PCE’s ‘Pop-up’ Mobile Precast Concrete Factories
PCE Ltd has further developed their offering to clients by providing temporary/mobile precast concrete casting factories to further improve project efficiency and Value benefits whilst also addressing sustainability issues across their range of HybriDfMA systems.
The drive by PCE to implement a temporary/mobile factory strategy, where appropriate, is based on many factors including:
- Manufacturing availability from established fixed factories,
- Types and quantities of components required,
- Speed of the project’s assembly programme,
- Sustainability issues,
- Local employment,
- Local sourcing,
- Reduced transportation,
- Client project team engagement with DfMA,
- Cost effectiveness,
With offsite construction projects being carried out by PCE throughout the United Kingdom, precast concrete components often travel many miles from their place of manufacture to the project site for assembly, which apart from Carbon Footprint issues can result in transport delay problems that affect the onsite progress.
Each mobile factory arrangement, tailored to the project’s needs, is set up at the site or relatively close by available industrial units or open space thus minimising the delivery distance and providing the PCE site team of greater and easier logistical, quality and management control over manufacture and programming.
Rigorous quality control systems
Management of the casting facilities is carried out by PCE directly employed staff who have many years of experience of precast concrete production with the company’s renowned Quality Control systems implemented throughout every stage of each components manufacture, including fabrication of reinforcement cages, positioning of encast items, etc, all carried out by locally employed operatives.
PCE has significantly invested in specialised mouldage to provide flexibility in component sizes that can be cast for different projects, with ease of use for high quality manufacture being a key requirement.
Recently one such mobile, or ‘pop up’, factory produced 664 reinforced precast concrete components including 218 columns of 400 x 400mm cross section and 214 beams with cross sections of 600 x 500mm and 500 x 500mm. Using 4 beam moulds up to 9.5m long and casting two columns in each of the two 10.5m long column moulds, 8 components were manufactured each day on a daily turnround, with zero casting defects being recorded.
In addition to the above, a further 232 box type upstands, 450mm high were also cast at a rate of 4/day.
In total over 1,500 tonnes of reinforced concrete components were produced, enabling the onsite programme to be met and with an overall reduction in vehicle haulage mileage more than 7,500 miles that would have occurred by using alternative fixed factory availability.
Nickie Brown, PCE Managing Director said
“By creating mobile or ‘pop up’ factories we can ensure that the correct quality products are manufactured with locally sourced labour whilst enhancing programme capabilities and helping to ensure certainty of project delivery in a more sustainable manner. Such facilities enable us to innovate new component manufacturing processes whilst providing our clients with an enhanced offsite construction solution. We need to be working with like minded clients and create added value and benefits”.