As fabrication progresses towards manufacturing, a new approach is being taken that mirrors industrial manufacturing. The approach is known as distributed manufacturing for many industrial producers. For mechanical and plumbing contractors, it involves a network of fabrication facilities, VDC resources and jobsite construction crews that work together to design and build projects as efficiently as possible.
The 2022 MCAA Fabrication Conference, powered by MSUITE will be hosted by McKinstry Company, who will share insight into their network of shops approach. It involves coordination and balance of both fabrication and VDC resources across their multiple locations. In order to do this, it takes ample resources in software, VDC personnel and fabrication tools & equipment.
It begins with the people. VDC operators need to be able to not only have expert knowledge in drawing, but codes for multiple jurisdictions. They also need to be able to coordinate between offices and remote workers to allocate portions of the job and track progress. Once drawn and approved for fabrication, manufacturing and supply chain operations takes center stage and a determination must be made for where to fabricate based on final location and specialized equipment for each fabrication facility. Final installation is then performed by construction crews distributed over a wide geographical area around multiple office locations.
While this technique might be seen as only approachable by large contractors with multiple locations, it can actually be used by small contractors that are looking to outsource parts of their operations. Many contractors use multiple VDC resources outside of their operations when coordinating and designing. The same goes for outsourcing parts of their fabrication from other trades or specialty firms.
To learn more, attend the 2022 MCAA Fabrication Conference, November 2-4 in Seattle, Washington.
UPDATE: Registration is temporarily sold out while we secure additional hotel rooms. If interested, please fill out the waitlist registration form below and submit it to MCAA.