A small cement mixer is ideal when you are using a small amount of cement or making a minor repair. Cement is the basic ingredient in virtually all masonry projects. Cement is a water-soluble bonding agent that holds sand tightly to form grout or mortar. Adding aggregate to cement results in concrete while adding hydrated lime creates stucco. Cement is a versatile building material with uses ranging from bonding bricks to forming a hard outer shell on the exterior of a home or even patching masonry surface damage. A cement mixer is a small barrel-shaped piece of equipment with a crack handle that sits on a base with wheels.
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Things you need
- Ready-mix cement
- Portland cement
Pour ready-mix dry cement to the mixer. If you wish to make your own cement add one-part Portland cement and three-parts clean sand. Turn the mixer on if it is electrically powered or crank it several times to loosen the dry mix. Shut the mixer off.
Add water in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions, usually 3 pints per 18.1kg. bag. The cement may require more water, depending on temperature and humidity. Add water to the dry mix cup-by-cup. Pour the water over the top of the dry mixture and allow it to soak in for two to three minutes. The amount of water depends on the ready-mix manufacturer's instructions, temperature and humidity.
Turn the mixer on or crank it by hand. The rotating drum will toss and turn the cement to mix it. Stop mixing when the cement has a consistency of cake batter.
Turn the mixer off. Insert a hoe into the wet cement and cut a deep curve into the cement. If the sides of the curve do not cave in and you can shake the cement off the hoe, the mix is good. If the curve collapses, the cement is too wet. Add small amounts of dry ready-mix and turn the mixer on to blend. Test the consistency again. If the cement does not come off the hoe easily, add more water and remix.
Tips and warnings
- If you need a better bonding quality to your own mix, add in one-part hydrated lime to the dry materials. Wear gloves, safety glasses and a dust mask when mixing cement. Use only clean sand when making your own mixture.
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