Field Fabrication vs. Shop Fabrication

Have you ever wondered why some project specs contain language prohibiting field fabricated trusses?

The fact is, there is no evidence that field fabricated trusses are any less exceptional than shop fabricated trusses. In fact, Lamp Metal Trusses is a certified truss manufacturer by not one, but two independent certification organizations for quality and performance. We put our products through frequent and rigorous quality inspection so that you can order with absolute confidence. Lamp’s field fabrication method provides numerous advantages over typical shop fabrication, which translates into a more competitive and smoother project for you! So if you like saving time and money, read on…

Then, double-check your specs to allow field fabricated trusses on all of your projects, today! →

Which would you rather have?

The Difference...

Lamp’s field fabrication is shop fabrication, just without a roof! Using approved, engineered drawings our truss members are cut by the manufacturer to the specified lengths, then shipped in compact bundles which reduces every project’s overall freight costs.

Our experienced crews use jigged-table assemblies to lay and fasten each member per the approved shop drawings, right in front of you.

``Piggy-Back`` Trusses

A “piggy-back” truss is a fully assembled truss that shop-fab companies have to break into smaller sections to fit onto the truck, then reassemble onsite.

“Piggy-back” trusses require more engineering, more design time, more fabrication time, more install time, more loading time, and more freight resources. Their connections are also subject to weakening because of the rigors of extra handling and transportation, an issue known as “racking.”

Lamp’s field-fab services streamline the entire process with full transparency and saves you time and money!

LEED Status

Field fabrication has a critical fringe benefit that the shop-fab process simply can’t compete with: reducing your project’s overall fossil fuel emissions.

Lamp’s truss components are shipped directly from the manufacturer to the jobsite in compact bundles. This significantly reduces the number of trucks needed to supply a job, and eliminates unnecessary carbon emissions created by redundant shop-fab shipments.

Field-Fab FAQs

Why should I consider field-fab trusses?

Approving Lamp’s field fabricated trusses in your specifications is not a risk, it’s an advantage. The end product by both field-fab and shop-fab methods will meet your specified engineering requirements. But only Lamp’s field-fab method can significantly reduce project costs and durations by eliminating “piggy-back” trusses.

Are field fabricated trusses as good as shop-fab trusses?

Yes! Lamp’s field fabricating methods are the same as any shop. We produce high-quality, consistent profiles time and time again because we use jigged-table assemblies, and most of our material is cut to length by the component manufacturer.

Lamp is also the only truss manufacturer to carry TWO fabrication certifications (SFIA and TPI), enabling you to purchase with confidence knowing that our quality standards are second to none.

Should I be worried about transport damage?

Not when you use Lamp’s field-fab method. Because field-fab components are shipped in compact bundles, the risk of transport damage is exponentially less than shop-fab assemblies.

However, transport damage to shop-assembled truss pieces is a real concern. Weakening of the connection points during a shop-fab truss’s transport is called “racking,” and it can create supply issues and project delays.

Can field fabrication save time?

Absolutely! Using jigged-table assemblies at the jobsite, the Lamp Metal Trusses crew builds perfect trusses ONCE, and provides a turn-key product right in front of you.

Shop-fab trusses are manipulated TWICE before installation. First upon initial assembly at the shop, and again upon arrival and “piggy-back” reassembly at the jobsite. On top of that, the time it takes to off-load and load shop-fab pieces to trucks, as well as travel time is exponentially higher than the field-fab method due to the inherent need for multiple truckloads to ship the same amount of material.

How does field fabrication provide design flexibility?

We know there is no such thing as a “perfect” construction project. When/if problems emerge in the substrate or drawings, our crews are able to quickly and effortlessly implement any approved engineered modifications. Lamp’s field-fab method provides unmatched flexibility, and since our fabrication crew is also our installation crew, it’s a turn-key service.

Without inclusive language that approves the field-fab method in your specs, engineering changes made after delivery would require transport back to the shop-fab facility; delaying the project. Onsite assembly of a new truss design using existing materials would be “field fabrication,” and thus prohibited per any exclusionary language in the project’s specifications.

Does field fabrication take up more space on the jobsite?

Whether field-fab or shop-fab, both methods need the same amount of space at the jobsite for off-loading, storage, and staging. Lamp requires adequate space for fabricating, which is coordinated through project teams.

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What our customers are saying...

Jason Larkins

“Our relationship with Lamp has been more of a team/partnership in which our firms work collaboratively for solutions and for the best product for the owner/client.” – VP of Construction, Orion Building Corporation

Click here for Jason’s full testimonial.

Phillip M. Esswein

“Shop fabricated trusses often experience damage during shipping and handling. This is not an issue with Lamp’s field fabricated trusses.”
– Phillip M. Esswein. P.E.

Click here for Phillip’s full testimonial.

Ryan Parker

“It is a breath of fresh air to work with professionals who show up and get the job done with little to no fuss.”
– Ryan Parker, Senior Project Manager

Click here for Ryan’s full testimonial.