Block Making Machine – Rising Demand in Developing Countries

There are two main categories of masonry recognized in the construction industry. These are either block or stone masonry. Recently there has been enormous interest in the use of block masonry as compared to use of stone in construction. Most developing countries in Africa and the world are in the middle of a construction boom and this has created demand for construction equipments.

The Block Making Machine
The usage of the block making has been increasing in the recent years, mainly due to the rise in the construction projects around the world. The concrete block making machine offers multiple advantages which has made them more preferred over the stone blocks in the developing countries. Some of these advantages are;

  • Guaranteed versatility; the concrete blocks are highly versatile for everyday use due to high structural strength and performance. The blocks can also be manufactured in various colors, shapes and surface textures both for indoor and outdoor usage.
  • They are manufactured in larger sizes and therefore requiring much fewer joints as compared to stone blocks which are cut in standard sizes.
  • The concrete block machine is able to manufacture blocks of uniform sizes, which allows use of modular systems and accuracy of construction is achieved with these concrete blocks.
  • Cost reduction ;the concrete blocks are more cost effective as compared other types of blocks due to the production efficiency derived use of the block making machine. This has also made them attractive for use in the developing countries.
  • High compressive strength; the compression strength of the concrete blocks exceeds 10N/mm2. This allows them use in many resistant walls.

Features of the Concrete Block Machine Promoting Demand in These Countries
Automation; there has been high level of automation in the manufacturing and construction of the concrete block machines. The current machines have gone one step further to make the machines as semi automatic. One example is the machine construction where the molding trays are easily movable, rather than having to move the entire machine.

Control systems; the equipment comes with a computerized control system including a touch screen interphase and an encoder for various operational processes. These will help in controlling the frequency and range of vibration with exact precision. This makes the concrete block machine to be among the most reliable machines on the market today.   

Efficiency in power consumption
Continued innovation and research has led to the development of block making machines that have high energy savings, while maintaining high performance levels. This has great advantages in the developing countries where electrical installations and power supply levels are always fluctuating.

Production Capacity
The high production capacity of the block making machines has also been a major factor driving demand for the machines and the increase usage of concrete blocks in the developing countries. The machine output per hour can be as high as 1000 blocks depending on the number of moulds and size of the moulds made per hour.
With all these positive developments and features, the demand for the block making machine will continue to grow exponentially in developing as well as developed countries. 

Block & Pipe Making Machines Designs That Have Dominated the Industry

The concrete blocks are manufactured either through manual method or with the use of block making machine. Manual manufacturing method involves concrete moulds kept in a row and concrete is poured and compacted in the mould with a vibrator. Over time this method has been seen to be slow for mass production of blocks and this led to the development of the block making machines.
This machine has a replaceable gang mould system that can produce many blocks at the same time. The quality of the blocks shows that they are superior in strength and have a better finish due to better control of equipment during the compaction phase of the process.

Critical Design Parameters for the Block Making Machines
Achieving the right compaction of a concrete block is an important criteria affecting the block quality and resulting strength. The compaction of a mould depends on the frequency, amplitude and duration of vibration.  In essence, ready mix concrete with coarse aggregate requires a lower frequency of vibration and higher amplitude while that of finer fractions will require higher frequency and lower amplitude.

Design Features

  • The equipment may be equipped trolley wheels, with the front pairs connected to a steering system for easier movement from one point to another.
  • Incorporation of a horizontal power shaft connected to an electric motor through a v-belt system and pulleys for off loading the completed blocks.
  • Moulding section is equipped with several slots/ cavities to enables machine deliver more than one block per cycle.
  • Fitting pads have been equipped with built in with vibration isolating devices that help confine the vibrations to the mould block.
  • With these salient features, an output of more than 150 blocks per hour can be achieved with better compaction and strength.

Pipe Making Machines Design Features
The concrete pipe making machine is another important product from the Apollo Infratech company. The development of the vertical cast process for manufacturing of concrete pipes has proved very efficient and cost effective. It has also proven to be the best automation technique requiring lesser labor force while achieving faster production, consistency and higher quality of product.

Some of the important innovations that will enhance the efficiency of the machine and improve production include;

  • Automated swivel arm operation and the concrete feeder
  • Hydraulic press / rocking functionality
  • Stationary control panel
  • Pneumatic system for casting of lined pipes
  • Elevation and cooling system for the vibrator
  • Double and triple casting stations for greater output per cycle
  • Hydraulic vibrator, with a modern frequency control system.

The incorporation of these innovative features in the pipe making machine makes the equipment extremely versatile and efficient, able to manufacture long lasting concrete pipes, culverts, manhole systems, reinforced and non-reinforced concrete pipes, non-circular pipes, manhole risers and many other related products. These machines are able effectively utilize the ready mix concrete with reduced wastage, leading to profitable operations.