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Batch mixers are mixing machines that are designed to efficiently combine different ingredients into construction materials that are used for interior and exterior projects. The distinctive name of the mixer is indicative of its function, in that the mixer is used to prepare an entire batch of the substance required. This is in contrast to a continuous mixer, where materials are fed into the device continually, creating an ongoing supply of product.
While there is some variation in design, the typical batch mixer is in the form of a cylindrical tank that is equipped with openings at each end. Raw materials are inserted into the tank at one end, while controls cause the tank to rotate. As the materials are thoroughly mixed, the product is discharged from the opposite end, usually into a tray that directs the flow of the product into molds or troughs. Large mixers of this type are usually mounted on a wheeled frame, making it easy to move them into the most strategic position during the construction phase.
The batch mixer has an extremely high capacity, making it possible to prepare batches of up to one thousand gallons or 3785 liters. One of the advantages of using a mixer of this type is that it is possible to control the exact combination of ingredients, thus allowing the builder to have greater control over the quality of the finished product. When using a continuous mixer, where ingredients are fed into the device on an ongoing basis, there is more of a chance of some small variation from one of the smaller batches to the next.
It is possible to use a batch mixer for a number of different projects. The most common is in the preparation of concrete for sidewalks, building foundations, and similar construction efforts. With many forms of concrete, the process involves combining the dry ingredients, allowing them to blend thoroughly, then adding in the liquid until the desired consistency is achieved. Once the batch is completed, the concrete mixture is funneled from the body of the mixer to the site where the material is spread into position. A similar process is employed when using a rotary batch mixer to produce foam solutions for fire extinguishers.
A concrete batch mixer can also be used to produce other types of building materials, such as grout or mortar. The exact process will vary, depending on the ingredients used and the consistency that is desired for the final product. In many cases, the tank of the mixer is flushed after each use, making the interior of the rotating chamber clean and ready for the production of the next batch.