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Old 03-30-2017, 10:29 AM   #1
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Cement Mixer Question


When one purchases a cement mixer, does the specified size of the mixer denote how much concrete it will mix at once? Or is that the total volume of the bowl?

I'm thinking of purchasing one of those cheap Harbor Freight mixers... Saw them on youtube and seem to get decent reviews.. Probably get a warranty with it.

The mixer size says 3.5 cubic feet.. how much concrete will fit into a 3.5 cuft mixer?
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Old 03-30-2017, 10:52 AM   #2
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


For small mixers the capacity for wet mix is a about 1/2 that of the bowl.

http://cementmixerblog.cart-away.com...ixer-capacity/
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Old 03-30-2017, 11:38 AM   #3
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


Quote:
I'm thinking of purchasing one of those cheap Harbor Freight mixers...
Ayuh,.... Back when I was lookin' for a mixer, I had borrowed a bigger 1 like those at HF,....
A traditional lookin' cement mixer,...
The draw-back is, ya need a wheelbarrow or buckets to move the mix,....

That's why I bought a wheelbarrow style from Northern Tool, 'n Hyd....
Like these,....
Since then, I've mixed, 'n poured yards, 'n yards of concrete,...

The Trick I found is to set up a mixin' area, next to the pallet of bag mix, 'n build a little "bust the bag" table,....
Mine is made of scrap 2x4s, 'n plywood scraps, makin' it 'bout 2'x2', with a 2x4 lip all 'round the edge, except for an area the width of the mixer's hole, at the height to push the mix into the mixer,...

Pourin' the bag mix directly from the bag into the mixer is hit, or miss, at best,...
The bust the bag table allows ya to control the amount of mix, 'n get it into the drum, insteada all over the floor,....

I feel the only 2 mistakes I made buyin' this mixer is,...
I shoulda bought the plastic drum, rater than the thin light-weight steel drum,....
'n I shoulda blown the wad, 'n bought the biggest 1, insteada a smaller 1,...
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Last edited by Bondo; 03-30-2017 at 11:42 AM.
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Old 03-30-2017, 02:34 PM   #4
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


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Originally Posted by Shopguy View Post
When one purchases a cement mixer, does the specified size of the mixer denote how much concrete it will mix at once? Or is that the total volume of the bowl?

I'm thinking of purchasing one of those cheap Harbor Freight mixers... Saw them on youtube and seem to get decent reviews.. Probably get a warranty with it.

The mixer size says 3.5 cubic feet.. how much concrete will fit into a 3.5 cuft mixer?

An 80 lb. bag of sakrete is 0.60 cubic feet.


Forgot to say 27 cubic ft. to a cubic yd.
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Old 04-04-2017, 05:37 PM   #5
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


I have to pour some 20 diameter columns that range from 12 inches tall (easy) to 48 inches tall.

I have a farm tractor with a loader bucket and hilo forks. I plan to mount the mixer to a skid so I can just pick the whole thing up, drive it to the sonotubes, and dump the mix in.

I have to pour about 5 cubic yards of concrete (spread out over 10 different columns) so it won't be done all at once.. We'll probably pour two columns per day, wait a day for them to dry a bit, then pour two more. Since they're all going to be interconnected by piping embedded into the concrete, allowing the first two to solidify will prevent us from prematurely disturbing them.. Maybe I'll wait two or three days in between pours.

Thanks for the info...
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Old 04-04-2017, 09:08 PM   #6
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


Just as a note, you're going to spend more money on bagged concrete and a cheap mixer than just buying ready-mixed concrete shipped to your site. Not to mention, ready-mix concrete is superior in probably every aspect to bagged mix (quality control, larger aggregate, faster curing, often stronger, air-entrainmentfor cold climates, etc..).

On very small jobs, bagged mix can make sense financially. At 5 cubic yards, your simply "a glutten for punishment" pouring with bags.........
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Old 04-05-2017, 09:29 AM   #7
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


we use wheelbarrow style too - can fit in 2 80# bags at a time
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Old 04-05-2017, 10:02 AM   #8
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


Just using Canary's numbers, .6 ft³ per bag and 27 ft³ per yd³ you would need 225 bags for 5 yards. Would a ready-mix truck be able to get anywhere close. They will usually wait if you have some help and a few wheelbarrows. I've helped pour the concrete around a large pool in a back yard and we had to wheel it about 150'.

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Old 04-05-2017, 10:08 AM   #9
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


you're near our min delivery of 6cy,,, why mix your own ? tack on some steel to your loader's bucket & place it that way,,, obviously the closer you can get the transit-mix trk, the better
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Old 04-06-2017, 02:00 PM   #10
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Re: Cement Mixer Question


Definitely get a truck for that much. Rough estimates in my head put it at about 1/2 the cost, you can get it all done at once, with a lot less work. Plus, you get a mixer driver some work, and that's good for everyone.
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Old 04-10-2017, 01:09 AM   #11
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At what point does it become economical to get ready mix vs bag? My problem is I don't want that huge truck on my driveway and can't drive on the grass because it's soft as fcuk and it's uphill. On YouTube they have pipes that can push it to where you need it. Is that a normal thing or more a commercial product?
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Old 04-10-2017, 10:45 AM   #12
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Cement Mixer Question


Any more than a yard or so I'd get a truck. Rough math says that it's about $210 per yard if you get bags at Hombre Depot, about double what it costs in the truck. And how much is your time worth?

The "pipe" is a concrete pump, either in a boom or line pump. They start around $500 for the service, depending on region and type, but sometimes they're the only way to get it done. They'll certainly pump a residential job.

Another option is to rent a Georgia Buggy (basically a big powered wheelbarrow) if it's not too steep, and you can park the truck wherever you want.
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