center table design
Ground Work
Ground Work
Simple Living room with TV unit, Center table and sliding door design
Simple Living room with TV unit, Center ...
brick work and truss
brick work and truss
staircase  centering
staircase centering
Modern sofa and center table in leather
Modern sofa and center table in leather
Modular kitchen design with cook top and hood at the center of the kitchen
Modular kitchen design with cook top and...
Nice Center Table
Nice Center Table
work in progres
work in progres
Wooden center table design
Wooden center table design
Tradionally painted work on ceiling
Tradionally painted work on ceiling
Click on the image to enlargeClick on the image to Enlarge
Click here to view more pictures
Related Articles
Cement Concrete
In the construction of building work, there is need of various types of building materials which are used during the c..
More Articles
Read View all
Hot Articles
Staircase railings
Stair railings is not merely a way to go up and down, it is a part of the décor and design theme of your home.
Read Read more
Kids room ceiling designs
Are your kids room is well decorated, themed room but ceiling is flat? Now you can decorate kids room ceiling, we will..
Read Read more
Living Room Ceiling
Living room ceiling can change the interior of your room. Beautiful ceiling designs and colorful ceiling can be the fe..
Read Read more
Top 10 mistakes in stairs design
Most people do not realize the many choices they have for staircases. May be they do not know about the some mistake i..
Read Read more
How to Design Stairs?
Going up and down the stairs needs much energy if the steps are not designed smoothly. For easy access to upper floors..
Read Read more
Inground Swimming Pool
If you are planning to install an in ground swimming pool in your home, you can find a range of designs and styles to ..
Read Read more
French style
French style looks perfect for those who desire for a touch of luxury. Carved furniture, decorative accessories, cryst..
Read Read more
Baby Room
If you are waiting for the arrival of new baby, it’s a good time to set up a baby room. While designing, opt for a st..
Read Read more
More featured articles
Related tips
  • Line and levels of the form work should be checked in centering and shuttering work otherwise the concrete structure would not be required shape.
Aggregate Bathroom Board Brick Building Ceiling Cement Color Concrete Construction Dampness Dining Door Finishing Flooring Furniture Glass Home Interior Interior decoration Kitchen Kota Light Marble Paint Plastic Plumbing Pop Sand Security Steel Study Termite Tile Vastu Window
View all tags>>
12Next  >>
Copyright 2007- All rights reserved.  

 |  Advertize with us  |  About us  |  Contact us  |  RSS  |  Blog  |  Terms of service  |  Style made simple  |  Decorating slide show  |  Tips  |  Give your feedback  |