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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In case my responses got lost in the good-natured banter ... thank you Grumpy, Teetorbilt, Bob K., MDS, and yes, Bob-the-builder too!:Thumbs:

Some additional questions are lingering though:

~T~ Can you give me an example of a major screw up that might have had heads rolling???

~Bob K.~ I was thinking of a more contemporary space that might perhaps mimic a loft-type office. So the doors might be taller but still remain 3 ft wide, right?

~MDS~ Thanks, you've cleared up a lot! And thanks for sharing your experiences ... they'll help me create my own!

New questions:

Bob-TB mentioned Unions. Have any of you had experiences with Unions? And if so, in what context? Do they dictate industry standards?

Who orders materials?

How do job crews get formed?

Who absorbs the cost of mistakes that the crews make?

More to come ... thanks all for indulging me this way. Hope its been a pleasant break in the midst of your work issues!!!! :)

~Lori~
 

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DGR,IABD
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lorizecca said:
TB mentioned Unions. Have any of you had experiences with Unions? And if so, in what context? Do they dictate industry standards?
They certainly don't dictate industry standards, but in many trades the most skilled people are union members and (and therefore work for union subcontractors).

lorizecca said:
Who orders materials?
Each subcontractor includes the price of materials in his bid to do his portion of the work, therefore the subcontractors order the material necessary to do their work. There are instances where "xyz is to be provided by others" (as the normal contract language would state. Since I am an electrician, often the lighting fixtures are "provided by others", and "others" is normally the general contractor or sometimes the owner if he/she picks them out themselves. Also, I might be hooking up the electric to equipment provided by others such as the drinking fountains, hvac units, etc. That's another area where things can get screwed up. An HVAC contractor may order and sit in place on the rooftop air conditioning units that require 3phase electric, and I come along to wire them up only to have to break the bad news that the building is served with single phase and those units will not suit.

lorizecca said:
How do job crews get formed?
Over time, some guys "click" better with some than others. Some effort is put into putting a group of guys on a certain project that work well with each other, and only grab the jerks and assholes from others jobs to help them if they get behind for some reason. (which seems a little counter-productive if you think about it).

lorizecca said:
Who absorbs the cost of mistakes that the crews make?
What kind of mistake? A "mistake" that was really an error or omission on the plans is really what we'd call an opportunity for a "change order". We get these signed by the general contractor when a "mistake" that was really done in accordance with the prints needs remedied. In this case, the owner will have to absorb that cost.

If the "mistake" was a genuine screwup on the part of one of the subcontractors and was not done in accordance with the prints, the subcontractor or the subcontractor's insurance company or bonding company must pay the cost to remedy the situation (depending on the severity and dollars involved).
 

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hmmmm....mistake....... Well I think it all started in the spring of 1964, when my parents were shot while running from the hospital.

Oh...job mistakes....Ok

My brother and 2 high school buddies landed a huge carpet job. Towards the end of the final day Steve wanted to know who ate his big mac, and boy he was pissed. Nobody would fess up.

An hour later, vacumeing up the cut waste, they noticed a hump in the living room floor.........It squashed down rather nicely, but the dog created a call back repair.

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Glasshousebltr said:
hmmmm....mistake....... Well I think it all started in the spring of 1964, when my parents were shot while running from the hospital.

Oh...job mistakes....Ok

My brother and 2 high school buddies landed a huge carpet job. Towards the end of the final day Steve wanted to know who ate his big mac, and boy he was pissed. Nobody would fess up.

An hour later, vacumeing up the cut waste, they noticed a hump in the living room floor.........It squashed down rather nicely, but the dog created a call back repair.

Bob
Bob ... Bob ...Bob

You are too funny! I'm guessing an average day with you is anything but dull. Hope the dog was eventually pacified.

Thanks, as always, for your unique input. :Thumbs:

~Lori~
 

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Well thank you Lori but I can't take all the credit....you see I have this clown who lives in my pocket......:eek: .............................................thats as far as I can go with that one.:cheesygri

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
More questions ...

Is it true that most contractors start their day early in the AM? If so, how early?

Is it typical for a Project Manager/owner to have more than one project going at once?

Would a Project Manager/owner have more than one trailer? One for each project?

(Yes, I do seem obsessed with those trailers! LOL! ;) )

If the business was successful enough, would this same project mgr have a regular office in addition to a trailer?

Thanks, guys!
Lori
 

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lorizecca said:
Is it true that most contractors start their day early in the AM? If so, how early?

Is it typical for a Project Manager/owner to have more than one project going at once?

Would a Project Manager/owner have more than one trailer? One for each project?

(Yes, I do seem obsessed with those trailers! LOL! ;) )

If the business was successful enough, would this same project mgr have a regular office in addition to a trailer?

Thanks, guys!
Lori
That depends on what time of the year. If its smoking hot out most contractors will be there when the sun comes up so they can finished before the day heats up. Average time 7:30am - 8:00 am. If its not smoking hot out. If its is plan on 5:30am thru 6:00am.

Question 2. DEPENDS HOW BIG HE IS. It isn't uncommon for a big contractor to have more than one project going on. Now trailer. Depends on how big the project is. Most will have a trailer office for a big project. All contractors have trailers....Being defind as a trailer pulled behind his truck which he keeps his tools in. It will normally be left on a jobsite if its a good area. Meaning not prone to theft.
 

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My friend is a union carpenter and another is a super. Here in NJ the unions start at 6:30am and out at 3:00.
 

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What I know about unions. One union roofer who smokes pot every day. I did some govt work and on govt work union can work side by side with non union. They don't like that. In addition I find that unions do work just as well, or WORSE in some cases than I and my crew does. You have union and non union hacks.

Depending on the job site dictates who absorbs the mistake cost. Typically when there is a general contractor his job is to cover his ass and force all liability on his subs. If the sub is smart he will know how to play the game, the game is paper work paper work paper work. Document everything!

Again the job site and relationship from GC to sub also dictates who orders materials. Usually the sub will be responsible for ordering materials... and to be honest I usually prefer this because when ever someone else orders the materials there is always a screw up which causes me wasted time. However I use subs for some stuff, my gutter subs buy their own materials. My roofing subs I buy the materials. Usually my subs make me buy anything special order, that places the liability on me, and that's ok with me because I am confident in my estimating skills... but I am not a typical general contractor infact I think the industry term to describe my situation would be Prime Contractor.

You have to understand there are exceptions to every rule. There is an industry norm but that norm can vary from job to job.
 

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There's several kinds of "trailers". Some are totally empty, to receive deliveries that aren't ready to be installed. Some contain tools. I think you're talking about the "office trailer", which has desks, phone, fax machine, and tables big enough to roll out prints.

Any job that is big enough to last more than a couple of months normally gets an office trailer. They cost a few sheckels to set up, since you need to haul them to the site, block them up level, hook up the electric and phones, etc. The larger General Contractors own one or more of them, but quite often they are rented from national leasing companies like GE Capitol. The subcontractors normally don't have an office trailer. They most often work out of their storage trailer or tool trailer. If the project is to last for a year or more, the subs may have office trailers too, if space on the site is available. Sometimes if the project is what's called a "tennant refit" (like in an existing office building or retail mall), the general contractor might set up his office in adjacent unoccupied space, building owner permitting. For small projects, the office may be nothing more than a table on the jobsite somewhere with the plans laid out on it, bulletin board above, and phone and fax stashed underneath (reference "war wagon").

Some subcontractors may adjust their work day so that they can do certain things when fewer people or no people are around (such as flooring), but not always.
 

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Our builders assn. has a 'good neighbor policy', it's also voluntary. You can show up early and leave late as long as your major noise period is between 8 and 6.
 

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Teetorbilt said:
Our builders assn. has a 'good neighbor policy', it's also voluntary. You can show up early and leave late as long as your major noise period is between 8 and 6.
That's a fantastic policy! :Thumbs:

I wish the screwballs operating the crawler loader across the road from me at this very minute had that same policy. It's a nice evening, and I'd like to have the windows open but for the noise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks 747

747 said:
That depends on what time of the year. If its smoking hot out most contractors will be there when the sun comes up so they can finished before the day heats up. Average time 7:30am - 8:00 am. If its not smoking hot out. If its is plan on 5:30am thru 6:00am.

Question 2. DEPENDS HOW BIG HE IS. It isn't uncommon for a big contractor to have more than one project going on. Now trailer. Depends on how big the project is. Most will have a trailer office for a big project. All contractors have trailers....Being defind as a trailer pulled behind his truck which he keeps his tools in. It will normally be left on a jobsite if its a good area. Meaning not prone to theft.
This was really helpful. I kind of thought as much, having had a new house built several years back, but I wanted to be sure! BTW, I like your little cartoon! :cool:

Lori
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks Tim ...

TimNJ said:
My friend is a union carpenter and another is a super. Here in NJ the unions start at 6:30am and out at 3:00.
I grew up in NJ! Where abouts are you? :Thumbs:
Lori
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks, Grumps ...

Grumpy said:
BTW I'd like some royalties as a consultancy fee. I don't think that's out of line. Do you?
Your insight was really great, thank you! As for royalties ... it could be 1-2 years before this book ever hits the shelves ... if at all ... will you settle for credits in the dedication???? Perhaps a character named after you ... someone who is um ... grumpy-ish! :)

Lori
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
T ...

Teetorbilt said:
Our builders assn. has a 'good neighbor policy', it's also voluntary. You can show up early and leave late as long as your major noise period is between 8 and 6.
Thought you abandoned me!!!! Always glad to hear from you!!!! :cheesygri
Lori
 
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