View Poll Results: Should all architects and mech. engineers be required to do 2 years in the field?
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Whats an engineer?
We've had enough!!
I don't know about where you all live, but aren't you tired of architects and engineers designing stuff on paper that isn't logical?
Whether it's a A/H hanging 8' above a drop ceiling with no access. A RTU 23' up on a 45 degree metal roof with no roof hatch. A 16" metal duct to fit through a triangle with a maximum side of 8". An RTU flue exhaust blowing directly into the side of the parapet wall 7" away, or replacing the 500+lbs pump in a 3'X5' area 4' off the ground. I could go on and on, but I digress. Anyway you get my drift.
I once talked with a guy from Germany who told me "All engineers/architects have to do two years in the field before they put anything on paper".
My poll question to you is: Do you think that it should be mandatory for architects and mechanical engineers in the USA to do the same?
I'll second that!
I agree! I have seen some of those things mounted on 45 degree roofs, and refused to work on those things. What gets me, is the in house maintenance guy who WILL go up there using some 1/2" beat up piece of rope. The way I see it - one slip, and you are done - career over........
I seriously don't think it will help. Doing the trade we're in requires a certain amount of "common sense".
I don't care how long you go to school...you can't teach that!!! And that's the problem.
Not to say "all" engineers don't have common sense. Most of them know you can't put a round peg in a triangle hole but that's what they are trying to get us to do sometimes.
You're only as good as your customer will allow you to be.........If they want junk, sell them junk, but make your junk look neat!!!
Architects are the worst!! I am having an issue with an architect right now due to a poor design on his part. I found the flaw when I bid the job, advised him of the problem and his response was "I've been doing this a long, long time. You just bid the job as it is and leave the thinking to me." I asked for a signed waiver from him releasing my company of any liability caused by poor performance, efficiency, or overall comfort due to architectural design of the hvac system and he sent me a notorized waiver. The problem was his hvac design of a 577 square foot kitchen/dining room in a fire department called for 61kbth of cooling!! I figured the load at a worst case scenario (door permanently propped open, excessive cooking load, 24 hour occupancy, etc.) at just under 12kbtuh. As instructed, we built it as per spec. Test and balance comes, adjusts all cmfs to spec, records all the start up data etc. We padd allinspections with flying colors, even one done by the architect! Summer comes to georgia and I get a "warranty" service call at the fire department. I get there to find mold and mildew growing on the walls and ceiling. The temperature is set at 60° and the firemen are uncomfortable. Rh in the room is 89]! More the architect is trying to save his reputation with the city and blaming my company for the"poor design"!? We got to court in april, I can't wait! I have every piece of correspondence between us regarding the problem, including his liability waiver. What a PITA!!
Sorry for the typing errors, I'm posting from my phone...
Good for you!
Originally Posted by GAacTech
Sorry you are dealing with someone like that, not all architects are bad...
An accurate paper (and electronic) trail is in my experience the "killer app" when threatened with legal action (only once), and when I mentioned/showed their lawyer some of what I had, their case disappeared (never went to Court). The stress of this stuff is unbelievable though, but if you have the evidence, you'll be OK.
Good Luck, and hopefully YOU'LL recover some damages/compensation via the powers that be...
Last edited by enb54; 03-24-2012 at 02:06 AM.
Reason: some of
I have had my share of run ins with enginers. but there are some real ones out there too. I have learned a lot from them, and they have learned from me too. as with a lot of you folks also.
a stupid question is a question you wont to ask, but don't
Thank you for the encouragement. I have only owned a buisness for 2 1/2 years, I try to be VERY thorough when it comes to bidding on commercial jobs. I always run the load calcs despite what is spec'd on the plans just for my own piece of mind. I have never been subpoenad to court to defend myself on ANY court. however, I did retain an attorney from day 1 of opening for buisness just in case something like this were to happen. My attorney says that its a "closed case" They have threatened to seek damages in civil court, they have contacted my GL insurance provider saying they need to send an adjuster so they can file a claim against my policy, they even contacted the GC (That im on the lake fishing with at this exact moment) and slandered my personal and buisness image. Their attorney has never contacted me or my attorney for anything, just a subpoena to court after I refused to replace the system without compensation. Im not the kind of guy to counter sue for damages or expenses beyond the actual cost, but I think that I'm going to make a good effort to bankrupt this guy based solely on principal. I will update the thread after my court date and share the outcome.
Originally Posted by enb54
I am so sorry to hear of your situation, as I'm sure so many others are here, please just remember that you are not alone, we are all here with you although not in body, at least in spirit...
Originally Posted by GAacTech
You just have to try to keep all of your evidence straight up, and from what you've told us here, you'll be fine. I'm assuming of course that both of our justice systems (USA/Canada) are basically the same... except for Queen Elizabeth II (who my sister shook her husband's (Prince Phillip's) hand... Wahoooo!)...
I'm sure if everything you've related is correct, you'll be fine!
why are they coming after you and not the GC? if the customer hired an Architect and then a GC to bid those drawings and the GC got bids, and you were working through the GC than the GC should be involved as well. was there an Mech engineer involved? or was this a design build on your part? Basically, what I'm saying is if you were handed a set of drawings and was told to bid what was on the drawings and you gave your bid to the GC and he in turn presented a bid for the whole job, the GC needs to be talking with them not you. All you have to say is i bid the job based on the drawings and installed it as it was shown on the drawings...Period.. I wouldn't lose a minute of sleep over this.
Usually with most commercial jobs, long before the dirt is broken or a building is demo'd, there is a bidding process. Blue prints and mechanicals are distributed to the prospective contractors. I mull over the plans and drawings, scratching my head, download engineers suggested equipment specs, wondering WTF and how the hell, this is where I list a plethora of questions and concerns, and get ready for the required walk-thru or the all important pre-bid meeting where I set down with the GC, architects, and engineers and knick pick all my issues and questions.
I then take what came of that meeting or walk-thru and build up my bid with EXCLUSIONS, then I utilize our contracts (CYOB form) and re-iterate our change-order process and have this signed along with the contract.
Your contract...not theirs, is the MOST important piece of protection one can have whether in resi or commercial.
Change-order process and setting up a direct line of communication, for submitting and documenting RFI's to the engineers and architects is a MUST.
I will admit engineers and architects are annoying and there are good and REALLY bad, but unlike automotive, electronic, and product engineers and designers who can have a finished product to tweek, test, and tinker with long before it hits the consumer market place, an architect and building engineer will ultimately end up utilizing the experts in the field to give them the feedback and send them back to the drawing board....if you have your contract signed, RFI process established, and change-order program in stone, then your butt is covered in this process, your making extra money and not losing it, your covered for inspections issues, code issues, time delay penalties, etc. Your companies reputation is upheld and the GC will be in gratitude to you for being the most competent contractor on the job and you will be his first call on any future jobs.
So always remember to
PRE-JOB Walk-Thru and Meetings
Bid includes EXCLUSIONS!!!
CONTRACTS signed off
CHANGE-ORDER PROGRAM signed off
RFI (Request for Information) Process Established and signed off
If you get the job...great, if not...you don't need it..you will lose money, reputation, sleep, and hair.
What's an engineer?