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How To Minimise Preparation Time For Off-Site Prefabrication


Although it’s generally agreed that prefab saves time in construction, the prevalence of manual processes and outdated software in the construction industry can make the process more trouble than it’s worth. Creating prefab sets in Revit by default can be a time-consuming task when mechanical contractors have to create prefab sheets, tag, and code sets all by hand.

And yet, according to a McKinsey report, prefabrication can accelerate project timelines by 20 to 50 percent. The barrier of entry for most is the cost and effort associated with new technologies, but emerging options are making advanced prefab capabilities more accessible — greatly minimising preparation time for accurate and timely off-site prefabrication.

The key to prefab functionality is to find software that makes it easy for contractors to create and share prefab sets. Three features, in particular, allow mechanical contractors to realise the full potential of constructible models:


  • Prefabrication functionality: Leverage a complete and seamless prefabrication workflow from concept to installation by automatically generating prefab sheets. Aided by intuitive tag integration, these solutions minimise preparation time for accurate and timely prefabrication.  

  • Nodesolver Connecting Tool: Intelligent connection tools make it easy to visualise connections for pipes, ducts, and other elements and accurately resolve complex nodes. A nodesolver automatically places necessary ductwork, damper, and flexibles where needed to help improve the accuracy of design connections.

  • Constructible Content: Leverage localised manufacturer content within the software and access a large online library of up-to-date mechanical content. Use constructible content to produce Revit models as close to the final structure as possible and even produce schedules that are ready for ordering products directly from the model. 


How to optimise the prefab process with Stabicad

Stabicad streamlines prefab preparation by automating several processes and involving prefab earlier on. Follow these four steps to quickly and effectively prepare models for prefab within the software:


  1. Download manufacturer-specific content: Stabicad supports an extensive library of manufacturer content. Embed relevant product data into 3D models to improve their usefulness for all project phases. Part dimensions, article numbers, prices, and more can be added directly to 3D models to enhance information delivery.

  2. Model systems: Stabicad Autorouting and Nodesolver features help refine the information of drawings. These features pull from data systems and adjust properties in turn with measurements that are used. This means that when a Revit model is adjusted, the article number will automatically change accordingly. 

  3. Code and visualise prefab sets: Some prefab practitioners feel that there is a lack of consistency when it comes to coding styles — every company, project, and user has their own way of coding prefab sets. The Stabicad coding tool configures to the needs of the user and helps establish a standard for the whole project. Afterward, simply use the “create plan” function in the palette to visualise sets.

  4. Create sheets: Create several prefab sheets at once. Through the “manage prefabricated sheets” function, users can create a materials list, insert multiple prefab sets on one sheet, and automatically insert tabs.


Stabicad contains a full suite of unique tools specifically designed to help mechanical contractors produce detailed 3D mechanical designs for prefabricating off-site and installing on-site.


How MEP contractors are saving time with Stabicad 

Stabicad is the only UK software that offers a seamless prefabrication workflow to minimise the preparation time needed for accurate and timely off-site prefabrication. Backed by a collection of features specially designed with MEP contractors in mind, Stabicad helps make it easy to create prefab sets directly from 3D models.


“Thanks to the manufacturer-specific content, prefab sets that correspond to reality can be easily made. The generated prefab drawings and cut lists can then be used for assembly at the workshop, which saves a great deal of time.”  Interview with Mark-Jan Koldijk, managing director, DWT Group 


Involve prefab sooner in the construction workflow, and reduce the effort required to create prefab sets and other prefab elements. Thanks to automation features, users can generate prefab sheets with the push of a button — pulling content that already exists within 3D models and helping to enhance the usefulness of models for the entire construction workflow.


Want to see Stabicad in action and learn what it can do for your company? Watch the demo video.