An excellent example of MiTek SAPPHIRE™ in action can be found in a recent job licensed MiTek fabricator, Frames & Trusses NSW, did for a builder working on the Stonecutters Ridge Development. Situated 45 minutes north-west of Sydney’s CBD, this 904 lot project will provide a variety of home solutions for families looking for resort-style living.

Approximately 60 percent of the development is dedicated to open green space including: four parks and an 18-hole (par 72), Greg Norman-designed, championship golf course. Quite a few of the lots even border the Colebee Nature Reserve. There’s a variety of lot sizes; many with wide frontages and golf course or park views.

img5573a1024“We’ve done several homes in the Stonecutters Ridge development already,” says Geoff Barron, Frames & Trusses manager and estimator/detailer.  Geoff started using SAPPHIRE™ Management in
conjunction with 20/20 last year. “I’ve really enjoyed SAPPHIRE™ Management and the all-encompassing role it plays in our business. It has made a huge difference to the way we process information. SAPPHIRE™ Management gives us real-time data on everything from workflows, reporting, quotes in and out, the status of orders – even monthly Eqa reports and a whole lot more.  The only thing it doesn’t do is the accounting… and make coffee!”

“Our local FSM (fabricator support manager) Amanda Ling has been a huge help bringing us up-to-speed with SAPPHIRE™,” Geoff says. “So we couldn’t wait to see what SAPPHIRE™ Structure could do. And the Stonecutters Ridge project seemed like the perfect job to test it out.”

What quickly became apparent was the host of features and benefits SAPPHIRE™ Structure delivers. Following are a selection Amanda highlighted in the Stonecutters Ridge project:

Wall input:

  • With Wall Input it’s easy to extend a wall to another wall in one simple move.
  • Because frames only need to be input the once the overall input of the job is faster.
  • If a wall is put in the wrong position SAPPHIRE™ can easily move it – with all other walls around it being repositioned at the same time.
  • Wall information can even be altered in 3D mode – and the viewer can see all adjustments made automatically.
  • Quick opening – speeds up the input of openings.
  • SAPPHIRE™ Search and View – makes it easier to find and check wall inputs. Panels can even be filtered allowing the viewer the option to see only load bearing panels, panels of a certain height etc.
  • Design the lintels and opening studs by selecting wall design and the loads from the roof will transfer to these materials and provide the results.
  • SAPPHIRE™ can check measurements in 3D to ensure both frames and trusses will work together on site.

Roof input

  • SAPPHIRE™ Plane Input – is easier as it shows the plane shape being created whilst selecting on the planes.
  • When inputting framing files, SAPPHIRE™ displays what the framing file will look like on the live plan before placing the framing file…plus altering of framing files is easy.
  • SAPPHIRE™ Search and View – allows filtering of un-designed trusses and finds trusses quickly by a right mouse button click on a truss and select on zoom to object. This works for any entity.
  • Window placements work with Dual screen.
  • Entity groups – allows the movement of entities into groups eg: the Stonecutters Ridge job required a girder layout…so the visibility switches entity group setup was altered – clearly displaying the trusses required.
  • Adding or altering a web is very easy in Engineering View.
  • Editing any entity in plan view, elevation view or 3D view is very easy and in real time.
  • With SAPPHIRE™ dimensioning tools are available in all views too.
  • Output of the job is extremely quick – with one click of a button .
  • All SAPPHIRE™ layouts are customisable.

When asked about the advantages of SAPPHIRE™ Structure, Geoff is quick to praise.

“The whole-of-house feature is a game-changer for our industry,” he says. “Every other program has walls and roof trusses as separate entities – some say theirs talk to each other – but they’re still separate. Importantly, there was no lag – it all happens instantaneously. We used SAPPHIRE™ right through the job – from the initial order to manufacturing and dispatch.  Plus, were able to monitor the progress of the job all the way and get valuable information on every aspect of the production process.

“SAPPHIRE™ is an unbelievably powerful program. I have great confidence in the engineering credibility of SAPPHIRE™, too. We can always get MiTek to check our work, but there’s no need – SAPPHIRE™ gets it right first time, every time. Plus, we can even tailor it to our way of doing things.”