By Lucy Perry
Streamlined Connections A smart pre-construction process ramps up efficiency, turnaround
Logistics and staging, from shop to field, play a key role in the pre-construction planning process for Steel Service Corp., a Jackson, Miss., fabricator. “We keep it as efficient as we can to keep it as cost-effective as we can, as a team,” says Jim Simonson, executive vice president and COO.
erect their fabricated components in the field. “We keep it as efficient as we can to keep it as cost-effective as we can, as a team,” he says. Smooth, sequenced deliveries of the materials needed—and only when needed—make fabrication operations more cost-effective, too. So does adopting quality-control processes into the pre-construction fabrication process. For example, with an integrated barcoding system, Steel Service can track materials as they leave the plant and as they arrive at the site, and mark rigging weights onto each piece to speed up work on the jobsite.
wo of the major influencers in steel erection today are speed and efficiency. Customers demand quick turnaround, productivity, and safety, and the steel industry answers with pre-construction fabrication processes that are as efficient and cost-effective as possible. Modular designs in the shop, created with 3D software programs, require fewer live connections in the field. And quality-control practices, such as barcoding components, guarantee smooth field operations. “There’s a movement towards controlled fabrication/modularization, where work is
Lucy Perry operates WordSkills Editorial Services in Kansas City, Mo. With 35 years of writing and editing experience, she has spent 20 years following the North American construction industry. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
done more in the shop. In a controlled environment, components in the field are installed as fast as possible,” says Jason Hoover, eastern regional business manager and industry outreach executive for SidePlate Systems, a Mission Viejo, Calif.-based designer of custom steel connections. “That’s the model we’ve adopted.” That controlled environment not only increases productivity, but makes for a quicker turnaround, adds Hoover. Getting all concerned entities involved in a project early on also shortens turnaround time, ensuring the transition from shop to field is glitch-free. “We hold early coordination meetings between the erector and fabricator so they know early on how they can make the process as efficient as possible,” explains Jim Simonson, executive vice president and COO of Steel Service, a Jackson, Miss., which hires erectors to assemble and
18 | THE STEEL ERECTORS ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA
The barcode comes out with the shipping mark, the job number, and the weight of the piece, so when the rigger gets ready to hook it to the crane, he knows how much weight he’s dealing with. Steel Service’s team creates and shares the shipping piece list so the erector can check off pieces on the shipping ticket to make sure he has everything he needs. In the sequenced logistics model that Steel Service follows, multiple truckloads to make up each sequence. How the loads get staged out and fed to the jobsite; making sure all the safety aspects are met to make it more efficient; ensuring that perimeter safety holes are pre-drilled; recognizing that lifelines or
In the shop, Steel Service uses barcodes so all its pieces have the shipping mark, the job number, and weight. In the field with a Steel Service-provided shipping piece list, the erector can check off pieces on the shipping ticket, and the rigger knows how much weight he’s dealing with when he hooks a component to the crane.
In this issue: Streamlined Pre-Con Techniques; Low Level Fall Protection; 2017 Convention Highlights; Big Box & High Rise