Basic MEP Field Tools for Enriching BIM Workflows

MEP layout

No matter where you are in your BIM adoption process – whether you are just getting started with digital layout or already using advanced 3D workflows on every jobsite – there are field tools that can enrich your workflows and help you improve your accuracy, efficiency and overall productivity. Most mechanical, electrical and plumbing contractors begin experimenting with BIM by using paper or CAD files for MEP digital layout. MEP layout requires accurate information throughout the entire process to avoid expensive rework, so having the ability to quickly and easily add construction layout points to your project is critical in the field, as well as in standalone CAD environments. Here are three common MEP workflow challenges and the basic field tools that can help you overcome them. Continue reading…

When to Use a Scanning Total Station vs. a Dedicated Laser Scanner

MS50 Slab Flatness

When is it best to use a scanning total station versus a dedicated laser scanner?

It’s a question we’re increasingly being asked by professionals who want to improve accuracy and reduce rework on their construction projects. In both new construction and renovations, the rich, complete data captured with a laser scanner provides the required information with the accuracy needed for as-built documentation and construction planning. But what type of laser scanner is the best fit for your needs?

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Four Steps to Connect Models to Field Work

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For most contractors, accurately connecting information from the office to the field, and from the field back to the model in the office, is an ongoing challenge. In the office, the building information modeling (BIM) or virtual design and construction (VDC) group can push information and models out to the field all day long, but if the crews in the field – the ones actually doing the work – don’t buy in to the process, these models are nowhere near as valuable as they could be. How do you create a workflow that establishes buy-in from everyone on your team? Continue reading…

Laser Scanning: A Better Way to Analyze Concrete Slab Flatness

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Most of the methods used today for conducting slab flatness analysis are manual and labor intensive. Floor flatness/floor levelness (FF/FL), a commonly used method, requires the creation of a grid on the concrete slab following a set of specifications before taking manual readings. Contractors that use the ASTM E1155 standard method for determining floor flatness (FF) and floor levelness (FL) numbers typically take a measurement every foot along the grid lines. Using this method, even small projects often require a substantial amount of time to complete the data collection and analysis. Recently, however, contractors have begun to discover a new way to save a substantial amount of time and money on their projects: laser scanning.  Continue reading…

BIM 101: An Easy Handheld Solution for As-Builting into Revit

BIM 101 for as-builting with Revit

For companies that are just getting started in building information modeling (BIM), the variety of hardware and software that is used to connect the real world with the digital world can seem intimidating. However, BIM doesn’t have to be complex. Leica Geosystems’ BIM Business Manager Cathi Hayes demonstrates how the Leica DISTO D330i, an inexpensive and easy-to-use handheld laser measurement tool, ties directly into Autodesk Revit to provide a “BIM on the Fly” solution for as-builting. Watch the video to learn more. Continue reading…

A Simple Way to Monitor Structural Health in Supertalls and Superslims

“Supertalls,” the category of buildings over 984 feet tall, and “superslims,” a term being applied to supertall buildings with very small footprints, are becoming increasingly common in modern cityscapes. Surprisingly, however, structural health monitoring of the sort that is often deployed on bridges and dams is not a routine part of supertall asset management. Part of this is complacency; the Empire State Building, after all, was completed in 1931 and is still standing tall at 1,454 feet (including antenna). And in fact, skyscraper and supertall performance over time has been impressive. It appears that architects, structural engineers, and contractors really do know how to build tall buildings in ways that stand up to the forces of weather and time. But this very success could be creating new risk factors as the relatively sudden expansion of supertall and superslim construction puts pressure on architects to push the envelope of construction technology. Continue reading…

BIM 101: Getting Layout Points to the Field

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If your BIM data has already been prepped for field layout, you’re ready for the next step: taking it into the field. Armed with BIM layout points, plan underlays and reference models, you are now ready to shoot points on the jobsite that replicate the accuracy of BIM in the office. Continue reading…