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Re: STEEL: Q - What is the proper procedure for submitting/approvingan alternate design?

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Bill, I have the following note on my drawings: "Options are for the contractors convenience.  The contractor shall be responsible for coordinating any required design changes.  Costs associated with any design changes shall be born by the contractor."  

Engineering & design costs are often overlooked when something gets "value" engineered.  Like you, I welcome comments on my design.  But we are hired to design to specific criteria & have spent a great deal of time making sure every condition is coordinated.  If a sub has a special approach that is different, they must bear the cost of any re-design and re-coordination.  That note is not in AISC, but is part of my standard notes.  Also, if you let the sub use his "cheaper" method, will the owner (or you) receive a credit (or compensation) for it?  If not, why even entertain the option?

Jake Watson, P.E.
Salt Lake City, UT


---------- Original Message ----------------------------------
From: Bill Polhemus <bill(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc>
Reply-To: <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
Date:  Tue, 16 Nov 2004 08:39:05 -0600

>Hello, all.
>
>I have a job where the contractor is submitting though his 
>fabricator/detailer an alternate design to that which I submitted for 
>permit.
>
>In general, I have no problem with this, as long as it meets the design 
>requirements. In fact, I sort of enjoy the opportunity to "learn" from a 
>fabricator and erector. More'n one way to skin a cat, as we say in these 
>parts.
>
>However, when the submittal arrived, it was in the form of ONLY shop 
>drawings, no calculations, not even an engineer's seal or "disclaimer" 
>attached. Since I'm the EOR, I guess that much is a "gray area," but my 
>response to them was "guys, I don't have anything to approve. Please 
>send me calculations, etc., so that I can review it for conformance to 
>the design requirements."
>
>Their response has been puzzlement. I think that THEY think "h*ll, 
>you're an engineer, you oughta know if it's okay or not!" It's almost as 
>if they're pulling something out of their design standards and then 
>asking me to verify the design adequacy. Since they're not my client, 
>and since my client has already paid me ONCE for the steel design, I 
>don't see why I should oblige them.
>
>What I need to know is, what is the proper procedure here? I have 
>lookeed through the AISC Code of Standard Practice, but I cannot find 
>anything that covers this. I have also looked on AISC's website to no 
>avail. I would contact their support hotline, but I'm not a member of 
>AISC and I figure I could better get a cross-section of real-world 
>opinions here.
>
>Thanks.
>
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