Concrete and Cement Complete Information | Thumb Rules For Cement and Concrete Work

Cement is one of the most important building material that is used in building construction. Cement is the most important constituent of concrete and RCC.

Cement is costly material and it should be used wisely and efficiently. If more cement is used then the cost can increase manifold. And on the other hand if less cement is used then the strength of building can also be compromised.

We have thus come forward with this extensive post about cement use in construction as advised and used by experience and guidelines.

Thumb Rule For Concrete Mix

General thumb rule for nominal concrete mixes are shown below.

Concrete MixRatioCement Qty (Bags)Coarse Aggregate (m3)Fine Aggregate (m3)
M51:5:102.820.98 0.49
M7.51:4:83.480.970.48
M101:3:64.500.900.45
M151:2:46.600.880.44
M201:1.5:38.400.840.42
M251:1:211.090.770.39
Mix design of concrete

Thumb Rule for Concrete Work

  1. Volume of concrete required is 0.038 m3/sqft area.
  2. Standard weight of 1 bag of cement is 50 kg.
  3. 1 bag of cement is equal to 1.25 cuft or 0.0347 m3.
  4. In high rise building 0.5 bags of cement is required per square feet of area.
  5. Density of cement is 1440 kg/m3.
  6. Specific gravity of cement is 3.15
  7. Average cost of concrete is 50 to 80$ per cubic meter.
  8. Initial setting time of cement is 30 minutes and final setting time of cement is 10 hrs.
Thumb rule for concrete and cement
Thumb rules for cement and concrete

Cement Required In Brickwork

Quantity of cement required in 1 m3 of brickwork for different size of brickwork varies. Below is a thumbrule for brickwork cement required.

Brickwork sizeCement required (m3)Cement Quantity (Bags)
230mm Brickwork0.876 m325.4
115 mm Brickwork0.218 m36.32
Thumb rule for brickwork.

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Thumb Rule for Brickwork for different mix ratio thickness of brickwork along with cement sand required are given below.

BrickworkMix RatioMortar Thick (mm)Cement Qty (Bags/m3)Sand (m3)
100 mm thick1:4100.150.035
200 mm thick1:6101.40.30
200 mm thick1:5101.70.25
200 Blockwork1:5100.150.02

Important Thumb Rule For Plastering

Cement required changes according to type of plastering. Cement required for internal plastering is comparatively lower then cement required for external plastering.

Below is a table containing cement requirement for different type of plastering work.

Plastering TypeCement Qty (Bags/m2)Cement Qty (Kg/m2)
Internal Plastering0.094.5
External Plastering0.1758.75
Rough Plastering0.094.5
Duct Plastering0.094.5
Lathen Plastering0.5527.5
Stucco Plastering0.1758.75
Thumb rule for cement required in plastering

Cement sand requirement for wall and ceiling plastering are shown below:

Plastering TypeRatioPlaster Thickness (mm)Cement (Bags/m2)Sand (m3/m2)
Internal wall Plaster1:3150.160.017
External Wall Plaster1:4200.170.024
Ceiling Plaster1:2120.170.012
Rough Plaster1:5160.110.020

Thumb Rule For Cement Masonry Work

Cement requirement in masonry work varies according to cement masonry type and mix. Quantity of cement required for different cement masonary work and mix is shown below.

Masonry Type and MixCement Qty (Bags/m2)Cement Qty (Kg/m2)
200mm Masonry Work (1:6)0.1246.20
150mm Masonry Work (1:6)0.0934.65
200mm Masonry Work (1:4)0.20610.30
150mm Masonry Work (1:4)0.1447.20
100mm Masonry Work (1:4)0.1035.15
Thumb rule for cement masonry work

Bulk Density of Cement

Density of cement according to type are shown below:

Cement TypesDensity (kg/m3)Density (KN/m3)
Lime mortar1600-184016-18
Ordinary Cement144014.4
Plain Cement Concrete240024
Pitch101010.1
RCC250025

Types of Concrete

Concrete has evolved over time and different types of concrete is nowadays used in construction. List of Concrete types used in construction is given below:

  1. Plain or Ordinary Concrete
  2. Reinforced Cement Concrete
  3. Prestressed Concrete
  4. High Density Concrete
  5. Normal Strength Concrete
  6. High Strength Concrete
  7. Rapid Strength Concrete
  8. Precast Concrete
  9. Light Weight Concrete
  10. Ready Mix Concrete
  11. Air Entrained Concrete
  12. Polymer Concrete
  13. Self Consolidated Concrete
  14. High Performance Concrete
  15. Shotcrete Concrete
  16. Pervious Concrete
  17. Vaccum Concrete
  18. Pumped Concrete
  19. Stamped Concrete
  20. Limecrete
  21. Asphalt Concrete
  22. Glass Concrete
  23. Roller Compacted Concrete

Setting Time of Cement

Cement hardens when it is mixed with water. But how much time is required for setting of cement depends upon the cement type and grade of cement.

There are two setting times, they are

  • Initial setting time of cement
  • Final Setting Time of Cement

Initial Setting time of Cement:

Initial setting time of cement is the time taken by the cement paste when it starts to lose its fluidity after water is added into it.

As we know after adding water cement starts to set. The time elapsed after addition of water and cement fluidity begins to lose is known as initial setting time of cement.

Initial setting time is measured with the help of Vicat Apparatus. Generally initial setting time of cement is 30 minutes.

Final Setting Time:

Time intervention between first addition of water and when cement has completely lost its fluidity is known as final setting time of cement.

Final setting time of cement is 600 for all type of cement.

Below is a list of cement types and initial and final setting time of respective cement.

Type of CementInitial Setting TimeFinal Setting Time
Ordinary Portland Cement (33 Grade)30 minute600 minute
Ordinary Portland Cement (43 Grade)30 minute600 minute
Ordinary Portland Cement (53 Grade)30 minute600 minute
Sulphate Resistant Cement30 minute600 minute
Portland Pozzolona Cement30 minute600 minute
Rapid Hardening Cement30 minute600 minute
Slag Cement30 minute600 minute
High Alumina Cement30 minute600 minute
Super Sulphated Cement30 minute600 minute
Low Heat Cement60 minute600 minute
Masonry Cement90 minute600 minute
IRS T-4060 minute600 minute
Initial Setting Time and Final Setting Time of Cement

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