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How To Work Out The Concrete Mix For Your Mould

For ease of calculation, we work by volume and not weight. Thus 250ml of oxide would be 1 cup of powder, or 5ml would be one teaspoon.  If using 1 Litre of cement, use an old 1 litre bottle and fill that.  Once you have measured the volume you can use any container marked with what you need to use. For instance, you could use a 10 Litre bucket for the stone.

Click for more information on Oxide Mix Ratios

  • Assume mould size is 100mm x 100mm x 50mm (9-cavity).
  • Therefore 10cm x 10cm x 5cm x 9 (cavities) = 4 500 cubic centimetres (or 4,5 litres) total volume.
  • Assume the mix ratio required is 1:2:3 (one part cement to two parts sand to three parts stone – six parts in total. (all mixes are printed on a pocket of cement).
  • Now divide the six parts into 4500ml:
    750ml x 1 = 750ml Cement
    750ml x 2 = 1 500ml Sand
    750ml x 3 = 2 250ml Stone
    Total = 4 500ml (if you have more than one mould, simply multiply by that number)
  • Increase each of your parts by about 10% because volume is reduced when mixing in the water. Otherwise the mould will not be filled to the brim as convergence takes place.
  • The volume of water required varies a lot depending on size and type of sand, stone and cement used. Your material might also be damp. Your mix should be roughly the same consistency of thick porridge. (too much water will reduce concrete strength and cause excess shrinkage.)
  • Pour mix into mould, (ensure that it has already been prepared with release agent) and shake mould to remove air bubbles. Now leave to set.
  • After concrete has set, de-mould by inverting and distorting the mould slightly and pressing in the centre back of the mould.
  • Your mould can now be cleaned and prepared for the next casting.
  • Cure the concrete by keeping moist for 7 days (concrete reaches full strength after 28 days).
  • The laying of the stones can take place as soon as enough strength has been attained. However, driveway stones should not be driven on for 28 days.


REQUIREMENTS FOR 1 SQ METRE PAVING (50MM THICK)

RELEASE AGENT - 20ML PER SQ METRE

FIGURES ARE APPROXIMATE AND CAN VARY TREMENDOUSLY DEPENDING ON MATERIAL USED - ALLOW FOR CONVERGENCE (THE VOLUME REDUCES ONCE MIXED WITH WATER)

MIX RATIO1:3:31:3:21:2:31:2:2
APPROX STRENGTH 10-15Mpa 15-20Mpa 20-25Mpa 25-30Mpa
AREAS USED GARDENS AND FOOTPATHS PATIOS/HOUSE SURROUNDS POOLS/LOW LOAD AREAS DRIVEWAY/GARAGES
CEMENT 42,5N O.P.C. 8 LITRES 8,5 LITRES 8,5 LITRES 10 LITRES
RIVER SAND 24 LITRES 26 LITRES 17 LITRES 20 LITRES
STONE -13-19mm 24 LITRES 17 LITRES 26 LITRES 20 LITRES
OXIDE - IF 1% USED 80 ml 85 ml 85 ml 100 ml
OXIDE - IF 2% USED 160 ml 170 ml 170 ml 200 ml
OXIDE - IF 3% USED 240 ml 255 ml 255 ml 300 ml


Please note: The ratios printed on cement bags call for “barrows”. This can be confusing, as one pocket of cement (50kg) is equal to 33Lt by volume and one “barrow” is equal to 66Lt.

* Megapascal is the metric unit for pressure or stress.