Using cement as a rock dust.

Discussion in 'Planting, growing, nurturing Plants' started by FintanK, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. SueUSA

    SueUSA Junior Member

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    Cement is not rock dust.

    An article on coal combustion residues from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):

    Depending upon the source and makeup of the coal being burned, the components of fly ash vary considerably, but all fly ash includes substantial amounts of silicon dioxide (SiO2) (both amorphous and crystalline) and calcium oxide (CaO), both being endemic ingredients in many coal-bearing rock strata.

    Toxic constituents depend upon the specific coal bed makeup, but may include one or more of the following elements or substances in quantities from trace amounts to several percent: arsenic, beryllium, boron, cadmium, chromium, chromium VI, cobalt, lead, manganese, mercury, molybdenum, selenium, strontium, thallium, and vanadium, along with dioxins and PAH compounds.

    My question is: when fly ash is mixed with concrete (it's used as a hardener), do the toxins leach out? One would think so.

    * * *

    Portland cement is a mix of pulverized kiln-dried limestone and clay that will harden under water.

    If plants improve next to a bag of cement, the natural soil may be acidic and the lime is neutralizing it, and the plants are probably of a kind that likes lime (a form of calcium, lacking in acid soils) and a higher pH. There may have been other types of seeds/plants there when the bag was set down, and the change in soil caused some of them to grow better, and may have killed off others.

    Several months ago, I ran across an article on the Great Pyramids, where it was theorized that the blocks weren't dragged to the site, shaped, then lifted into place as is commonly thought, but were built of a "limestone concrete". If it was, their limestone concrete has lasted over 4500 years.

    Here's some info on the theory, if you're interested: https://www.geopolymer.org/category/archaeology/pyramids

    Here's an Australian blog on sustainable cement: https://sustainablog.blogspot.com/2005/11/stronger-more-sustainable-cement.html

    The worldwide use of cement and concrete isn't going away, so it would be nice to find a greener method to produce something similar.

    Sue
     
  2. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    Sue, noone here has confused Cement with rock dust, not even me.


    Why would one think so? I don't know so much about concrete but I think there must have been tests carried out on this possibility. Perhaps write to a concrete expert, some sort of chemist and ask them what the case is.

    I think i will have to find out exactly how cement is made and also how more about lime because this topic is getting blurrier by the moment. Not even wikipedia makes it clear for me about lime. In fact, its made it so muddy, that I feel I could tear my head off.

    This is the sort of thing i was think when I commented above when i wrote,
    Well i bet that set the cat amongst the pigeons. For my part, i am completely confused about the possibilities of lime so i hope that the british lime expert Stafford Holmes replies to my recent email.

    The link didn't work and i couldn't find the posting. Could you give me another link. Thanks for taking me to that site though cause it answered another question i had today - one about getting a better torch. I now know i need to buy an LED torch. This is not for camping but for use around the garden at night which i have to use a lot. I just came to the realisation that using these disposable large batteries is bad bad bad. So i will try to find one of those torches but I hope not to have to get one from america via amazon to be able to afford it.

    Yes i totally agree.
     
  3. gardenlen

    gardenlen Group for banned users

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    this is how i see it how other see i can't explain or even take on baord, but hey it is everyones right to an opinion without facing a jury. someone says something online i go and research i just don't find supporting sites i find discussion forums the best place to get appropriate links etc.,.

    so if someone want to go ask the cement makers if their product leeches anything at all as far as i am concerned they will tell you want they want you to hear. they won't be able to tell you honestyl about any leeching and what health risks that may cause because there has never been any human trial testing, like the person who rang a cement tank maker remember they make grease traps and septic tanks etc.,. as well was told by the maker that their cement did not contain fly ash, that was here in qld where fly ash is used as they can no longer dredge dead coral from the bay. now if the information is to be believed they are saying that their cement cmes from a different manufacturing chain if so it would be dearer than the normal cement and cement tanks might be too expensive.

    now it would be like going to monsanto/pharmacia and asking them about the safety of GMO's, glyphosate and aspartame etc.,. no human trialling has ever occured, what do you realy think they are going to say?? they will at least say no one has gotten sick or died from the results of their products, and why because how would they know there have never been any parameters created by human trialling to show when something goes bad, so we just keep eating it, we are living human guinea pigs.

    was reading someone said over time glyphosate ties up certain things in the soil and causes waht they called plant SID's.

    edited in, we have cement here that contains fly ash, it gets black mould very quickly and becomes slippery whether in the full sun or not, where the potted plants stand (and no we don't have trays) there appears to be some sort of chemical reaction between what is in the potting mix and in the cement (we know the humus in all potting mixes contains medium grade industrial liquid waste as well as waste from the sewerage farms which contains hospital and low grade waste) , never seen that before. and also we helped a neighbour plan his agricultural drain to stop water coming throuhg his foundation cement (no fly ash in it) as it would leach out elements like calcium and the foundation would weeken. the drain worked. might be similar to the action of risingdamp??

    len
     
  4. DonHansford

    DonHansford Junior Member

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    Since the floods around here, I have noticed almost?? every street with a reasonable flow angle in the gutters, has a white stain on the bitumen.

    It looks like a leaching of "something" is running out of the drains, and into our streets!!!

    Shock!!!! Horror!!!!!
    In some cases these run for considerable distances(3 - 400m). In any area where all the houses (or a significant majority) are "old style queenslanders - i.e. on stumps, timber framed and non-plaster walled, the phenomenon almost disappears.Could it be the leaching of the slabs that have gradually overtaken suburbia?????? Who knows - but maybe the dreaded CIV (Concrete - Immuno - Virus) is spreading!!!!!!

    PS. This was written tongue-in-cheek (in other words, I was taking the piss out of a heap of things/people) Please don't hold it against me (unless "it" is a large pair of very firm breasts) :D
     
  5. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    Don, i don't know if i made it clear above, but i have since found out that lime is completely unsuitable for building a house with a la concrete. If I had stone and wanted to use it as a mortar that would be different.

    Also lime straight from the ground has to be cooked/treated. I can't do that.

    There's a lot more to lime than the discussion we've had suggests. I think its not really an option for me. But i am still waiting to here back from stafford holmes/ perhaps he's not going to bother or perhaps he's just too busy to get back to me yet.

    As to Sue's link to the geopolymer site, that looks like a big topic that I haven't the time or inclination to study. I haven't been able to figure out if that theory of the pyramids has been widely accepted. If it hasn't, you have to ask why not? If there is good grounds for accepting it, it would be worthwhile for someone to due further tests with using lime as a concrete.

    By the way, i've see the pyramids first hand. Obviously i wasn't looking for clues as to their construction so i can't shed any light on it form firsthand experience.
     
  6. Farago

    Farago Junior Member

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    G'day
    My name is Dean Farago, I am a traditional plasterer/formworker/builder, trained by my grandfather, in methods of material manufacture and techniques of execution of design,passed down in the family since biblical time.

    Just joined this forum, and came across this thread.
    All the materials that are used my grandfather taught me ' we are just copying nature in making stone just speeding it up'
    There are many materials on the 'tree' of mortars and these each have branches etc etc

    And was taught to make each from scratch, and would love to pass these on as this will allow local production.
    One of the most useful ones is what we call Charoset , the russians rediscovered it, and Prof Davidovits expanded his work on this even more. Calling it geopolymer,good name and all the kudos to him for rediscovering it, for me this was just how our family made concrete or stone always, O don't ever use portland cement not only because it is an ecological nightmare, but it is just plain inferior in comparison.

    It is probably one of the most versatile of all binders for over 7000 years, being able to make for eg a monolithic building that is limestone or marble, and does so by just creating the chemical reaction that the earth does over millions of years. It has been and allows for many many adapted applications, from everything to strong thin shelling using hemp fibres to a translucent stone or even being able to direct light for eg into a cellar or cistern.And if you are wondering how strong it can be, I have reached strength of over 200Mpa though this was the primo technique and mineral sources.

    But its most popular use was in creating large 'limestone' structures, the pyramids of giza, pantheon in roma, and the pier that was mentioned, though these were done under duress of slavery, there are many other examples of structures that were done that people just assume was quarried stone or carved stone that were done using this methodology.

    My main concentration over the past years have been refining the building techniques I was taught to meet all human physical needs as integral to the building in a permaculture frame of mind and to deal with post peak oil effects.

    Water harvesting and keeping this water healthy and oxygenated, food production and hopefully with the help of others energy too.Each element in these needs helps the other. Everything from fireproof and insulating are just a given.And there is no waste,I was taught if there is waste then you know that you are doing it wrong. As alot of the materials needed can be found right under your feet in most cases it can be very local.

    Have also been working on a solar calciner and have nearly perfected it, I was able to calcine 1.2 tonne of hydraulic lime for a job and used just 15kg of timber and palm fronds, when in the US I saw restoration lime people were pleased when they used 1 1/2 tonne of timber for 1 tonne of lime...I was horrified myself lol. Though this solar calciner isnt useful for mass plant work, it was never designed for that anyway, its just for local production.

    You'll have to excuse me for hijacking the thread, but I am a plaster fanatic and can go on about it till someone brings out a tazer.

    Can't work out how to post pics of work though.
     
  7. eco4560

    eco4560 New Member

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  8. sun burn

    sun burn Junior Member

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    Welcome dean i reiterate what eco has said.

    Now about all your knowledge, advise me please. And when talking, please can you explain technical terms like solar calciner. I know almost nothing about building so many terms I have to look up and can be easily confused if you do not explain in simple terms. If you know so much are you planning a book? Sounds like many people would be interested in your expertise.

    I'm going to start a new thread so that if you like you can pour the contents of your clever brain into it. I am going to call it, how do you make a stone to build a house with. I hope to see you there soon.
     
  9. FintanK

    FintanK Junior Member

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    Hi folks back in January I asked "This may seem like a very naive question. Has anyone ever considered applying cement dust to their garden in the same way they apply rock dust?". A few people thought it was quite a stupid question and stated this.

    This morning I was looking up some information in my copy of "Introduction to Permaculture" by Bill Mollison with Reny Mia Slay and on page 54, I read "Soils cleared of vegetation are likely to need calcium, silica, and such easily-leached nutrients as suplhur, potash and nitrogen. Initially phosphates (as bird manures or rock dusts) may also have to be added. Try some cement dust, or use bamboo or graon husk mulches in gardens for adding calcium and silica".

    Just thought some of you might like to know this.
     

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