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SA-56 Shrinkage Limit Set is used in Shrinkage Limit Tests to determine shrinkage properties of cohesive soils, defined as the water content at which further loss of moisture will not cause a decrease in volume. The test is one of the Atterberg Limits methods of defining characteristics of cohesive soils.
This ASTM D4943 method has been the recommended alternative to the original D427 test method, which was withdrawn in 2008 due to its use of mercury for volume determinations. The D4943 recommended alternative uses similar apparatus for preparation of a soil pat, but requires immersion of the pat in melted wax. This step prevents absorption during a subsequent immersion in water for mass determination.
A soil specimen with moisture content above the liquid limit is placed in the shrinkage dish and struck off with the straightedge. The soil pat is then oven dried. After coating in melted wax, volume of the soil pat is computed by weighing in water and noting the difference from its weight in air.
The SA-19 Wax Melting Pot and SAA-15 Microcrystalline Wax are required components for this testing process and are sold separately.
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