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Webinar Review: Fix Schedule Drift

Aug 20, 2019 11:54:45 AM

Many of Qnect's customers have shared with us just how much Qnect saves them from schedule drift. They said that the buffer gained by using Qnect has not only saved their project but also their reputations. It's a busy time for most in the structural steel business so keeping to schedule is key. With this recent feedback, we created a webinar to share with others just how to gain weeks of buffer time to stay on schedule. View the video or read through the transcription below.

Fix Schedule Drift: How to Gain Weeks of Buffer Time to Stay on Schedule

Design changes, RFIs, conflicts, all wreak havoc on detailing performance. That, in turn, impacts drawings-to-shop resulting in poor throughput, lost efficiency, upset clients, etc. How to mitigate this? Qnect is the perfect tool to create a buffer to handle this more effectively. Let us show you how in this special webinar.

We will walk you through these steps so you’ll be able to:

1. Create weeks and weeks of buffer time by connection engineering and detailing the model on the first day the model is ready.
2. Identify on Day 1 issues to resolve from ground to roof. Early data is crucial.
3. Identify connections that are problematic and need early attention on Day 1
4. Quickly make connection changes and save more time.

And, if desired, Qnect can optimize your building with absolutely no additional time needed.


HubSpot Video


Starts at 1:00 minute in - after the introductions

Let's start the technical presentation and we’re going to cover two areas that are very powerful in helping minimize schedule drift. 

The first one has to do with the extraordinary speed of our software. That [speed] will provide weeks and weeks if not months depending on the size of the project of buffer time that will help facilitate changes that will happen. 

The second part of our software and our presentation, is the speed in making revisions. Obviously, there will be a great deal of revisions on every job and our software is extraordinarily fast for that purpose and includes connection engineering; as you know, conventional systems require a connection engineer and a detailer. We still need both but Qnect will integrate those. 

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So why do changes happen? Well, obviously there are many changes and I need certainly if I don't need to tell you what they are but let's just kind of do a synopsis of how it could happen.

A order has a building they're trying to secure tenants, they move the process back, they're anticipating tenants on a certain date therefore we move: 

  • the erection date, 
  • drawing date, 
  • drawings for approval date

and therefore the design drawings need to be released by a certain date. Often negotiations start, people commit the dates, the tenant is not secured the reward drifts and even as the reward drifts and the tenant is secured you're often asked to produce based on the original schedule. So drawings design drawings are often released because of this backing of time relative to tenant. They're often released before they are complete. There are other areas: 

  • design changes 
  • conflicts on designs 
  • coordination changes for the trades 
  • RFI's 
  • RFI design changes 
  • approval design changes 
  • email requests
  • material substitution

webinar 0181419 - timeline issues

All of this starts to happen and occur during the detailing production 

>> which ultimately leads to a drift in the date for drawings for approval 

>> which then leads to drift for other points to the shop 

>> which ends up leading to a collision of competing resources when one drift leads into the production of another job and we often see chaos and scramble. 

Let's now move to the first part but the first thing I want to do is a quick refresher of how Qnect works. This will be very very quick. We are currently on the Qnect websitewebinar 0181419 - app we have a job called a “Demo building” and on this website, the Qnect website, we will prepare setup, introduce all of the parameters for both the design and the detailing of each joint, each joint is custom design and a custom component, a Tekla component is produced.

Once this is all filled out with our support then we're ready to have this information follow the connection engineering and the modeling from day one all the way through revisions and of course including estimating where our software is often used in support of the bidding process. 

Once you've signed up with Qnect and you open your Tekla model which we're on currently our buttons Q 1,2,3 will show up.  The process is the same whether you're doing one joint, one floor, webinar 081419-buttonsone phase or the entire building. To do this, this is already connected building, we connected about two hundred and one joints and would have selected the whole building hit button number one. Then we would get an email that said it's done. We'd hit button two and this information would be populated back into the model. 

Let’s at least do one joint because it will take about a second we select these members we hit button one and this comes up. We sign in, we find accompanying, we find a job and we will call this session webinar 0181419 - quickqnectweb one we submit again. We don't have to wait for an email because with one joint it is extraordinarily fast and we see that it's already there. We submit and it's complete. Right? So that's the process. 

As you can see, this uses a three inch standard spacing and so let's just show you very quickly what happens when we optimize a joint to give you the suitable opportunity for speed and saving. So they're about six folds. We will delete this connection. We will go to the website and activate the Optimization. We will submit back to the model once that's activated. Again we'll select both members, we hit button one, give it a session name, we submit you know it doesn't take very long, we hit button two and it's not ready yet so taking just a tiny bit longer. We'll hit button two again and now it's ready as you can see and we submit. 

We see for the very same reaction this connection is now reduced by two bolts or 33 and 1/3 percent. So this is the process whether you want to use optimization on that it's but the one button two and the whole model is done or 60 to 80 percent and then the connection is fully engineered.  

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Let me show you real quick here's the first output just to bolt sides, angle size, general data. Then we'll show you the strength which is the output limit states all the limit states and then if we click on the code you will see all the calculations, AISC references etc. 

So you've now seen the speed the modeling and the engineering. Let's just sort of now look at how the speed creates the buffer of time. You may want to jot down just for yourself because you're going to be the one to determine: How long would this model have taken you for connection engineering and then for a detailer to model the connections in no matter how fast they are and how well they use Tekla macros we all know that Detailers are really pretty smart and fast with it?

But the whole process between waiting for connection engineering, detailer interpreting the chart, creating the macros, putting it in and then the detailer checker checking to see that that was done completely. Just write down for yourself how long that would have taken.

Now that you've done that let's just note that this is about a 50 ton project we connected 87% and this 87% of connections, these 201 connections, took a minute and 20 seconds. So if you reduce a minute and 20 seconds from whatever you wrote down whether it's two days, one week, one day that's the buffer we created on this model. 


Let's go take a look at a couple others.  As these models get populated into the Tekla software so that you can do your analysis again. Here is another model where we connected it. We connected about 66% of the joints. It's a nice job it's about 200 tons and I'd like you now to write down how long it would have taken not just to model it but the process between the connection engineer and the detailer that ultimately results in all of these connections being placed in the model. And now that you have completed your math on that I can report to you that we connected around 66% of this particular building over 400 joints and we did it in less than 10 minutes.

Let's go. I'm going to show you two more. Let's see a village.  okay that's not that's fine let's do that one. And again to stay with us the model gets populated we felt it was important that you've seen actual models of different sizes so you can really start to appreciate for yourself how the buffer could get created so we see connections. 

Actually this one it's a very clunky building very odd shape. I think we've got some moments in here. Let's see a connected moment connection. There you go so we've got quite a few connections on this one as well some more moment connections. We also do full pen weld. This model is 430 tons. We connected 53% for different reasons that we can investigate. Often our first run is not where we stop because then we go back in and we can increase the count sometimes 5 to 10% once we understand why it didn't connect. 


So please write down again how long you think this would have taken you waiting for connection engineering and so forth. 

So we connected about 53% of these connections and this one also took us less than 10 minutes. 

The last one I want to show you it's a little bit of a larger project. This one is a project that is currently being negotiated. It's still in bid so it's a pretty fresh project that people are competing for. Just get with us if you will as this one gets brought in. I think it's a little over, close to 9,000 tons. So we start with zero in on the connections. 

This one is not super complicated but lots and lots of connections. There are many things complicated about it for sure but Qnect is able to run through this pretty quickly. So make note and write down for yourself what you think this will take for a connection engineering and detailing back into the model. Now that you've done that I can tell you that we're connected around close to 6,000 joints, a little over 60%. This entire process once the web locally to fill out the parameters on the website took two hours. 

If you remove two hours from your amount you have stated it will take there is your buffer. We did in a 30,000 ton 60-story building 15,000 connections in about three hours. There is no question, not because we said so, but because our users have reported back we will save weeks and on one job we are saving 19.2 weeks. Let's see what what's that job? Oh yeah yeah it's a pretty big but I can't say what it is. But where we generally see time savings of 20 to 30 percent of the detailing time. So if you think about whatever the detailing time is that you're expecting on a job if on the low end you took twenty percent so if it's 15 weeks you're going to see three weeks and there we start to create the buffer.

That really is the extent of what we wanted to present in terms of the first part.

Now we'd like to turn this over to Islam who is our another one of our technical members and he's going to show you now he's going to actually make a revision with the combination that you just saw with the one joint of connection engineering and detailing. 

Because the speed of the software is extraordinarily important on the second major area that derails and causes schedule drift -- revisions. We talked about that earlier revisions from numerous sources coordination, late mechanical, and so you can't get away from that but you can't mitigate it, you can't help the scheduled drift. 

So with that is that please take over Islam.

Thank You Henry. Now I'm going to change - do a revision in the model - and show you how can it can handle revisions quickly. I'll switch to the floor plan here. In this area we're going to have to do a change. First, we'll delete the connections and then I'm going to move this beam and this beam also will make it skewed. I'll add another beam here. Then change some of the loads or another one. 

Let's make this 20. (HENRY: Let's also change the beam size it would be really good for the users to see.) Okay and this beam size as well. Then we'll select this whole area and we'll do button 2, export. Open one export all just zero one yeah (you could we can also use a RFI number or the bulletin number and that's fine now you have it because that is also tracked on a report.) 

Then we will now upload the changes so doing this revision manually is time-consuming and also you may need to check with connection design engineer for each one but with Qnect you can go get all the connections fully designed and engineered in a matter of a minute.  We'll try now and see. Those are done we're going to import so and connections now are added under revisions is made switch to 3d as well to see. 

Aright thank you. So that's how it knows revisions very quickly by just changing the model and re-uploading our connections to the Qnect website and then the connection will get engineered in a minute.

Thank you Islam. Just to repeat there are two ways that you can mitigate schedule drift:

  • The first - is thanks to the extraordinary speed we combine the connection engineering with the modeling back into the model and the time that it takes to do it in the conventional manner creates the buffer because no matter the size of the job we can have it done within hours.
  • The second - is the speed at which revisions are produced and certainly aided by the fact that we're also engineering it at the same time so there is little to no coordination with the connection engineer.

 That concludes our part of the presentation.

I'd like to turn it back over to Dermot to take any questions that you may have and then at the end of this demo we're gonna ask you to please just fill out another survey thank you very much.


Yes so the first question that came through is: can Qnect helped get shop drawings back faster? 

Thank you and thank you everyone for being on the webinar 

If the user if there were a questioner is asking about approval returns. The answer is actually “yes” are having quite an impact on the approval review process because Qnect puts the loads the code connection capacity utility ratio back into the model and by creating the shop drawing template that information is showing up directly on the shop drawings identified as the left and right hand capacity reaction and engineers of records are really appreciating this data which tells them that they don't have to look at the end connection if they see our code on it and users are recording a quicker approval return with less back and forth with the EOR.


The second question that came in is: can you optimize while saving time - does optimization slow down the speed of Qnect?

Well, it doesn't. It doesn't slow it down they are both done - the time and the optimization - is done simultaneously the fact is that we have expensive and expanding computer power with our Amazon Web servers and so while there are thousands of hundreds of thousands of calculations being done it's it's not an issue at all.


Next question that came in was: when there are design changes how can Qnect help?

I think well I think you already saw that in the second stage of creating buffers for a schedule drift or even improving schedule. You know there's no revision that we if you take any particular floor and you change all the beams and change loads all of that, we're likely to be able to engineer and detail it back into the model all of a floor in ten minutes. So the speed is extraordinary and it's a second way we help buffer schedule drift.


Next question that we have in is: who do you propose or who do you see using Qnect software most often engineers or Detailers? 

We're seeing quite a mixed bag. First I'll add that general contractors certainly like what we're doing and in particular they deeply appreciate this schedule impact when the buffers that we provide are used in that way. Fabricators are certainly a big source of the use of our software. Engineer of Record (EORs) are also using our software in some cases for delivering connected models and that's also growing. And then yes of course Detailers. So as it turns out we know we cover the ability for several people to use it for all the processes. 


Most recent question that just came in asks: how are the connections calculated?

Well, the connections are all designed to meet AISC requirements of 14th edition and covers all of the limit states that you would expect, demand and require that the EOR would require. I would add that we've done numerous jobs across the country and every time we do a job if it's a new connection engineer because we have connection engineering partners that work with us we also have detailing partners that work with us; but all the connection engineering partners have had to validate the engineering for the first time. All of the EORs that we've worked with have had to validate our engineering because obviously they they're responsible - both of those folks - are responsible for the final outcome and so we've had a lot of validation of our engineering. But more specifically answer the question we meet all of the AISC version 14 requirements.


Next question that just came in is: what detailing software will connect interface with?

At this time we we work with Tekla and Tekla only. Our system is built for a future expansion into other potentially systems but we're a Tekla service at this time the Tekla interface app. 


Thank you and these are the questions that were asked unless someone has a question to put through right now thank you very much for the webinar Henry and Christian Erickson and we thank you very much for your attendance.


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