Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - 13

Offsite Construction Challenges
While there are benefits to offsite modular
building construction, the Global Industry
Analysts report says the 183 or so U.S. builders (299 worldwide) face the following issues:
1. Safety - Eliminating worker soft-tissue
and larger injuries requires training
and planning.
2. Movement flexibility - Reducing production slowdowns with quicker change
outs cannot always be achieved with
pre-existing systems.
3. Costs - Retrofitting existing buildings
to produce modular structures can be
expensive. Hiring ticketed employees and
installing cranes and rails adds to costs.
4. Size - Moving larger prebuilds inside
of a factory presents logistics, efficiency
and delivery problems.

Sub-optimal Modular Building Construction Plant
Time is money. When a construction plant
uses old-fashioned load-moving equipment
- cranes, floor conveyors, and rails and
forklifts - an assembly error may require
that an entire line is shut down. Maybe the
whole plant. Because the next station cannot
proceed, the process flow is halted. Each tick
of the clock without production nibbles away
at profits. Quality is a key differentiator of
offsite modular constructed units over onsite
stick-builts. Additionally, if a unit doesn't

match plan, a foremen may have to stop the production line, which
may affect the on-site building schedule.
But there are alternatives. To reduce expenses and enhance safety,
a modular construction management team can choose to retrofit an
existing building with new moving technology, or it can start from
the bottom up and design a safer, more efficient, more productive
plant using an air caster system.

Paul Jakse is vice president sales of AeroGo
Inc., Seattle. AeroGo
manufactures heavy
load equipment utilizing
hovercraft technology
for moving heavy, awkward or delicate loads

Optimized Modular Building Construction Plant

in factories. Tel: (866)

An optimized modular building plant embraces air caster technolo- 537-0153. For more
gy. By using fewer pieces of moving equipment, like cranes, dollies
information, please visit
and forklifts, air caster systems reduce the chances of injury. Movehttp://www.aerogo.com.
ment flexibility is superior from the omni-directional capability
afforded by air bearings, which is not obtainable with rails. Because
the modular units of any size (24-feet to 72-feet or more) float on air,
fewer employees are required to move a unit. Air casters can easily
be added to heavier sections of the prefabricated building (kitchens
or fireplaces) to even out the load.
A construction blunder can be pulled from a production line within minutes, and the line barely misses a beat. The highest of quality
standards can be achieved with a minimum of workflow interruption. Troy Yaschyshyn, NCSO manager, safety, says there's another
safety feature when using air caster technology: "Based on our loads
of units, the size of standard casters/dolly wheels kept the module at
the height of approximately 24 inches once bolted to a rim joist. Using AeroGo air casters dropped that height down to approximately
16 inches. This was significant for us because it made access and
egress safer for our employees."

Eyes on the Modular Buildings Industry
Competition in the construction industry is stiff. Modular buildings
are more cost-effective than stick-built structures and deliver a
shorter time to project completion. There is less waste because the
factory-controlled construction lowers the amount of unused material at the project site.
Today's marketplace is demanding agility. Making the move 24to 72-foot and larger buildings around a production facility with
multiple build stations presents both logistical and safety problems.
Additionally, the expense of installing conveyors or rails is high; the
process of installation also is time-consuming and delays or stunts
growth opportunities.
To achieve cost savings at the modular building construction facility with the highest safety and greatest movement flexibility (and
with the least building damage) air casters are the optimal choice.
Heavy-duty air casters will last longer and can support the weighty
building boxes across many build stations even if loads are uneven.
Choosing an air caster supplier with a long history, solid technology,
and good customer support is vital.

13

VOLUME 16, ISSUE 1 CONSTRUCTION-TODAY.COM

MODULAR BUILDING

* The on-site project timeline is reduced
- The delivery of the pre-builts provides
speed to construction.
* Less waste for lower costs and better sustainability - Quality modular structures
with LEED certificated builders introduce energy and cost savings.
* Labor and site preparation expenses are
lower - Especially in months-long cold
climates, modular deliveries match local
climate and labor requirements.
* Speed to market - End-user design
changes can be addressed without unnecessary delays.


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1

Contents
Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - Cover1
Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - Cover2
Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - 1
Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - Contents
Construction Today - Volume 16, Issue 1 - 3
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