Design Details in CAD

  • Clark Ricks
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2 years 4 months ago #50 by Clark Ricks
Clark Ricks created the topic: Design Details in CAD
Yesterday I received an email from an experienced architect suggesting that the industry do a better job of educating architects on the design details of ICF components. He seemed to imply that the lack of these details in hampering ICF growth. I'll paste his full email below.

My question is, how can ICF BUILDER GROUP, and the industry as a whole, resolve this issue so more architects specify ICF?

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2 years 4 months ago #51 by Clark Ricks
Clark Ricks replied the topic: Design Details in CAD
Here's the original letter:

I appreciated your latest issue and the various articles regarding ICF’s. I am an architect. And we have been home builders also, over the years, as well as residential architects. Actually I am an old architect (ha) and have been in in this business for over 40 years. I have seen various products come (and go) over the years. One of my pet peeves with new products and innovations in the construction industry, especially with items that are really good for the industry, such as ICF’s, is the lack of information regarding how to implement them into my drawings. My product is, not only the design of the home, but also the plans (working drawings) from which I can show the builder how things fit together.

I notice that, by far, the most amount of money spent on marketing these products is in the area of testing, the benefits of the product for the home owner, the ease of installation for the builder. But there is NEVER effort nor information given (shown) to the architect and/or draftsman as to how the product fits or details into the working drawings. We actually had a job a few years back where the owner wanted to use ICF instead of the conventional 2x6 framing. I looked for details and drawings and information on how to implement these into our plans (create new plans) but to no avail! Instead the builder simply said to us that he would take our plans and adapt them on site. You and I know this is problematic.

I don’t mean to sound like an old grouch about this. But I noticed in your article “2nd runner-up, Simon & Harris Home” that this architect “faced the challenge of adapting them (plans) for ICF construction”. And he did a very nice job. But my comments here; my reason for sending you this e-mail, is to suggest to you and those involved in promoting ICF’s, that you spend at least some effort in presenting to architects a series of plan details so this doesn’t become a big “challenge”. Things so simple as how does an ICF exterior wall intersect with an interior wood frame wall. Or perhaps a plan detail of a furred out wall for electrical or plumbing along an ICF wall. Or how does a typical window or door frame into an ICF wall? I know these things sound very elementary to any builder (or architect) already familiar with ICF’s. But I am one architect that, unless I have things pretty clear in my mind about how they go together, I will shift over to something I am more familiar with. I really think the steel framing people, after a long time, finally figured out that they needed to sell to the architects more than to the general public. It is the architect that will guide their clients into areas and products that they themselves understand. And I know that builders would prefer to build from plans that already show the ICF’s and not have to “adapt” the plans to work with ICF’s.

I hope this is informative to you and not abrasive. Ha These ICF’s have been around for a while now and I still think a big struggle for many of us is our unfamiliarity with how to implement them into our construction documents.

Sincerely,
Jim Stanton
Oklahoma Architect License #1320

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2 years 3 months ago - 2 years 3 months ago #52 by Robert Klob
Robert Klob replied the topic: Design Details in CAD
This is a great email and Jim posts some very important questions that face the design community.

Many ICF manufacturers have created CAD (DWG & Revit) details for architects, designers and engineers to use on their plans. Some have done a much better job than others. Look on the manufacturers website - most have a "Technical" area and offer free downloads of their details. These will need to be adapted for your office standards and also local building methods/techniques.

Another challenge for the design community is understanding each system and sizes. Some blocks have 2.5" EPS, others are 2 5/8", and some are 3"+. These fractions of an inch can be problematic when you need to maintain specific clearances. ICF Blocks can be 12", 16" or 18" tall. This should be understood when developing wall heights. Some block systems are reversible - this should also be considered when designing these heights.

Every year ICF Builder Magazine posts an updated comparison chart of all the ICF brands in North America. This is a great tool to see different block types, sizes and code approvals. I personally use it as a guide numerous times a year.

Take a look at the ICF systems in your area and who offers the best support in your community. Spend some time understanding their product. Talk to the installers and see what works - and what doesn't. learn from others mistakes on the design/plans. And if all else fails....post a question here & I would be happy to help out.

Here is a link to the latest comparison chart:
www.icfbuildergroup.com/index.php/2013-0...icf-comparison-chart

Specializing in ICF design throughout North America, Mexico & the Caribbean.
Last Edit: 2 years 3 months ago by Robert Klob.

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