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Difference Between Formwork, Shuttering, Centering , Staging & Scaffolding

Formwork, Shuttering, Centering , Staging & Scaffolding are all temporary structures arranged on site for specific purposes.

You use these terms Shuttering, Formwork, Centering, Scaffolding frequently. But most people don’t know the considerable difference between them.

In this post, you are going to learn the difference between Formwork, Shuttering, Staging, Centering and Scaffolding.


formwork of column












It is a temporary structure which is used as a mould to pour the concrete. It is a vertical or horizontal arrangement made to keep concrete in position until it gains strength & shape.

Have you seen the below mentioned shape of column of bridge in the image? Ever wondered how to bring the concrete in such a shape. This is all possible by formwork. Firstly, the desired mould is prepared using steel or iron, and then formwork is fixed in position without any gaps to pour the concrete.


circular column shuttering

It is a part of formwork, or you may call it as derivative of formwork. Shuttering is a vertical temporary arrangement which is arranged to bring concrete in a desired shape.  It could be defined as formwork which supports vertical arrangement is known as shuttering.

In a technical point of view, Formwork for columns, footings, retaining walls is called as a Shuttering.

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Centering for Slab

Centering is a temporary arrangement & part of formwork which is arranged to support horizontal members.In a technical point of view, the formwork for floor beams & Slabs is known as a Centering.


Staging (props & Supports)

Staging is a temporary member which is used to support formwork (either it may be for centering or shuttering). It is done by props, jacks, H frames, cup lock system, wooden ballies, etc. (Refer below image for clear understanding)


scaffolding for workman

Formwork is arranged to support the structural members, whereas scaffolding is provided as a workers platform around the building to work at heights, Scaffolding is a movable/fixed platform refer below image for more details.

Source: civilread

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