Speed. It seems like everything is about speed. Be it getting your sandwich “Freaky Fast” or switching to a different Internet service provider because they have the “Fastest Download Speeds.” In football there is “no-huddle or hurry-up offense,” and in NASCAR, each race team is looking for a way to get more speed from their cars and pit crews. In the business of curved steel including beam bending done by bender/rollers, this is no different.
If not once a day (often more than once a day), but for sure once every other day, a request for a quick quote is received. The request for quote (RFQ) will have the following notes: “I need this right away,” “no later than the end of today,” “my bid goes in in a few hours,” “can you help me out on this one”, “just a budget number” and the always popular “ASAP.” These are just a few phrases heard or written.
The reasons for needing a quick quote are varied. The estimator for the steel fabricator “missed” the item(s) on their original take off, “they decided to bid this project at the last moment,” “I thought I sent you a request for quote days ago” (and they were mistaken) or the ever popular, “I missed this, can you help me out?” The reasons are not important, what is important is that a customer or potential customer has a need for a quick quote to make their bid complete and accurate. In many cases a quote can be provided quickly and, more important, accurately.
However, to accomplish this task in an expedited manner, there needs to be detailed and accurate information provided. Answers to the following questions constitute the essential information for a quote of any kind, but especially for a quick quote:
- Are we quoting Labor-Only or Labor-and-Material
- What is the material?
- What is the shape?
- What is the member size?
- How many are required?
- How is the member rolled?
- What is the radius?
- How much usable arc is required?
- Shall we include freight to your facility?
Given accurate answers to these questions, a quote can be prepared in many cases quickly and accurately. For our discussion, we will use a curved beam as an example:
The RFQ is for an A 992, domestic material, W30 x 116, rolled the hard way (x-x axis) to a 75′-6″ outside radius, with 41′-6″ usable arc. A total of 6 pieces are required. This information can be written, sent as part of a take-off in table form or sent as a sketch/drawing. The more complete and detailed the information which is provided, the better chance there is of a bender/roller providing not only a quick quote, but an accurate one as well.