5 Ways to Save Money on your Next Custom Build.

Posted by Joe Kondrat - 13 February, 2018

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In today’s competitive marketplace, firms are always looking for ways to stretch their budget dollars. Here are five ways to save money on your next custom fabrication build:

Allow more time for quoting.

This is perhaps the most overlooked and simplest way to potentially save a lot of money with very little effort. In today’s hyper-paced workplace, it seems time is always in short supply. When a quotation is rushed and information imperfect, the firm doing the quote will error on the side of caution meaning higher pricing. Especially when doing a custom fabrication quote where each build is a one-of-a-kind pricing exercise, the more time a firm has to lock down actual costs of inputs and processes instead of using estimates, the lower the cost can be. Sometimes a day or so extra can make all the difference in the final price.

Longer production window can equal lower costs.

On the flip side of the coin, the more time you have for production, the lower your build price can be. This is because fabrication shops run on a production schedule and to maximize efficiency we need to keep busy, but not too busy. A longer production window allows us to plan our schedule keeping production at normal capacity without needing to resort to overtime. The savings in turn can be passed on to you, the client.

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Pay attention to your material input sizes. 

When planning a build, be sure to keep in mind typical material input sizes. For example, a lot of materials most often come in 4 x 8 sheets including plywood and composites. Additionally, the machines that cut, plane and tool them are generally built to accommodate the 4’x8’ sheet size. While you may find larger sized sheets, keeping to the standard 4’x8’ will save money and the increase likelihood it will be in stock, saving you time.

Be Flexible.

This is a great area to save some money that is often overlooked. When specifying out a materials list, be sure your design team is open to possible material substitutions. The right fabrication partner can often make substitution recommendations that won’t compromise the design intent but may reduce costs and oftentimes the substitute material may even be a stronger more suitable fit than the originally specified medium.

Generally, the fewer sub-trades needed, the more cost effective and time efficient your build can be. A shop with multiple trades under one roof reduces costs several ways. First off, there is no communications delay, so if the welding manager has a question for the lead carpenter, being able to walk over and discuss the matter directly rather than wait for another sub-trade to return a call is a lot faster and reduces the likelihood of mistakes.

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Having multiple trades under one roof also allows more execution options. When you have the full 64-pack of crayons (with sharpener) so to speak, instead of the standard 8-pack, you have a lot more choice in how to approach a build, which in turn can lead to greater cost efficiencies as well as an overall better build solution.

ASTOUND is an award-winning design & fabrication company that specializes in the delivery of state-of-the-art environments, exhibits, & events around the world. To discuss your next project, click here to Contact ASTOUND.


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