Deck Project - Concrete

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I bought one of those 3.5 cu ft Cement Mixers from HFT and mixed two 80# bags of SAKRETE concrete mix accodring to the directions adding (at first) .75 gallons of water per bag.
The mix was dry. And balls of mix developed .75" to about 1.5" and rolled about the mixer without mixing in very well.
I wound up adding more water about a gallon per bag to get a mix that looked something like the mix the pros bring when I order several years from a regular cement truck. Or the mixes I used to do in a shallow plastic tub with hoe and rake to mix the SAKRETE.
Adding the water was essential to getting a mix I felt comfortable with - with the exception that I fear the additional water might effectively ruin the mix and deck footers I was pouring.
I thought to ask here in case anyone had experience mixing concrete in a similar mixer or the one from HFT.
Or maybe one of you can point me to a source that will help answer my questions. Thank you.
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Not in a mixer, but a gallon per bag is the mix I've always started with. Once in a while I've had to add a little (maybe a cup) more.
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On Sun, 17 Jul 2011 18:29:38 -0700 (PDT), Gooey

It _very_ likely didn't. I've seen idiots fill holes with water, toss in the 4x4, dump in a bag of crete, stir with the 4x4, then set vertical. The resultant lump 'o crete was nice and solid the week after. I was fairly surprised. Do try to use as little water as possible, though.

I should measure it the next time I put in a fence post. I believe I use about a gallon for a #60 bag of fence post mix.
-- Life is an escalator: You can move forward or backward; you can not remain still. -- Patricia Russell-McCloud
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Sakrete makes a no-mix fence post formula. They also make a lightweight aggregate mix.
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On 7/18/2011 5:10 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

i use the regular sakrete, put in dry. it'll rain eventually. works great. Most posts don't need concrete anyway if they are of proper depth.
--
Steve Barker
remove the "not" from my address to email
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On 7/18/2011 5:53 PM, Steve Barker wrote:

I have probably built 30-40 fences. I replaced one a few years ago, we were able to simply pull the posts out of the ground with out digging or working the posts back and forth. The previous installer used the wait till rain technique. 8 years later the concrete was still uncured and powdery just like it came out of the bag.
Apparently the top got a little wet, cured, and shielded the remainder. That fence failed about 12 years too early due to laziness
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Actually, I am not setting posts. Rather U-shaped metal supports that posts fasten to and have a projection or two that is/are embedded in the pour.
I have my reasons (for this approach) related to how I plan to attached the beams and joists on this low-level deck and based upon experience using them on another project.
I've also had success following the directions on the bags of SAKRETE I get at LOWES - I buy the torn bags for half price.
Thanks to those offering the feedback, suggestions and links. My project couldn't wait for same, but seems to be setting up (curing, thank you) quite nicely so far (24 Hours) as I covered the concrete with plastic and am keeping the surface damp for at least 48 hours before putting any stress on the fittings embedded therin.
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"Gooey" wrote:

the pour.
I have my reasons (for this approach) related to how I plan to attached the beams and joists on this low-level deck and based upon experience using them on another project.
I've also had success following the directions on the bags of SAKRETE I get at LOWES - I buy the torn bags for half price.
Thanks to those offering the feedback, suggestions and links. My project couldn't wait for same, but seems to be setting up (curing, thank you) quite nicely so far (24 Hours) as I covered the concrete with plastic and am keeping the surface damp for at least 48 hours before putting any stress on the fittings embedded therin. ----------------------------------- Sounds like you were looking for affirmation, not information, and in the process, wasted the time of those who responded.
Lew
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was out doing the mixing (shovel + a sheet of iron, no doubt), when she hollered "how much water, honey", Goofy panicked and hit the "brains Trust". It was near on nightfall too [18:29:38PDT ] so that extra effort in waffling on about an imaginary mixer added the urgency. Goofy wanted <r.w> to know he was no cheapskate!!
Lew, some advice is coming, well more of a "shheeet I knew that" kinda thing. So. It is rare there is any value in a Google Groups [Gugglers] post, of anything. Mostly a conglomeration of losers and dribblers. Up until now I have left my Guggler Gun holstered. It's getting air, right now. I suggest those Gugglers who think they may have worth in <r.w> go get subscribed to a news server. The one you (Lew) are using is a bewdy.. $10 buys you 25GB. http://www.news.astraweb.com/signup.html Enough to see anyone here through to leaving the remainder (unused) as an inheritance!
/aims square at Goofy the Guggler
/flicks the hammer
bye Goofy...
/reload
bye Gugglers..
george
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wasted the time of those who responded.

Well, if the responses had indicated my extra water would kill the project I would have re-done the work. You are correct in that it would have been better all around if I'd asked before I mixed the concrete, but I didn't see the problem/issue until I started to mix the concrete. Catcha-22
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Don't worry about the troll responses. Just don't feed them by giving audience.
The group is a success is indicated when you get these fools. They will always find something to poke at even if it is with the way you type your period character, at the end of your sentence....too much pressure or too little pressure on your keyboard, etc....
I have poured premixed concrete into a hole, dry, and walked away, if it will rain in the next day or so. It works just fine and you seem to know what you are doing.
Have a good one! ---------
"Gooey" wrote in message
Well, if the responses had indicated my extra water would kill the project I would have re-done the work. You are correct in that it would have been better all around if I'd asked before I mixed the concrete, but I didn't see the problem/issue until I started to mix the concrete. Catcha-22
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Josepi wrote the following:

It's what my fence company did when they installed my 15 - 6' h x 8' w wooden fence posts. They only poured dry concrete in the corner posts and the posts that hold the gate hinges. All the rest were just buried without any concrete at all. It's been 25 years since.
--

Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
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Concrete on fence posts tends to accelerate the rotting process of the wood and can give the frost something to get ahold of for lift in the spring.
There are prefab concrete piers with a slope on them (smaller at the top) for support posts to sit from below the frost level that will stop the frost lift from getting hold of them and lifting. I built a cedar fence once and the mistake of that is the frost lifts the fence, due to being so light weight. I had to pound it back down after the frost was out of the ground and left the stain marks about three inches in the air above the ground level, every spring. Need the weight of the cheaper lumber to keep the posts down into the ground. A shallow concrete sleeve can make the problem worse.
-- Send in the clones.
-----------
"willshak" wrote in message
It's what my fence company did when they installed my 15 - 6' h x 8' w wooden fence posts. They only poured dry concrete in the corner posts and the posts that hold the gate hinges. All the rest were just buried without any concrete at all. It's been 25 years since.
------------------------------- Josepi wrote the following: Don't worry about the troll responses. Just don't feed them by giving audience.
The group is a success is indicated when you get these fools. They will always find something to poke at even if it is with the way you type your period character, at the end of your sentence....too much pressure or too little pressure on your keyboard, etc....
I have poured premixed concrete into a hole, dry, and walked away, if it will rain in the next day or so. It works just fine and you seem to know what you are doing.
Have a good one!
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On 7/19/2011 1:07 PM, Josepi wrote:

And what if it does not rain in a day or so? Kind of a stupid gamble.
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On 7/19/11 2:08 PM, Leon wrote:

That and the fact that what really happens is you get a crispy shell of cured concrete covering the dry powder concrete on the inside.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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On 7/19/2011 2:35 PM, -MIKE- wrote:

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wrote:

Concrete is ery porous. The second time it got wet, the next layer would be wet and set. Repeat a dozen times and the whole thing is set. My question would be "How well does each layer stick to the other?"
-- Progress is the product of human agency. Things get better because we make them better. Things go wrong when we get too comfortable, when we fail to take risks or seize opportunities. -- Susan Rice
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On 7/19/2011 11:09 PM, Larry Jaques wrote:

Concrete "is" very porous however soil can be much more porous. If the surrounding soil is more porous the water is going to go to the soil vs. concrete. Add to that the thicker the concrete the more the water has to penetrate to get to the uncured section. It is important that the concrete next to the post be cured, If it takes 4 or 5 rains to cure everything you have movement from the fence post that will open the hole that the post is in and then what is the point of using concrete at all.
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wrote:

Precisely. But concrete is like a sponge. It holds water and transfers it to the next particle as long as there is enough to pass on.
I most certainly wasn't espousing the "no water" method. Gawd! But I was belaying the thought that the concrete next to the post would never get water. It would, after a few good rains, lawns being watered, deck washings, etc.
I've never done a dry pour, either, but a fence would be the place to try that if anything. Never a deck footing!
-- Progress is the product of human agency. Things get better because we make them better. Things go wrong when we get too comfortable, when we fail to take risks or seize opportunities. -- Susan Rice
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snipped-for-privacy@invalid.diversifycomm.com wrote:

Incorrect. What happens instead is that you get hardened granules that don't stick to each other, and the entire thing is a grainy mess.

Hardly at all.
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