Effect of Production Methods and Material Ratios on Mechanical Properties of the Composites
G.K. Matoke, S.F.O. Owido, D. M. Nyaanga
Journal of Engineering & Architecture, 1(1), pp. 24-33.

Plastic waste and bamboo fibres can be used to produce composites for the construction industry. This would reduce the environmental problems associated with plastic waste and also reduce pressure on conventional materials such as wood from forest resources. Recent interests in reducing the environmental impact of waste materials and forest cover enhancement have led to the development of composites. Fillers and reinforcements are used in the plastic industry to produce composites for load carrying structures. Bamboo, sisal and hemp are strong and renewable plant fibres that can replace synthetic fibres. This research focused on the effects of the production methods on the physical and mechanical properties of recycled plastic - bamboo fibre boards. Recyclable plastic wastes were cleaned, dried and shredded before melting to mix with bamboo fibres. The thermo plastics were heated poured into moulds where they were mixed with bamboo fibres and then allowed to cool completely before removal in the case of open casting. In compression moulding, the mould charge was pressed using the mould lid. Bending strength and impact strength were carried out in according to standard procedures. The fibre content and production method influenced mechanical properties of the composites. Mechanical properties of the composite were influenced by the method of production and materials ratios. The addition of bamboo fibres to the polymer improved the mechanical properties. Impact and bending strengths increased with increase in fibre content upto 30% then started decreasing. Tensile strength increased with increase in fibre content as fibres are strong and rigid in tension. Strain decreased with increase in fibre content as the enhanced fibre loading hardens the composite, thus reducing elongation. .These findings could be used to develop alternative materials for the construction industry.

Full Text: PDF

Matoke, G.K., Owido, S.F.O., & Nyaanga, D. M. (2013). Effect of Production Methods and Material Ratios on Mechanical Properties of the Composites. Journal of Engineering & Architecture, 1(1), pp. 24-33.

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George Matoke is a Deputy Director, Technical Education in the State Department of Science and Technology. He has a long experience in Science, Engineering and Technology. At the University of Egerton, he earned a bachelor of Industrial Technology and a Msc. in Engineering in 2011. Currently Mr. Matoke is pursuing a Ph.D in Renewable Energy at Kenyatta University.

He has served in various capacities in Technical Education and Informal Sector Development.

He has published his work in alternative source of construction materials and is a member of Task forces in Technical, Vocational Education and Training and Productivity centre establishment. He is a Technical Education Examiner interalia.


S.F.O. Owido
Associate Professor, Department of Crops
Horticulture and Soils, Egerton University
Box 536-20115, Egerton


D. M. Nyaanga
Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural Engineering
Egerton University Box 536-20115
Egerton, Kenya