Friday, April 17, 2015

Drawing interpretation and Communication

Not long ago, we engaged one of our trusted trade partners to fabricate a steel rail for a staircase. Due to the speed of the project, we met on site, drew sketches in the field, turned over a final CAD drawings, and they proceeded with the fabrication. The installed rail was not detailed as had been drawn or discussed. Their project manager agreed to reconfigure the design as intended. We are pleased to work with trade partners who exhibit our same dedication to “getting it right”. However, issues as this one in the design and construction process strike me as peculiar. Does a fabricator not see the same thing as drawn on the page? Or what designers find even more discomforting; does a fabricator take it upon him/herself to change the design? Lesson learned: even when fast-tracking, work closely with trusted trade partners and always have the fabricator produce shop drawings. By the way, the finished rail looks great.
Original rail drawing
First iteration in field
Revised rail under construction
Final rail complete
Final rail complete