Masonry cement - Testing for workability (cohesivity)

This document deals with the adaption of existing test methods and equipment to provide a repeatable and reproducible means of assessing the workability ("cohesivity") imparted to mortar by masonry cements.

Mauerzement - Prüfung auf Verarbeitbarkeit (Kohäsion)

Scope not available

Ciment de maçonnerie - Test de maniabilité (cohésivité)

Scope not available

Zidarski cement - Preskušanje obdelavnosti (kohezivnost)

Prilagoditev obstoječih preskusnih metod in opreme, da se zagotovi ponovljiv način ocenjevanja obdelavnosti (»kohezivnosti«) pri pripravi malte z zidarskim cementom.

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Standards Content (Sample)

SIST CR 13933:2001
Zidarski cement - Preskušanje obdelavnosti (kohezivnost)
Masonry cement - Testing for workability (cohesivity)
Putz- und Mauerbinder - Bestimmung der Verarbeitbarkeit (Kohäsion)
Ciment de maçonnerie - Test de maniabilité (cohésivité)
Ta slovenski standard je istoveten z: CEN/TR 13933:2023
91.100.10 Cement. Mavec. Apno. Malta Cement. Gypsum. Lime.
2003-01.Slovenski inštitut za standardizacijo. Razmnoževanje celote ali delov tega standarda ni dovoljeno.

CEN/TR 13933
November 2023
ICS 91.100.10 Supersedes CR 13933:2000
English Version
Masonry cement - Testing for workability (cohesivity)
Ciment de maçonnerie - Test de maniabilité Mauerzement - Prüfung auf Verarbeitbarkeit
(cohésivité) (Kohäsion)
This Technical Report was approved by CEN on 20 November 2023. It has been drawn up by the Technical Committee CEN/TC
CEN members are the national standards bodies of Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia,
Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Republic of North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Türkiye and
United Kingdom.


CEN-CENELEC Management Centre: Rue de la Science 23, B-1040 Brussels
© 2023 CEN All rights of exploitation in any form and by any means reserved Ref. No. CEN/TR 13933:2023 E
worldwide for CEN national Members.

Contents Page
European foreword . 3
Introduction . 4
1 Scope . 5
2 Normative references . 5
3 Terms and definitions . 5
4 Equipment . 5
5 Test procedure . 7
5.1 Introduction . 7
5.2 Principle . 8
5.3 Apparatus . 8
5.4 Calibration of the flow table . 8
5.5 Procedure for the assessment of the cohesivity of test mortars . 9
5.6 Calculation of results . 10
6 Results from the co-operative test program . 10
7 Re-appraisal of calibration . 19
8 Assessment . 25
9 Future work . 25
Bibliography . 26

European foreword
This document (CEN/TR 13933:2023) has been prepared by Technical Committee CEN/TC 51 “Cement
and building limes”, the secretariat of which is held by NBN.
Attention is drawn to the possibility that some of the elements of this document may be the subject of
patent rights. CEN shall not be held responsible for identifying any or all such patent rights.
This document supersedes CR 13933:2000.
This document includes the following significant technical changes with respect to CR 13933:2000:
— the titles have been added in French and in German,
— text has been rewritten to exclude permissions, recommendations and requirements.
Any feedback and questions on this document should be directed to the users’ national standards body.
A complete listing of these bodies can be found on the CEN website.
Mortars incorporating masonry cements are used for bedding masonry units and also for rendering and
plastering. In 1988 the CEN Technical Committee responsible for Cements and Building Limes (TC 51)
charged its Working Group 10 to produce a Standard for Masonry cements and for the test methods to
support that Standard.
Test methods for setting time, soundness and strength are common requirements in most cement
standards. However, where the cement is specifically designed to adhere to and subsequently provide a
good bond with masonry units, it is important that an adequate level of workability is achieved. In
contrast to the concept of workability as applied to concrete, workability in mortars is not just a question
of adjusting the "wetness" of the mortar by adding more or less water. In masonry work, the craftsman
requires rather more of his materials in that he expects them to flow easily from the trowel and to spread
on to the masonry unit evenly and without segregation. It is only when these properties are present that
he can expect to achieve the consistent degree of bonding necessary to produce durable watertight joints
and renderings.
The appropriate RILEM Committee considered that workability comprised two main components,
notably: consistence and plasticity. They defined these components as follows:
Consistence: That property of a mortar by virtue of which it tends to resist deformation.
Plasticity: That property of a mortar by virtue of which it tends to retain its deformation after reduction
of the deforming stress to its yield point.
Consistence is a measure of wetness and is measured using a penetration device, but that plasticity
required a more dynamic assessment such as could be achieved by using apparatus which caused the
mortar to move. However, in order to obtain any meaningful numerical measure of plasticity, it was
adjudged important to ensure that the testing for this characteristic was carried out on mortars where
the consistence had been controlled to a narrow band.
Since the testing procedure adopted in the CEN Standard EN 413-2:1994, Masonry cement - Part 2: Test
methods involved the preparation of a mortar using standard sand and with sufficient water to achieve a
narrow band of consistence as assessed using a plunger (penetration) test, this was considered as the
starting point for the work to assess workability, or as was deemed more appropriate "cohesivity".
Early work involved measuring the time taken for a mortar of standard consistence to flow between two
points in the AFNOR workability meter. This method was incorporated into EN 413-2:1994 as a test
method, but on account of the limited amount of experience available no limits were set in the Masonry
cement Prestandard ENV 413-1. Subsequently, further testing revealed significant calibration problems
between laboratories and consideration was given to the use of a flow table as an alternative means of
providing the dynamic component of the test. This document deals with the development of the test using
flow tables.
1 Scope
This document deals with the adaption of existing test methods and equipment to provide a repeatable
and reproducible means of assessing the workability ("cohesivity") imparted to mortar by masonry
2 Normative references
There are no normative references in this document.
3 Terms and definitions
No terms and definitions are listed in this document.
ISO and IEC maintain terminology databases for use in standardization at the following addresses:
— IEC Electropedia: available at
— ISO Online browsing platform: available at
4 Equipment
As has been discussed in the introduction, there is considerable merit in using the standard consistence
mortar produced in EN 413-2:1994 as the starting point for the cohesivity test. Such a practice uses no
equipment beyond that already in use for masonry cement testing. The mortar is prepared in the mixer
defined in EN 196-1:1994 and the sand used and the plunger device for measuring consistence are those
specified in EN 413-2:1994.
Since flow tables are not uncommon in cement testing laboratories it was decided to evaluate these in
order to provide a measure of cohesivity. However, previous experience suggests that even where these
pieces of equipment are covered by strict specification requirements, their performance can be expected
to vary from table to table. A review of the flow tables in use in various European testing laboratories
revealed considerable differences as is shown in Table 1. Calibration of the tables was therefore
considered to be an essential step in the test procedure.
In order to keep this calibration procedure as simple as possible, the first attempts at calibration were
carried out using the EN 196-1:1994 sand damped with a fixed amount of water. The results from this
calibration as carried out in the nine laboratories participating in the co-operative test program are given
in Table 1.
Table 1 — Calibration Results
Test Lab Flow Table (drop in mm) Flow Table mould mm Sand Flow table calibration - spread after jolting mm
Type Top kg Drop Top Btm dia Ht. 196-1 5 10 15 20 25 30

BC ASTM 4,08 12,5 70,7 102 51 German 129 140 153 165 171
(UK)    131 139 148 160 172
129 139 150 161 172
ave    129 139 150 161 172
BLI ASTM 4,002 14 70 101 51 France 126 138 146 158 167 177
(UK)    127 139 149 156 164 171
124 137 148 157 170 180
ave    126 138 148 157 167 176
Cimpor BS 6463 6,6 19,1 70 100 60 France 150 158 162 163 163
(Port'al)    152 158 160 163 164
154 159 164 164 163
ave    152 158 162 163 163
DBDK EN 459 4,352 10,2 70 110 60 German 119 132 154 160 163
ENCI RMU 3,298 10 70 100 90 German 122 134 139 145 147
Italicem 3,34 10,1 69,9 100 60 France 114 129 140 145 149
(Italy)    114 127 136 143 144 148
116 128 139 144 148
ave    115 128 138 144 147
UNI 3,22 10,0 70,2 100 60 France 113 131 139 144 146 147
119 136 137 140 144 148
116 134 138 138 143 147
ave    116 134 138 141 144 147
Lafarge ASTM 4,1 12,5 70 100 50 France 132 143 151 153 162
(France)    129 145 151 154 161
127 130 146 151 159
ave    129 139 149 153 161
Norcem NS 3107 3,495 9  German 166 175 184 191 198
VDZ EN 459 4,35 10 70 100 60 German 125 141 147 153 157
Germany    124 141 148 153 156
124 142 150 155 159
123 143 150 155 158
122 141 146 151 154
122 139 147 150 155
ave    123 141 148 153 157
DBDK was the German Lime Association, ENCI was the Netherlands cement manufacturer and Norcem
was the Norwegian cement manufacturer.
The number of jolts and the log10 of the number of jolts for a spread of 145 mm is shown in Table 2. The
log of the number of jolts is given since the relationship between the log of the number of jolts and the
spreads approaches linearity.
Table 2 — Number of jolts and the log of the number of jolts for a spread of 145 mm
Test Laboratory Flow Table Number of jolts requested for a
spread of 145 mm
Number log of number
BC ASTM 13 1.114
BLI ASTM 13 1.114
Cimpor BS 6463 4 0.602
DBDK EN 459 13 1.114
ENCI RMU 20 1.301
Italicementi DIN ? 22 1.342
UNI 26 1.415
Lafarge ASTM 13 1.114
Norcem NS 3107 3 0.544
VDZ EN 459 12 1.079
The results obtained revealed large differences between the design of the flow tables in common use in
the different laboratories and also in the spread of mortar obtained from a given number of jolts.
However, despite these differences, there was good agreement between the ASTM tables in three of the
laboratories in achieving a spread of 145 mm and a tolerable level of agreement between the ASTM tables
and the EN 459 tables. The Italian table and those in use in Norway and Portugal however, gave very
different results. At this stage of the evaluation there was promise that an effective means of calibration
was possible and it was encouraging to proceed further with this type of test procedure.
An attempt was also made to calibrate the flow tables using mixtures of EN 196-1:1994 sand and aqueous
solutions of cellulose ethers and standard viscosity oils. The rheological properties of these materials
proved to be markedly different from those of the mortars to be tested and they were not proceeded with.
5 Test procedure
5.1 Introduction
The test procedure b

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