Which soil grain size analysis method should you choose?
It depends. You’ll need to examine your research goals, define what the measurement will be used for, and then weigh the advantages and disadvantages of the above methods. Keep in mind that the accuracy of soil texture analysis and the grain size distribution curve depends on the methods and tools you use.
For example: The PARIO (ISP+ method) is a good method for people looking to minimize the amount of time and labor it takes to perform a particle size analysis because it reduces labor while improving the accuracy over other sedimentation-based methods.
It's important to understand that no matter what method you choose, you will need to pretreat the samples and sieve the sand fraction.In short, understanding the pros and cons of each method and defining the desired outcome can help you decide which will be most effective.
Dane, Jacob H., and Clarke G. Topp, eds. Methods of soil analysis, Part 4: Physical methods. Vol. 20. John Wiley & Sons, 2020. Article link.
Durner, Wolfgang, Sascha C. Iden, and Georg von Unold. "The integral suspension pressure method (ISP) for precise particle‐size analysis by gravitational sedimentation." Water Resources Research 53, no. 1 (2017): 33-48. Article link.
Gee, G.W. and Or, D. (2002). 2.4 Particle Size Analysis. In Methods of Soil Analysis (eds J.H. Dane and G. Clarke Topp). Article link.
McKeague, J. A., and Peter C. Stobbe. "History of soil survey in Canada 1914-1975." (1978). Article link.
Syvitski, James PM, ed. Principles, methods, and application of particle size analysis. Vol. 388. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991. Book link.
Yong, Raymond Nen, and Benno P. Warkentin. Introduction to soil behavior. No. 451 pp. 1966. Article link.