PERLITE
CONCRETE
SCHUNDLER

CUSTOM
MIX DESIGNS
CONSTRUCTION GUIDE
The Schundler Company
150 Whitman Avenue
Edison, New Jersey 08817
732-287-2244 www.schundler.com



LIGHTWEIGHT CONCRETE MIX DESIGNS


This product guide contains various mix designs for lightweight concrete, utilizing perlite as the primary aggregate. This guide gives basic mix designs, which may be used as stated, or as a starting point for your own custom mixes.

Perlite lightweight concrete is used in many different applications, as diverse as lightweight tile mortars, garden sculptures, decorative bricks, to gas-fireplace logs.

Perlite concrete, while not usually suited for structural or load bearing uses, offers many advantages beyond its lightweight. Perlite concrete also has sound deadening properties, and is thermal insulating as well, depending on mix design. Generally speaking, the lighter the weight, the greater the isolative properties.

Please use these mix designs as a guide recognizing that each and every application may have particular requirements.


In these and many other mix designs on our web page, the mix designs are volumetric (not based on weight but on volume). Also, the normal assumption is that one cubic foot of portland cement is 94 lbs., and that a regular bag of perlite aggregate (both concrete and plaster aggregate grades usually can be used) is the eqivalent of 3.5 to 4 cubic feet.

Normally transit companies and job site mixing conditions tend to overmix the perlite concrete, and so we recommend using more perlite than less (e.g. presume a bag only contains 3.5 cubic feet after being shipped, handled, and mixed.)

We don't have any current testing on these mix designs, and they are given just as illustrations of what others have done.

MIX DESIGNS AND TYPICAL PROPERTIES OF A VARIETY OF MIXES
( note: proportions are by volume (cubic feet), not weight)
CEMENT
(CF)
PERLITE
(CF)
EXPANDED
SHALE
(CF)
WASHED
CONCRETE
SAND
(CF)
WATER
(GAL.)
ADMIX
FLUID OZ.
DRY
DENSITY
WET
DENSITY
COMPRESSIVE
STRENGTH 3
YIELD
CU. FT.
1 1.1 0 2.1 7.8 ?A 88 105 2300-2500 3.5
1 2 0 2.2 5.5 ?A 60 74 1800 4.1
1 3 0 2.2 11.2 ?A 65 82 800-900 5.1
1 1.6 0 2.5 9.2 ?A 82 98 1100-1300 4.1
1 3 22 0 10 3B 65 90 2500-2800 3.2
1 3 22 0 10 ?A & 3B 62 78 2000-2100 3.5
1 3 21 0 9 ?A & 3B 54 72 1400-1700 3.8
Perlite Concrete Mixes Using Only Perlite
1 2 0 0 5-6 ?B 61 77 1500-1900 1.7
1 3 0 0 9 ?A 47 62 800-1100 3
1 4 0 0 10 ?A 36 50 350-500 4
1 5 0 0 11 ?A 30 46 230-300 5
1 6 0 0 13 ?A 27 42 125-200 6
1 8 0 0 16 ?A 22 37 90-125 8
    • 1 expanded shale 5/16"
    • 2expanded shale 1/2"
    • 3compressive strengths can vary and these are offered for guidance perposes only
    • aair entrainment with "?" because of vast differences in air entrainment concentrations and strength. Check with your local portland cement supplier for more information about how much air entrainment should be used for each 100 lbs of portland cement.
    • bPlasticizers and/or Pozzolith 300


    MIX INSTRUCTIONS:

    • Proper mixing will assure the maximum yield and uniformity. Low shear, low RPM mixers (similar to plaster mixers) are recommended for best results.
      1. Add all materials except perlite to mixer; then mix until this slurry is fairly uniform. Two minutes will usually suffice.
      2. Add all perlite: then mix again only long enough for a uniform mix, probably another two to three minutes. Excess water and under mixing may reduce yield and workability. Over-mixing may degrade the perlite and increase concrete density, reducing yield. Optimum mixing cycle can usually be determined with one or two trial batches.


    GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS:

    • Addition of mason sand to a perlite/cement mix increases the compressive strength and also the weight by approximately 100 lbs per cubic foot of sand.
    • Addition of expanded shale also increases the compressive strength and weight, but at about 1/3 the weight of sand, at higher cost.
    • Addition of fibers increases the tensile strength of perlite concrete.
    • Addition of air entraining agents reduce the weight and compressive strength of the mix, but improves freeze/thaw performance.
    • A range of aggregate size is desirable for increasing compressive strength, but the coarser the range the greater the compressive strength.
    • For detailed products such as garden sculptures finer aggregate particles are recommended.


    SUGGESTIONS:

    • Consult your perlite manufacturer for recommended types and proportioning of air entraining agent. Usually, try to obtain 10-15 percent air in the wet mix.
    • For information on transit mix/ready mix applications and procedures, see our page Transit Mix Perlite Concrete--Guidelines and Procedures.


    Ask your perlite supplier for more information about these mix designs, or contact: The Perlite Institute




    For more information, please call or contact:

    The Schundler Company

    150 Whitman Avenue
    Edison, New Jersey 08817
    732-287-2244 or www.schundler.com
    email: info@schundler.com

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