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Mortar is the bonding material between bricks, concrete block, stone, and many other masonry materials.It is made from Portland cement, lime, sand, and water in varying ratios. Lime-sand mortars are a factory produced mixture of damp sand and hydrated lime delivered to site in specified proportions, to which cement, additives and water are added in a mixer prior to use. A common mortar made from portland cement has one part cement to one part of lime and 6 parts of sand (abbreviated to CI:LI:S6 or more simply 1:1:6). The limestones from which hydraulic limes are formed naturally contain a varied range of minerals of which silica and alumina are the main ones for creating hydraulic lime. Hi. A whiter mortar typically indicates a lime mortar. Preparation of the mix In most cases ‘soft’ building sands conforming to either Type S (BS 1199) or Type G (BS 1200). i.e. Guide to mixing natural hydraulic lime mortar Hydraulic limes differ from non-hydraulic limes in that they have a chemical set as well as the process of carbonation. Its use dates back at least 6,000 years, to the Ancient Egyptians who used lime to plaster the pyramids. Most bricks and blocks are quite porous and as only a thin layer of mortar is required, a wet or “sloppy” mix is often preferable. Cement/Lime mortars. The best mortar mix type for any project depends on the application and the various design specifications for the masonry construction. Mixing Mortar. Each type is mixed with a different ratio of cement, lime, and sand to produce specific performance characteristics such as flexibility, bonding properties, and compressive strength. Lime mortar today is primarily used in the conservation of existing old buildings or the recreation of new ones using traditional methods. The firmness of the wet mortar can be altered by changing the type of sand, the sand/cement ratio and the amount of water added to the mix. The most common mortar mix ratio for wall plastering is 1:6, here 1 part is cement and 6 part is sand in a workable amount of water. The strength can be increased upto 2.0 N/mm2 by decreasing one portion of sand. There is a quick test you can conduct to further check what type of mortar you have. There is a white Portland cement mortar, this can be tricky and fool the eye into thinking you are looking at historic lime mortar. Lime mortars – Pure lime mortars usually require a well graded sharp sand to perform adequately, a typical specification would be to BS882:1992.T.4 Grades ‘C’ & ‘M’. The strength of 1:6 ratio of mortar after 28 days is 3.0 N/mm2. Lime mortar is composed of lime (hydraulic, or non hydraulic), water and an aggregate such as sand. Mortar proportions are always expressed as the proportion of cement to lime to sand… and always in that order. If mortar is grayer in color, it is likely Portland cement modern mortar. Traditional mortar was made from lime putty, or slaked lime, combined with local sand, generally in a ratio of 1 part lime putty to 3 parts sand by volume. Mortar mix is a critically important building component that must be combined thoroughly. Lime mortar basically falls into two main catagories; 'Pure' lime is that which has been produced with no impurities and is reliant on good drying conditions for a 'set' to be acheived (often sold as lime putty)and hydraulic lime is basically the same, but with impurities within the fiished lime … The proportioning and mixing guide for site-made mortar ( below ) also applies to lime-sand mortar. 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