Bending steel takes time…but is well worth the wait

July 2, 2010
A tribute to steel benders everywhere

The Joe Daniels Construction Company crew members, expertly led by Tom Laufenberg and Joe Trainor, have been working hard on our library expansion project.  I can’t say enough about how diligent they’ve been every step of the way.  They’ve uncovered a few surprises since we began construction three months ago, including less than perfect “existing conditions”, but they report, respond, and adapt.  I’ve been so impressed with how they’ve orchestrated demolition and reconstruction simultaneously and with such a can-do attitude.

Not long ago I asked Tom why they had most of the framing up on the addition but not the curved wall at the south end of the building.  You could see where it was going to go but there wasn’t any structure there yet and I was anxious to see it.  (He never tires of my questions.  Thank you for that, Tom.)   So Tom paused a moment and said something like, “Well, the steel and the structural people have to agree on how to bend the steel.”  (At least that’s what I think he said based on my limited understanding of construction-speak.)  He went on to explain that bending structural steel into a curve to fit exactly into the space required precise calculations.  Once those were agreed on by all parties, the steel had to be bent.  Not many companies bend structural steel.  Hence the wait.

They erected the curved steel on Wednesday.  It is now in place on the south end of our library addition.  I can’t tell you how magnificent it looks.  As it gets filled in with walls and windows I’ll share the photos with you.  Here you can see the beginning of a truly remarkable addition to our library!  (Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

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