Textured Concrete floor redo

We bought a house that has a textured concrete floor. As I understand it, they use soft cement, and put a sheet of vinyl over it, and do things to make it come out looking like natural stone. Then stain and seal.
Fast forward to today. Walls removed, and no stain on concrete. Long white lines where walls were. Cut marks losing their grout. Holes where plates were shot in. White spots where the chemicals in the concrete seem to be leaching up.
We decided today we're carpeting the whole mess.
How do we get it flat? I would ass-u-me that one would use a filler and a wide knife and a long straight edge and get it as close as one could. Then padding and carpet.
What would you use for filler? Any hints on how to apply it so that it gets pretty flat, and you don't use tons and tons of it? Brand names? Formulas for mixing it myself if it's just a Portland/sand mix?
Is this a DIY job, or one for the floor guys, providing their price is reasonable?
Thanks.
Steve
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There are machines for grinding and polishing concrete such as those used for terrazzo floors. I don't think that they are for a homeowner to use, but an experienced concrete finisher should have the know how. I think grinding it down to a smooth even surface would be better than dash patching that much texture.
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On Tue 29 Apr 2008 06:39:53p, John Grabowski told us...

I totally agree. Skim coating or using a filler to flatten the floor can give you problems later with the skim coat separating or flaking off and just making a general mess under the carpet.
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Wayne Boatwright
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John Grabowski wrote:

The concrete surfacing grinders are readily available from the big rental houses like United Rentals. You of course have to buy the grinder inserts to go with the machine rental since they are consumable items. After you grind it reasonably level, I'd put down self leveling compound, which technically you should be able to do without the grinding if you can tolerate the increase in floor height. With carpet going down and the expected thresholds, the extra height may not be an issue. As for DIY, I can't say, since *everything* is DIY to me.
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-snip-

I used one a couple years ago. If I remember right it was about a 12" disk- like a kick-ass buffer.
I needed to grind about an inch of tar & mortar?/soft-concrete? off a floor of what was once a cistern. Only 10x10, but it made quick work of it and did a decent job.
In a living space I would probably hit it with a skim coat of self-leveling portland underlayment. If it all seems to be solid I might just go straight to the skimcoat.
I used whatever HD had for a different job. It was only good up to 1/2" thick. Three years of traffic on that one & it seems to be holding up good. [we used those carpet squares so I occasionally lift them and check the floor underneath.]
Jim
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On Tue, 29 Apr 2008 17:00:20 -0800, "SteveB"

Can you chisel a small area of texture off the pad? There is an air tool a fellow called a "pogo stick". An air chisel used while standing. Hook 'er up to the compressor.
(sample) Chiseler/Scaler Compressed air tool thats ideal for breaking up and removing old ceramic or quarry tile..... http://www.taylorrental.com/item_detail.asp?id=5
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SteveB wrote:

applications? Deformable plastic bumps on the bottom, and a layer of luan plywood on top? No reason they wouldn't work above grade. Only downside is the height they add to the floor.
-- aem sends...
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"SteveB" wrote

Steve, how deep is the texturing? That makes the difference here. If it's 1/4 inch or so, you can just get away with a thicker soft pad underlay for the majority of it. If it's deeper, then the same stuff we used on a ship to even the deck before adding tile, will work. It just mixes with water and you towel it on evenly. Very durable.
Goggle for Thin-set Mortar and the following seemed possibly workable if you need to even it up a bit. http://www.laticrete.com/DoItYourself/Products/ThinSetMortars/tabid/221/Default.aspx
http://merkrete.com/merkrete/thinset-mortaradd-1.htm
In your case, I gather you mostly just need to fill in some of the patterning til it's relatively even.
Use a shag carpet <g>.
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