A cement mixer mixes cement using a revolving drum that is commonly motor driven and is frequently used in residential, industrial, and commercial applications. They will mix Portland cement into the correct consistency that can be used for foundations, brick laying and patch work and ideal for further enhancements with surface grinders, or soff cut concrete saws. One common and popular type is the wheelbarrow mixer, which is commonly used in small projects where the mixer can be moved around with ease as it is wheeled or the use of more expensive concrete buggy equipment may be needed. They will usually be compact such as the Imer Minuteman II. Finding one that is portable and towable is also quite easy.
What is the difference between cement mixer and a concrete mixer?
That is a great question, and the answer is no difference. They are the same machine its just an industry term that comes back to people calling things by different names but in the end its same like Kleenex or tissues. The main difference in mixers is whether they are towable, non-towable, stationary or portable.
How To Choose the Right One
To understand which will fit your application we have put together a quick tutorial on how cement is made. This guide will help you make a more informed decision on which machine is right for you. When mixing batches of cement you want to start off with one bag (usually 80 lbs.) of Portland cement. Next you add sand gravel and water to your mixture. The breakdown of this combination is as follows:
1 bag of Portland cement (80 lbs) Sand (180 lbs) Gravel/P-Gravel (240 lbs) ______________________ = 500 lbs of material
Please note: 1 bag of Portland cement is equal to about 6 (80 lb) bags of Pre-mix (Pre-mix is a mixture of Portland cement, sand and gravel to which you only add water to)
When buying cement mixers you must take into consideration the overall cubic feet of the unit. Most manufacturers will say that the total drum capacity of the machine is 9 cubic feet or the capacity is 9 cubic feet. This 9 cubic feet is really about 6 cubic feet of batch output for your pour (remember mixers do not mix straight up and down they mix on an angle which means the entire drum is not used all at once, only about 2/3 of the capacity will be used).
Another way of understanding how much the unit can mix is to take a look at the total weight the cement mixer can actually mix in one batch. If a cement mixer is rated at 250 lbs, then you must remember that 1 bag of Portland cement requires 500 lbs of material. This means that the machine will be able to handle 1/2 a bag (80 lb) of Portland cement plus sand, gravel and water in the mixer.
BE CAREFUL: Some people get confused between Portland cement and Pre-Mix and some manufacturers will base batch mixing on Pre-Mix for their machines since a lot of consumers will purchase Pre-Mix from their local Home Depot or Lowes. Pre-Mix is more efficient for almost all jobsite applications.
So you must ask or realize that if the machine has a rating of 1-2 bags and it is only a 5 cubic foot cement mixer it is based off of pre-mix bags. Because 2 bags of regular cement or (Portland cement) would require a 1000 lbs of mixing material to complete the job and no towable mixer can handle that, only an industrial sized batch plant.
Other things to consider is how the cement mixers are powered, do you need a heavy duty gas or electric motor on the construction site, that all depends on how or where you plan to mix. If you are on a job site and power is not easily accessible then gas is the way to go, if you are mixing indoors or have a generator on site, electric is a great alternative as its quiet and requires a lot less maintenance then a gas engine. There different types of cement mixers for different types of jobs.
Cement Mixing Tips:
Volumes & Weights of Materials
* 1 Bag of Cement = 88 lbs.
*1 Cu ft. Sand/Gravel = 85-100 lbs. * 1 Cu. ft. Plain Cement = 140-150 lbs. * 1 Cu. ft. Water = 62-65 lbs. * 1 Gallon of Water = 8.33 lbs. * 1 Cu. Yard = 27 cu.ft.
* Average maximum load = 200 lbs. * 2 cu. ft. = 6 sq. ft. 4" thick * 2 cu. ft. = 8 sq. ft. 3" thick * 1 yard = 27 cu. ft. * 1 yard = 80 sq. ft. 4" thick * 1 yard = 108 sq. ft. 3" thick * 1 80 lb. bag = 2/3 cu. ft. * 1 80 lb. bag per fence post
How to Mix Sand & Gravel
* Use an 8-1/2 x 12" square point shovel. * Portland cement, gravel or round stone and masonry sand. * Start mixer in motion. * Put in 2 gallons water. * Add 6 shovels full of gravel or round stone. * Add 2 shovels full of Portland cement. Slowly add 4 shovels full masonry sand * NOTE: WATER WILL VARY ACCORDING TO MOISTURE CONTENT OF SAND & GRAVEL.
How do you mix cement?
* You will need approximately 2-1/2 gallons water. * Two 80 pound bags pre-mix. * Start mixer in motion. * Put in 2 gallons of water. * Add one 80 pound bag of pre-mix * NOTE: MIXTURE WILL BE VERY SLOPPY * Slowly add 2nd bag of 80 pound pre-mix. * Add 1/2 gallon water slowly to obtain desired thickness.