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embed plate thickness

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I guess that would depend on how much welding you would be doing, and how big the plate is to spread out the heat. But I am pretty sure we have used embed plates as small as 3/8"with no reported problems. Also depends on the humidity in the air, how green is the concrete, etc for the moisture level to be at such that it heats up and causes concrete spalling. Interesting question though.
 
Andrew Kester, PE
Lake Mary, The Plywood and Blue Tarp State