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09 May 2022

Jan de Beer on behalf of Cement & Concrete SA’s School of Concrete Technology

With Covid-19 lockdown restrictions now eased, Cement & Concrete SA’s School of Concrete Technology (SCT) will visit Durban in June and Cape Town in August to present live tuition for three basic but important training courses in concrete technology.

In Durban, SCT will on June 6 and 7 present the two-day “SCT10 Introduction to Concrete” course; on June 8, the “SCT12 Mortars, Plasters, Screeds, and Masonry” course; and on June 9, “SCT13 Making Concrete Bricks and Blocks”. The venue will be the Premier Splendid Inn in King’s Road in Pinetown with practical sessions, if included, carried out at the CONTEST laboratory in Westmead.  In Cape Town, where the PPC Cement premises at Montague Gardens is the venue, August 1 and 2 are the dates for SCT10, August 3 for SCT12, and August 4 for SCT13.  

John Roxburgh, senior lecturer at the School of Concrete Technology, says the “Introduction to Concrete” course is hugely popular and suitable not only for emerging and new building contractors, small or medium-sized enterprises, but also for any newcomer to concrete-related work responsibilities.

“Sales and laboratory staff as well as site employees will greatly benefit from this training which deals with essential elements of concrete operations such as getting the basics right and knowing why certain procedures and practices are required. This is vital background knowledge for anyone planning careers in concrete and concrete-related industries.  In fact, even the most junior staff in companies in the cement and concrete sectors should be armed with the knowledge this course offers,” Roxburgh adds. 

He says emerging building contractors will also greatly benefit from the course as it covers all essential aspects such as the basics of materials for concrete, batching and mixing of concrete, and the necessary requirements for transporting, placing, compacting, and protecting as well as curing of concrete.

“SCT12 Mortars, Plasters, Screeds, and Masonry” is of particular interest to contractors and companies involved in house building. It was originally developed by SCT to assist National Home Builders’ Registration Council (NHBRC) inspectors to interpret and assess the requirements of the NHBRC Home Builder’s Manual. South African builders must enrol new homes with the NHBRC before construction starts to protect housing consumers’ rights.

The syllabus for this course includes:

  • Factors that affect the strength of concrete;
  • The role and selection of cement, sand, stone, and water in the production of concrete;
  • Mix proportions for concrete for foundations and floors;
  • Floor screeds;
  • Properties of mortar and plaster;
  • Sand-cement mixes;
  • Slump and cube tests for concrete;
  • Vital role of proper curing; and
  • Concrete and clay masonry: expansion and shrinkage.

Finally, “SCT13 Making concrete bricks and blocks”, is a half-day session providing a basic understanding of how to manufacture masonry units that could become the cornerstone of a new business enterprise.  “The small-scale production of concrete bricks and blocks for masonry is ideal for small businesses. Manufacturing can be carried outdoors, the process is simple, and the equipment required not exorbitantly expensive,” Roxburgh adds.

For further information about the coastal training courses, contact Rennisha Sewnarain at [email protected] or phone 011 315 0300 or visit www.cemcon-sa.org.za.

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