When it comes to carrying out structural engineering work, piping is often one of the last things that’s considered…
We get it. We understand it’s often easier to fit piping around big machinery, rather than the other way round.
But still, because it’s often rushed at the end of a job, it means you often find it’s the cause of numerous problems and delays onsite – which can soon ramp-up the costs on a job.
To make sure you’re able to avoid any piping problems, here are three things you should always think about before doing any pipework…
1. Make Sure You’re Taking Accurate Measurements
The first thing – and perhaps the most fundamental – is to make sure you take accurate measurements.
It might seem like a no brainer…but you’d be surprised by how easy it is to slip up when it comes to measuring pipework.
If you’ve ever tried to measure a window to fit some curtains or a blind at home, you’ll know the pitfalls only too well.
Get three people to measure the window frame and you’ll likely get three different measurements.
Here are Pipesco we avoid this problem by using state-of-the-art scanning technology to render 3D models that are incredibly accurate and intuitive.
In fact, our scanning software is even able to work out where specific flanges are being used to attach different pieces of piping and calculate the exact distance that should be between them.
That said, sometimes, with older pieces of piping and structural work you might find there has been warping or there might be a valve placed in an untypical position.
It’s why point two is so important…
2.Take Into Account Any Anomalies
Accuracy is one thing…
But before drawing up a design or fabricating any new pipework, you also need to take into account any anomalies there might be in the existing structure.
For example, imagine a straight line of pipe has warped to form a two-inch arch at the top.
In the middle of that arch there is a release valve that is itself two inches of the ground.
As it is, it’s fine. The warping means the valve is off the floor.
But if you were to replace the pipe with a standard straight piece of pipe that hasn’t warped – the valve would end up touching the floor.
This is why it’s important to take into account such anomalies. You can either take them into account and correct them or fabricate and fit the new piping so they are exact replicas – including the anomaly.
Thanks to the accuracy and intelligence of the 3D modelling technology we use here at Pipesco, we’re able to do either.
But even then, you might measure up accurately and take into account all the anomalies and still end up with a problem.
It’s why you need to…
3. Check You Know Who’s Accountable For Errors
Let’s say you’ve gone to great lengths to get all your measurements right and you’ve put the designs together perfectly.
Thing is: when you get the piping back from fabrication and the fitters are putting it in place, there’s a problem.
One piece doesn’t fit.
A lot of the time, you’d have no come back here.
Accountability for the problem could lie with you, the fabricators or the fitters.
Whilst the buck is being passed, your costs are going up and time is running away.
As piping is so often the last consideration on a structural engineering job, chances are a quick fix would involve hacking up the pipe to make it fit.
Thing is: thanks to our scanning software, we’re able to scan things again after fabrication and during fitting so you can check to see where the problem is.
It might be that your measurements were exactly right, but the fabricators messed up. In such a case, you can shift accountability back to them.
Alternatively, it might be the fitters have installed something else in the wrong way, which is having a knock on effect.
Again, you can put the accountability back on to them and show them how it should be fitted.
So, as ever…
When it comes to carrying out any pipework on your site, if you want to make sure you get it right first time and save yourself a lot of extra time and money in the future…
Give us a shout here at Pipesco and we’ll be happy to talk more about your specific challenges and advise you on the best way to take things forward.
You can contact us through our contact page here or call us directly on 01469 576677.