Oct 03 2016

The Quick Factory Job That Became a Complete Factory Renovation

By Deven Paolo

Recently, we’ve been working with a local food processing facility. They hired the Solid Form team to build some catwalks to connect two work areas and allow people to oversee more of the facility at once. However, the simple catwalk project wasn’t what it seemed.

This facility, now under new ownership, was planning on several renovations to upgrade the whole building. But once they got started, they found many areas that needed to be completely rebuilt due to rot and corrosion. So our original $50,000 catwalk job turned into a $300,000 factory upgrade.

Working with the carpenters, electricians and moving company, we were challenged with the ever-changing scope of this project. As conditions changed, our fabrication and installation schedule had to be adjusted.

The job began with the design and fabrication of the catwalks. However, after the inspection,  they found that the equipment frames and structural components of the building were no longer sound. So, we paused that project and worked with the team to gather details about the new steel framing we’d be fabricating to replace the damaged ones. All of the material we used was marine-grade stainless steel to prevent the rust and corrosion that previously occurred. Due to the chemicals used in the facility, there is a very wet, marine-like environment that damages many other types of material.

industrial metal fabrication

This project involved both in-shop and on-site fabrication because of the size of many of the structural components. We had to overcome some space limitations when installing the new structures with the raised equipment platform. When replacing the legs on this platform, the old legs had to be removed, the platform lowered and then raised again for the new legs to be properly attached.

custom catwalk design

After all the structural elements were in place, we were able to finish the catwalks for the platforms and to finish it all up, we fabricated some shoots to transport the product from one part of the facility to another. Although there were many surprises during  this nine month project, we were able to work with everyone involved to produce all the metal fab projects they required.

If you're interested in our industrial custom metal fabrication and design services, contact us for an estimate!