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  • #16
    Hey BudMan580 around here, or any of these sites it’s the same as on the job site, you take the good, and throw out the bad.
    Caution!
    These are "my" views based only on “my” experiences in “my” little bitty world.

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    • #17
      *I* would order the 1" stuff pre-cut from my supplier, as they can do it a **** of alot faster and cheaper than I can. I would bore the holes with my mag drill, and depending on the wall thickness of the tube, I'd order them cut to length, and cut the bevels with my torch, my plasma, or my evolution saw (in descending order of wall thickness.)
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      • #18
        Originally posted by BudMan580 View Post
        Well Bret, see that's the thing, I was asking you, the EXPERT, how YOU would cut it? I could go on a lengthy tirade with my experience, but like I said it's 90% field. As for the size of the job, in the last 6-7 years, I've installed over 20 million dollars of curtainwall, misc. iron, and architectural metals. When I say installed, I've run these jobs with anywhere from 10 to 70 employees. How I got here is thru 20 years of working my way up the ranks. I just started my own company and while staying with my employer, am just finishing my first job this week ($500,000 in 4 months). Oh, I guess I did go on a tirade.
        See, I was just asking for a little advise on equipment that I wouldn't be using in the field, so I don't know much about it and right away people think that you're some rube who just decided he wants to be an ironworker. Forgive the little bit of bite in my reply, but maybe one day you'll come to the big city and I'll make you feel like much more of an *** than you just tried to make me feel like. As for everyone else, than you for the input.
        Well if you have that sort of background then I'm sure your butt is well covered then. It sounds as if you are one of the few out there with more than enuff on your plate. So that said .....congratulations!!
        I believe I would say ditto on the Big Ellis bandsaw. With that budget I would jump on a good cold saw as well. I agree with the mag drill and you may as well get 2 of them because they are well priced IMO. I would buy a big ole drillpress as well and try to wear that thing out.
        If you had a guy using each machine plus a couple working together on the torch and plasma cutters and a dang good foreman overseeing everyone you could knock out a bunch of work and not pay the overhead that you would with a multi-million dollar steel company. Plus you would be keeping your guys working.
        This sounds very interesting to me and would be absolutely delighted to see some nice pics as this project progresses.
        Please forgive the general tone of the forum. Virtually everyone here is good as gold and means well. We get a ton of newbies here and they sometimes are truley deep in over their heads and are seemingly on the virge of danger all the time. Not really used to a legitimate question from a seasoned pro....it has been a while I'm jealous

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        • #19
          First off, Budman, nobody here knows you as anything other than words typed on a screen. Even going back, and reviewing all 16 posts you have made, doesn't really give any idea of who and what you are. This is an open forum, and people are free to answer as they see fit. You yourself are free to disregard any answers that aren't applicable. That being said, some of the answers you didn't like are in fact very good answers, you gotta remember this thread remains up, available for anybody to read, until Miller pulls the plug on the forum or the server completely crashes. Point is, it's not just here for you to read and benefit from, it's here for everybody and anybody to read.

          First off, the plates. What are the tolerances permitted??? It's really no big deal to shear these in a couple days work, either with a big shear or with a big ironworker (after cut into 20" strips). The very nature of shearing, of course, distorts the cuts somewhat and tends to pull the metal slightly as the blade cuts thru. Slightly not square, but with the use of templates should be easy enough to lay out holes and location of the beam properly and accurately on each plate. Make template(s) with 1/4" plate, cut accurate, and use transfer punches to mark the base-plates.

          Is +- 1/8" good enough?? If it is, seriously consider farming this cutting (the plates) out to somebody with a big shear, even if you have to go out of the NY city area to get a good price, both on steel and processing. Trucking is not that expensive. Although you may or may not run into problems with the unions or the mafia if you do this

          Mag drills, or a couple moderate-sized drill presses, with power down, would be a cheap and efficient way to drill holes, especially if you have no plans to use the equipment again. The drill presses are available cheap if you look around a bit, especially 3 phase powered ones. Set one up with a 1/4" or 3/8" pilot, the other with the finish size, have plenty of coolant.

          Cutting beams .... there are better, bigger, and faster bandsaws available, than the Ellis's already mentioned. Vertical, power feed, hydraulic clamping systems, liquid-cooled blades. Easy to change the angle of cut. Check with the used market, equipment brokers, plant dispersals. Plenty of good equipment out there, relatively cheap. Often times you can buy used equipment that comes with the various roller frames and tables necessary for efficient use. Just lay in a stock of blades, there's a learning curve as far as getting the travel speed right, especially on hollow tubing.

          Even if you plan to use some of your own guys to do the work, I would suggest finding a good fabrication man; able to layout, set the equipment up, plan the work-flow, show everybody else what to do and not do. As you yourself realize, there is quite a bit of difference between shop work and field work, getting the right man to run the operation for you would pay big dividends. He should also be able to help you decide what equipment is needed, how HE would do the job, and inspect used machines.
          Last edited by JSFAB; 01-18-2010, 10:27 AM.
          Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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          • #20
            The cheapest most efficent way is to get these 1" plates flamecut with the holes by most any steel supplier, at least the ones around here can do it. They use a cnc flame cutting table so you would get however many plates you want all the same & much cheaper than you can put the holes in with a drill, mag drill, etc. The difference in cost of buying processed plate with holes vs. buying it without the holes will be minimum. I'm assuming that they are not close tolerance but mainly bolting flanges for columns, beams etc. They can burn them +or- 1/8" which is plenty close for structural stuff.
            MM250
            Trailblazer 250g
            22a feeder
            Lincoln ac/dc 225
            Victor O/A
            MM200 black face
            Whitney 30 ton hydraulic punch
            Lown 1/8x 36" power roller
            Arco roto-phase model M
            Vectrax 7x12 band saw
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            • #21
              MMW has a good point too.

              In fact, a job like this I would approach with the idea of making as much money as possible with a telephone and a fax machine, before ever actually touching a piece of steel.
              Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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              • #22
                Once again, I thank you all. There has been some great advice, and the best may wind up being to sub this out. Still weighing the various options. I don't have this job in hand, we'll have to see where this goes.
                I do appreciate everyone's concern, as I am very concerned myself, and I apologize for the "outburst". My feeling is just that if you don't have anything constructive to say, why try to belittle or embarrass someone. I know that it seemed silly for someone with such a big undertaking to ask simple questions, but like I said, I'm an erector. When things come out to me made wrong, I fix them, so of course I COULD fabricate these pieces, but I'd be doing it like a caveman. That is why I was asking about the equipment that I would not be using in the field.
                As for the time that i spend here, I do alot of lurking, not alot lately as I've been pretty busy. I am always trying to educate myself, I am a research hound, so when I see a thread that interests me, I'll read it from front to back. I usually don't log on unless I have something to add or ask. Something like the diagram showing the 8* bevel from the plasma cut, I find very helpful, and 10 years from now, when the situation arises, I will remember that diagram and use that knowledge.
                Basically what it comes down to is something my father (who has forgotten more than I'll ever know about this industry)told me a long time ago-"There are no stupid questions....just stupid answers."
                Thanks again and keep em coming!

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by BudMan580 View Post
                  My feeling is just that if you don't have anything constructive to say, why try to belittle or embarrass someone.
                  You might as well grab your nosebag and head to the parking lot; you won’t fit in around here!
                  Just kidding!


                  If you’re paying prevailing wage for field hands I can’t believe you’ll ever come close to the price of a fab shop, or a steel yard price, (just in labor). I think it would be time well spent to get an accurate material take off list, and as JSFAB mentioned get on the telephone.
                  Caution!
                  These are "my" views based only on “my” experiences in “my” little bitty world.

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                  • #24
                    Sonora, been getting prices coming in today, and that's the way I'm leaning. I have always tried to think outside the box and explore all alternatives. Like I said, it was and to less of a degree still is a consideration. The fab really wasn't complicated, just an awful big order. I've always enjoyed the problem solving end, finding better or faster ways to do things, and don't back away from too many challenges, I may educate the crap out of myself and experiment a little before attacking something, but I usually find a way to do things. So, sooner or later I'll have my own shop, as that's where the real money is at, but it has to be the right situation.
                    Anyway, I can and do break b$*ls with the best of them, There was just something in the tone that rubbed me the wrong way. I don't want to beat a dead horse and as far as I'm concerned, it's done with. I don't hold grudges, if I did, I'd hate everyone, just remember that ANYBODY can learn something from ANYBODY.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by BudMan580 View Post
                      Sonora, been getting prices coming in today, and that's the way I'm leaning.
                      Well darn I was hoping to help you spend some money! Only one thing I like better than buying tools…………. Is spending someone else’s money!

                      You mentioned the angle kerf of the plasma, I’ve had a CNC O/A for years, never hooked it up.
                      Caution!
                      These are "my" views based only on “my” experiences in “my” little bitty world.

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                      • #26
                        I agree with iron those ellis saws are great amd accurate too.

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                        • #27
                          You mentioned the angle kerf of the plasma, I’ve had a CNC O/A for years, never hooked it up. [/QUOTE]

                          Never hooked up which, the plasma or the O/A?
                          You sound like my wife with spending my money!LOL

                          Now you've got me thinking about doing this just so I can get some new stuff! I went to a shop in Jersey to check out some material for my boss, and was mesmerized by the laser table they had going! Walked out sayin "I gotta get one of these!" I really like the dual column hor. bandsaw as well.

                          Someone mentioned shearing the plates, thats gotta be some big ram, never even really considered that way due to the plate size and the distortion.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by BudMan580 View Post
                            Now you've got me thinking about doing this just so I can get some new stuff!
                            Now you’re coming around! Never have too many tools!


                            I never hooked up the O/A, bought the 3-hose machine torch, but haven’t needed it yet.
                            Caution!
                            These are "my" views based only on “my” experiences in “my” little bitty world.

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                            • #29
                              Hyd-mech Bandsaw S-22A,120 ton Ironworker,Geka,Scotchman.Have the plates burned to 20"x20". 2 pieces of equipment and the jobs done.IMO...
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                              • #30
                                Just remember that each one of those 1" plates is 113#. I wouldn't want to lift 340 of those to an iron worker & punch 4 holes. But then again you can build all the material handleing equipment to go along with it.
                                MM250
                                Trailblazer 250g
                                22a feeder
                                Lincoln ac/dc 225
                                Victor O/A
                                MM200 black face
                                Whitney 30 ton hydraulic punch
                                Lown 1/8x 36" power roller
                                Arco roto-phase model M
                                Vectrax 7x12 band saw
                                Miller spectrum 875
                                30a spoolgun w/wc-24
                                Syncrowave 250
                                RCCS-14

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