Cement rendering is the process of creating a cement mixture and applying it to a wall in thin layers as a finish. The process is used to both improve the appearance of surfaces and further protect walls and interiors from natural elements such as inclement weather. Rendered walls can be painted for a more colourful look, or stylised, as is the case with stucco. Rendering is a relatively simple process that requires few tools.
The two phases of preparation involved in cement rendering are creating the cement mixture and preparing the surface. A bucket can be used as a container for mixing cement. A trowel or wooden shaft such as a paint mixer can be used for mixing cement in a bucket. The World News guide to Traditional Rendering suggests preparing the mixture on a flat surface such as a road. For this, a shovel is required for mixing, and a wheelbarrow for holding the mixture once it's complete. To prepare the surface, spraying and washing tools such as a hose, sponge and towels are required.
Floats are tools manufactured with the specific purpose of being used in the rendering process. A float is a flat metal or wooden surface attached to a handle that is used to evenly spread cement on a wall. The World News guide to Traditional Rendering suggests instead a pan, for throwing splotches of cement onto a wall, and a large wooden board for smoothing the splotches over into a cohesive surface. A trowel, or pan, can be used to fill in the spaces between the cement splotches for fuller coverage.
A sponge float is much like a standard float, though rather than metal or wood, it is made of a sponge. The sponge float is used to give a rendered wall a dimple texture. Though sponge floats can be purchased for rendering, household sponges without handles can also be used. If a flat texture is desired, trowels can be used as a finishing tool. A trowel is similar to a float, though has less surface area and is much thinner, making it a better suited to smoothing than to applying cement.