architects, engineers... do they think about the building process?

Discussion in 'Architecture & Engineering' started by Mr. Hamtastic, Nov 27, 2008.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Mr. Hamtastic whackawhackado! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,492
    I have seen so many intances of material waste in construction, because the design calls for something moronic. I have seen masons cut bricks to 7 and 3/4 inches long, due to some stupidity on the part of the architect. Electrical engineers don't even consider where, precisely, wireways need to be run, it gets left to the field electrician to decide. Isn't there software for this stuff? Don't get me started on the conflicting drawings of equipment placement between trades... more than one sprinkler head has been moved for light placement, and vice-versa.
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    11,888
    The short answer to your question is: yes.
    7-3/4" bricks? Architect's stupidity or conformance with some staute on maximum size of building?
    Wireways: as an engineer/ designer I've found over the years that the guy at the "coal face" likes to have some autonomy, and dislikes overly-restrictive layouts.
     
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    33,264
    We always run wiring to the electrical outlets that the blueprints tell us where they are located. There's no real need to draw in the wires for they can only be installed in a few ways to get them to where they are going, overhead, underground or inside the walls. The only waste I see at sites is usually the form boards for the headers or other areas form boards are used. The cement blocks that are used where I am are also sometimes cut down to size only so that the fit is neat and tight. It isn't always that brick masons can use every cement block exactly the way they are made.
     
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    23,053
    I've designed projects specifically for modular brick ...only to find that the during the bidding process, the contractor found king-size brick cheaper, so the owner gave his permission to make the change.

    And yet when the engineer/architect does design those raceways and conduit locations, the electricians build it differently because of some "normal" practices that he's used to.

    Ham, you have to understand the differences between the drawings/designs and work in the field. I've found that contractors/builders "know" what has to be done and seldom even consult the drawings!

    Ham, it's not always the fault of the architects and/or engineers.

    Baron Max
     
  8. Mr. Hamtastic whackawhackado! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,492
    As the builder, I have to say a bit more detail would be appreciated. What happened to the old overlay system of drawings?

    I have stood as a foreman trying to interpret drawings, and a worker trying to do what the foreman says. It looks like it is the designer's fault, because we either have no access to the customer, or the customer comes to us asking ten billion questions and suggesting that the designer won't listen.

    Give me a general print, I'll make it happen, give me a detailed, accurate print, I'll make it happen faster and more efficiently. Maybe not mor money for the designer, but more money for the GC, and thus more money for my company.
     
  9. kmguru Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,757
    My designs always match what can be done in the field. That is because it was my reponsibility to supervise the field construction and startup. Some installers do not care how the wiring looks behind the panel and it could look like a spagetti mess. But both myself and my installer/field techncian are artistic in nature so we try to make it as elegant as possible - behind the panel or in the front.

    These days there are software that does the raceways layout...sameway the multilayer circuit boards are done. If you look closely most Japanese circuit boards are fairly elegant layout but Koreans were not several years ago...now they are catching up.
     
  10. draqon Banned Banned

    Messages:
    35,006
    to have everything calculated and simulated will require ginormous number of hours and time...work for which is underpayed and given not enough time.
     
  11. CheskiChips Banned Banned

    Messages:
    3,538
    By the way...when building a house...

    What's with the drywall guy not drywalling before the tub is put in...and they won't put the tub in before they drywall. What ends up happening as I have seen is they put the tub in, they put up the drywall, they have to replace the tub...they take it out and put a new one in. For every bathtub you see, 2 were used!?

    As a foreman explain that one.
     
  12. thecollage Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    431
    I was going to be an architect but decided against it because the math ate me alive. Unless they are an architect engineer, they are more along the lines of design as opposed to construction. That probably explains the waste. Make sense?
     
  13. Baron Max Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    23,053
    CAD systems make the overlay system as obsolete as the pencil! With CAD drawings, one can make "layers" then use those layers to do almost anything, show almost anything. I've done it numerous times.

    And I've stood as an architect trying to explain to the developer (my client) why it was taking longer than ten minutes to design a 24-story condo project!

    I've stood as the client adamantly demands that we stop work and send the drawings out for the bidding process, then for construction. His answer to all of my concerns? ... "Oh, hell, don't worry about it! The builder knows what he's doing!"

    As an architect, give me more money and more time, and I can give the builder and contractors anything and everything they need to build the projects.

    Ham, as you know, life ain't no bowl of cherries or a rose garden. We all make do with what we're permitted or allowed ....we're all constrained by money, time or both.

    Baron Max
     
  14. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Messages:
    24,690
    There's no shortage of people who can hang drywall--especially a vertical installation!--and these days some of them are pretty hungry. Unless you live in the middle of Montana, you will be able to find someone whom you can supervise personally and he will hang the drywall anywhere you tell him to hang the drywall, as long as you pay him. Then have the tub installed and if you have to go back and completely re-do the drywall bring the guy back and ask him to re-do it. It will be a whole lot cheaper than a new tub!

    Is your tub guy articulate enough and cooperative enough to explain to you in understandable language why the drywall has to go in first? Or is this just one of those legendary "union rules"?

    If this is an industrial project, I don't know what to tell you, except you're getting a first-hand view of how America got this bad. But if you're remodeling, you will soon learn that you have to be your own prime contractor if you want it done on schedule, on budget... and right!
     
  15. Cyperium I'm always me Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,985
    I'll be your prime contractor if that is what it takes. (and that is how the world works)
     
  16. Digmaster Registered Member

    Messages:
    22
    (In response to the first few posts) It sounds like this is just the result of poor communication between architects, engineers, and the builders. If we had an improved way for these three parties to communicate, we'd have less construction waste.
     
  17. kmguru Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,757
    That is what six sigma, ISO9001 etc are there for....
     
  18. weed_eater_guy It ain't broke, don't fix it! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,516
    ...and basic common sense. Sadly, this is not so common anymore... *sigh*

    My family had some guys rebuild a part of their house recently. My dad's a civil engineer who did some of his own architecture work for the project (had the plans formally approved of course). He called for and was willing to pay for overbuilt joints and such that were designed such that the roof could better withstand possible tornado damage (my dad's like that, don't ask). Contractors just built the things the same ol' cheap-ass way they normally do, even after being shown and explained the drawing THE MORNING BEFORE THEY BUILT THESE JOINTS!!!

    The guys on-site don't like being bossed around, and the guys planning don't like people on-site "winging it" too much. Didn't help that these guys smelled thick with bud every other day they were on site...
     
  19. Woody Musical Creationist Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,419
    The brick morter wasn't accounted for.

    That's because it isn't worth the trouble for an electrical engineer to "figure it" on a drawing when the tradesman has the skills to make it work and has to do the labor himself anyway and pay his people to get it done. If he goes over his bid then he often eats the cost of it depending on whose fault it is. It can be his call in the field and he has standard codes he must meet as a tradesman.

    A drawing is a plan, but you have more information once something is being built. No computer program is good enough to tell you what the weather is going to be before a construction project begins. The building process is the "software" with its built in checks and balances that are supposed to be managed by the project manager under the scope, schedule, and budget. 3-D CAD is about the closest thing you can get to replace human visualization skills, but the plan isn't well executed unless it addresses the uncertainties as they arise. This may require a deviation from the original plan to keep the project on time and on budget without sacrificing integrity.

    Some information is better determined in the field than at a CAD terminal. This is especially true of a refurbishment job. Consider this analogy:

    A surgeon has a plan to do an operation based on x-rays and many different tests. When the surgeon gets in there he may find the actual problem to be worse than he expected. Hence he alters the plan based on his experience and judgment. Gotta know what you are doing. :shrug:
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2009
  20. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    33,264

    Your dad had the right to stop them from working on the house until he could get the workers boss to do what he wanted them to do. He could have easily just called their boss to explain that they were not doing as was drawn and then the boss should have reprimanded the employees not your dad. That's where I think your dad made an error, dealing with the employees rather than their boss to start with. If at anytime a person sees something being done they have the right to ask the men working on his property to leave until a remedy is found for what ever the problem and those men must comply.
     
  21. weed_eater_guy It ain't broke, don't fix it! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,516
    You're right, and I should've mentioned, my dad did take this up with their boss. The problem is the foreman was the boss's son, and therefore the son could do no wrong, even if he did flunk out as a mech engineer. Fortunately, after they went 125% over budget without being halfway through (part due to the guys wasting the last paid hour hanging out by their trucks in our damn driveway, like we wouldn't notice...), my parents got the contract renegotiated under threat of lawsuit.

    Never do a time-and-material's contract. The only reason my folks did is because they heard the guy was credible, but they we expecting the guy to be the foreman, not his pot-head spawn.
     
  22. mikenostic Stop pretending you're smart! Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,624
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! I can't believe you brought this up. My other IT support cohort and I were discussing this the other day about our new call center. I've often asked if the engineers/designers of the bldg had dropped acid or ate some shrooms when they designed the place. It's as if they used no common sense when they built it.
     
  23. h.g.Whiz Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    37
    If they won more awards for making the building process more efficient and safer and economical instead of being unique and comestically uniform there would be less waste.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page