Sophisticated Subcontractors

Thursday around 5PM, after the subforums had wrapped up, Jim Bratton from Dyna Electric started rotating through one of his models. Operative word – his. We were all quite impressed because most electrical subcontractors insist that there is no value in modeling. Because of some schedule issues, we were able to pair him with David Morris, from EMCOR, for a presentation Friday morning to discuss model collaboration as a subcontractor. Like Kathleen’s presentation, this was an “instantly useful” presentation.

David spoke about coordination and although most of the things that he discussed were “flashes of the blinding obvious”, they are things that we consistently miss or leave out. He stressed the importance of publishing a Written Coordination Plan prior to the start of coordination. He also shared his coordination schedule, which was very helpful: a simple spreadsheet that works backwards from installation, identifying tasks such as fabrication, coordination sign off, general coordination, etc. The simplicity made so much sense – my sense is that we often over complicate our coordination schedules, to the point where no one even looks at them (never mind sticks to them).

Jim walked us through several of his models, pointing out things that he modeled: hangers, anchors, brackets, (some) wall studs, miscellaneous metals, seismic bracing etc. One thing that he wants to do on his next project is model clearance volumes to represent working access and service access. His general statement about scope was: If you don’t model it, it will be an issue on the job site. On projects that he coordinates, he insists that if a sub doesn’t model a certain component, it must be installed last.

I was so impressed with everything they said that I am going to set up a conference call for next week with Jim, David and the M/E/P/FP subcontractors for the Autodesk project, for guidance or inspiration or something along those lines.

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