Understanding Portable Cement Mixer Capacity

A 4.1 cubic foot cement mixer or a 1.94 cubic foot mixer?

There is misleading information that accompanies the sale of small cement mixers today. There are retailers that advertise large capacities in the bold headlines, and then they hide the real capacity from the buyer down in the spec sheet. It is only when you dig deeper that you will find the actual mixing capacity of their equipment.

Obviously the marketing and sales departments of each manufacturer wants to show their product in the greatest light. They want you to believe that you can yield higher volumes of wet concrete and very high production rates per hour. Yet, we have discovered that the stated capacities differs greatly from actual mixing capacity and that hourly production calculations are nothing more than a sales pitch gone wrong.
Cement mixer capacity exposed
This misinformation represents a real problem for those who are attempting to find a mixer to meet the demands of a specific project. For example: If you need to produce 20 cubic ft of material per hour, then you would want to know accurate batch sizes and correct mixing cycle times before you spend money on a mixing solution.

There should be some truth in advertising when it comes to the sale of contractor cement mixers, but alas there is slight of hand.

We suggest that you never purchase a cement mixer without discovering the truth about the wet material capacity of the equipment.

We spent some time exploring an online site that sells cement mixers. They obviously sell these mixers by highlighting and listing their capacities. We found a 4.1 cubic foot mixer that seems like a great price for the capacity that was advertised. They called it a 4.1 Cubic Foot Cement Mixer…

If you calculate this 4.1 cubic foot mixer by the cost of capacity, then you should be buying a mixer at $72.93 per cubic foot of capacity (It is advertised at $299)
But this is not accurate, because the 4.1 cubic foot mixer will only mix 1.94 cubic feet of wet concrete in each batch. So your mixer is really costing you $154.12 per cubic foot of production capacity.

A call to the customer service department of this retailer found that the 1.94 cubic foot wet mix capacity is due to the limitations of the electric motor to spin the weight of the concrete in the drum. The 4.1 cubic foot advertised capacity is how much air the unit will hold.

The real issue is that the capacity disparity is misleading when you are attempting to purchase a mixer based upon mixing output. You are actually spending money on air, not concrete mixing production, if you are to believe the advertised capacity.

Cement mixer buyer beware…

If you understand that what is advertised as cement mixer capacity is much higher than what you are getting, then you will be a wise consumer of these mixers. A quick review of various mixers shows that actual mixing volume is about ½ of what is advertised, but not all retailers share this fact.

You may be asking why don’t they just sell at the accurate capacities? A great question, for which you should demand an answer!

For the record… Cart-Away cement mixers will produce as much or more than what is stated in any of the advertising claims. We tell it to you straight!

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4 Responses to Understanding Portable Cement Mixer Capacity

  1. Tom Vail says:

    I’m sure if you called 10 manufacturers of mixers all would say that they have to practice this deception because their competitors do. It seems to me this is an opportunity for a mixer manufacturer to step up, like you have, and point out the real working capacity.

  2. Brenton says:

    Very good article. I bought a mixer 25 years ago believing it was a light burn 2.5 cft unit. However doing precise concrete work the amount of cement required to make a good 32mpa mix never worked out. So I finally filled my mixer with 10 litre buckets of water to find it holds 40 litres. That’s 0.04m cubic and equal to only 1.37 cubic feet.
    Finally all clear, just a pity I cannot find the bloke I bought it from all those years ago. Probably he was deceived as well by the dealer.

    • Adam says:

      My name is Adam, I work for a dealership, are you interested in selling those mixers you bought several years ago Brenton? If so, call me at (678)381-4942

  3. john says:

    I’ve been reading about mixers a lot at the moment and yes they are all only capable of mixing about half the advertised volume. We must understand though motor power aside concrete is very heavy, 2.5 tons a cubic metre. So you can tell just by looking at them they won be able to handle much. I’m going to build my own only issue is it wont be as portable as a smaller one.

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