Commonwealth of Pennsylvania PA Test Method No. 632 Department of Transportation October Pages LABORATORY TESTING SECTION. Method of Test for

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1 Commonwealth of Pennsylvania PA Test Method No. 632 Department of Transportation 5 Pages LABORATORY TESTING SECTION Method of Test for TIME OF SETTING OF CONCRETE MIXTURES BY PENETRATION RESISTANCE 1. SCOPE l.1 This method covers determination of the time of setting of concrete with a slump greater than zero by testing mortar sieved from the concrete mixture. The method is suitable for use only when tests of the mortar fraction of the concrete will provide the information required. Since the hardening of concrete is a gradual process, any definition of time of setting must necessarily be arbitrary. The temperature of storage of the specimens employed in this test is to be selected by the user. Times of initial and final setting of concrete are determined in accordance with this method on the basis of a rate of hardening test using penetration resistance needles on mortar sieved from the concrete mixture. 1.2 This method can also be used for determining the effects of variables such as temperature, cement, mixture proportions, additions, and admixtures upon the time of setting and hardening characteristics of concrete. It may also be used as a part of a performance specification to determine compliance with specified time of setting requirements. 2. DEFINITIONS 2.1 Time of initial setting - The elapsed time, after initial contact of cement and water, required for the mortar sieved from the concrete to reach a penetration resistance of 3447 kpa (500 psi). 3. APPARATUS 3.1 Containers for Mortar Specimens - Rigid, watertight, non-absorptive, non-oiled containers, either cylindrical or rectangular in cross-section. The minimum lateral dimension shall be 152 mm (6 in.) and the height at least 152 mm (6 in). NOTE 1- The container(s) for the mortar from each concrete mixture shall provide enough mortar surface for ten undisturbed readings of penetration resistance. See Section 6.2 for clear distance requirements for needle impressions.

2 Page Penetration Resistance Apparatus- Spring reaction-type apparatus, graduated from 138 kpa to 4826 kpa (20 to 700 psi.) in increments of 138 kpa (20 psi.) or less. The needle provided with the apparatus shall have a bearing area of 6 mm (1/4 in.) and the shank shall be scribed peripherally at a distance 25 mm (1 in.) above the bearing face. 3.3 Tamping Rod - Round, straight, steel rod 16 mm (5/8 in.) in diameter and approximately 600 mm (24 in.) in length, having the tamping end rounded to a hemispherical tip, the diameter of which is 16 mm (5/8 in.). 3.4 Pipette - Pipette or a suitable instrument for drawing off free water from the surface of the test specimens. 4. PREPARATION OF MORTAR SPECIMENS 4.1 From the concrete mixture under test select a representative sample of concrete of sufficient volume to provide enough mortar to fill the test container(s) to a depth of at least 140 mm (5 ½ in). 4.2 Remove essentially all of the mortar from the sample of concrete by sieving it through a 4.75 mm (No. 4) sieve onto a non-absorptive surface. 4.3 Thoroughly remix the mortar by hand methods on the non-absorptive surface and place it in the container(s) and compact by rodding. Rod the specimen by means of the tamping rod held so as to penetrate the mortar with the round end. Rod the mortar once for each 25 mm (1 in.) of top surface area of the specimen and distribute the strokes uniformly over the cross section of the specimen. After completion of the rodding, tap the sides of the containers slightly with the tamping rod to close voids left by the tamping rod and to further level the surface of the specimen. Upon completion of specimen preparation, the mortar surface shall be at least 13 mm (1/2 in.) below the top edge of the container to provide space for the collection and removal of bleeding water and to avoid contact between the mortar surface and the protective covering specified in Section STORAGE OF MORTAR SPECIMENS 5.1 Store and maintain the specimens at the desired temperature of test. To prevent excessive evaporation of moisture, keep the specimens covered with a suitable material such as damp burlap or a tight-fitting, water-impermeable cover for the duration of the test, except when bleeding water is being removed or penetration tests are being made. The specimens shall be shielded from the sun.

3 Page 3 6. PROCEDURE 6.1 Remove bleeding water from the surface of the mortar specimens just prior to making a penetration test by means of a pipette or suitable instrument. To facilitate collection of bleeding water, tilt the specimen carefully to an angle of about 12 degrees from the horizontal by placing a block under one side of the specimen, two minutes prior to the removal of the bleeding water. 6.2 Bring the bearing surface of the needle into contact with the mortar surface. Gradually and uniformly apply a vertical force downward on the apparatus until the needle penetrates the mortar to a depth of 25 mm (1 in.) as indicated by the scribe mark. The time required to penetrate to the 25 mm (1 in.) depth shall be approximately 10 seconds. Record the force required and the time of application, measured as the elapsed time after initial contact of the cement and water. In subsequent penetration tests take care to avoid areas where the mortar has been disturbed by previous tests. The clear distance between needle impressions shall be at least 13 mm (½ in.). The distance between any needle impression and the side of the container shall be not less than 25 mm (1 in). 6.3 Make penetration tests at hourly intervals for normal mixtures and normal temperatures, the initial test being made after an elapsed time of 3 to 4 hours. For accelerated mixtures or high temperatures, it may be advisable to make the initial test after an elapsed time of 1 or 2 hours and subsequent tests at hour intervals. For low-temperature conditions or retarded concrete mixtures, the initial penetration test may be deferred for an elapsed time of 4 to 6 hours, and perhaps longer. Subsequent tests may be made at intervals of 1 hour, unless the rate of increase in penetration resistance indicates that shorter intervals are desirable. 6.4 Not less than six penetration resistance determinations shall be made for each rate of hardening test. The time intervals between penetration resistance determinations shall be such as to give a satisfactory rate of hardening curve, as indicated by equally spaced points. Continue the tests until a penetration resistance of at least 3447 kpa (500 psi) is reached.

4 Page 4 7. REPORT 7.1 The report shall include the following: Data on the Concrete Mixture: Type and proportions of cement, fine aggregate, coarse aggregate (including maximum size and grading of aggregates), and the ratio of net water content to cement content Name, nature, and percentage of active ingredients by mass of cement, or of any addition or admixture used Air content of the fresh concrete and the method of determination Consistency of the concrete as determined by the slump or other test for consistency Temperature of the mortar after sieving Record of the ambient temperature during the test period Date of the test Time of Setting - The time of initial set shall be reported in hours and minutes to the nearest minute. REFERENCE: ASTM Designation C 403

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