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ASTM C451-13

ASTM C451-13

Standard Test Method for Early Stiffening of Hydraulic Cement (Paste Method)

2018-10-10 /Historical
Superseeded by:
Significance and Use:

5.1 The purpose of this test method is to determine the degree to which a cement paste develops early stiffening or to establish whether or not a cement complies with a specification limit on early stiffening.

5.2 When used for establishing compliance with a specification limit, the specification requirement is customarily stated in terms of the minimum allowable final penetration, in percent, calculated in accordance with the Calculation Section. When used for estimating the relative tendency of a cement to manifest early stiffening, additional information of value may be obtained if the remix procedure described in the Procedure Section is employed. Under some conditions, a judgment may be made by comparing the behavior in the initial test and in the remix procedure to differentiate a relatively less serious and less persistent tendency to early stiffening (false set) from one that is more persistent and, consequently, more serious (flash set).

5.3 Severe false setting in a cement may cause difficulty from a placing and handling standpoint, but it is not likely to cause difficulties where concrete is mixed for a longer time than usual, as usually occurs in transit mixing, or where it is remixed prior to placing or transporting, as occurs in concrete pumping operations. It is most likely to be noticeable where concrete is mixed for a short period of time in stationary mixers and transported to the forms in non-agitating equipment, such as on some paving jobs, and when concrete is made in an on-site batch plant.

5.4 Cements with severe false setting usually require slightly more water to produce the same consistency, which may be expected to result in slightly lower strengths and increased drying shrinkage.

5.5 Early stiffening resulting from false set is not likely to cause a cement to fail the applicable time of setting requirement.

5.6 Early stiffening resulting from flash set, depending on severity, can cause a cement to fail the applicable time of setting requirement.


1.1 This test method covers the determination of early stiffening in hydraulic-cement paste.

1.2 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as standard. No other units of measurement are included in this standard.

1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

Warning: Fresh hydraulic-cementitious mixtures are caustic and may cause chemical burns to skin and tissue upon prolonged exposure.2

1.4 The text of this standard references notes and footnotes which provide explanatory material. These notes and footnotes (excluding those in tables and figures) shall not be considered as requirements of the standard.

early stiffening; false set; flash set; hydraulic-cement paste; Vicat
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