Design Assist

Design assist is the procurement method of choice for projects completed by Dissimilar Metal Design. Each project that moves through design assist phase goes through four major steps:

1) Take offs
2) Details
3) Virtual Mockups
4) Full Scale Physical Mockup

Common Questions for Design Assist

Q: Will design assist add unnecessary complexity to the project?
A: On the contrary, design assist simplifies a project in many ways. By identifying potential issues early, it prevents costly changes and delays during construction. The collaboration streamlines the process, accelerates the schedule, and minimizes risks, resulting in a smoother project execution.

Q: Why if I’ve already designed details, does design assist make sense?
A: Even if you’ve already designed the details of a project, using Design Assist Procurement can still offer valuable benefits. We bring practical construction expertise that can refine and optimize the design for better constructability, cost-efficiency, and overall project success. Dissimilar design assist will identify potential issues, reduce fabricated components, and lead to a smoother construction process and a more successful outcome.

Q: Won’t involving a fabrication design assist duplicate the engineer’s role?
A: Not at all. Subcontractors and engineers have distinct areas of expertise. Engineers focus on structural and technical aspects, while our fabrication team contributes practical construction insights and methods to reduce cost. By combining their knowledge, you get a more comprehensive and well-rounded approach to design and construction.

Design Assist makes complex architectural features into known quantities beyond a shadow of a doubt.

Our Design Assist Process:

  1. Take Offs: We provide general take offs of the scope at multiple phases during design. This will help the design team make informed decisions to stay within the client budget for the scope.
  2. Typical Details: Dissimilar’s engineering team will work with the design team to identify and resolve critical details and to provide preliminary engineering calculations to inform the system design. This will save time typically spent by design team working on details that end up being redone by the fabricator. It also lowers designer exposure to risk of providing details not per industry standards which requires to redo work or might lead to change orders.
  3. Virtual 3D Mock Ups: We provide digital 3D mockups of typical details to better verify how details fit with design intent. This is a valuable graphic tool that allows all stakeholders to review and provide feedback in terms of design intent, fabrication, and installation.
  4. Full scale Physical Mock Up: The final mockups take what is often the most complex component to be fabricated for owner and designer sign off. The designer and owner will be able to see exactly what they are going to get for the project. This mock up will also allow the fabricator and installer to test fabrication and installation of different components, which would ultimately benefit the project schedule. The mock up will also help provide a very good cost estimate of the overall scope.
  5. Completion: After completing the design assist process, the owner and design team will have a resolved metals system with a complete set of details. This means less RFI’s during construction and less exposure to change orders with unexpected cost impacts. DMD will commit to providing the scope based on the package details at a fixed cost. 

Case Studies featuring Design Assist