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Engineering documents

Engineering documents

Engineering documents

Hi all! I'm researching (in my university) problems that engineers face in their daily work with different documents (standards, specifications, datasheets, reports, drawings etc.)
What are your daily routines you want to get rid of?
What is time-consuming or inconvenient while working with documents?
Where do the most mistakes usually happen?

I will be very grateful for your sharing!

RE: Engineering documents

Quote (Salimtina)

Where do the most mistakes usually happen?
Due to copy paste without a proper read through. So many people just regurgitate documentation from another project without fully understanding what is in it. Good project managers/Contract Administration people are detailed and diligent, and many of them prefer to almost start from scratch for every document. Or at a minimum, start with the barest of templates.

RE: Engineering documents

I would be interested in learning more about your project. Though there are some tools that exist, a simple, quick, easy software solution for fire sprinkler plans and calculations would be nice to have.

RE: Engineering documents

What are your daily routines you want to get rid of?
It would be nice if I could just remember everything, working within your area of expertise and having previous projects to reference back to is very helpful for this.
Really my daily annoyances mostly come from MS Windows focus stealing and waiting for stuff to load on my computer so I can continue.

What is time-consuming or inconvenient while working with documents?
Some code sections are overly complicated (such as wind and seismic load development in ASCE 7) or vague/open to interpretation (such as fire assemblies in IBC).

Where do the most mistakes usually happen?
Mistakes usually happen when the entire load path isn't considered by the designer.
Other mistakes can be related to using the correct units, or selecting the correct options for things such as bracing or fixity within structural software. Understanding what the software is doing before trying to use it is key.

RE: Engineering documents

...cut and paste. I often encounter referenced specs that are out of date or even withdrawn.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Do you feel any better?


RE: Engineering documents

One of the big problems that I have is with international standards. On a job in Laos, the specs were written for ASTM steel rebar and cement; yet why would a designer expect rebar and cement to come from USA? Most of the rebar and cement came from Thailand. SD40 was slightly under the ASTM Spec for tensile strength. When the steel was brought to the site, it met the Thai spec but was slightly under the ASTM. We ended up adding an extra bar every now and then - but the specs should have been written to use what would really be available for the project.

In Indonesia, it was the same but the contractor was Japanese and they supplied steels and that to Japanese Stds. Again - it was a real pain to try to cross-check one international spec against another.

That's the headache I had quite often . . . now it is ASTM vs GOST (Tajikistan/Russian).


RE: Engineering documents

The writer needs to review whatever standards are being referenced. ASTM test methods are withdrawn and replaced from time to time. You'll find the withdrawn standard in specs forever afterward. The same is true for building codes. They change, and designers need to keep updated.

I work with a municipal organization that is finalizing a new design methodology. It hasn't been fully implemented, but designers are starting to use it. What are the plan reviewers supposed to compare designs against, the current standard or the new one in progress?

RE: Engineering documents

Thank you for sharing! I'll be happy to know more about difficulties you all meet with. This information is very useful for me.

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