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GoPro For A Day: Vanessa Carman

June 6th 2018

If you’re in the construction industry, you may have heard of a Trimble, but maybe you don’t know exactly what it does or how it’s used.

In this installment of Hermanson’s “GoPro For A Day” series, our cameras follow Sheet Metal Journeyman and Trimble Operator Vanessa Carman through the Trimble process out at the Harrison Hospital Acute Care Expansion project in Silverdale to show you what a typical “day in the life” of a Trimble Operator looks like.

The Trimble is a robotic instrument used to accurately measure slope distances and mark installation points for sleeves and hangers in the building deck to provide paths and support Mechanical & Plumbing systems. Use of this technology achieves significant increases in field productivity.

At the beginning of the video, Vanessa sets up the Trimble by strapping a column clamp to a column. This clamp will keep the "robot" level and within sight of the “prism,” the endpoint for measurement. The large yellow laser is called a robotic total station (RTS) or robot for short. When Vanessa installs the robot onto the clamp, she will need to level the base for accurate readings.

Then, Vanessa uses a layout rod with a prism attached to the top. The prism communicates with the robot to establish distance. Also attached to the rod is a tablet showing "points" that represent where hangers or sleeves need to be installed. When the layout rod is positioned correctly, the table will show a checkmark, signifying that it’s time to mark the point. Vanessa uses a punch to mark where to install hangers and sleeves.

Using Vanessa’s punch, the plywood is marked with an identifying label. Different colors are used to identify which trade will use the mark and what kind of hanger or sleeve is needed. The team will hammer "bangers" into the plywood at the marked positions. Embedded in the middle of the banger is a thread that will later be used to install hangers.

Used in both new construction and major renovation, the precise work of Vanessa and her team is critical to the efficient mechanical system installation.