The plastic limit is defined as the lowest moisture content of a soil that will permit a sample to be rolled into threads of 3 mm diameter without the threads breaking. When the water content of a fine-grained soil is reduced below the plastic limit, shrinkage of the soil mass continues until the shrinkage limit is reached. Shrinkage can be significant in clays but less so in silts and sands. The equipment listed enables the engineer to determine a number of important parameters, including shrinkage ratio, volumetric shrinkage and linear shrinkage.