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Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

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  • Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

    If you've driven down Nimitz through Kalihi, you've seen the future home of D. Otani Produce shoot up into the sky like a frustrated geyser. It seemed like it wasn't there one day, and then it was there the next.

    Just a bit down the road and across the street, near Nico's at Pier 38, there's something going up next to the building that houses Pacific Ocean Producers and Nico's, and it seemed to go up just as quickly.

    A close look at this second building led me to think that maybe the walls of this structure were pre-made and then erected, joined together, and even cut down in certain places with cement-cutting saws.

    Do they have pre-made cement panels that you link together to form buildings? How do they get the things to stand up and stay exactly in place? There doesn't seem to be any interior structure upon which to hang these things. Or am I just making something up? If I'm making something up, how did they get these walls up so quickly and without those huge steel frameworks?
    But I'm disturbed! I'm depressed! I'm inadequate! I GOT IT ALL! (George Costanza)
    GrouchyTeacher.com

  • #2
    Re: Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

    Your're not imagining things. The building method is called "tilt-up". Wall panels are pre-cast and are attached to a hinge like system on the perimeter of the floor slab. A crane then lifts (tilts) the wall to an upright orientation.

    Same thing was done to build Costco's Dillingham... drive by in the morning, nothing... drive by at the end of the day, there's a building there.

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    • #3
      Re: Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

      I knew someone was going to know...I just thought it was going to be Craig, for some reason!

      So, Cezanne, are the walls cast specially for the building in mind, or is there a warehouse of these somewhere and the construction company just orders as many of a certain size as it needs?
      Last edited by scrivener; July 5, 2006, 01:06 AM. Reason: "one saturday i took a walk to zipperhead..."
      But I'm disturbed! I'm depressed! I'm inadequate! I GOT IT ALL! (George Costanza)
      GrouchyTeacher.com

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      • #4
        Re: Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

        The walls are cast, usually on-site, to the specs of the building design. Openings (windows and doors) are built into the form (mold). For really long walls, these need to be done sections at a time. Still, these go up in no time.

        I'm sure there are designs based on modular units but it's not a requirement for tilt-up.

        This is just my basic understanding of this construction method. My involvement is during the "finishing" stages of construction. I too was amazed at how fast some of these buildings go up so I kinda asked around with some people who are involved with this phase of the project.

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        • #5
          Re: Pre-Fab Cement Buildings

          Originally posted by scrivener
          I knew someone was going to know...I just thought it was going to be Craig, for some reason!

          So, Cezanne, are the walls cast specially for the building in mind, or is there a warehouse of these somewhere and the construction company just orders as many of a certain size as it needs?
          Thanks for the shout out but Cezanne is correct and that's exactly how the Kapolei Home Depot came up so quickly as well. Kinda like a house of cards, makes you wonder what'll happen when a big wind comes along
          Life is what you make of it...so please read the instructions carefully.

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