The process of fixing stainless steel, aluminum and glass products has various options when positioning these in the space intended for installation. Depending on the type of product, in some cases it will be necessary to fully fix it to the available space and in other cases, this fixing may be standard or non-permanent, depending on the element to be installed. This will also depend on the material used and the utility of the product. For example, the fixing of an aluminum door or window is not the same as the fixing required for a stainless steel railing.
In the case of elements that require a resistant fixation, as in the case of railings, the best option is always anchoring. This is usually done by inserting a rod, pipe or profile into a hole and using a special material or product for its fixing. This product used must provide the anchor with high mechanical resistance so that the installed system does not lose rigidity or become disconnected from the ground over time.
Within the world of products for anchoring and fixing materials, there are all kinds, from chemicals to mechanical anchors. In this post, we are going to teach you a little more about anchoring made using expansive cement. This type of anchor is the one we use in most modular railings and has some characteristics and properties that make it the best option for fixing jobs. To get started, let’s define what an anchor is:
An anchor is a broad concept that refers to a piece or part of material that serves as a fixing element to a structure. Generally, the primary purpose of anchoring is to embed or secure an item, part, or assembly to a wall, frame, or the ground itself. The need to use anchors stems from the fact that, in general, the structures or areas where products of all kinds are installed are subjected to various forces. From forces caused by the wind, the weight of the materials, impacts, vibrations in the ground, among others. Under these conditions, it is necessary to fix the elements in such a way as to guarantee resistance to all these forces and external agents that may affect the position and rigidity of the installed elements.
The types of anchors that exist are many, since they depend to a great extent on the field of application. We have mechanical anchors, which generally use systems similar to flanges, chemical anchors for small and medium-sized parts, anchors by welding union processes, among others. The field of application of the anchors, previously mentioned, is extensive. They are used in construction, mining, decoration, architecture and practically in any profession dedicated to the manufacture and installation of products.
Cement is a material that allows to give cohesion to two or more materials or elements that are physically and chemically separated from each other. This union is possible thanks to the chemical properties of cement, which, in general, is made up of limestone and clay in specific proportions and which, when it comes into contact with water, allows it to bind and join any type of piece. It is a product that is widely used in the construction and architecture industry and is found in practically any structure built by man. It is important to clarify from the outset that traditional cement is not the same as expansion cement, which we will discuss later, since it has specific properties due to the hydration to which it responds more strongly chemically.
There are mainly two types of cement at present, those of the clayey type and those of the pozzolanic type. From this general classification, the most popular commercial cements such as Portland cement, blended cements, fast-setting cements, and aluminous cements, among others, emerge. Most have a group of properties among which the following stand out: resistance to chemical attacks, to high temperatures thanks to its refractory characteristic, to impacts and to all types of contact with common materials present in nature.
An important point to take into account with respect to traditional cement is its volumetric stability. This means that by default the cement does not expand when it solidifies, it even shows contractions due to solidification. In the case of requiring expansion during solidification, the following type of special cement comes into play:
Expansive cement is a special variety of traditional cement that takes full advantage of the property of expansion by hydration. This chemical reaction is achieved by combining traditional portland cement with calcium sulfate in a large proportion. The resulting mixture, which dries quickly (between 10 and 15 minutes), has the most attractive characteristics of cement and at the same time allows it to occupy spaces that would otherwise remain when the cement is poured.
Regarding the use of expansive cement, it is generally classified in two ways: for destructive and non-destructive uses. The destructive use is mainly in applications where the pressures generated by the expansion during the drying of the cement are used to break rocks or demolish traditional cement or hard areas of the soil. In the non-destructive field, it is ideal for anchoring pipes, profiles or rods to the ground, since the expansion and controlled pressure exerted by the cement allow the entire hole to be covered without leaving spaces that cause poor grip or embedment.
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