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Course Title: Construction Administration

Course NO.: 4300-471


Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

MEASURING CONCRETE WORK


GENERAL
Division 3, concrete, of the Uniform Construction Index (CSI) format includes items
relating to concrete construction.
Preparing a quantity take-off of concrete work requires the estimator to measure a
combination of items some of which may be shown on the drawings, while others
might have to be inferred from them.
Most of the drawings would normally indicate all major items of concrete work, such as
footings, walls, and columns, but the details of formwork required for the work is not
indicated. Similarly, cement finishes and items such as screeds and curing are not
generally explicit on the drawings and have to be worked out from the specifications read
in conjunction with the drawings.
Estimating concrete can vary depending on whether the concrete is cat-in-place on the
project or is purchased as precast units. If the concrete is cast-in-place, the estimator must
consider certain activities in developing the cost, such as installing formwork, reinforcing
steel (including embedded items), concrete, finishing, curing, protecting concrete, and
removal and cleaning (and possibly coating) of the forms.
If the concrete is precast, the estimator determines the cost of the specific item and then
considers the cost of placing it into its final position. There are many different types of
commercially available precast units, and most manufacturers of precast components can
custom make any size and style needed. Concrete can be precast on or off the job site.
Specialty contractors usually install precast units.

MEASURING CONCRETE
a. Concrete shall be measured in cubic yards net in place. The volume of concrete is
calculated from the dimensions given on the drawings with no adjustment for add
on factors. Additional material required because of spillage, expanding forms, and
wastage will be accounted for later in the pricing process by means of a waste factor
added to concrete items.
One exception to this general rule applies to the situation where the concrete is to be
placed on rock or shale. In this case the overbreak in the excavation is generally
required to be filled with concrete and, as the volume of overbreak is not indicated,
the estimator will have to add an assessed amount to the quantity of concrete to allow
for this overbreak.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

b. No adjustment to the quantity of concrete is made for reinforcing steel and insets
which displace concrete. Also, no deductions are made for openings in the concrete
that do not exceed one cubic foot of volume.
c. Concrete shall be classified and measured separately in the following categories:
10. underpinning
11. pile caps
12. isolated footings
13. continuous footing
14. retaining walls
15. grade beams

16. columns and pedestals


17. beams
18. slabs on grade
19. suspended slabs
20. floor toppings
21. stairs and landings

22. curbs
23. manholes
24. equipment bases
25. roads
26. sidewalks
27. other structures

d. Different mixes of concrete shall be measured separately in each of the above items.
For instance, where a high rise is being estimated, if the columns up to the second
floor are specified as 6000 psi concrete; from the second up to the tenth floor they are
5000 psi concrete; and above the tenth floor they are 4000 psi concrete; quantity of
each strength of concrete is required.
Often on a project all the concrete for a certain use, for example footings, is specified
as the same mix, in which case there is no need to note the mix on the take-off as it
will not have to be considered until the recap and pricing stage is reached.
Mixes can be further complicated by the type of cement that could be specified. For
example, concrete in contact with soil may have to be made with type V, sulfate
resisting cement. There could be the requirement of air entrainment or the use of
super-plasticizers. All of this produces a multitude of concrete mixes comprising
various combinations of the list of variables. To simplify the pricing of concrete, the
items listed on the recap are priced for the cost of placing (labor and equipment) only.
A separate list of the amounts of the various mixes is prepared and against each item
on this list the price of the particular mix of concrete is entered.
e. Where columns and walls extend between the floors of a building they shall be
measured from the top surface of the slab below up to the undersurface of the slab or
beam above.
f. Beams may be measured separately from slabs but if they are to be poured
monolithically with the slabs, the quantity of concrete in the beams should be added
to the slab concrete for pricing.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

PRICING CONCRETE
The total cost of concrete could include concrete material cost, concrete labor cost,
concrete equipment cost.
Concrete Material Cost
The ready-mix supplier will provide the cost per cubic yard of each type of concrete
specified. The types of admixtures, strengths, and general quantities will affect the cost of
the concrete. The estimated should ensure that the ready-mix concrete supplier has the
resources and capability to deliver the specified concrete.
Concrete Labor Cost
The cost of labor depends upon the productivity and wage rates. Company historical data,
revised for the specific job, is used along with current wage rates. In determining the
labor cost, the estimator should keep in mind that the concrete has to be physically moved
on the job site. To determine the amount and cost involved, one must first determine the
method by which the concrete will be moved. Will it be the wheelbarrow, chute, crane
and bucket, conveyor, or pump? The method will most likely be dictated to the estimator
or be known based on pat experience for the specific type of work and project.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Another labor-intensive activity, in the placing of concrete, is tamping or vibrating of


concrete for proper compaction and striking off the concrete to its designated elevation.
The estimator must consider the activity requirements when establishing the labor
productivity.
Concrete Equipment Cost
For many projects, heavy equipment is needed to move the material on the job site. The
estimator must determine what equipment will be used and for how long. Knowing this
information and the hourly cost to own and operate or rent the equipment a total cost can
be derived and documented on the summary sheet.

MEASURING FORMWORK
The formwork operations involve a number of activities including fabricating and
erecting the forms, stripping, moving, cleaning and oiling the forms for reuse. All of these
activities and the materials involved are allowed for in the pricing of the forms.
Generally, the estimator measures the surface area of the concrete that comes into contact
with the forms; this is known as the contact area. At the take-off stage, all that needs to be
established is which surfaces of concrete require forms. The square foot contact area
(sfca) is then categorized by the type of member being formed (beam, column, slab, etc.).
An exception to this would be for moldings, cornices, sills, chamfers, and copings, which
are taken off by the linear foot.
As indicated earlier, taking off the quantities of formwork is more difficult than other
materials because the drawings do not indicate the location or quantity of forms to be
installed. The estimator must be able to determine what concrete needs to be formed,
including requirements for bracing, scaffolding, or similar formwork components not
shown on the drawings. This requires the estimator to have experience in formwork
construction and/or be provided detailed formwork design drawings.
Estimating formwork can be a tedious and time-consuming job. There are hundreds of
different formwork systems, as well as the various type of materials of which they are
constructed. Forms can be built on the job (job-built forms) or pre-built. Job-built forms
are usually constructed of wood; pre-built forms are usually made of steel and wood. Prebuilt forms could also be made of fiberglass, and all metal.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Whether the formwork is job-built or pre-built, cutting, fabricating, placing, alignment,


and bracing are possible in constructing formwork.
Also, it is to the contractors advantage to reuse the same form, whether job-built or prebuilt, as many times as possible. This will result in a lower per unit cost. Of course, the
number of reuses depends on the durability of members, the care taken in erecting and
removing them, and the number of times the same member or section of member can be
reused. Usually, more reuses can be obtained from pre-built forms than from job-built
forms. The issue of reuse should be considered in pricing the formwork.
1. Formwork shall be measured in square feet of contact area, i.e., the actual surface of
formwork that is in contact with concrete.
2. Formwork is classified into the same categories as concrete as indicated in figure
below. For example, forms to footings, forms to walls, and forms to columns would
each be described and measured separately.
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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

There are, however, a number of factors that may have no effect on the price of the
concreting operations but do affect the price of formwork and should be noted. For
example, the volume of concrete in all walls, whether they are straight or curved, will
have the same price but the price of forms to curved walls will differ from the price of
straight walls so the forms to curved surfaces must be kept separate.
3. Bulkheads and edge forms shall be measured separate within these categories.
Similarly, if there are pilasters projecting from the walls, the area of the pilasters
would be calculated and noted separated from the wall forms.
4. Forms to slab edges are measured separately from forms to beams and forms to walls
even where the edge forms may be extensions of beam or wall forms.
5. Where there is an opening in a form system, no deduction is made from the total area
of the forms if the size of the opening is less than 100 square feet. Examples of such
openings would include openings for windows in walls, stairway openings or elevator
shaft openings in suspended slabs. Openings less 100 square feet are not deducted but
all cut outs would be deducted.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

6. Items of formwork that are linear in nature, such as grooves, chases, keyways,
chamfers and their likes are described stating their size, and measured in linear feet.
Narrow strips of formwork, less than 1-foot wide can also be measured in this
fashion.
7. Forms to circular columns are described giving the diameter of the column and
measured in linear feet to the height of the column. Column capitals are described and
enumerated.

PRICING FORMWORK
The total cost of erecting formwork includes materials, labor, and equipment. Since jobbuilt and pre-built forms can be used for most formwork, the estimator should perform a
cost-benefit analysis to determine which is more economical. In this analysis it is
important that the estimator consider the number of times the forms can be reused, and
this will be dependant on may variables. Some of the major ones include complexity of
the formwork, size, number of repetitions of the same size, quantity of formwork to be
installed, and quality of the formwork materials.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

9 of 22

Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Formwork Material Cost


The costs of materials are obtained from the supplier of the formwork components or
systems. In the case of job-built forms, the estimator should determine the cost of the
material for one section of the formwork, calculate a unit square foot cost, and use this
number to determine the total cost from the takeoff of the total square foot contact area
for the specific form.
After the prices of the individual components are calculated, the items are added and the
sum divided by the total square foot contact area. If the formwork is to be used more than
once, the price per square foot of contact area is divided by the number of reuses. The
price is then increased by approximately 10 percent to account for any formwork
damaged during removal. The final unit price is then applied to the total square footage of
formwork required for the project.
Formwork Labor Cost
To obtain the labor cost, the estimator will need to know the labor productivity and wage
rates of the crew. The productivity is obtained from company historical records and
adjusted for the specific project. Many items could affect the productivity rates, such as:
1. What is included in formwork
2. Number of forming irregularities
3. Whether or not formwork will need to be cleaned and oiled
4. Complexity of the fabrication of pre-built forms
5. Complexity of the construction of job-built forms
6. Amount of reshoring needed for elevated slabs and beams
7. Size and shape of member to be formed
8. Height of member to be formed above ground
9. Number of reuses
10. Removal of the formwork
In formwork construction some tasks do not require material, such as stripping and
cleaning. These activities should be documented separately on the summary sheet from
those related to the erection of the forms, which include a material component.
Formwork Equipment Cost
For very large formwork projects, heavy equipment may be needed to assist in the
erection and removal process. In addition, special formwork systems require the use of
heavy equipment. The equipment is priced by the type and size required and the number
of hours needed. Operator time and wages also need to be considered, either as part of the
equipment costs or listed in the labor category.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

MEASURING REINFORCING
EMBEDMENTS

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

STEEL

AND

OTHER

The reinforcing steel used in concrete may be reinforcing bars and/or welded wire mesh.
Other items in reinforcing or formwork, know as embedments, include anchor bolts,
plates or inserts for the future connection of other items of work, corner protection
angles, supports for the reinforcing bars in the forms, and sleeves for the passage of
pipes, conduit, and ductwork
Reinforcing bars are designated by the bar number, which corresponds to the bar
diameter in eighths of an inch. Reinforcing bars are available in many different types and
grades of steel.

The reinforcing bar can be purchased from the mill or warehouse, where they can be cut
to size, bent, bundled and tied. These suppliers can also provide shop drawings that aid in
the handling and placement of reinforcement bars on the job site. For smaller jobs it is
possible to purchase straight bars and cut and bend them on the job. Such an activity
would result in more wastage and is seldom more economical.
Mesh reinforcing may be welded wire mesh or expanded metal. Welded wire mesh is
usually furnished in a rectangular or square arrangement of wires welded together. The
wire mesh designation uses spacing and wire gauge. For example, for a designation of 6
X 6 W1.4 X W1.4, the first two numbers indicate the size of the grid, in this case a
square of 6-inch (longitudinal direction) X 6-inch (transverse direction). The second set
of numbers relates to the standard size for the specific gauge of wire.
Welded wire mesh is sold in rolls or flat sheets. The rolls are 5 feet wide and 150 feet
long. The flat sheets are available in a variety of sizes. In addition, the mesh is available
in different materials, the most common being plain or galvanized steel.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Expanded metal reinforcement is a special type of mesh used primarily for concrete floor,
roof, and bank vault construction. The estimator should check with the supplier to
determine units of takeoff.
Reinforcing bars are held in the forms by bar chairs, spacers, or bolsters, or they may be
suspended by wires. These supports may be plastic, or galvanized or zinc-coated steel
with plastic legs and other materials. All of these accessories are included in the
embedment category. To determine the type, size, and quantity of bar supports, the
estimator should refer to the technical specifications and consult with experienced people
within the company.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

WORKSHEET

DATE:

COMPUTED BY:

PROJECT:

PAGE:

CHECKED BY:

ARCHITECT:

INDEX NO:

SIZE
REF

DESCRIPTION

NO

#4

SIZE

LENGTH

TOTAL

NO

#5

SIZE

LENGTH

TOTAL

NO

#7

SIZE

LENGTH

TOTAL

NO

#8

OF

SIZE

LENGTH

TOTAL

NO

LENGTH

TOTAL

6.12 WALL STEEL


Horizontal

100

900

Vertical

71

16.5

1171.5

Dowels 200

67

16.5

1106

67

603

67

469

400

Subtotal

2471.5

2178

Conversion factor

0.668

2.67

1651

5815

SUBTOTAL
6.12 FOOTING STEEL
Horizontal

15

Subtotal
Conversion Factor
SUBTOTAL
TOTALS FROM PREVIOUS PAGE
TOTALS

0
1651 lb

100

1500 134

4.5

603

150

1350

1500

1953

1.043

2.044

1565

3992

1565 lb

3992 lb

0
5815 lb

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SUMMARY SHEET

DATE:

COMPUTED BY:

PROJECT:

PAGE:

CHECKED BY:

ARCHITECT:

INDEX NO:

QUANTITY

REF

DESCRIPTION

TOTAL

UNIT

MATERIAL COST

UNIT
COST

LABOR COST

DAILY
PROD. CREW
MATERIAL
OF
MAKESUBTOTAL CREW
UP

OF

EQUIPMENT COST

MAN
HOUR TOTAL TOTAL AVG.
PER
MAN CREW WAGE
LABOR
UNIT HOURS HOURS RATE SUBTOTAL

RATE
PER
EQUIP. SUB OR
HOUR SUBTOTAL OTHER

TOTAL
COST

6.12 WALL STEEL


#4 REBAR 1651 lb

1.1

1816 2000

6.6

21

139

1955

#8 REBAR 5815 lb

1.25

7269 1500

31

21

651

7920

SUBTOTAL

9085

790

9875

FOOTING STEEL
#5 REBAR 1565 lb

1.15

1800 1800

21

147

1947

#7 REBAR 3392 lb

1.2

4790 1800

20

21

420

5210

SUBTOTAL

TOTAL FROM PREVIOUS PAGE


TOTAL

6590

567

7157

15,675

1,357

17,032

Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Reinforcing bars are taken off in linear feet by type and size and converted to weight. Reinforcing
steel bars are taken off in an order consistent with the specific members identified on the
drawings. Following this approach will result in capturing all the reinforcing bar requirements for
each member.
Reinforcing bars are available only in certain lengths, as such they may need to be connected
through splicing, or lapping. The prevailing codes should be used to determine the acceptable
connecting technique. If lapping, an allowance must be made for this depending on the length of
the overlap.
In terms of waste, as little as 1 percent should be included for precut bars and as much as 10
percent when the bars are cut and bent on the job site. Additionally, when there are no special
design requirements, the estimator can use 5 percent to take care of the additional bar length
needed for laps.
Welded wire mesh is taken off by the various sizes specified and the number of square feet
required of each type. In the placement process the mesh is usually required to be lapped at least
one grid. This allowance must be included in the takeoff. There is very little waste (1 percent or
less) that needs to be considered in the welded wire mesh takeoff (10 percent taken for lap). Once
the total square footage has been determined, the quantity is then converted to rolls and sheets,
depending on how it is purchased.
Embedments are taken off per unit by type and size. The quantity of each is listed by type and size
on the worksheet, with 5 percent added for waste.

PRICING REINFORCING STEEL


Reinforcing Material Cost
Reinforcing steel is usually purchased by weight. The exception may be for welded wire mesh and
embedments. The estimator should contact the supplier to determine the unit of purchase for the
embedded items.
Normally the general contractor receives a price for all the reinforcing. The estimator should make
sure that all bending, shop drawings, and shipping are included. For small projects, the reinforcing
contractor may quote a unit price for the reinforcing. The estimator takes the total weight times the
quoted unit price.
Reinforcing Labor Cost
The labor productivity and wage rates must be known to determine the labor cost. Company
historical productivity factors altered for the specific project will be utilized along with current
wage rates. It is important that the estimator separate the various labor production functions as the
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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

takeoff is being performed. The productivity for placing reinforcing in a wall footing will be
higher than the productivity required for a wall. In addition, the estimator should not forget the
handling of the reinforcing steel once it arrive son the job site. It may also have to be inventoried
and stored, which incur labor costs.
Reinforcing Equipment Cost
Heavy equipment may be needed to unload and handle the reinforcing steel. The cost of the
equipment, such as a crane or fork lift, should be included in the estimate.

MEASURING FINISHING AND MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS


After the concrete is placed into forms, vibrated and screeded to the proper elevation, the next task
is the proper finishing of the exposed surface in accordance with the technical specifications. The
method, tools, and equipment used depend on the specified finish. Finishing operations may also
include application of certain types of materials such as a surface-hardening agent.
In addition, to control the rate of setting (hydration) the concrete must be cured. Proper curing
ensures that the concrete attains its desired strength. Curing methods include leaving the forms in
place, sprinkling, ponding, spray mists, moisture retention covers, and seal coats. A combination
of these methods may also be used.
Finally, concrete may have to be protected from such things as precipitation on slab surfaces,
freezing temperatures, and other activities or environmental conditions that can damage the
material or exposed surfaces. The method used will depend on the potential damage. For instance,
heat may be need to be provided to keep the concrete from freezing, or a plastic cover may need to
be placed over a newly placed slab to protect it from rain.
These items can be measured according to the following:

Finishes
1. Slab finishes are measured in square feet of plan area, and vertical finishes are measured in
square feet of exposed surface of concrete.
2. Finishes are first classified in terms of what is being finished: slabs; walls; columns; stairs;
sidewalks, etc. They are then separated by type of finish: wood float; sack rubbed; bush
hammered; steel trowel; broom finish, and so on. In addition, if floor hardeners are required,
they are measured separately describing the type of hardener specified.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

Screeds and Curing


3. Screeds can be measured is square feet as the plan area of the slab, or some estimators prefer
to measure the length of the individual screed strips. This length ca easily be obtained by
dividing the area of the slabs by the spacing of the screed strips.
4. Curing slabs is also measured in plan area, as too are vapor barriers but, because these
membranes are lapped at the edges, an additional 10 percent is added to the square feet area.
Inserts and Waterstops
5. Inserts into the concrete such as anchor bolts are described and enumerated in the takeoff.
6. Linear inserts such as waterstops are measured in linear feet.
7. Construction joints in walls are often required to incorporate waterstops, grooves and sealants,
each of which is measured in linear feet. The takeoff of this type of construction joint will
comprise bulkhead forms in square feet; then waterstop, forming grooves and sealant, each
measured separately, in linear feet.
Expansion Joints
8. Expansion joints are measured in linear feet stating the size of joint and the type of material
used. If a sealant is required in connection with the joint it shall be measured separately in
linear feet stating the size and type of sealant.
Non-Shrink Grout
9. Grout to anchor bolts and base plates is measured in cubic feet and different types of materials
are used separately.
Saw Cutting
10. Saw cuts are measured in linear feet stating the size of the cut. Here it is important to note
whether old or new concrete is to be cut and what is to be cut; Slabs, walls, columns, etc.,
should be defined.

PRICING FINISHING AND MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS


The estimator must first determine the total costs of any materials needed in the finishing, curing,
and protecting activities. These costs can be obtained from the material supplier and documented
on the summary sheet.
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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

The cost of labor depends on the productivity rates and current wage rates. Company historical
rates, adjusted for specific job site conditions, should be used. In most cases, heavy equipment will
not be needed to perform the tasks. The contractor will most likely use some powered tools for the
finishing operation. The cost of these can be placed in the equipment category.

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Course Title: Construction Administration


Course NO.: 4300-471
Topic:
MEASURING QUANTITIES

File # 222, DOCUZIP CENTER

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