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Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/06/2015 2:27 PM

Being I have the ever ongoing new house project I think I just found my new toy I need to build for this summer!

Loader bucket concrete mixer

I'm figuring that with something like this on the front my old tractor backhoe should be able to work with about half a cubic yard at a time or if I scaled it up to the the old Case 1150 track loader bucket size I could make about 2 cubic yards at a time.

Aggregate and mix materials wise being we have an active stream on our property so I have all the washed sand and gravel I would ever need for free too!

Reason being as of last summer delivered premix concrete was pushing around $120 a cubic yard but to make my own it's under $50 a cubic yard plus if I end up going back to work in the oil fields again next summer this would let me do my own batches at my own rate without having to plan my days off around when the concrete mix trucks can make deliveries.

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#1

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 2:53 PM

Keep you mixing operations near your work.

That Skid load has its pants full. Any traveling or down grade for the pour is asking for trouble.

Other then that, I'd still call ready mix.

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 3:35 PM

That's the plan. I have lots of room in the yard so I can stockpile my materials and do the mixing on site as needed.

I've also got a buddy who is a expert concrete craftsman so I will have him help me out on the initial batch refining to get the best mix with what I have here.

For the most part the mixer just seems like a fun project to build.

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 3:45 PM

Good for you,....

Flat work is O.K., I had did walls with 1" plywood forms,.... for me, that's no too good.

Too dam heavy, especially if there's a gust of wind when your carrying then to set them.

The only cement work I've done lately, was put in a Shade Sail on our deck, and Hammock Where I poured 18" dia Columns, I mixed it all by hand, After one column, I went to Harbor Freight and bought their Cement Mixer. I'm glad this is all I need.

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#3

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 3:45 PM

If you're talking about a slab, I would bite the bullet....otherwise I see cracks in your future....and a lumpy floor!

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#5
In reply to #3

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 3:49 PM

Its all in the mix and how you do it.

My niece's husband built a garage by himself. 40' by 60' or 30' x 50' can't recall.

He thinks everything can be learned out of a book and You Tube. He is a smart guy, ..... at times the dumbest, smart guy I know.

He did the flat work and he didn't care to be teased about his slopes. As it was curing, after a rain, it looked like a lot of bird baths

I told him the main tool he should have his tool box is a Pen and Check book.

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#7
In reply to #5

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 6:27 PM

yuk yuk, I've done my share of concrete work....and if you want to mix the concrete yourself you need man power....somebody has to be working the cement while you mix the next batch, and you can't let one pour harden before the next pour, then at the same time someone has to be leveling, takes two for proper screeding, and it's a time consuming laborious process....and those 80lb sacks of concrete get heavy a lot faster than you might think....in other words you have to have a team that works together like an Indy pit crew....I'd say at least 6 people, and 8 better....and in good shape that know what they are doing....

No ,just cheaper and easier to buy it....and better for your sanity...That way you just need the guy pouring, 2 working the mix and leveling...then just 1 guy to do the finishing....

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#8
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Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 6:39 PM

Agreed SolarEagle! My wife and I helped a friend and his wife pour a 12' x 12' floor...we were all absolutely exhausted when we were done...nonstop work, work, work! That was when I was MUCH younger, I'd never attempt it now!

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#10
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Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 8:58 PM

a slab that size, He used ready mix, and has relative helping. When it was delivered, he got some inexperience driver, that could not pour. A consistent thickness And he thought something was wrong, because it was so hard to pull the concrete in place..... Good enough. Like I told him, his best tool in his tool box is a pen and check book.

We I was about 21 years old, we poured a manure slab about 150' x 150', we wanted to do it in one huge pour, we put forms and as the concrete set, we pulled the forms when the next load came in. It was the first I used a power trowel, loved it. But keep a firm grip on it.

Would we do it again.... Hell no. But I have to say, 35 years later my brother put 2 extensions on it, each time we had it inspected, thinking we need may need to replace it. And it was good to go.

Flat work I don't mind, if the driver can do a pour, I do not like walls..... Or should I say, moving and setting up those wet plywood forms. I guess Fiberglas forms are better.

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#6

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 5:47 PM

Maybe you could find a used standalone mixed and modify it into something like this... http://www.agrisupply.com/cosmo-cement-mixer/p/28537/

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#9

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 8:50 PM

Well you guys are no fun.

Actually I have a power trawl and my brother has forms and the rest of the concrete working tools plus on top of that we have a few buddies who are very good at concrete work that have more equipment that so far owe us a good deal of cheap labor.

As of now so far we have poured a few slabs up to around 14' x 20' and styrofoam formed walls without problems.

Right now our biggest problem is when we do smaller projects that only need a yard or two that are too big to do with our small rotary bucket mixer that only does about a cubic foot at a time it gets pretty expensive when a 10 yard truck only needs to bring out small fractional loads.

Right now given the resources and equipment we have I am actually leaning towards making the big 2 yard mixer that would mount on our old track loader. Being able to make up to two yard batches at a time should cover a pretty good amount of area fairly fast.

Mostly I just have some metal, a big hydraulic motor and gearbox and some free time to use up and this seems like a fun project that will use them for.

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 9:11 PM

My dad had a mixer, the problem is the neighbors would borrow it, and they would borrow it to someone else, and so on.... When we needed it, we'd have to track it down, that wasn't the worse, the worse is that the volume was cut in half because the yahoo's that used it, never washed and cleaned it out

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#12
In reply to #9

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/06/2015 9:14 PM

Well why didn't you say all that to begin with?? By all means go for it.....and post pics as you go so we can live vicariously through your experience....

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#17
In reply to #9

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/08/2015 4:06 AM

I reckon it's a great idea. Small batches are either impossible or expensive to be delivered and hand batching is just a string of cuss words.

For small batches here I am lucky to have cheap labour and it's as difficult as telling somebody to do it.

When I have to do it myself then I just cuss and shovel.

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#18
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Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/08/2015 12:17 PM

Thats where we are at. Either its a cubic foot at a time or pay way too much to have a big truck bring out a small load.

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#13

Re: Think I need to build one of these!

03/07/2015 5:29 AM

We used to have a company around here that had a small version of a cement truck mounted on a trailer. You called them placed the order and picked it up with your truck. They required a minimum size on the truck you planned to haul it with. I think it held about 1-2 yards. Worked well for small jobs. Hardest part was cleaning it out well enough to return without the extra fees they charged if it wasn't clean enough.

I haven't done any cement work in ten years so don't know if they still exist or not.

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#14

Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/07/2015 11:57 AM

I am curious if you have produced concrete with the on site aggregates you refer to. Wile there may be some logistical issues to using the system you are talking about it sounds like you have adequate man power and expertise available to address them. I would just want to make sure that the aggregates you have are clean enough and of the proper gradations to produce a good mix. Especially for structural work. MY other thought would be for you to see about obtaining some mid range water reducer with retarder so you would be able to pour your projects with the small batches and get even curing and thus be able to finish it properly. Since we pour concrete every day this would not be our choice of hobbies for the weekend but for you it might be fun. The self loading aspect of this attachment makes it very attractive and there are many variations of it in use around the world so you are definitely not looking at something impractical. Have fun and good luck.

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#15
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/07/2015 12:45 PM

If I need specific aggregates thats not really a problem either. Some friends of mine have a gravel company and I can get a few tons of what ever I need for the cost of my time and fuel to get there and back.

As far as personal materials I have been wanting an excuse to make a small screening system for some time anyway and looking at the loader mounted designs on the internet it looks like something that would be pretty easy for me to put together to go with the mixer unit.

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#16

Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/07/2015 7:39 PM

If you have a small truck spare you could do this;-http://www.concretetaxi.com/Jim

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#19
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/08/2015 12:21 PM

Well I have the old fire truck and converting it into something like that is well within my fabrication abilities.

I'm just not all that thrilled with doing mini mixing as a business. It looks like it could be work.

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#26
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/09/2015 10:34 PM

Whilst i was sweating my nuts off hauling barrowloads of concrete across the garden, because the mixer chute didn't reach far enough, i would have swapped jobs with operator in a heart beat.
These trucks carry everything on board. The only shortcomings i saw was that the chute didn't go as far as the big mixers'. To compound this they are low to the ground and an angled chute is too low to get a barrow under. Inevitably i wanted the barrow on ground that was on a level above that of the Concrete Taxis' chute. ( Murphy's Law ) I had to fill the barrow on the lower level and push it up a ramp before i started my journey to the footing. In the end i used the big truck and paid the extra.

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#20

Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/08/2015 1:00 PM

Stream sourced sand and rock are not recommended for structural applications, as they have round, and not sharp edges. All of our concrete jobs in our area (Ca.), must be CRUSHED sand and gravel. This may not be true in other places. Just a heads up with your needs and engineering purposes.

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#21
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/08/2015 4:24 PM

The proper mix of concrete for specific region and use is a real science....

https://pro.homeadvisor.com/article.show.Concrete-Basics.13701.html

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#22
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/08/2015 6:19 PM

My last project that I mentioned earlier, I made two columns, and used premix., (about 30 bags) The directions on the premix, used too little water and I had to make adjustments,

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#23
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/08/2015 8:08 PM

Very good overview. Many thanks. I had never heard of air entrained concrete as I don't /didn't build in freeze zones. An old German engineer made me aware of the aggregate size relationship, to strength; His example was: " See that large granite rock over there? That is 100%…Every other mixture is an attempt to replicate that…" He always specified "Hard Rock Pours", IF POSSIBLE, using the truck and chute method, as the aggregate could go up to 1 1/2 inches, instead of the 1/4 inch pea gravel "pump pour" mix, which then had to be reinforced by using higher amounts of cement / steel to try and achieve more strength. His calls were for no less than 3000 PSI, reinforced footings, and up to 5000 PSI for heavy loading. I just poured a new driveway, using Fibermesh" concrete and no steel. My concrete guy said no cracks, and guess what ? He is right…None at all after 3 years (Approx 2000 ft., monolithic pour). Never heard about that material either!!

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#24
In reply to #20

Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/09/2015 5:02 AM

Very true! I experienced this once, when casting a foundation with river aggregate. Not nearly as strong as crushed aggregate.

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#25
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/09/2015 12:34 PM

The strength of the concrete due to aggregates is dictated more by the proper gradation and the actual hardness and durability of the rock. Round versus fractured makes little difference except the fractured rock is much more difficult to finish. I could go on for hours about mix designs but suggest you consult someone locally with the needed knowledge. Max aggregate size is dictated by the thickness of your pour and the spacing of your reinforcement. Cracking is primarily caused by either too much water in your mix or poor preparation of your base. When it come to slabs, very few people add air entrainment as it play heck with the finishers. As I say, consult your local experts and have fun with the fabrication project. It's always fun making sparks.

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#27
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/09/2015 11:44 PM

Excellent--I gave a GA, as it is so local.. In California, the specs are given to the concrete mix yards, by the Engineers, and the requirements are pre-spec'd by the State and Local Bldg. Departments. We had a local footing inspection, raised footing , 18" high, all steel installed, forms up, for about 150 lineal feet, and were refused for pour by the local Inspector, , as the LOCAL soils requirements were for 2 foot of depth, versus the 18" on the plans, and 18" wide , versus the 12" wide on the plans. The reason was "Local Expansive Soils", …Needless to say, we were set back for over a week, and had to pay the concrete company for the first truck that was on the road, ($1000) , and was unable to pour, plus the cost of the pumper ( $750 / day and transport). Drives you batty… No one accepted responsibility, but we had a job to do, and the client was not the problem, so we honored our contract, and made sure our name was not blemished.

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#28
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/10/2015 12:13 AM

I have done similar things and rationalised it to myself by saying; $1000 worth of advertising wouldn't buy the goodwill i just got.
Jim

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#29
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/10/2015 1:27 AM

Where in OZ? Have friends in the Margaret River area…..Visited as a youth , in the 60's . for 6 months, Sydney, Canberra, and on to Melbourne for a long time…Loved it, the people, and want to return at some point..….

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#31
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/10/2015 8:34 PM

On the fringe of the food and wine area known as the Swan Valley. www.swanvalley.com.au/

Jim.

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#30
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/10/2015 1:41 AM

Good on you for wearing that one. ( did you have a tiny tantrum?)

Don't these things get checked before being stamped "for construction"?

Seems the hold point was too short.

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#32
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/11/2015 8:18 PM

Could not afford to tamper with the Inspectors feelings, as the job was in a very High end part of town, and provides great project potential, all high end residential clients (Think Hollywood execs, etc.). They don't not rotate inspectors in that area, like they do in other places, to reduce Contractor /Inspector coziness, so we knew we would run into him again. Had to bite our tongues! But, we did put in a complaint with the Building Dept. of the city, and let them know, in uncertain terms, there would be "stop work" lawsuits filed in the future. I think we got their attention. Sometimes one just has to go with the flow, and know that all storms don't have rainbows.

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#33
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Re: Think I Need to Build One of These!

03/20/2015 4:37 AM

Sometimes these types of things get through the permitting process.
Most plans have the info repeated so many times in so many places that when corrections are made after comments from the governing body are received one or 2 of the corrections aren't made.
Most of the time they catch them or the designer/engineer does.
But the contractor sees the one everyone missed and uses that info instead of the correct info. then things like this happen and everyone blames everyone else.

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