How to Form a Base for a Gravestone Marker

Form a gravestone base

Forming a base for a gravestone marker is usually a service you have to pay the cemetery or gravestone installer to do for you. However, if you would like to do it yourself, it will save you money and be an opportunity to serve your deceased loved one. There are many different products on the market to form a gravestone base, including pre-mixed portland cement mixes and hydraulic cement mixes. The latter cure quickly and provide a much higher compressive strength than portland cement mixes.

Dig a hole near the burial plot with a round nose shovel that is at least two feet deep and the width and length of the gravestone marker. If the gravestone marker is extremely heavy, the hole will need to be deeper.

Build a concrete form out of two-by-four lumber to the dimensions determined in Step 1. Cut two pieces of two-by-four to the length measurement and two more pieces to the width dimension. Nail or screw the ends together to create a strong, solid form.

Lay the concrete form on the ground and pound pieces of rebar into the dirt to keep the wooden concrete form in place while the hydraulic cement is being poured and curing. Pound pieces of rebar into the bottom of the hole to help reinforce the hydraulic cement.

Mix the hydraulic cement according to the manufacturer's suggestions and fill the hole and the frame to the top of the frame. Level the cement to the top of the frame and finish the exposed cement with cement finishing tools. Help the curing process of the hydraulic cement as instructed on the product label.

Allow the cement to cure for seven days before mounting the gravestone marker to the formed base.

Kelly Nuttall is a student at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah. She is set to graduate in the spring of 2011 with her bachelor's degree in technical communications. She has been writing for various websites since March of 2009.