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Aggregates: the difference between crushed stone and gravel

Crushed stone and gravel aggregates

Aggregates are an essential part of any concrete mix. Different concrete projects call for different aggregates, so make sure you know what the differences are between the aggregates. Crushed stone and gravel are not the same, even though they come from the same ore and the same quarries.

Crushed stone and gravel have different uses in construction. This is why aggregate suppliers will sell them separately. They have different methods of production and separate applications. Here are some details that you should know.

Production of crushed stone and gravel

Crushed stone is the result of breaking down large rocks in a crushing machine. The most common ore used to make crushed stone includes granite, limestone, trap rock, basalt, dolomite and sandstone.

Gravel is a natural product of weathering and erosion. It can be collected from river beds or harvested from the same quarries that produce crushed stone. The types of ore in the gravel are similar to crushed stone.

Crushed stone usually has more angled surfaces than gravel as a result of the crushing process. Crushed stone can also range in size from fine dust to large rocks. Gravel is more rounded and often smaller than crushed stone. Gravel also comes in various sizes, from 6mm up to 50mm.

Uses for crushed stone and gravel

Both aggregates are most commonly used for construction projects. The angular surfaces of crushed stone make it perfect for forming flat surfaces when compacted or rolled. It makes a stable, interlocking base for concrete foundations, roads and floors.

Crushed stone is also ideal for railway track ballast beds, a filler element, drainage system and retaining walls on shorelines and mountain roads.

Gravel, being smoother, is often used for aesthetic purposes. It also has a wider range of natural colours, which makes it ideal for decorative landscaping on pathways and flower beds. Gravel is also used as a flooring material on patios, paths, stepping stones and driveways.

If you want an aggregate for construction purposes, crushed stone is your best option. If you need an aggregate for decorative purposes, then gravel is the answer. The two aggregates have different purposes so use the right stone for the job.

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LafargeHolcim is a leading building materials and solutions company that has been operating in international markets for decades. We produce cement and aggregates for construction projects, ranging from small affordable housing developments to large-scale infrastructure projects such as high-rise buildings, dams and bridges.

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LafargeHolcim Tanzania has been supplying the country and neighbouring countries with our world-class Tembo cement brand for over 30 years. Our head office and fully-integrated plant are located in the Mbeya Region at Songwe in Southwest Tanzania.

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At LafargeHolcim Tanzania, we believe customers come first. We listen to your specific requirements to supply and develop the best solutions for your needs. As the new leader in building materials, you can also rely on our cutting-edge research and development capabilities that have resulted in the finest materials for your construction projects, whether large or small.

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