As regulations become more stringent, manufacturers find their levels of responsibility rising. While requirements for product quality tighten, so does the onus on them to supply greater, verifiable detail on those products- often along with certified training on their installation and ongoing maintenance. Product delivery is no longer an end in itself.

Our Manufacturing Group looks at the very specific challenges manufacturers face in the Construction Industry’s changing landscape. Whether identifying issues arising from the level of granularity required to contribute to carbon footprint measurement or the need for conformity in asset attribute descriptions; each is analysed and prioritised.

Passing these issues through to BIM4Housing Workstreams for solutions, we are looking to help enable manufacturers to connect-up with integrators to create cost effective and sustainable living environments.

Manufacturing Group Meetings and Highpoints

If you have a comment or suggestion on a particular meeting, or just in general, please

Chaired By : Will Perkins



Recording -

WILL PERKINS Picking typical products and asking ourselves specific questions what is the critical bits of information that need to be captured in terms of the golden Thread and hopefully we can pull together lots of good examples of fire safety products and feed that into the wider BIM for housing initiative.

The subject of this meeting is Electric strikes and security entrance systems.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, electric locking as a component, obviously of a door set, which can be a fire door or an escape door so we will cover this: what are the essential requirements for those?

Roy shares his screen

For the purposes of the application we will use this floor plan that we have used previously. I found the colour version rather than the plain line drawing one. To start off we have to get a bit of background. Access control is something applied to doors in a building. Too often it is applied later on in the project which means that some of the requirements are not thought early enough which can lead to difficulties in achieving what is required under the current regulatory requirements. We need to identify what is the information that is needed to ensure that we have a compliant and correct solution on these doors. So we have to start thinking about what is applicable. So we have the fire integrity of the doors and we need to make sure we don’t compromise that in any way for e.g. with any addition of the electric hardware. We also have the need of the occupants to escape from the building and the ability to easily overcome any locked door on an escape route in a timely fashion. So there are mandatory requirements that apply and these requirements stay the same in either case: whether it is a mechanically or electronically locked door. Under the construction product regulation and the current framework we have for the CE certification or the UK conformity assessment certification, there are mandatory requirements that the hardware must comply in order to be deemed suitable for the use in that application and above all we have to not interfere with the integrity of the fire door. Access control can take many forms: it can be an electric lock which is hardwired to an access control reader and an access control system. Or it could be a battery powered locking device with a built-in sort of RFID reader or PIN pad on the actual unit itself. It does not matter what it is but the requirements don’t change. So if the doors are escape doors they need to comply with the escape legislation, if it is fire rated doors we still must not affect the integrity of the door and what we fit to the door. The type of solution we are thinking about today is an electric lock and I have picked the one to show you that most mandatory certifications apply to, but it could also be a magnetic or a mechanical lock – the requirements are the same.

Any hardware which is deemed to be essential to maintain the compartmentation and provide the fire integrity is the door closer, the hinges, any mechanical or electromechanical lock or electric strike and then from an escape door perspective the essential hardware would be any locking device which is deemed to be an emergency escape lock or a panic escape lock, or an electrically controlled lock as part of any M13637 solution, would fall into that category, all those C certification or UK CE certification is not a requirement at the moment. I will come back to that. So if we think about the electric lock solution, so the lock, the handle set and the striking plate that sits adjacent to the lock that interacts with, are what is covered by the construction product regulation and the mandatory requirement for C certification. So in order to comply with the building regs, we have to comply with construction product regulation, which means that the hardware, if we were to fit these to an escape door, need to be C certificated and we were to fit it to a fire door, it needs to have adequate fire test evidence and also have the correct classification in Box 4 of the classification code under the C certification, so that would indicate that the product is suitable for a fire door.

So this is the door and that lock there, it is a hard wired solution. It could be battery powered but in this case we are going to think about a hard wired one. So you would have a cable way in the actual door and you would have a cable transfer device to transfer the power and the cable onto the door leaf as well as some stuff around the environment of the door. Any cable way and the actual lock being fitted into a fire door can have a detrimental effect on the actual fire door integrity itself. As a minimum it needs to have the correct C classification in Box 4 of the classification code to prove that the product is designed for use on a fire door and has been subjected to a fire test to prove its suitability.

WILL PERKINS You were talking about C certification now, what specifically need to be C marked there?

ROY BUCKINGHAM From a fire door perspective, it will be the door closer, the hinges, the lock case, these would be the essential items so they would require the correct classification in the Box 4 of the classification code and would have a Zianex 7:23 to allow the CE marking of the product for use on a fire door.

WILL PERKINS and where is the control of the quality of the installation on the fire door itself which is the primary product for defending against smoke transfer?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So the control of installation is a difficult one because there is no mandatory requirement for installation of a fire door by a third party accredited installer. So it comes down to obviously the contractor manager perhaps the quality auditing the installations that his team are providing on site, or if the door supply is part of a third party accreditation scheme, then obviously they are compliant with that third party accreditation.

WILL PERKINS I am assuming that the components you are talking about on the screen are factory-fitted.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Not necessarily, because in the UK we have two types of doors that can be provided into a building. We have door sets and door assemblies. A door set is where everything comes from a single source, so there is one invoice for everything. So that is hardware, door, leaf, door frame. All supplied from that one source and in most cases that would be factory prepared.

WILL PERKINS So what is in that instance? What is the standard mark that covers the door and all the components as one product?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So again, it is complicated because there is no CE mark that applies so the best thing we have got is the BS8214 which is the standard for door sets or door assemblies and that will define the hardware that is deemed to be essential components has to meet those certification so that standard will refer to it but there is no requirement for C certification of that internal door set.

WILL PERKINS If it was an external door set, would that include a declaration of performance? Would the components of that be interchangeable?

ROY BUCKINGHAM To a limited degree.

WILL PERKINS So all the components have to have already been seen, marked and installed and that would be covered under a new declaration. Effectively the whole lot together is a new product and there will be a declaration performance for that product.

ROY BUCKINGHAM And that is where the difficulty comes in with these internal door sets because there is not that. You have got to look in a more granular aspect to make sure that the hardware that is being fitted to the doors meets the requirements as well as the door as a whole, maintaining the fire integrity etc. under the fire test evidence that has been obtained.

That is only one type of door set, we also have what we call door assemblies. So door assemblies is the frame that would come from one supplier and then the door leaf from another supplier and the hardware from someone completely different. That probably accounts for the majority of the door sets sold in the UK market. So then you refer back to BS8214 which will define how that door simply should go together. It will define what the performance criteria of the components should be, where they are covered by the harmonized European standards or after 2023, the designated UK standards. But ultimately it is up to the person who assembles it on site to make sure it is within the manufacturers’ instructions and that the hardware fitted is suitable and designed for that application. This is where the difficulty comes in because when you come to the components, there should be declarations of performance for those essential hardware, like hinges, door closer, mechanical or electromechanical strike, emergency escape hardware and panic escape hardware, so all of those are covered by the certification and therefore need a DOP. In my opinion the components that make up that complete door set should also have their DOPs included with the fire safety information that is handed across to the responsible person because otherwise in their normal course of maintaining that door, how will they know that the parameters are of that hardware that they can change on that door?

WILL PERKINS and yes there is a glaring gaping hole in terms of the quality of installation even if you are using C marked products. If you do not know what you are doing there is no safety net there.

ROY BUCKINGHAM and the installation of that hardware is fundamental to the performance of that door from a fire and operational perspective.

WILL PERKINS There is no factory control, there is no quality control, there is no oversight.

ROY BUCKINGHAM There is a change in the market place happening. Single-source door sets are becoming more popular and the manufacturers selling door sets are promoting the need to have a QR code or barcode or something similar which actually gives all the info related to the hardware that is being fitted to that door and that door’s information. So what we are doing here potentially will help the market to bring quality solutions into the market place. But still something like 80% of doors sold in the UK market are still door assemblies (not single-source door sets).

Depending on the type of door, you get different requirements for the way that the cable might be rooted around the door, but that all should be if it's a fire rated door. Obviously that has an impact on the fire integrity in the door. The other thing we need to consider is not just about whether a product has a correct classification in digit for its performance standard, which identifies its suitable for provider. But there also needs to be adequate fire test evidence for the combined solution. So if we just to set the scene, if we went back 10-15 years, a hardware manufacturer would do a fire test with their product in a typical example door, a door manufacturer would do fire testing of their doors, not necessarily without hardware installed, but it was acceptable to put the two together as a combined solution in a fire door application. Following Grenfell building control have substantially changed that. The reality was that we weren't doing things the correct way in the past because approved document B is always said that the fitting of hardware to a fire rated door can substantially affect the performance of that door and the integrity of that door. Because if you fit a lock which is oversized compared to what the fire test was done, then of course potentially that may lead to an early failure of the door. But people they ignored that. But since Grenfell building controller tightened up and now what they're actually looking for is that combined test evidence. So under BS476 part 22 or EN 1634 part one and the two fire tests that are applicable to fire doors, and under that what building control are now looking for is that combined test evidence that proves that door leaf and door frame have been tested with that particular hardware fitted to that door. So the evidence is combined. That's been backed up a little bit by the fact if we remember from Grenfell the following that tragedy, there was a mass fire testing of flat entrance doors that were carried out from major manufacturers. And the majority of them failed. And that's because they weren't necessarily tested from both sides of the door opening in - opening out, and they weren't tested with the hardware necessarily that they had been fitted with. So that has sort of prompted that distinct change in in in the regulations.

So it's even more critical now that not only do we have the DOPs for the essential hardware, but they're also is adequate fire test evidence to prove the combined solution as has achieved FT30 FT60 etc.

So if we come back to this drawing, in a typical sort of building, where would we find access control? What it's gonna be on the circulation route within building. So, you might have access control, which is managing access to the stair core because you don't want somebody who's authorized to be on one level going up to a different floor, because you you're trying to minimize crime, you minimize people to only go to the areas where they are authorized to go to, and somebody who lives on the 10th or doesn't necessarily need to go to the fifth floor unless they visiting somebody they know, who would let them in. So you might find access control on the circulation doors. Predominantly this would be controlling access onto the stairwell, or it could be controlling access off of the stairwell, but either way, it's still an electric lock which is actually fitting to the fire rated door, which is also on an escape route so has to be easily overcome.

So if we were controlling access onto the floor plate in this scenario, we've got two possible doors where we could actually install the access control hardware. Now one is an FT60 rated door, one is an FT-30 door. Now, if I was talking to an architect, the first thing I would say is the easier place to install is gonna be on the FFT 30 door because you've potentially got an easier way of achieving an electric lock solution on that door, whilst maintaining that fire certification because obviously an FT 60 is a more onerous fire test and it can be more difficult to get an electric locking hardware through an FT60 fire test and it can be for an FT30 fire test. So we might be fitting that. But if we're gonna fit that electric lock to these doors, what do we actually need from a compliance perspective?

So firstly it's an escape route, so we need compliance with one of the escape standards: E179 E 1125 or E 13637.

It's a fire rated door, so we then need the compliance with the fire door requirements. So instantly we need C certification for the escape compliance. We then need C certification for the hardware in respect to the fire door and so EN 14846 for the lock. Obviously EN 179 or EN 1125 for the escape function, and so there's instantly some DOPs that we need to have for the hardware there to comply with. In addition to that, we then need that dual certification or sorry, that the fire test evidence that proves the combined solution working together is suitable and acceptable. Now that's a bit difficult to quantify because that relies upon the door supplier to actually provide that information and confirm that the hardware proposed that the door is adequate for that application and covered within the scope of testing. So that's kind of where we are with regards to what is required.

A locked door and escape route has to be easily operated without any prior knowledge and without the need to use a key token or a ping code in order to unlock that door and if you if you take approved document be literally what it actually is referring to is a single operation to unlock and open the door. Now that's ultimately what it describes.

JIM CREAK (Guest) Obviously, the escape route is primarily one way to the stairs, so does that does the any of the requirements mean that the lock has to be overridden on both sides?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Not necessarily. It's a good question. But if that was a fire fighter stairs, so the emergency services will use that to access the floors in order to fight the fire within, then there may be a requirement for easy access onto the floor. So that would be covered under approved document B.

JIM CREAK (Guest): OK. And that and that would be decided by the architect?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, it would be the design and the fire strategy for the building, which defines what is required for these doors. So that's a key element of the design is the fire strategy and this is something I always point out to architects is that they need to be thinking about the fire strategy and the requirements for security at the early stages in conjunction with one another, because anything you fit to a door to provide that level of an additional security element can have a detrimental impact on that fire strategy for the building.

So, it could need to have access in and there are different requirements as to what this door needs to do so, do we need that door to fail, locked or fail unlocked? So there's a misconception that you need an escape door to fail unlocked because an escape door can fail locked providing it still always provides that single operation to escape through the door from the inside. From the secure side. So if you've got an EL179 or an EM1125 locking solution on the door then that will have a mechanical function to unlock the door in the direction of escape. But the door can fail locked for entry, so then preventing people coming into the secure area.

Obviously, we also have fair unlocked requirements, so approved document B describes green break glasses and the need to have an electrical lock failing unlocked. And that's because you know they want this door to become insecure in the event of a fire alarm activation. Or operation of the green break glass. But again, the one thing that's often overlooked in that scenario is the need to escape from a building is not just because of fire. That's just one reason we may need to escape a building. If there was a gas leak or a terror incident or something like that, then you may need to escape a building without the firearm having activated. So therefore you always need to have that manual means of unlocking the door. If the door is electrically controlled and has to be electrically unlocked, then that falls into the scope of the M 13637. And BSL 214, which is the door standard, will actually refer you to the M 13637 for that application. And that wouldn't be a green break glass necessarily. It is a slightly different solution.

So there's a number of things to sort of think about because often access control is added in at a later stage. So it may be even after the doors have been ordered, you know somebody suddenly decides they need to electrically lock that door. Well, you can't just change the mechanical hardware on the door and fit electric locking, because that could compromise the doors integrity from a fire perspective and it may compromise the escape strategy for the building. So there's a number of things that need to be thought of earlier on.

JIM CREAK (Guest) There are fire fighters that do come up against locked doors - not all of them have got override for fire fighting, so I you know, either we won't sell any. Some of the manual pin lock devices that obviously have got no override from one side, or there's gonna be a whole bunch of things if the fire fighters have got access through every locked door.

ROY BUCKINGHAM, You can't make every door fight unlocked to allow the fire fighters access because you know, you have got couple the fire safety requirements with the security needs of the building as well. So there's always gonna be that that clash to some degree. If you have a building that there might be multi occupancy, so it might be residential in one part of the building, but perhaps on a lower part of the building it's more commercial, you know and you might want to manage people going from the different areas. So there's gonna be different needs in the commercial area you're not gonna want doors to fail on knots because it becomes insecure. So what I try to get people to think about is the design functions function of the door.

So, one of the things that we we've done is to try and simplify things. If we think about what the regulatory requirements are and then the design function of the door, then we identified there are only 6 door types in the building. So you've got a door type A, it's not fire rated, it's not escape, it's a convenience store privacy door. But there's no there's no mandatory requirements that apply to that door for the hardware that you fit to it. So you haven't got to worry about compliance in any particular level on that. It might be good practice to fit hardware that meter performance standard, but there's no mandatory requirement to do so. But you've got a door type B, it's a non-fire rated door, but it's an emergency escape, so all of a sudden we have mandatory requirements so the locking hardware must conform to the emergency escape standard EM179 or if it's electrically locked and has to be electrically unlocked then you would comply with the M 13637. Same with a door type C which is non fire rated but panic escape so again mandatory requirements but instead the standard is here and 1125 and 13637.

Door Type D might be riser cupboard, it's fire rated, but it's not an escape door, so there's mandatory requirements that apply for the hardware under the requirements for a fire door. Door type E is both fire door and emergency escaped door so that actually would be that door that we were looking at on that stairwell. It's a circulation door, it's fire rated and it's on an escape route. That's probably the most common door, where access control is fitted in a building. And then we got a door type F which is slightly different risk from an escape perspective. It's a panic risk rather than an emergency risk. And it's also a fire-rated door. So again mandatory requirements. So five of those six door types have mandatory requirements that have to be complied with for the hardware that you're fit into those doors. And so that's where I try to get people to start from, because that tells them, you know, you know what, what is required? What do we have to meet in order to achieve the functionality on the door? What hardware requirements are there?

I bring up the question the question. So if we have to think about the questions that we might need to ask to arrive at that information that we need to prove that the products that have been used, the hardware products that have been used on the door, are designed for the purpose, and have the right certifications to provide the authority that they got the right products to meet the requirements. So the overriding thing here is the designer should ensure that the doors incorporating electric locking devices are up to date and relevant test evidence and 3rd party certification importance with the requirements of the UK Construction Products Regulation and are provided with detailed installation details relevant to that installation. So the parameters in which the hardware can be fitted.

So if we think of the majority of suppliers into the marketplace, they will buy a core aka a slab of timber which they then convert into a door set. So they might then manufacture a frame, they'll cut the door to the size that they need for that particular opening and that will become the fire door that they're selling into the project.

So, as I say, that can be supplied in two ways. It can be supplied as a door set, which is everything from a single source or a door assembly where they might only be supplying the door leaf and the frame and then somebody else is providing the hardware. But ultimately the door supplier will either have their own fire test evidence to prove the fire certification of the door, and within that certification, they will set the parameters of what hardware can be used on that door. Alternatively, they may rely upon the door core manufacturers, global evidence and field of application documents which define what the parameters are, the sizes are, and what the tested hardware is based on multiple fire tests that have been committed over a period of time and all assimilated into that single document. So sometimes the door supplier owns the evidence, sometimes it's the core manufacturer that owns the evidence, but ultimately there will be an overriding set of test data which defines the parameters, sizing configurations of those doors that can be installed. And that hardware that's gonna be installed on that door needs to fall within those tested parameters to be deemed suitable. And that caused us a big problem after Grenfell because when building control suddenly changed their requirements to have combined test evidence, the reality was the door industry have lots of test evidence from mechanical locks - they had very little for electronic, electromechanical or electronic locks, and all of a sudden, you know, the solutions that are used for access control couldn't be fitted to the finals. So it's taken a long while to address that. So this is the product specification question set for fire rated doors and so the first question we've got there is what is the required fire rating for the door? The lock is to be installed into. So we need to understand if it's an empty 30 or 4060 because we then got to make sure that the hardware we fit to it matches that rating and is suitable for a similar rated door.

WILL PERKINS: So in column J or K is it worth us putting it all in column J effectively EG 30,60 and the units would be minutes, isn't it? And I mean the 3030 and 60 relates to time, doesn't it? Minutes?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes. So that's the time period. So it could be 30, 60 ninety 120 or even 240 for an application. And interestingly, you know, we we're starting to see more higher rated doors being specified, which seems to be gaining ground.

So it's understanding what that rating is and who is responsible for ensuring that compliance. So obviously the client developers, the people who are gonna operate the building are going to be accountable because once the building's been built and handed over to them under the RO, they're gonna be accountable.

The designer is responsible to some degree because they got to define what the requirements are. The main contractor is delivering the solution, so I would think that they are responsible, particularly in a design and build application. The trade contractor is supplying the product into the built environment, so they're responsible as well.

The manufacturer would be consulted because somebody's buying their product to put it into an application, so they might need to be consulted about the fire test evidence to ensure the hardware and the door are compatible. And of course, the supplier may not be the actual manufacturer. It may be being supplied through a third party, so the supplier would also need to consult to ensure they're supplying the right product. And then the building operator might be responsible rather than just informed.

JIM CREAK (Guest) I think they are responsible. They must seek assurance from others, so I put those back with the client and developer.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, the Commissioner just needs to be informed. And if we sort of go through these doors, so if we know that the door is a fire door, then we need to know which standard it's tested to as well.

JIM CREAK (Guest) And for a retrofit then the tenant could be responsible too, or the property manager.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, definitely. Because if you think about Grenfell, one of the issues was that that there were flat doors that have had had been modified. They might have even changed them to a U PVC door, which it's clearly not fire rated. So there is an element now I don't know quite where we fit them. Do we need to put that in as another column?

WILL PERKINS Let's try and keep to those columns in that instance and it's fairly safe to assume that a tenant comes under the operator.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, I agree. So we need to know if you're verifying that the hardware is fire tested, you need to know to which standard the door is fire tested. It doesn't matter which of those standards, it is the same requirements still apply to the hardware.

WILL PERKINS With what evidence?

ROY BUCKINGHAM That's a good question. Really. I was hoping we'd have one of the door people that have been part of these working groups on this one as well, which would have enlightened me because my forte is in the components and not necessarily in the doors themselves.


They're all arguing between themselves about their custodian of testing. Who is going actually say what they actually use?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So ultimately there will be that global evidence document field of application document which defines what the fire test evidence is applicable to, that door set, whether it's a door assembly or whether it's a door set. So ultimately the supplier of that door would be the one that will certificate and say that yes, it's within the scope of that testing.


OK, let’s put in in column J: evidence required.


Well, it's definitely required as a function of regulation 38 under building regs and, in my experience, at the moment there are some very sophisticated registers appearing as dummy documents for the Firedoors Now registers for the whole process.

ROY BUCKINGHAM but it’s the door supplier because ultimately it's going to be the person who's supplying the main contractor that's gonna need to satisfy the main contractor.


But the main contractor will be responsible for handing over the Regulation 38 paperwork.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah. So again, I've got the client developer as being accountable Designer responsible main contractor responsible, the trade contractor responsible. Manufacturer consulted, supplier consulted. But I would say the door supplier actually is responsible for that evidence. And the operator and Commissioner informed. So that then obviously was the other question is: is it a door assembly or is it a door set, because that might define whether there's E marking applicable to the Dorset, if it's an external door, it may be it will have. If it's an internal door not necessarily.

WILL PERKINS It's OK from a golden thread point of view: Why does the building operator need to know if it's a door set or an assembly decides assembly?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Because of the limitations on what they can change within that, as an operational ongoing maintenance requirement. So with a door set you have to stick within what was fitted on the door. So if for instance if the door set had a certificate with a particular door closer fitted in a particular way, you may not be able to change that door closer to an alternative solution if it's not covered within that scope. Same with the locking element.

WILL PERKINS Why commercially, would anybody ever go down a door set route, apart from the fact that it's safer, it's got full traceability, it's got full test history apart from those really good reasons commercially, why would you go down that route?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Less risk. So from a main contractor's perspective, if you're building a big, big hospital or a big tower block, if you're buying a C marked door set, then you know that there's only one person that's responsible for ensuring the full compliance at that door set. If you're buying a door assembly. And of course also because the door set tends to be factory prepared as a door set, so you've got less risk from the way that the door is gonna operate once it's been installed on site, because it theoretically should all be within tolerance. When it's installed, because it's been designed, the framers been designed to work with the door set. The hardware has been designed to work on the door set.

WILL PERKINS So is it reasonable to put there as it just as a narrative, a door set is more robustly tested. Preferable safer.

JIM CREAK (Guest) I don't know very because door sets don't necessarily come with them - all the electronics necessary for relay operation and security. So you're gonna change a door set anyway, so there's some vagaries about, but having said that, fit it as fitted. It'll probably be easier for the tier one contractor to fit a door set and leave the security to somebody else.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So that's the key. A good point you raised there. So effectively, if you have a door set say it's a mechanically operated door set and you wanted to add access control to it, you're gonna negate that certification. The other thing we need to remember is a Dorset fitted as an internal door set in a building doesn't have C marking requirements at this moment in time. It may do in the future, but at the moment there isn't C marking requirements for the door set as a whole, only for the hardware that goes on to the Dorset.

WILL PERKINS So question why do we need to know the difference between a door assembly and a door set and whether it's a door assembly or a door set?

JIM CREAK (Guest) From my perspective it would be a lot easier if there was no access requirements on an as design project to fit door sets, because then I would be assured from the manufacturing point of view that it meets the requirements. But I wouldn't have that assurance as a procurer for door assemblies. I'd be reliant on the contractor a lot more.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So, it comes down to understanding the parameters for what the test evidence might be from a fire certification, but also the parameters of what hardware can be interchanged on that door set on an ongoing basis for maintenance. So knowing whether the door is a door set or a door assembly would allow the building operator to know that there may be limitations on the parameters of what products they can change within.

WILL PERKINS So actually isn't the question: What's the harmonised standard for a door set?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So there isn't a harmonized standard for an internal door set, only an external.

WILL PERKINS So ultimately what we're saying there is: Does it fall within scope of 14351? The evidence is created, look for a declaration of performance outside of that, it's actually less structured, isn't it? It's a lot more flexible.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So you could actually take this question out because we got this question here, which is: Is the door set you see UKCA? So if I strike through that we could say we don't need. So if I add in that. So we could say that's covered by question 8.

JIM CREAK (Guest) But you're gonna get a no for a door assembly, aren't you?


JIM CREAK (Guest) So what do you do then?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So you still you still gonna need to have the DOPs for the hardware. But there is no C certification for the door, so you don't need a DOP for it.

JIM CREAK (Guest) It's not gonna make any difference at all if that is certificated and you're gonna be retrofitting security, are you? So I mean if it is certified, that obviously it would suggest that it's a door set fitted with a device that you want.

ROY BUCKINGHAM You know that the whole reason as to why we need to understand what the hardware is certificated to, because if it's a door assembly, that's the only way of knowing whether it's the correct hardware or not on the door. Does that make sense?

JIM CREAK (Guest) Well, I'm looking at the questionnaire as it would be helpful to a designer. Or an architect because if it's a door set about the whole lot, I'm not assured if it's a door assembly. I'm only assured by the contractor. But, I can't answer the question, because the question #8 it's assuming that everything is a door set, not a door assembly.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, I see where you're coming from, because we, we can't say that the door assembly is EUCE because it doesn't apply, so it's a tricky one. The reason for asking the question if somebody wanted to verify whether the door met their requirements. Then, if it was if it was an external doorset, then CE marking would be a mandatory requirement under the construction product regulation. But if it's an internal one, it's not.

JIM CREAK (Guest) I think if you put eight and nine together, if you write it like this: does the doors fire, test evidence, cover the applied hardware? So you have one or the other. Because that makes better sense to me. ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, see part of the reason why that question is there is because a door could be a non fire rated escape door on the perimeter of the building, in which case you may need to know whether that is a C marked door set because you need a DOP for the actual door itself for the door set. If it's an internal fire door, there is no requirement for that. Either of them could be door sets or could be door assemblies and you know because you don't have to use a door set. It's complicated, isn't it?

JIM CREAK (Guest) But I think what we should do is to just confine ourselves to fire doors with the 3060 or 90 minute radio rating, because the others are effectively not within the scope of. I suppose it's in the scope of BIM, but they have to be dealt with completely separately, don't they?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, but don't forget there's two reasons why a door needs to have mandatory requirements. One is the fire integrity and one is escape, so it's the doors and escape door. It still needs to have the DOPs for the hardware being fitted to the door. So that's why the questionnaire is for a door – internal and external because if it's internal then this doesn't apply. If it's external then that does apply.

JIM CREAK (Guest) Yeah. That a bit misleading as well, because you could say that in some blocks of flats the front door is internal. But it's not. It's being treated as an external door, isn't it? But I like the suggestion of the fact that if it's for escape, it's included. Do you know what I mean for the operator? If he considers that door is required for escape, then these things need to be assured. And specifically, if they've got any security device on it.

ROY BUCKINGHAM I guess internal or external wouldn't normally be the flat entrance unless it is open to the elements. And because it's a flat entrance that wouldn't be covered by the C certification. It's gonna be the communal entrance or the panic escape doors at the bottom of the escape stairs, which are gonna be the ones that require that C certification.

WILL PERKINS Is it worth actually turning this around and go at it from the hardware point of view first? and I think the difficulty we coming at is there are so many variations here.

ROY BUCKINGHAM It could be, but I'm sure a door supplier would suggest otherwise, but. So this is a general questionnaire for the fire rated doors and the C certification of the door set. I've then got a set of questions that actually relate to the hardware.

JIM CREAK (Guest) I like this because it actually does provoke some communication between stakeholders and other parties.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, and of course we got there. Does the door fire test evidence cover the applied hardware because the doors evidence needs to also cover the hardware and the hardware needs to be fire tested independently on its own right as well.

WILL PERKINS I'm pleased to see Elliott (Dawson) has joined us, he is a door manufacturer. So he might be able to do the next session talking about fire doors.

ELLIOT DAWSON One point I would like to make is that we would supply as a door manufacturer exactly the same door set that would be used for what would be classed as an internal flat door. So one that probably sits off a communal area. But in those internal flat doors there will be an identical door probably on the back to a landing at little veranda type in these maisonettes which we're seeing 10s of thousands of which will be classed as an external door and will have exactly the same hardware or be exactly the same door, but we have to test that to UK CA levels because the one that is open to the elements even though it isn't, requires a CA marking the one that is internal doesn't require anything. But it's the same door. So what we are looking to do now is we test everything so the full door set to UK CA marking and then it complies with everything you can imagine so that is 14351. And that is where we are moving to. We are not there yet on all our door designs, but we will be by February, March of next year, it's an absolute nightmare. It is because the apps etc for CA, marking a ludicrous. So you can't take a min and a max. You have to do it in ever decreasing circles, which as you're aware ever decreasing circles never meet the middle and never meet the requirements because you could only reduce and I'm not technical to the enth degree, but I believe you can only reduce and increments of 25%. So it's an expensive process, let's put it that way.

WILL PERKINS And from a hardware point of view your testing with a suite of hardware that is limited in your ability to substitute maintain your certification I'm guessing.

ELLIOT DAWSON Yes. So we have a list or four closers that we could that can be used that we've used in a succession of testing. Same with handles are pre-supplied, but primarily it is the closer that we substitute in and out. But we do make sure obviously on our testing we'd have to use two or three different, but that would only apply to that one test, and this is the ridiculous part of it. So if we did one test with an ASSA Abloy or one test with a Rutland, and then we decreased down 25% and used a different closer, we wouldn't have CA marking for that door set on the smaller dimension with the other product, it wouldn't cascade down.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So that kind of explains why the operator of the building needs to understand whether the doors see marked or not because you know if it see marked, then they'll know that there's limitations on what they can change.

ELLIOT DAWSON That should that should be within the field of application or the scope.

So on a data tag that's in our door that that building operator will have, it will have those parameters at the click of a button for them.

WILL PERKINS So the question is though, what does the designer put into the specification to make sure? ELLIOT DAWSON That the designer can't. The designer can only specify a fire door that is CA marked for fire and smoke. They couldn't specify a particular door with a particular closer because it would have to be already within that field of application by that door manufacturer.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, it starts to get prescriptive, and of course, if they went to a different manufacturer then there the solution will be different. Yeah, it might be different hardware, different door configuration, different test evidence.

WILL PERKINS So is the question actually from a designer point of view, the designer needs to state it's whether it's a 30 minute or 60 minute.

ELLIOT DAWSON Yeah, but CA marked. So, rather than getting into the intricacies of whether it's an internal composite door or an external, if I was trying to push the designer, I wouldn't push them to a particular product. I would just say it whether it's internal, external for future compliance, all those sets must be CA marked and be 3060 or 90 minutes depending on what they stipulate. And then it's down to the manufacturer to provide that field of application to the person who's owning the building or looking after the building as to how they maintain that product moving forward.

JIM CREAK (Guest) What happens then if the designer wants to fit security devices to the door set? Like an electronic security on the lock.

WILL PERKINS Security access, which is the actually the subject of the discussion today.

ELLIOT DAWSON Forget it , unless it's being unless it's being tested. You can't because you it won't be in the field of application. We can test with the Wink House or we can use the Wink House AV2E electronic lock. But apart from that, there's no other lock that we've tested. So without going down a route you could you could speak to a manufacturer and say pre installation what locking mechanisms have you got within your field of application. That would be one way round it, but retrospectively I think you would struggle to fit anything. I know you can fit certain things to the face of our door as long as the skin isn't penetrated because it's a phenolic foam, so it will just close the gaps anyway. But you can't actually chase out any of the any of the hardwood or the foam. So in in one sense she can retrospectively fit certain things, but nothing that would be seen to accelerate the fire, which again, without testing, they all could. So we're back to square one.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, so what I would say is obviously you do more than what is required because you're supplying see sort of UK CA assessed door sets, which for applications you don't need to provide that certain level of certification portal. But if we are, just as an idea, looking at the image on the screen there, one of the areas we were thinking of is the circulation route, doors, you apply access control to that. Of course there's no CE certification required for these doors. It is not a mandatory requirement. But there is a mandatory requirement for the hardware to meet certain UK CA certifications but also for the hardware to meet certain certifications from a fire perspective as well. And you tell us you would need combined fire test evidence to cover the door and cover the hardware fitted to that door. So that is what my question whether it's internal or external came from. It is because trying to identify whether the door needs to be UK, CA certificated or not.

ELLIOT DAWSON And I I agree with everything that you said, but I think what you'll find is a door manufacturer will go down one route or the other. They will either be purely internal doors, at which point they don't need to CA marking and they can just operate. But that limits the the application of that door because in essence it's an external door anyway, but they're just not. They're not getting the harder / more costly accreditation. The other one is you'll get people like us who are going down the route that if we get the highest level then the whole market is open to us and therefore we can put that door, it costs us not a penny more once we've been through the testing. But to your point of that I think you'd have to still get as daft as it sounds you would whilst ever the door might not need to be CA marked that all the component parts on it from a hardware perspective will. So therefore therefore they will need to be tested, which will by default make that door set CA mark because you will have to go through a test or the relevant testing to achieve that accreditation.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Not necessarily because obviously if the hardware meets the the UK CA, the door set is being fitted to, doesn't have to, if it's an internal Dorset.

ELLIOT DAWSON So is that not a desktop study?

ROY BUCKINGHAM No, it's life safety critical applications. So the essential hardware is at a station level, one third party certification, and that would apply to anything which is deemed essential to the performance of the door. So your door closer, or your hinges, any mechanical or electromechanical lock or electric strike, the emergency escape hardware and the panic escape hardware. They all fall under the scope.

WILL PERKINS It comes all the way back to the discussion we have before you joined Elliott. However, the way that is installed onto a door which could be on site has got no quality control, no certification, no factory production control, nothing. You could just drill great big holes through it.

ELLIOT DAWSON Well, that's what I'm think I'm playing devil's advocate here and saying if I fit all your beautiful hardware to a chocolate door.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, and that's where obviously the fire test evidence comes into it. So from a door surprise perspective, they would have to be combined test evidence to show that hardware and that door compatible and have been tested together. But how do we how do we define that from a regulatory perspective and ensure they understand what they need to be asking.

WILL PERKINS I mean it is the direct parallel appreciate volumes are much smaller, but our area is natural smoke ventilation which for all intents and purposes is a window and an actuator. There you are a door and a piece of hardware. The same thing. What did we do as an industry? we said together that is 1 product. You can't substitute, you test it together. You issue a declaration performance for the product. It's so much easier now. I appreciate you doing the variations indoors and volumes are totally, totally different, but if you've got something they're porting 351, surely we should just be pushing that.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, Europe is very much a door set market. They've already gone down that route, but the UK is still held onto this door assembly requirement and it's because of the number of doors that are sold through the Travis Perkins and people like that, that account for the vast majority of fire doors sold in the UK.

ELLIOT DAWSON I agreed, I think you'll find 99% of all fire door. Manufacturers now will provide a complete door set. We won't even sell a blade to anybody that has an intention of just retrofitting it into an aperture.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So of course, the other thing that's a consideration on a fire door is whether the hardware is actually installed in accordance with the defined parameters that it's been tested within. So if you think about that door closer scenario, if we went back sort of 10 or 15 years, possibly even longer, the popular door closer was a Britain 2003 fixed power size 3 door closer, perfectly adequate for a for a door when it's on the pool side with the bracket, the arms coming out at 90 degrees from the door, because it's a fixed power size 3. But if you fitted it on the opposite side of the door so that your arm was parallel with the door, it actually lost a power size and became a power size 2 door closer and wasn't added suitable for that application on the fire door. So of course the C certification for the door closer or the UK CA certification will define the parameters in which that door closer can be used on a fire door. So if it's application one, DOP is there. If it's application 66 on the opposite side of the door, it's not covered by the DOP. So it's not just about understanding, it hasn't DOP, but also understanding that the products been fitted in accordance with the DOP as well.

WILL PERKINS Going back to our scenario of our building our plan- a student accommodation- would the design team be expected to specify the hardware?

ROY BUCKINGHAM With access control quite often, yes, because there will be a security consultant involved. There may be a designing the access control system that's going to be used in the building and they're in the MEP package, which is completely separate to the door package, which is perhaps in a different package so.

WILL PERKINS For sure. But that's comes down to the fire strategy within smoke ventilation is the same thing, have split packages, doors, facade, windows, electrics, the whole lot is it very, very similar. What is it that the fire strategy team have got to define in there? Because actually flipping it round, if they're specifying the security access control, then part f that is that they need to specify a fire door which is UK CA approved with that specific hardware surely.

ROY BUCKINGHAM You've hit one of the key problems in the industry is it is at the moment because, the doors have got specified as FD30 FT60 etcetera. That will define what those fire requirements are. But you'll go all the way through to about stage three before somebody thinks about the access control because up until that point they've been specified in silos separately. Nobody's been thinking about them as a joined up solution.

WILL PERKINS Yes, 100%. But this is it, we're in a perfect world now in this, in this example. It's wonderful because we can get everything right and what we're trying to do is specify the questions to the designers. What seems to me the discussion here is actually the fire strategy design team, one of their first questions before they choose on the fire rating of the door is the access control. Because that will determine what products they can install when it comes to finals.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes and what the door set needs to be capable of doing, with the hardware fitted.

WILL PERKINS OK, cool. So it's driven. So the security access actually, in the hierarchy, is higher than the door set.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, I would agree.

ELLIOT DAWSON Yeah. And in an ideal world, you would have a database where you could put your chosen method of security closer and that would throw you up with the door sets that were accredited to take that system. That would be if I were a Winkhaus, or a Rutland, I would probably build that database so that any specifier could go on and say I want this security system. What doors have you tested with that?

WILL PERKINS That's exactly what we have done as a business because we manufacture actuators hardware and you click on and we've got 30 system companies that says he it's accredited.

ROY BUCKINGHAM If only were there…

JIM CREAK (Guest) You are with your door sets providing door closes, I assume.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So door sets will always cover the hardware that's part of it, because that's part of the CE certification for the door set or ultimately as a manufacturer you would want to ensure that you're hardly you're incorporating into your door set regards whether it's a or not is suitable and has its own performance testing for that hardware and to prove it suitability.

ELLIOT DAWSON Yes, and we test everything that is in our field of application. We are so heavily regulated. In our several, I think we've got six or seven different closes that we can use and a three or four different locks - they all obviously have been tested rigorously, more than once and on more than one size.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So certainly from Elliott perspective, you know they're doing all of their due diligence before they place their product, the door set onto the marketplace and therefore you've got that limited scope of being able to change products. So if somebody wants to add access control to one of their doors using a different functional locking element, then obviously they can't do that. But obviously when we go to door assemblies, that's a different ball game because you know people can and will define what they want on those doors.

WILL PERKINS But if we look at if we look at this another way and come at it from the security access point of view, have we got a question set for the security access control system?

ROY BUCKINGHAM I haven't focused on security access because obviously the mandatory requirements are escape and fire, so you know, regardless of what the security element is, the ones that you gotta comply with in the building regs escape and fire.

WILL PERKINS OK. So but coming at it from your hardware point of view, because I think that was the thing specifically we were talking about the electric side of things, which was the kind of chosen difficult subject we're talking about. If we came and that first illustration you showed us of the door with the electrics etc. If the client needed, what would you describe that as?

BUCKINGHAM ROY Yeah. So the electric locking device on the door, may be able to provide slightly different functionality depending on the product. But ultimately if it's being fitted to an escape door, then it has to be escape compliant, it has to meet the escape certifications I 179 E 1125. If it's obviously a fire door, then it's gotta be fire tested and that from a hardware perspective, that's do we end 1634 Part 1 as a manufacturer, we have to do fire testing against that standard. For the hardware only to prove its suitability for use in that application. That doesn't necessarily mean it's suitable to use in Elliott's door because although the harvest certification, it doesn't mean to say that the test evidence for the door can cover that hardware as well.

WILL PERKINS The answer is you need that evidence to be happy that it's gonna work. That's the point is. If we're starting from that electric locking device, isn't the question set a series of: Is it for escape? And if so…… UK CA marked door which is tested with this application? Is it for fire? Same question set, so it's actually flipping the question set and coming at it from this quite unique requirement which is the electric locking function.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So way of approaching this might be actually to think of it more as a flow chart. I'm working that down to arrive at your answers which there might give us the questions we need to put into this document I'm thinking.

WILL PERKINS But it's coming at it, not from the fire door to the hardware. It's actually coming at it from quite a unique requirement, which is electronic locking.

ROY BUCKINGHAM But it comes back to what I said at the beginning. What is the design function of the door? You know what is required from that door? Is it violated? Is it escape? Do you need to fail locked? Do you need to fail unlocked? All of those bits will filter down to arrive at your solution.

WILL PERKINS Correct. But the starting point is: I need electronic locking. That's the first question, isn't it? And everything else comes off there, doesn't it?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes, but again, you know the same applies to the mechanical hardware as well. So if the door's not electrically locked, you still got the same requirements.

WILL PERKINS Yeah, but the whole point of this exercise is we pick one very specific product and walk through that product and then you've got half an idea of how it hangs together.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, so, so I agree. Yeah, perhaps we need to come at it from a different approach. I haven't thought of that because obviously I was looking at the spreadsheet thinking about the spreadsheet and the questions that were that were there.

WILL PERKINS So the first statement rather than a question I guess is: Point 1. We need electronic locking.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So once we know that, then we kind of know what questions we then gotta ask, don't we?

ELLIOT DAWSON I will put: ‘Is the door internal or external?’ because a lot of manufacturers don't make escape doors. We will make internal stroke external composite doors but we don't make any escape doors whatsoever. Unless you would consider as escape door a standard composite which is just to the external part of the building.

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, I would say that, I mean the definition of an escape door is any door that leads to or across an escape route. In other words, if you have to pass through that door in order to reach safety, then it's an escape door. Whether you dress it with hardware that meets the performance standard or whether you put a sign above it to say it's an escaped or will depend on certain other factors. But so you're flat. Engine still is effectively an escape door.

JIM CREAK (Guest) Sorry, sorry. Can I just interject and then do you do you test with the ordinary panic hardware on your sets?

ELLIOT DAWSON To be honest, we've not tested with any panic hardware. We literally just use a Standard DDA compliant handles with no pushboat push bars.

Jim Creak (Guest) So you can fix all of those to the door sets that you manufacture?


WILL PERKINS And doesn’t it affect your UK, CA?


ROY BUCKINGHAM Well, from a composite door perspective, if you're thinking about that sort of flat entrance door or that flat rear entrance door, onto the balcony or whatever, you know, they're not covered by the escape regulations as such, you don't have to fit escape compliant hardware to those doors. You know the difference was on that door that we were looking at that led to the escape stairs is that's a communal door and therefore it's in a public area and therefore that does have to comply.

JIM CREAK (Guest) OK, I'll say it again. I'm only looking to give people advice. Do you know what I mean in terms of how they get round the particular problem of multi occupancy type places now that are above 11 meters. Then, with retrofitting, they are gonna have a big problem.

WILL PERKINS Again, there are so many questions that we can answer if we can try and bring it back to just the work one worked example. So what we're saying point number one, it's a statement. We do need an electrically locked door, OK, that's point 1. Now number 2: is it the door fire, does the door need to be fire rated if it does, what are the questions that need to be asked? I assume it's the number of minutes of fire rating, isn’t it?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yes. Is the door fire rated? What is the rating?

WILL PERKINS So, the middle question is: is the door and escape door. What's the relevance of that?

ROY BUCKINGHAM So the electric lock would have to be seized in accordance with the escape standards. If it's that communal and escape door so IM179 or M1125.

WILL PERKINS So, actually if it's an escape door, actually, we need evidence so the relevance is we need evidence of either EM179 emergency or EM1125 panic via a DOP perspective. Yeah, because that's great because that's evidence that will go in the golden thread then. We said that was far test report. Fire test evidence.

ROY BUCKINGHAM The door need to fail locked or to fail unlocked. It is important to know which type of locking you might need to use.

WILL PERKINS Yes, so that's important because that's the specification of the product, isn't it? That's almost the second question. So that effectively that's product selection. One of what the other critical questions that you as a manufacturer product selector need to need to be asked. Because we're not looking for door data here. This is just about the hardware, isn't it?


WILL PERKINS So are there any other questions that you would need ask if they said: ‘I want electrical lock door’. You'd say does it need to fail open or fail locked or faill unlocked? Are there any functional, any other functional questions?


Well, we obviously had one about impinging on the fire strategy for fire fighters. Is that relevant here? ROY BUCKINGHAM But that comes under: ‘Is the door to fail unlocked or fail locked?’ Really because that would define whether or not the firefighters have access through it potentially. I would say it's to do with the security functionality, because that would also dictate potentially what hardware you might use. For instance, the electric locked that we looked at the beginning, that would have various monitoring functions to determine that you can you can monitor the door is in the closed as well as the locked state. You could monitor if somebody uses the key or you could monitor the handle down from an access control perspective to give valid request to exit.

JIM CREAK (Guest) I was thinking early on in terms of the disability side of things as well about this overriding security because I've seen so many retrofits for the overrides being being in totally inappropriate places.

WILL PERKINS From an architect point of view, I don't know what 7273 part 4 or 13 six is. What does that mean?

ROY BUCKINGHAM OK, so if a door is electrically controlled and has to be electrically unlocked, that would be where you might have a green break glass type scenario. So you've got a manual release to remove power from the locking element to allow the door to be free for escape. Or you might have a firearm interface that automatically unlocks the door and removes power to unlock that door. So there's two ways of achieving that solution. One is BS7273, part 4, that's actually a fire alarm standard, which is the actuation of the release mechanism for the door. So it either allows an electrically held open door to automatically close to provide the compartmentation, or an electrically locked door to be electrically unlocked to allow escape. But that standard only covers what the fire alarm does. It doesn't cover the system on the door, so current best practice would instead to be to use the E 13637 standard which is for an electric electrically controlled exit system for use on an escape route. So that covers the whole system, including the locking element that fits to the door. But instead of having the green break glass, there would be an escape door system terminal that sits adjacent to the door, which would provide that manual release function as such.

WILL PERKINS So is the EN 13637 a hardware standard?

ROY BUCKINGHAM Yeah, it's a hardware standard that covers the system, not to an individual component. So it covers the actuation, the release and the blocking on the door.

WILL PERKINS OK, so that's a really important standard that that people need to be aware of.

ROY BUCKINGHAM So we mentioned 14351 earlier. If it was an external door then that would require this solution rather than this solution.

WILL PERKINS And is 13637 the hardware and the door tested together?

ROY BUCKINGHAM No, it is purely a system standard for escape locking, not for the door.

WILL PERKINS OK, so it's a relevant hardware standard. OK, That needs to be in there. It's an incredibly complex subject. How do you want to move forward on this? Do you wanna revisit this or do you want to do you wanna come back next time or do you wanna go? I've done enough. Somebody else take up the running.

ROY BUCKINGHAM I will sort of think around this and the flow chart and perhaps, you know, come up with something that, I can feed back in. And then we can share that and everybody can have a look at it, but we can focus on a different subject area next time as such. We were looking at it at a very granular level from a component perspective on this one.

WILL PERKINS Which is really important, which we've gotta do because that's ohh timidly, where the level we've gotta go down to with the golden thread.


Will Perkins - SE Controls

Andy Scott - C-Tec

Stephen Gore - Swegon

Jim Creak - Jalite Plc

Richard Freer - IceFire Portfolio

Jiss Philip Mukkadan - BIM4Housing


BIM4Housing Manufacturing Working Group Meeting-20220928


Status update : AOV Template V3

WILL PERKINS The worked example that George put together is student accommodation. The reason I haven’t included the floor plan is there isn’t an external wall mounted AOV there, it’s actually a shaft. But for the purposes of this I’ve used the example of a wall mounted AOV. Talking about a document he has shared on screen: These are the questions I believe a specifier should be able to answer when they’re generating their specification. First one, size of the geometric open. That’s critical because it’s got to achieve a certain free area. We’ve always had those situations where the physical hole is smaller than the free area required.

STEPHEN GORE That’s the opening of the hole rather than the size of the product? WILL Absolutely. STEPHEN because different manufacturers for a given aperture will have different sized products based on their clearance they need for things like thermal expansion, which is obviously then going to affect the geometric opening. Because they're typically aluminium, you're going to get quite a lot of movement. So I've seen when I've tested before, if you don't provide adequate clearance for that thermal expansion, what tends to happen is the frame jams up against the aperture. The blades then can't expand and everything seizes up.

So, at your five minute point where you go from closed state to open state to demonstrate maintaining free area they won’t open because everything is seized up. With ours there is an amount of clearance for expansion that you need, otherwise you know that under elevated temperature conditions you won’t get that opening.

WILL PERKINS There’s two points we’re talking about here. What we have to be aware of is generally at this stage it’s going to be an architect who’s putting this specification, they won’t have that detailed product knowledge, but the flag is to get them to go and find that out. The point is the aperture size has got to be at least, end of corridor, 1 1/2 square metres ADB, this is a residential situation.

Columns B through to I are based on a RACI matrix. R is responsible A is accountable, C is consorted. I is informed there's only. In a RACI matrix you can only ever have one accountable person and you can have many responsible, consulted and informed. In this specification stage it is the designer compiling the specification who is accountable.

Where is this specific unique product going to be installed? This is really important because it’s the start of the golden thread. Once these products are installed in a specific location they have a specific function and performance that is unique to that location. it might be repeated all over the building, but it has to be treated as a unique asset. In part of specification writing they have to identify that as part of the specification. The principle I’m expounding here is let’s get that data written once, then we track that data and monitor any changes.

The earlier we can get accurate data the better for the golden thread. We need that aperture size and we need the actual location where the product is going to be installed because it might be on different floors or a different aperture height/width scenarios.

GEORGE So the aperture would be the first thing rather than the product that's satisfying the the item? WILL Yes. GEORGE That’s an interesting point because the opening itself is actually the initial asset WILL yes, the asset is the hole in the wall.

WILL Obviously we need to understand what that AOV is going to be fitted into, the surrounding structure. In this instance, we're saying it's going into a masonry, it's a punch hole window into a wall, brickwork, masonry, whatever. But it could be curtain walling, it could be all kinds of things. Very important for you fixings and….

STEPHEN GORE it is. I know the current harmonised version of 12101 Part 2, which is 2003, doesn't distinguish between masonry curtain walling. The 2017 version that they never harmonised does. We would still, regardless of the standard, state that if you want to put it in curtain wall you need to test it in curtain wall because you will get a different reaction.

GEORGE to Stephen - When you say you would require them to have it tested in that…

STEPHEN What we would require is obviously, as we’ve got here, the person writing the specification to describe what supporting construction they're going to fit into. And if they came to us and said we are gonna fit into a curtain walling system. If, regardless of the standard, just says, well, you're just fit into something that doesn't move, we wouldn't put our product forward if we knew that the supporting construction fell outside of the scope of what we’ve tested or assessed.

Because we know from dampers that supporting constructions make a lot of difference to the results. We’re only talking 300 degree fire resistance testing so the temperatures aren’t the same.

Just based on our experience, if someone said I want to put it in this type of curtain wall, if we haven’t got data that we believe covers it we’d either have to run a test or decline not to quote.

GEORGE If you were going to run a test that would be a matter of the contractor or the client funding that? STEPHEN yeah, it’s done on a case-by-case basis, sometimes depends on the size of the job. Trying to get slots for testing can be a bit of a challenge. The best way to describe how we approach it is we certify to the 2003 version of the standard because that's the harmonised one, but we will use the 2017 one as guidance because obviously there was a lot of people inputted into that standard that never got harmonised that know a lot about these things. So we will use that as guidance from a design perspective.

WILL That’s very helpful and informative and supports the point here that for a manufacturer to put a product forward they need to understand the application. STEPHEN Yes, and we have turned work down if we know they are going to fit it somewhere where we have a concern or it’s outside of its intended scope of application, we won’t sell it. GEORGE to Will: In your case, how would you deal with that?

WILL There’s different scenarios in different situations. Remember, we don’t manufacture the window itself, but what we have is our tested solution which is the actuator and window…tested together. Like Stephen, we test to part 2 2003, then various systems will have been tested in curtain wall and effectively in masonry situations we would regard as similar to the actual test environment. If it’s going into curtain wall then most of the time the people providing the window are the same people, the same system as the curtain wall because it’s naturally integrated, therefore that testing has already taken place.

WILL Next, a critical one, is the required aerodynamic free area, it’s possibly the most important functional requirement of the design. Looking at our example floor template student accommodation, we’re ventilating at the end of the corridor, requirements under ADB is 1.5 square metres of free area. That under the smoke control association guidance amounts to an aerodynamic free area of .9 square metres and in terms of the capture of information for the golden thread that would be declared on the declaration of performance, via DOC, for the product. That’s how the compliance is being identified and evidenced.

Into the declarations of performance, the asset’s essential characteristics, the temperature rating is 300 degrees. 600 is really not needed for this specific application. Another important point, this is feedback from housing associations and building operators. Is the vent going to be used for day-to-day ventilation or smoke only? There is an essential characteristic operational reliability and if it's smoke only 1050 OPS. If it's going to be used for day-to-day ventilation 10,000. If it’s top of stairs for accessing the roof as well…But that's really easy because that's an essential characteristic and that that needs to be specified nice and early.

Slightly outside of the scope of the declaration of performance. We need to understand how that vent is going to operate, what's the cause and effect, and how it's going to interact with the wider smoke control system. Building Safety Act is in gateway two. Before Gateway two is signed off, you must have your smoke control strategy detailed. The gateway 2 stage is all about detailing this product specification and the wider strategy. So fundamentally there's no excuse for that not to be addressed. In fact, if it's not, arguably won't even pass gateway two, so they can’t construct.

Activation: part of that cause and effect, but this is more detailed to the actual appliance itself. We need to say how the the AOV is going to be initiated. I've given some examples there, manual intervention, automatically etc. and also the power supply in there that should be detailed in the cause and effect. And then final, which is part of the Declaration of performance, the reaction to fire classification, GEORGE: So as far as the design is concerned, that's the designers’ responsibility, isn't it? WILL I believe so. Typically that's going to be an architect downloading an MBS specification. We can't expect the architect to be an expert in smoke ventilation so we have to make sure is that these questions/clauses are as widely available to architects or specifiers as possible to make sure that they answer these questions nice and early.

GEORGE asks if it would not be the mechanical services designer. WILL You would hope so. We’ve got to remember this is potentially at gateway 1 stage, especially when it comes to the hole in the wall, the architect is responsible for making sure that the aperture is big enough. The mechanical services should be involved because they’ve got to take care of the power cabling etc and have a direct input into the final specifications. Ultimately it depends on the scale and the size of the building.

GEORGE asks Will if he’s made contact with Higgs. He’s asking because: in terms of interpreting the fire engineers requirements on the Higgs project that seems to have been assigned to Calfordseaden. So although PRP are doing the architecture, the interpretation of the fire plan is with them. WILL typically, what would normally happen to work that through is Calfordseaden who are very good company. We work with a lot come to us as specialists and say can you help put this scheme together for us please?

GEORGE But the cause and effect of operation, would that be a combination of the architect and engineer? WILL Ultimately that shouldn’t be the architect because that’s stepping into the realm of a fire strategy. Calfordseaden have their own fire engineers so they’d be more to do with the services, engineering consultant and the fire consultant to put that cause and effect together.

Because whilst on our example residential block the cause and effect is quite straightforward, they have to take a global view, starting to look at interactions with other fire safety systems in there. So there could be sprinklers, there could be a fire alarm system that could be an air conditioning system. So it's their responsibility to take a more holistic view on it.

Paul White joins the meeting so Will reiterates the task they are working on. It's picking up the same kind of principle you did with Paul Mcsoley, but I'm looking at an AOV, not the system, just at the AOV. In the first instance that we've just gone through, we're looking at what are the questions that the person drafting the specification needs to answer. So that's kind of what I've put in there, tying directly back to the declarations of performance, essential characteristics. Everything in gold is trying to capture what we need to highlight as part of the golden thread.

PAUL I’ve had a look at this. The only thing that was concerning me was the one that says masonry wall, I’m assuming that would probably be a window. We need to make sure it’s not going into a shaft wall, we don’t want to confuse people into thinking that the AOVs can go into a supply shaft. GEORGE Would you ever put an AOV into a smoke shaft? WILL Yes but, and this is the terminology, in a smoke shaft you would only ever put in this scenario, you’d only ever put a smoke control damper to part 8.

WILL Then we're moving on to design considerations for performance optimisation and risk mitigation. So these again, the accountability for the most of these is with the design team. The design team has started to wide out, probably architect and the mechanical services consultant now. Will the AOV be installed into a reveal? So typically if that end shev is set in a deep reveal then potentially that could have an effect on the aerodynamic free area, so that's a question that needs answering. And then if it is then obviously specialist advice is required to overcome that.

Will the open AOV create a risk from falling from height? So obviously we've got automatic opening windows/vents at the end of the corridor. Some of these things are basically glazed doors at the end of the corridor if it opens and there's no fall arrest there, then you needn’t worry about the smoke killing you because you’ll fall from the 15th. Is there a risk of finger entrapment. This is particularly relevant where the end shev might be used for day-to-day ventilation where it's opening and closing automatically. Obviously these windows close automatically and there's a trap hazard. It is an issue if it's not mitigated, but there's a risk that needs to be considered.

Another classic again, George, this is one that came up time and time again in the round table discussions we had is the impact of temporary scaffold or down pipes that are installed right outside the opening vent and that creates problems. Internal finishes. It’s common if it's not sort of properly where the plasterwork actually goes, right the way up and actually comes inside the free area or simple things like putting curtains or blinds in front of the AOVs for what seems like a nice aesthetic reason, but has a pretty nasty effect on the performance of the fire product.

Maintenance is a good one. Again, George, came up time and time again, especially at the top of stairs. UM is where the AOV has been installed at roof level at the top of the staircase and there's a scaffold needs to be a tower needs to be erected every time that needs to be maintained. Vandalism: a lot of the time the reasons these systems don’t work is because they’ve been tampered with and smashed. If it’s known the type of accommodation it’s going into, student being one of the worst, the designer should be thinking about how these risks can be mitigated.

Life expectancy of the vent. This is the function of a number of operations because if it's going to be used frequently for day-to-day ventilation then by nature that's going to reduce, just like a car doing lots of miles, it reduces the the typical lifespan/life expectancy of that. Some of the components will have different life expectancies (confirms Will in response to George’s question), but even if they are used for day-to-day ventilation you shouldn’t have to replace anything for 10-15 years, as long as it’s maintained.

GEORGE The reason I'm asking the question is we're doing a student accommodation project with Balfour Beatty at the moment and so that's all of the maintenance organisation. It's a 50 year project. If, for example, the AOV is coming from…there’s a number of different components that goes to make that up. Therefore should we be ensuring that we get all the component elements rather than a packaged AOV?

WILL It’s really important and interesting. We have to be careful because we are now into the realms of invalidating your product compliance because if you start substituting elements of that product then you’ve got to make sure that those products do not invalidate your certification. GEORGE Absolutely. If the actuator needed replacing in 10-15-years time, how would they know what actuator to use? WILL That information is part of the data that needs to be provided with the product. However, it does beg the question are they competent to replace that product?

GEORGE I agree and to some extent that’s what we need to be adding into this. I think the blanket thing saying you just need to go back to the manufacturer to get it is not an adequate response because we don’t know whether that manufacturer is still in that business anymore.

WILL It’s a problem we can’t solve today. Fundamentally there’s 2 elements: 1 is the product. There’s only going to be one manufacturer of that product because there’s only one product that’s been tested. Not many manufacturers have tested their product with substitutable motors etc so compliance is back to one product, one sub-assembly. But then there’s the question of people being competent with substitute components. It’s incumbent on any manufacturer to make sure there are lots of people who are competent to make those changes.

GEORGE Something interesting last week was that Howell from Sibsey made a point during his RIBA presentation that the person that actually picks the product is automatically the designer. So, if a procurement person decides to use a different product than the one the proper designer chooses then legally they then inherit the role. WILL Yes, and the point being (which goes back to the way European standards are drafted) is the specification should not include a manufacturer, it should only include the essential characteristics which are third party evidenced through the manufacturer’s declaration of performance.

Because that makes it a level playing field for competition. I’m a firm advocate of that. If you want an SE controlled product because it’s blue with pink spots…ultimately that liability doesn’t transfer to procurement it stays with the designer because the designer specification says those are the fire performance criteria. PAUL WHITE My opinion goes along the lines of Will’s.

NICK HAUGHTON From a point-of-view of any product to agree you should be able to specify the criteria and there will be certain companies which can’t be selected on the basis of that criteria. The challenge is that declarations of performance etc are non-existent in our industry so it becomes a lot more difficult to actually nail down. The last thing you want is having a specification which is only as aspirational as the British Standards or the regulations threshold - it needs to be more aspirational than that. In theory, not specifying a company sounds like a good approach in that respect although many manufacturers probably wouldn’t like that.

WILL Nick, if you want to we can do this exercise of picking a product and going through the questions that need to be asked. In some respects it might be quite interesting to do it for something that there isn't a declaration of performance, that there isn't a European standard with the essential characteristic. So I'll put it out there that we might want to do that in the future with a product that you think is relevant to this.

GEORGE The view from the Tier 1 group and feeding back from the Golden Thread initiative is that by Gateway 2 all the products should be picked - not just the performance, you should have selected which products you are actually going to install. That’s a challenge with contractor design portion as it’s often pushed into work stage 5. There seems to be consensus that the end of work stage 4, all of the products that are going to be procured should be specifically picked and you’d only have a change if it goes through a proper change control process.

WILL Is anybody in the room ever been involved in any project anywhere in the world in any of your life where everything has been procured and specified before a spade has struck the ground? STEPHEN Never. NICK the principle is good but the reality is the less products you’ve chosen the less you can choose as well. Especially when you’ve got a complex interface with a lot of water proofing, fire proofing etc.

GEORGE The view that I’ve heard is that if there is a relationship between the element, let’s say a damper and a wall, you really need to make sure the builders work holds in the right place. Then, the M&E contractor picking an alternative product can fundamentally impact on the roots/roofs? 39 mins 15 secs and therefore the builders work goes in one place. Possibly it’s not a matter of all products…that’s a consideration maybe we should have: which elements in which context would require to be done by that (early) stage? What would you say, Stephen?

STEPHEN No, the wall damper argument is probably a discussion I have about four times a day with people. The number of jobs where it actually gets specified correctly and then you get a phone call on site because someone has decided that they’re going to build a shaft wall. It's not a shaft, but they've now decided that the internal walls will be a shaft wall and now all of a sudden either everything that we were supplying because I haven't changed, damper supply, but they've changed wall supply, is now noncompliant because it's all nonstandard supporting constructions or that they put our products in because they couldn’t hold of someone else’s but because of the difference in tested opening sizes/damper sizes etc everything ends up out of alignment.

WILL This brings us nicely on to row 25: procurement. I’ve only put one line in here. We’ve established a clear specification with functional requirements, essential characteristics. When the product is purchased, are there any variations to that specification? E.g. going into a wall finish, for example. Specifically if we’re looking at AOV, has anything changed? If it has, from a golden thread POV, it has to be recorded. Why, who, how? That’s fundamentally the golden thread. Interestingly the RACI matrix, that moves across to the main contractor.

PAUL The point is is if the specification is correct in terms of the standard and the essential requirements and the time, That’s really all the specification should say. Any USPs are to be done at stage 3 before stage 4 is agreed. As you say, if it’s fixed at that point then there has to be a very serious reason for changing it. The issue, more so with than dampers than AOVs, is the change of the wall type or space.

WILL Moving on to install. What's really important is going back to the specification we'd identified in the specification where the unique product should be installed. So, simple question is, is that consistent? Because if it's changed etc part of the golden thread, we need to record that. But in theory and it all goes back to that kind of single source data. If the specification said this end shev (AOV) is on the third floor, but east elevation, etc that part of the install process should be that that is proved to be true. Have any variations to specification been required, recorded digitally, again that that ties back to the procurement side or if anything changed since then.

Installation GA drawings available. And are the electrical connection drawings and who are the installer the installers and are they called competent. We're getting into actually recording critical information here that that needs to be recorded as part of the golden thread. And again, if you watch the accountability here for the competence of the installer, it's actually the trade contractor who've got to put competent installers forward. They are accountable for it but the main contractor needs to be responsible to make sure they’re satisfied before they go on site.

Commissioning. Similar principle there, who is undertaking the commissioning and are they competent, so have they got that third party accreditation.

GEORGE When they are doing the install should they have a checklist of things they need to have done? In other words, yeah they may be competent, but in maintenance world now on PFIs they expect a record of the fact that they did have these eight tasks that they should have carried out. I think that should be there. WILL yeah, let’s add that. PAUL There's a handover sheet in 7346, part 8 for commissioning. I'm fairly certain, but I can't remember exactly what it says. The same thing is for installation as well. WILL The trade contractor is accountable for that.

WILL Commissioning. Who is doing it and are they competent. a catch all: has the commissioning test report been designed to recall all of the system assets, locations, identifiers and test data. To me those are the essential bits that need to be captured. And I've said, I believe it's the main contractor who is accountable to make sure that that’s all done. GEORGE Should the commissioning also include design performance specification…or is that just blindingly obvious? WILL It's blindingly obvious, but it's a very good point.

PAUL Can I just read a little bit from 7346 part eight, which I think probably covers this bit. The system should be commissioned by a competent person who has access to the requirements of the designer i.e. the system specification and any other relevant documentation or drawings. And on the form that you’re supposed to fill in it says t says ‘I/we being the competent persons responsible as indicated by our signatures to commissioning of etcetera, etcetera, conforms to the best of my knowledge and belief with BS 7346 part 8 section 8.1. so there is certainly mechanisms there to be able to do this.

GEORGE Moving on to the documentation bit, I can’t see that the documentation needs to include the performance specification, whatever the design intent. WILL the performance specification is inside the control strategy. GEORGE Does the AOV only have one intent? WILL Usually two: on the fire floor it needs to open, on the non-fire floor it needs to close or remain closed. GEORGE But in both cases it relates to smoke. So there’s no other things that it’s doing, like ventilation or something like that? WILL In an emergency situation, no. The point being, only talking about this example of student accommodation, floor plans etc. So in this instance there’s 2 states for the AOV: fully opened, fully closed in a fire emergency.

PAUL it could possible to add an additional line saying environmental system details where included or something like that. Add it just beneath the smoke control strategy because it will be before the cause and effect because the cause and effect will contain all of that. The wording: environmental system details where used or where relevant.

WILL The logic of this is those three clauses shouldn’t need to be generated because they should be exactly the same as the specification/gateway 2. Schematics, installation records, commissioning - all pretty straightforward. Obviously we’ve got to try and make sure this is all available and recorded digitally. In terms of an ongoing basis…now we’re into the building operation. What information do we need back from that AOV/end Shev real time, we’re looking for validation, status and position.

The validation in terms of that AOV, the performance requirement is to achieve an aerodynamic free area of 0.9. Last time that was operated effectively or maintained that position, that functional performance, one would expect that to be validated and recorded. Will adds to the document ‘images of assets in location’ at George’s suggestion.

STEPHEN Where we've got online 49 manufacturers installation instructions are you including in that maintenance information as well from the manufacturer? Because section 10 of 12101 part 2 details what maintenance and installation information should be provided. Where you’ve got manufacturers installation does that include the kind of operations and maintenance as well? WILL Realistically, it would be one and the same.

WILL A wider point, about that being in a machine readable format, what are your thoughts, Steve, on making that equipment available in machine readable format? In terms of digital a PDF isn’t good enough because it needs to be in a format that can be interrogated and integrated into the asset platform. GEORGE You want it as a JPEG or an image…is that what you mean? WILL No, it’s a wider question in terms of golden thread, it calls for a digital golden thread and this is critical information about the product. How do we as an industry, George, you’re on the data management side upstream. What do you want and expect?

GEORGE If we’re talking about photographs one of the things we should add to that is an appropriate reference. Machine readable basically means like a spreadsheet rather than a PDF that you’ve got to read and interpret. For example, you’d want to be able to do a query in an application and find all the assets that need this type of activity. A PDF is not machine readable because it’s not a standard format and therefore a human has got to read it and interpret it. So that’s where we’re trying to get to.

Will asks Richard if he’s contacted CPPI. Richard has but has not received any response so he will contact them again.

PAUL So, does this mean, like BIM in the early days, that we will need a template? WILL That’s exactly what CPPI are developing. Marketeers will be horrified by this because it's not gonna look glamorous at all. It's going to be an Excel spreadsheet. Totally practical, totally usable, totally transparent.

WILL The next one of these sessions is going to be with Roy from Assa Abloy and we'll pick up some fire door hardware to work through those, which is interesting because there won't be a whole nice standard for those because they're a component part. Nick if you want to volunteer for a later session then, then by all means do. NICK Yeah, sounds good.

GEORGE Nick is having one of his sessions at The Shard and we've been talking about having a round table session there. It’s in November. NICK Yeah, we’ve offered Bim4housing a round table opportunity on whatever topic.

GEORGE The point about this product selection and making sure that things are appropriate for the setting etc is fundamental. I get the impression that it’s very loose at the moment, Paul Mcsoley is constantly telling me that’s the case. WILL its incumbent on us, it’s what this is about.

GEORGE A quick question: Fire engineers, fire plans and what is going to be required going forward. To explain the context, over the last month I’ve been contacted by quite a few of the housing associations and councils because they've got this impending 23rd of January deadline to meet where the Fire Safety Act, rather than the Building Safety Act, requires them to have plans in place. The term fire plans is ambiguous because some people call the fire plan the drawing that goes in the premises information box that the fire brigade use to find their way around the building. Other people would say a fire plan is something that the fire engineer produces.

It’s the fires strategy, they are often involved early on in the process, but often the fire engineers they don’t continue through the design process and the architect or the engineer pick up what they've recommended and then interpret it into a design and then produce fire strategy drawings and fire evacuation plans.

PAUL The issue is you see fire strategies which are all things to all people. The first point is it right and has it called up all the correct standards etc. usually with smoke control it’s a bit dodgy because it usually says in there to speak to somebody else to design the smoke control, which isn’t very helpful. That’s going to have to change because it has to be done at stage 4. There’s also, the fire plan part of it, a load of management responsibilities in determining what they should be doing to help implement the fire strategy once the building has been built.

So, it's two things: One, it's about the design of the building, but then there's a level of management that goes with that to make the fire strategy work. For instance, if there had to be peeps 1 hr 06 mins in place that would be for the management to do. So if you find the fire strategy (and that’s going to be the most difficult bit) where you’ve got the management responsibilities the plan would be what happens when you get a fire alarm. The plan certainly wouldn’t be just the drawing of the building because it’s just a drawing - not a plan in the way they mean plan.

GEORGE That’s what I thought as well. The next question: Some people are producing drawings, others are producing models. I’ve spoken to the Royal Borough of Kensington and they are doing theirs on spreadsheets, just using cells on an excel to determine where flats are. So there’s big variance in the in the way that they're being produced. One of the things that would be helpful is…for example, compartment walls, to be able to identify what the specification of the walls needs to be. That should be done by an architect…

PAUL No, that should be in the fire strategy document, because they look at the building and say it’s going to be X metres high and therefore the floors have to be 60/90/120 minutes and the walls have to be 60/90/120 minutes depending on how high it is. And then in the fire strategy, somebody would have said, well, we're not going to do it like that because we think it should be this and so they'll have knocked 30 minutes off it to save some money, but they should have justified that. And if they haven't justified that, then you'll really in problems because just saying it isn't acceptable. You’ve got to give a reason for reducing these things. So I think the easiest thing, probably George, is what are these buildings you're looking at? Have you got a fire strategy?

GEORGE I've asked to see it. I need to get it. I agree. I mean we we've got one that Will’s looking at the moment as well which we're planning to do a simulation with PRP because we’re both working on it. It’s a Peabody scheme. It’s gone through work stage 3 which is where the fire engineers were employed. And now they're into detailed design. I don't think the main contractor has retained the services of the fire engineer. PAUL Unfortunately I don’t think that matters because the fire strategy is a document and they’ll all be working to that. There's a level of responsibility that goes with that fire strategy, particularly if you’ve departed from the guidance. If you’ve parted from the guidance, you have to have justified it satisfactorily.

WILL And that's the nub of it, Paul, because the main contractor won't have retained the services of the fire engineer, and then merrily planning on and evolving the detailed design without doing those checks. It's not the regulation, it's the design, that's the design and any movement away from that design needs to be recorded: who why, when, and I would suspect that’s not happening.

PAUL No, but the point is the fire strategy has developed and the person developing the fire strategy has a level of responsibility. So they’ve potentially done some design work in the fire strategy. And then the next people along are doing more design work and maybe departing even further from the guidance and the fire strategy and they have a responsibility. The reason I was asking if you had a fire strategy, George, is that I could go through it with you and say, so basically, when everything's there, these are the management responsibilities and the management responsibilities will be all the fire safety order. So, keeping escape routes clear etc and their plan for maintaining all the active and passive fire systems.

Basically if you look at BS9999 Annex I, if you’ve got any active system whatsoever that's controlling dampers, smoke etc. they should be having daily checks for faults. Now again, I have a bit of an issue with this because you can't test the faults on a smoke control system without triggering it because it sits there and doesn't do anything. But it does say weekly you should be firing off the system and going around and checking that it's working. And this is your plan. And the point is I don't think anybody's aware of 9999 Annex I as a for instance, and it isn't just about checking if I had doors and your fire extinguishers and keeping your gangways clear.

if you've got any other systems in there at all, so sprinklers, there's a whole stuff - It’s daily, Weekly, three monthly, 6 monthly annually and they should be planning around that and they won't have the money. It's a simple thing. They certainly won't have the people. And this is the problem. The landlord should be doing this as they are the responsible person and that’s the plan. The plan is is how do I meet the fire safety order? And the guidance for that comes from various places, one of which is Annex I and AnnexW in BS 9999 which they've got to go and spend £500 on to buy this standard.

It's all there, everything is there. But people don't know and they don't understand the breadth and the cost of all this, because they've never done it. GEORGE Well, that’s part of our role to make people aware of it. PAUL A lot of it is all about record keeping, because if you go to a site and you've got records there, that's good. If they recorded good things as well as bad things, that's even better because it implies that they have checked. So positive affirmation of checking is as good as finding faults.

Then you’ve got the usual cycle of ‘I found a fault’, you've got to do a risk assessment as to when you fix it, cause I the number of times I get asked how long have I got to fix this? Well, you're building's not working so it’s up to you. I'm not going to say it's 18 months because it potentially isn't 18 months. It's today and it's when the fault happened.

WILL That was one of the fascinating things of the outcome of that NFCC discussion: was recording effectively notifying a local brigade of all faults? And then effectively saying how long …you’re risk assessing how long you're giving yourself to to to repair that. PAUL From the 23rd of January that should be part of your plan. I found a fault in my smoke control system that I check every week and I've rung the fire brigade and told them. WILL I was trying to find the specific piece of the approved documents that they were referring to. Can you remember what it was?

PAUL I found it, but it was buildings over 30 metres, it wasn’t everything. It’s regulation 7 of the Fire Safety Act. Basically, if they now find a fault in their system on a building over 30 meters, they've got to go to that website and report the fault. And then and then they've got to go and report the fact that they cleared the fault. Now, what they don't realise that what they're doing is is that, push comes to shove, there's a whole bunch of evidence collected there that they haven't done any work.

But that's a different thing, but nobody from the fire brigade is ringing up to check that they've done it. What they were saying was it was just that in the fire engine on the way there, somebody taps into the website and says, oh, the smoke control systems not working in this building. Let's go back to the fire station. You know, it's all we've got this additional level of risk without being flippant about it, but that's what they're looking together. But effectively, it's also gathering other information.

The point is how how does anybody check that these people are presenting the faults? Even though it's a legal requirement, it’s like a quasi-legal requirement if I don't tell the fire brigade? I'll get that fixed and then it gets forgotten.


Will Perkins - SE Controls

George Stevenson - ActivePlan

Richard Freer - IceFire Portfolio

Nick Haughton - Sapphire Balconies

Paul White - Ventilation Fire Smoke

Stephen Gore - Swegon

Jiss Philip Mukkadan - BIM4Housing


BIM4Housing Manufacturing Working Group Meeting-20220706


will perkins shares a slide on screen, titled DIGITAL PRODUCT CONFIGURATION, with some important information. It’s a simple explanation of what we are doing. We’re taking an example floor plan with a specific application. We’ll approach various manufacturers…as manufacturers what we are trying to do is create a set of questions that we know need to be answered in order for that product to be specified correctly (and to select products). The intention is that these questions can then be integrated into the Templater to form a product configurator which, through the Templater, point the specifier/user etc through to hopefully selecting the product with the essential characteristics to have to track that product throughout its life in the building and thus as a fundamental part of the golden thread - that’s the principle.

Another colleague of Will’s has been working on the same process, but with smoke control dampers. He shares the document he’s referring to onscreen. On the left are statements about the characteristics of the product, questions need to be created to sit above them, so effectively it becomes a tick-list of what has to be achieved in this products specific application. It goes into singular product granular detail.

ALAN BRINSON, questioning this, says he’s not sure that this approach works for a system. We don’t use the word product, we use ‘system’ e.g. sprinkler system. GEORGE responds that the methodology is to work down from components to products and then up to systems. When you’re looking at it from a e.g. sprinkler system perspective that’s made up of a number of different component elements and that provides that 2-way granularity.

DAVID EMORY asks by what means this data is linked to the BIM model. GEORGE replies thy can be available as properties that can be in the BIM model, either as a parameter, or they can be connected via a GUID to a database that holds that information. GEORGE considers that the cooperation of manufacturers to modify their BIM models with these data fields would not necessarily be needed.

PAUL OAKLEY says this is about ‘things’ and it doesn’t matter what the ‘things’ are. You define things and then group them by methodology - products and systems are two examples. You are then defining standardised information against those things which will then be stored in a template. You then group the information requirements into those. There is a difference between information which is dealing with requirements and then responses to them. He advises not to get too caught up in the specifics of ‘this is a product’ therefore it doesn’t meet all the things I’m trying to deal with it. Some things will have to be looked at at an assembly level and some others at a system level.

ALAN, citing George’s reference to lighting, and considering the large number of possibilities of how to employ lighting, wonders how this takes account of the desire for flexibility?…

WILL PERKINS points out that the intent isn’t for this to be a design tool at all. From a manufacturers point of view if we are making products and products together are classified as a system, the approach is these are the questions that need to be asked to make sure the selected product information is correct. Providing this digital information means that in ten times time a building operator does not have to look through multiple PDFs for this critical information. GEORGE says if products are swapped out at a later date this means there is something objective to use ion a technical submittal, rather than just an opinion.

GEORGE says that an installed product may in fact be part of several different systems as they are used for a number of different purposes ‘so therefore we need to be able to group that one to many’.

JIM CREAK states that lighting is a system so looking at individual performance criteria as a function of output isn’t helpful to the maintenance guy as one light doesn’t provide all the lux levels you need. He doesn’t know at the moment how BIM handles systems because systems are designed by the experts.

CHRIS HALL says to be careful that there is a bit of mission creep here - we need to go back to where we are at. He thinks many of these questions, though valid, should be dealt with in the future, not now.

WILL PERKINS shares on screen the layout used at DCW. GEORGE explains the scenario: a fire breaks out the kitchen at a student accommodation which generates smoke. We’re looking at asset types that were there as part of the protection. What information do we need to ensure that people can get out safely?

CHRIS HALL of Siderise put forward his product EWCB30 which is a simple cavity barrier designed to give basic performance in an SFS or a block wall with a masonry outer. It’s a standard product that he sells quite a lot of. They fit within the cavity barriers: one is vertical and the other is horizontal compartmentation. Cavity Barriers are designed to stop the unseen movements of the products of combustion from one part of the building to another to avoid an unseen void. Most of the focus is on cavity barriers in facades, a la Grenfell, but they are required in lost of other applications as well. The kind of questions you would ask about a cavity barrier would be, to some degree, application specific.

WILL asks CHRIS what is the application of this particular product in the scenario example? CHRIS replies they would be installed in the void, the cavity between the internal and external leaf and would be subdivide the building into one student accommodation to another. They’d also probably be around windows (in student accommodation). It’s a cavity barrier in the external facade (as Will shows on screen). They then start looking at the questions that need to be answered.

Type of facade - what’s the issue of the facade? CHRIS replies the type of facade will dictate what type of cavity barrier you would use, the 2 basic types are ventilated (airflow needed) and unventilated. In this instance it's ‘unventilated’. The width of the cavity determines what sort of cavity barrier you will require. You would come across problems if you haven’t got 3rd party certification for cavity barriers, when you hand the building over you’ll have uncomfortable questions from other stakeholders. WILL considers that, in general, they need to know the minimum as well as the maximum of the cavity - both are vital information.

Manufacturer of products, according to CHRIS, is at this stage not really a requirement so it can be deleted and replaced with the next vital thing he needs to know which is the EI rating (Insulation and Integrity rating). It’ about how long the cavity barrier will function for when tested in accordance with the relevant standards. The minimum these days is 90 minutes integrity and 30 minutes insulation, the maximum is generally 120/120, typically it will be 60/60. they’ll be drawn from either the fire strategy from the building or reference to document B. Chris’ first question when asked for a cavity barrier would be ‘what rating do you want?.

Next, CHRIS adds location of cavity barriers - where do you want them to go? Normally, there would be marked up drawings as part of the fire design which would show where they should be situated. In this particular building they’d probably be around the windows. You may choose to position them in such a way to minimise disruption to the cavity barriers. CHRIS really needs to know what space he will have to play with for the cavity barriers - and there is never enough space, especially for horizontal rather than vertical.

WILL asks Chris what are the questions that sit behind potential clashes so that we can get to a digital yes/no answer? CHRIS thinks it's a difficult question, but his simple answer is ‘Can the cavity barrier be installed in an uninterrupted run (without any clashes or incursions)? Yes/No’. If yes, excellent, if no you go into a subset of questions: what space is available for the cavity barrier to be fitted in? What are the incursions into the cavity barrier? Yes = standard product, No = possible design input or adaptation of an existing product.

Cavity barriers are classed as passive, so in an ideal world they would a) never be called upon to

function and b) you’ll never have to access them because typically to access them in a facade

situation, you’ve gotta either take the the wall down from the inside or the outside, which is never a good idea. CHRIS adds Internal substrate details to the list - we are fixing the cavity barrier to what? Is it to an SFS, masonry construction, or other (timber stud)? This is relevant because it determines the fixings.

He moves on to Insulation. Testing is done with certain insulation flanking the cavity barrier. The type of cavity barrier and your advice and what you can claim in terms of 3rd party certification is dependent upon what type of insulation was used to flank the cavity barrier during testing. We need to know what the type of insulation is so that we can select the appropriate product to suit, with the appropriate certification. ROY BUCKINGHAM guesses a question could be ‘is the cavity barrier compatible with the insulation requirements/type of the building?’ - Chris thinks that’s a very good way of putting it.

At this point Chris feels that all the necessary questions are now there and if someone were to come with all the answers he’d be ready to offer them a product. GEORGE asks if Chris would be confident that the person who is installing it would have the information that they would need. Chris replies that’s part of the next phase, installation. All these questions enable the specification and performance to be created. After sorting out as much as possible during the design phase we can move on to installation knowing what is coming next.

Installation questions. Are there marked-up drawings? Are there non-standard installation requirements? Have non-standard requirements been approved by relevant stakeholders? Has the installer received manufacturers’ installation training? Does the installer carry any 3rd party installation certification? Siderise offers training to anyone that wants to install the company’s products. General training is good, but it's advisable to also have specific manufacturer training. Most tier 1 contractors do insist on manufacturers’ training.

Inspection regime needs to be considered next. Have the cavity barriers been installed in accordance with the manufacturers’ instructions. Typically, who ever is controlling the building control function of the building would be responsible for inspection. Chris would do periodic inspections and there is also an app that allows the installer to take photos of the installation. Chris reviews the downloaded inspection report, reviews it, audits it, and decide if it’s OK or not.

After the inspection all that needs to be done is the wrap-up - a bundle of all the above data, drawings, inspection reports, design issues. The wall is sealed up and that should be the end of the matter. You have to provide appropriate information for the golden thread etc. WILL asks, with all this data being gathered, what other information is needed? JIM CREAK mentions notes on any variations from the original design. Yes, they do need to be captured, says CHRIS, but they are often confirmed by e-mail. Changes from the original design would have to be agreed by both the manufacturer of the cavity barrier and the designer, ti would be recorded in a series of e-mails/marked up drawings. Siderise keeps a digital record of such communications.

DAVE EMORY says what he sees here is a dual use - although it may not be meant as I design tool, actually it has led us through a process to choose the correct products so it is at least an aid to design. Regarding the golden thread, what’s been captured here is the rationale behind those design decisions and he doesn’t think that’s ever been captured in product specifications before, so this is very exciting.

Siderise have signed up for the BSI identify scheme: there is a QR code on the product which is scanned and it’s held in perpetuity, it doesn’t suffer from Error404. The QR code, when scanned in 20 or 30 year time, will take you back to the design/product data and will tell you if that product is still available or you have to seek an alternative product. GEORGE thinks that process is where we need to get to. What’s misunderstood is that no one is currently determining what that data should be because nobody has actually defined it. Chris agrees, and says it’s no substitute for BIM, it’s a quick method for the guy that opens the wall up to identify digitally what’s in front of him.

Finally, the maintenance section. What does the building operator need to know about or do with that product during the life of that building they are responsible for? CHRIS replies ‘do not disturb it and leave it where it is’. It has to be done right initially, then you close the wall up and you never touch it again. To remove/reposition/reinstate the product you would need to seek manufacturers advice. Regarding cavity barriers getting wet, they are largely unaffected by the presence of moisture, though with a flood you may have to reinstate.

For the next meeting, WILL and ROY decide to look at a typical product that isn’t necessarily on a fire door that’s on that floor plan. ROY will think about a specific product…’maybe a closer’ thinks GEORGE.


Will Perkins - SE Controls

Roy Buckingham - ABLOY UK

Chris Hall - Siderise

Jiss Philip Mukkadan - BIM4Housing

Paul Oakley - ActivePlan

Richard Freer - IceFire Portfolio

George Stevenson - ActivePlan

Alan Brinson - Eurosprinkler

David Emery - Supply Chain School

Liam Wheatley - Nuliving

Jim Creak - Jalite Plc


Post DCW Feedback

Roy Buckingham

Roy Buckingham - Next steps from DCW roundtables-20220616

ROY BUCKINGHAM thought it was a good exercise despite the fact the time was limited and therefore they could not achieve a huge amount. RICHARD says it was a bit more challenging than maybe they had intended it to be, particularly as there were walk-ins who were obviously not familiar with the exercise. ROY thinks the RACI methodology is a good idea, but he thought from his perspective that the escape-ability from the building was missing.

ROY considers more collaboration meetings would be the best next step, whether face-to-face or virtual. He mentions a colleague, Douglas Masterson, who works closely with the Guild of Architectural ironmongers (GAI) who has been adopted onto the BIM BSI framework and maybe he should be included in future discussions.

GEORGE says they want to continue to follow the model used at DCW. The leader of the Construction group, Steve Coppin, is an advisor to the HSE and has a strong understanding of the process that the regulator is following. Gordon Crick from the HSE attended. The HSE are quite nervous about getting involved in certain things right now. Steve organised a session yesterday with 4 breakout groups, taking 4 asset types that make up a compartment and then did a deep-dive to see what information should be coming from who - a bit like the RACI but simpler. The data points were turned into questions.

The new digital information for fire is coming out next week with a large amount of new terminology - it will address some of the points Roy made about escape. ROY thinks ultimately, he’d be led by the contractors, stakeholders that operate the buildings, as to how they want the digital information, but first you have to identify what information is needed. GEORGE has learnt in the last year it’s essential to simplify the questions. roy makes the point that they need to be aware of which standards are relevant so when they need to they can go off and read it, but they don’t need it in the answer at that point. ROY says one of the biggest issues now is that everything is open to interpretation.

GEORGE says that MACE are looking at it as that a lot more of this needs to be prescriptive. Contractors often tell ROY that there are too many variables so they are not sure of what solution to use. Elliot Dawson (door manufacturer) says the challenge to make it interchangeable is that you’d have to have it tested with that particular manufacturer. The door assembly method in the UK (unlike EU) means different elements of the door come from different sources and is then put together on-site and ‘claim’ it’s a fire door. Also, cheaper doors often don’t natch the performance criteria of more costly doors.

After Grenfell, building control changed their approach of looking at the fire test evidence - suddenly they wanted primary test evidence with more specific details. The UK is moving a little bit more towards the door set supply, but there are still projects delivered with door assemblies, particularly small to medium size projects, but big hospitals and high rises use door sets. The question can be simpler with a door set than with a door assembly, which is more complicated.

GEORGE will arrange a 1-to-1 meeting with roy, who is also happy to participate in future group meetings. ROY thinks you need collaborations outside of the particular group specialities because you need interaction between them to understand the difficulties and the challenges the other groups have.



Post DCW Feedback

Stephen Gore

Next steps from DCW roundtables-20220606

RICHARD points out that as soon as a human gets involved there is a possibility of error. Industry should be moved towards accepting that it’s got to be machine readable and, therefore, absolutely consistent.

STEPHEN thinks that the format was OK but the location of an open space in the middle of an exhibition, along with the time constraints, were not advantageous - a meeting room would have been better. RICHARD said it was typical of the kind of meetings/roundtables that Bim4housing holds. We want to deliver outputs that are solutions (not to be talking shops).

STEPHEN is interested in attending the manufacturing meetings in the future. His role is fire safety but there may also be others at Swegon organisation who may be able to add more value in other elements of manufacturers e.g. service/contractors etc. Stephen is also working on competency frameworks so can assist with templates. It’s generally the manufacturers who will know the technical content of products better than anyone…the matter is to define it into something machine readable. So, Swegon can certainly offer support with the content generation of products.

RICHARD says thats fantastic and he’s already doing a lot of work on that. he will look at the fire dampers and smoke control damper docs and make comments.



Post DCW Feedback

Elliott Dawson

Elliott Dawson - Next steps from DCW roundtables-20220609

Elliott Dawson thinks DCW was good, but probably a bit rushed. Whilst it was clear what detail was being looked for it would be better for things to be looked at in isolation and then amalgamated together to get the desired effect. There was some cross-purpose talk sometimes and the venue was noisy. There were positive outcomes. Certain people at the (Manufacturing) table were pushing their own agenda - they looked at just one avenue rather than looking at the actual effect to the building and the golden thread principle for the entire package, they were pushing their own products.

For Elliot, it’s about data capture for the entire building, you need to encapsulate all the different golden threads and then have a ‘building envelope’ golden thread. In other projects he’s working on he concentrates on education rather than pushing the brand. It’s about accountability hot productivity - how have you captured that information from the point of inception to the point of delivery to ensure that it is exactly as it was tested? The day-to-day process needs to be captured and audited, not the one-offs. As RICHARD says, it’s about an ‘ongoing standard’.

Regarding door data systems, Elliot’s company has committed to paying for every part of the process to ensure that its adhered to for the first year of the products life cycle. The end user can then pay for the maintenance thereafter. To do this he uses JIM format and tags the doors which have all relevant data about the door - date of manufacture/where it was made/when landed in the UK/current size etc. The size is relevant as the door may fail if it has been trimmed too much. It ensures accountability throughout the process from the building of the door through to the maintenance.

Some people are reluctant to share product information, but Elliot doesn’t see why that would be the case. He’s currently working on refining the product, possibly adding an electronic closer. GEORGE asks to be put in touch with Dormer and Rutland, companies who Elliot has been testing door closers with. A concealed closer, put in by the fabricator, cannot be taken out.

GEORGE talks about doing a DCW-like exercise on Teams…Stephen Coppin told him that building control is going national, it’s moving from local authorities into the HSE. GEORGE is going to run the RACI again, on fire doors, walls and (perhaps) penetration seals with the idea of looking at it as compartments rather than just the door itself.

GEORGE says in order to get the simple answers that everyone needs its essential to frame the questions so that the question can be adequately explicit e.g. the width of the door. Elliot says there is often confusion about frame size. The overall size of the door isn’t an issue as such, what’s important is the initial size of the door compared to how much it has now been trimmed. Too much trimming may cause the door to be ‘out of tolerance’.

ELLIOT wants his fabricators to upload their software data onto the JIM system so there will be a full data sheet. If a specific door tag has been shipped to them and they try to attach that reference to an overall door size that is out of scope then it will cause a red flag. From a maintenance perspective you just need the standard and that’s why the golden thread needs to be captured.

GEORGE and ELLIOT talk about whether the information will be available in a machine readable form…

GEORGE talks about the door - there is the door itself, the weight of the door is important, and the wall itself. ELLIOT disagrees that the weight of the door is an issue, it can only relate to the substructure it’s fitted into. But GEORGE says that doors are often fitted into walls when it's the wrong type of wall. Circumstances need to be identified where these things need to be checked.

GEORGE wants to turn the parameters about doors from the issued data sheet into questions because if parameters can be standardised as a question it can then be mapped to an answer. ELLIOT is going to have a look at it. He thinks it would be interesting to put educators that are manufacturers with property owners/architects. George says this will definitely happen.


Post DCW Feedback

Paul White

Paul White - Next steps from DCW roundtables-20220609

PAUL WHITE says that they spoke more about doors than dampers in the Manufacturing roundtable at DCW. He thinks it would be helpful to do it in a bigger forum. RICHARD says that for the next 1 1/2 hour meeting documentation will be sent out beforehand so participants can be fully prepared to run through it.

PAUL WHITE understands the importance of collating the data but struggles with the presentation of the data ‘back out’. he also understands George’s idea that different individuals only require specific information relevant to them, but he takes issue with it as many people don’t want the information as they don’t want to make decisions about it and they haven’t up until now - they don’t realise the information that they need as they don’t want the responsibility and they’ve never had to do it. The new gateways have stopped things being shunted up to someone else who just signs off on things, now suddenly they have to know about it and think about it. The problem is more of outlook (‘philosophy’) than of data itself.

PAUL WHITE says this is going to kill Design & Build. The architects and consultants will now have to do some ‘real design work’. They’ll need to be aware of how it all fits together, to make decisions on which door will be fitted etc before it gets to the contractor. As RICHARD says, a change of mindset is required. Another example of this change in responsibility is ‘if you’re doing the fire strategy, don’t leave things out of it’. Eg why were the dampers not part of the fire strategy at Grenfell? The responsibility has been pushed down for so long - that’s going to change now.

PAUL talks about his space concept: ‘if you don’t leave space for it, you can’t put it in’.

RICHARD asks PAUL what he thinks about the RACI methodology. PAUL thinks it should be ‘cut down into smaller lumps - to do it by product’. And then it’s necessary to look at coordination outside of that. RICHARD says the idea is to split the group up into rooms within Teams, breaking it up into smaller chunks. It also means more involvement from participants. Also, in additional to online meetings, he suggests some face-to-face meetings would be useful.

PAUL says that he’ll have another look at the documents they’ve developed together and do them more like a checklist. RICHARD says that the plan is to turn the statements from the document into questions and, where possible, make tick boxes. Therefore there would be options next to each question, rather than leaving a question open. PAUL was thinking more to take each line and writing ‘who needs to know this’ and then the boxes are filled in.


Post DCW Feedback

Will Perkins

Will Perkins - Next steps from DCW roundtables-20220610

RICHARD asks WILL how did DCW go from his point of view? What should be the next steps going forward?

WILL PERKINS says, firstly, there was never going to be enough time. The fire doors group he was involved in was good, including the useful input of an architect who attended. His group focused only on fire doors considering that there were two fire door manufacturers and a hardware manufacturer in attendance. The floor plan was very useful because it was a real life situation. It took 20 minutes for the 3 door experts to agree on the actual application - just 1 fire door has so many possible variations!

The employee of Assa Abloy produced spreadsheets with machine readable data - this enabled them to see for the first time the kind of thing that manufacturers need to be moving towards to present their data. regarding CPPI, he doesn’t know if there is any need there for machine readable data. Therefore, Bim4housing should contact CPPI because they are driving data sheets. RICHARD says, yes, it’s essential to officially contact them.

Regarding RACI, asks RIChard, did that work? WILL says there would not have been enough time to go through all the RACI methodology in the DCW meeting, but the RACI approach to risk and accountability is critical. WILL considers that RACI is an extension of the original roundtable meeting they had about AOVs, it’s an illustration of who is accountable. In RACI there can only ever be one person/actor who is accountable, and several people ‘responsible’. he’s not sure how RACI can be used by them beyond being a tool of illustration of accountability.

RICHARD ask’s Will whether, in the July meeting, it would be a good idea to put out this methodology and going through the exercise with the whole group. WILL says yes, and he can do both AOV and Cavity insulation.

WILL thinks there is an issue with the titles in the template because they don’t align with the building safety bill. It’s good to put together RACI matrixes (one for each of AOV and cavity barriers) as long as they will have the freedom to refine it.

WILL says in the next couple of weeks he will email the group to inform them that they’ll refine the RACI matrix with AOV and cavity barrier products (there’s some continuity with the original roundtable here) and he’ll send the original document out. Participants will then be prepared to populate and refine the RACI matrixes during the design meeting. He’ll also send to RICHARD the CPPI info.




WILL PERKINS ‘last time we agreed to pick a manufacturer and actually walk our way through populating the Templater and see where it takes us. When we are comfortable with it as Manufacturers, we can introduce wider stakeholders into our experience (design, operations).’

GEORGE refers to Michael Gove’s response to the CPA and that its clear the department is taking a very hard line on responsibility and liability. Manufacturers, developers and contractors will be held to account for any defects - ‘defects’ include missing information. In the light of this the Templater work is very important as the information needs to be in the right format to be audited and checked.

WILL PERKINS adds that the relevant information is included in the whole data set (especially from Operations POV). GEORGE says something he’s working on for DCW is to look from a digital record perspective what information does each stakeholder consider to be important to protect themselves?

GEORGE (showing a slide relating to fire doors) says that ‘if we know where all the doors are and what they are made of (need to know this from asset management POV) that should provide us with the information we need from a safety perspective, it’s just a matter of adding the additional attributes on to make sure we have the right information. (We can then) capture information on embodied carbon. We do all of this, ideally, through standardised libraries that can be tested and validated so that the information requirements can be tested against the manufacturer's products, so the only products that are potentially considered are ones that already can satisfy the information requirements. by doing that we then create the asset information that we’re talking about in terms of the golden thread. So that’s a matter from a manufacturer perspective – what product was supplied, the context it was used, the installation procedures, what it was connected to.’

GEORGE re Data Dictionaries: ‘the principle means by which BIM systems talk to each other is called IFC, that’s coming from the Building Smart data Dictionary. There’s also Uniclass, complimentary to IFC, but with differences. Then, the CIBSE (???) data set, RICS and NRM, wholesalers have another set of information. No one of these data dictionaries is right or wrong – we need to be able to accommodate them all, they are all designed for different purposes. But the question is what information do you hold against e.g. a boiler? (GEORGE shows a slide with all the properties of a boiler that Building Smart says should be included). (He then shows a slide of what information NBS holds against a boiler) There is a crossover between the two, but they are different data sets using different terminology. CIBSE, NRM and ETIM all have different information about boilers. ALL THIS INFORMATION IS RELEVANT FOR DIFFERENT PURPOSES.’

GEORGE says the Templater can either connect the different data dictionaries directly or the information can be pulled into the master data dictionary in Templater – then it can be used by manufacturers and suppliers to populate information.

GEORGE shows the ‘Template for Door’ slide. It is referenced to several different classifications. It can also be allocated in the Templater who is likely to need to provide (particular) information and what will they need to use at each stage. The data dictionary can filter out according to an actor and the stage at which they are going to use information all of that vast amount of properties – you only see the information relevant that is relevant to you at that point in time.

JULIAN BUHAGIAR begins by talking about LEXICON. ‘The final result of all the efforts going on throughout the industry is to produce the PDT in consistent ways. (If different dictionary providers have) 2 templates that are about the same product they have a way of saying they don’t contradict each other, they are digitally replicable – that's the purpose of interconnecting dictionaries when they’ve been produced independently. The production process itself is becoming more important, to know that the right questions are being asked about products and people can reliably answer those questions. A list of properties (like George’s slides) are essentially a list of questions (what is the width? Etc.). LEXICON will be a form of producing a load of questions and answers, but Bim4housing groups (and others) will also do that. TEMPLATER is designed to be able to accommodate collections of templates.’

JULIAN shows a slide of a BIMhawk template that will become a Lexicon template. ‘As more and more data dictionaries connect, you’ll be able to find other templates by where its come from e.g. IFC etc. Anyone who wants to produce these templates needs a consistent set of answers against a consistent set of questions. For consumers of templates, the process needs to be as simple as being able to discover templates, the right one within BIM models etc. Searchability is a key factor. Having a single point where you can search for e.g. smoke detector would be handy for all manufacturers.

GEORGE interjects to give information about ETIM, which is the international organisation that standardises how manufacturers exchange information with wholesalers and distributors – it's very granular. He couldn’t find a door on it, or a smoke damper – it was all the components that goes to make up a door or smoke damper etc.

JULIAN (looking at the ETIM data dictionary) says there is a lack of definition of what length means (re a particular product). Different data dictionaries provide different levels of definition for the question. Templater gives the opportunity to gather what information is already available and also (over time, with groups like this and others promoting their own templates) leading to a convergence, with properties that are inadequately defined getting weeded out (because) a better definition will (eventually) exist.’

GEORGE :’we, as a Bim4housing community, can pick the things that are important to us and put them into the Templater, based on properties that are the international standards so that we’re not making up new terminology’.

JIM CREAK (after JULIAN’s long anecdote about a European level project he worked on with EPD): ‘When we’ve got different formats of information and possibilities of an intersection of different companies and access to different databases its important to choose words that have clear definitions within the documents that people actually understand e.g. there is no clear definition for ‘non-combustible’

JULIAN replies to Jim with an important point that he doesn’t think has been successfully put across yet: ‘none of this is about the answers themselves, the manufacturers still need to answer the questions. This is about adequately presenting questions and to present certain expectations on answers that allow those questions to be answered correctly.’ (taking Jim’s example of ‘non-combustible’ definition: ‘if you want to create a property that is satisfactory to a definition you can come up with (43 mins) (Julian compares this with a novel and how both the author and reader have the commonality of the English language and dictionaries to refer to clarify meaning) ‘the analogy of a dictionary is the same as this, this is a reference point for the list of questions. It enables people who are going to write the answers to write them a little bit better.’ (the userof templater/data dictionary can see that the manufacturer has provided an answer to a specific question (not the numerous other similar questions).

WILL PERKINS understands from all of this that this Bim4housing working group to actually start to create the questions that anybody writing a specification for my product needs to ask. The group would do it for specification, design, all the way through to this correct?

JULIAN says, kind of, ‘but what the NBS level does is to accumulate the answers as well as the questions, but it doesn’t then adequately explain what the questions were...a data dictionary is about providing the additional meaning of the question as well as the answer, but doing it mutually. This is a stage before the product’s the demand of rather than the supply of the information.’

WILL PERKINS asks ‘are you saying we should be thinking about designing questions that filter that down to very specific applications?’ JULIAN says ‘yes’, and example PDFs that he’ll show will clarify things.

MIKE SMITH, from the perspective of an architect/Revit/BIM manager: ‘The key question very early on in any project is how much data do you want to collate and collect within a model. The concept of what you’re trying to get to here is brilliant, a single source of information to an agreed set level, but it feels like at the moment we’re making it more complicated than easier.’ PAUL WHITE says that’ the amount of space you need to install something is the single most significant issue. Most things need more space to be installed than is ever allowed and if you get to far there’s no solution to the problem created by not generating enough space. But, the issue is the thing we have on the screen is a single item (off the shelf). A lot of the stuff we deal with in building services is multi-dimensional e.g. it depends on the volume of air you’re going to put through it (same apples to pipes).’

GEORGE: ‘we need to make sure that the software that is being used to do the commissioning and testing is able to recognize, for example, the the term for that particular (asset). And then finally, making sure that it then fits in with maybe at a procurement or a cost management system because everybody is calling things differently and that’s why we are trying to use the template to normalize some of these things.

JULIAN confirms to ALEXANDER SMALL that the Templater is still at PDT level. ALEX So your looking at a kind of a a granular level down from the product type PDTs to cover more product instance data JULIAN: YES,and other kinds of templates as well, like space, space, templates, build plates, a wider scope, and what lexicon wants to talk. JULIAN: ‘The templates are not about the storing of the answers because every manufacturer needs to be able to grab the list of questions and then put their own answers against it and then issue documents like this, but also to issue them in more digital ways because this is not necessarily the best presentation, (not the best way to) provide that information.

JULIAN - ‘If that relevance authority didn’t have an interest in actually making them, groups like this will probably create their own little bespoke additional properties, and they’ll offer it underneath the banner of Bim4housing . It’s not a lexicon templates.’

WILL ‘So are we looking at product and seeing what data is in the templates that already exist and doing a kind of gap analysis -these are the things that need to be answered as well.’ JULIAN - In some ways, yes.

GEORGE ‘What information do we s Bim4housing stakeholders need, and let’s put that into the Templater. Let’s pick the properties from the other data dictionaries so we are not replicating anything. To try and do a gap analysis is impossible - it’s too big a task.

ALEXANDER SMALL, from his manufacturer’s perspective, doesn’t have an issue with this, but has a caveat ‘please could we make sure that if we’ve got groups around the country putting together their own product data templates that when we have the official lexicon templates for that product that they map absolutely accurately into the product data templates that any organization outside lexicon produce so that effectively the lexicon template is the master template and then any any other properties to it for that product are additional to that lexicon template, not contradictory.’

JULIAN (showing slides) demonstrates (something) by typing the word ‘Detector’ into the application. If there was a lexicon entry already it would appear and then you could add your own properties to it. To create a template from scratch you type it in and create it - it has its own private area that anyone in the group could work on. It’s also possible to do this at the properties level - you can define a property in a template and it won’t get confused with other peoples definition of a property (though this is not encouraged).

GEORGE thinks this is all to much detail…

1 hr 23min 05 sec JULIAN IS DESCRIBING HOW TO WRITE A QUESTION - the way you phrase it affects what answers you get. Once a question is formed a property is created and this in the Initiation created by this working group. Once it’s created there is a possibility to group properties together.

GEORGE urges Julian to look at an IFC data template for a smoke detector because that may help people to better understand things. JULIAN does so.

JIM CREAK: ‘where one component makes up a system within a building I’m having difficulty creating a data sheet when one item is part of a system and it’s the system that then has to be specified.’ JULIAN says in Templater there are systems templates and product templates. The system template is the place where some of the properties should exist.’ He then talks about space templates etc…


Jiss Philip Mukkadan - BIM4Housing

Asif Mirza - Berkeley Group

Will Perkins - SE Controls

Jim Creak - Jalite Plc

Richard Freer - IceFire Portfolio

Chris Hall - Siderise

George Stevenson - ActivePlan

Charles Morriss - Kingspan

David Emery - Supply Chain School

Julian Buhagiar - BRE

Mike Smith - Bailey Partnership

Paul White - Ventilation Fire Smoke

Pete Foster - Exyte-hargreaves

Alexander Small - Tata Steel

GEORGE ‘There’s a number of different building blocks here. What we’re showing you the basic building block of of saying how do we describe things and to be able to describe them in different ways for different purposes, so therefore making sure that the information that the maintainer needs is included, the properties that they would relate to that probably tie into their maintenance management system.we’re not talking about the product data here. We then use this these standard data templates in product libraries.’

JULIAN thinks he should do a session showing the stuff that’s in the scope of templater. This is how to identify the stuff that is outside of the scope of templater. And when people can easily do that, it becomes easier to have then a demonstration inside templater because they know what should be going into it versus what should not be going into it’. WILL PERKINS thinks this is a sensible starting point. GEORGE agrees.

GEORGE refers to what Paul said about the space that is needed around the item and how it relates to what they’re doing at digital construction week. What do we need to do to mitigate the risk of smoke? What do we need to do from a digital perspective to protect us legally?

WILL PERKINS: ‘maybe we do a walkthrough example of something that is known and there is an existing template for and let’s kind of see where it takes us because I think we are trying to deal with too many unknowns at the moment.’ GEORGE thinks this is a good idea.


BIM4Housing Manufacturing Working Group Meeting-20220302


Those in attendance:
Chair: WILL PERKINS of SE CONTROLS, specialists in smoke and natural ventilation systems.

CHRIS WATTS chair of BS5266 code of emergency lighting.

LIAM WHEATLEY Bim manager of Swan New Living housing association

CHARLES MORRIS Kingspan Installation, head of digital content team.

DAVE EMERY supply chain sustainability school, creating content about digital and offsite construction.



WILL: What are the specific problems we are trying to resolve here?

Data Management and as built information. The operators are effectively the end users eg Housing associations/landlords responsible for safety of their buildings. There is a lack of consistency with and structure of DATA. George is working on how to improve the transferability of that data to different stake holders. Better information management is can we help industry get information about our products as and when they want it?

RICHARD we’ve set up a workstream with TIER 1 manufacturers to define the kind of information they want from their supply chain.

DAVE: 40% of enterprise data per se is either inaccurate, incomplete or unavailable; it needs to become accurate, correct and complete.

TINA: the ethical approach on GDPR needs to be considered. we talk about the golden thread and the resident engagement strategy, which is in Gateway number 2 and the building safety case. It follows it all the way through and it also in can be part of that resident engagement.

RICHARD: regarding compliance, you’ve got to be able to prove that you comply and know why you comply. This is from the GDPR mindset but is relevant now to all compliance.

DAVE: the group needs to understand not what data can it supply, but what data does my client or end user require and in terms of facilities, managers with building safety bill in mind, I, I think you cannot work in a silo without understanding the requirements of the FM operator.

WILL: One of the opportunities we have as a group is potentially to select two or three products. Out of which, hopefully we’d have manufacturers in the group who’ve got those who make those products, and we could do a walk through and actually populate the work that HACKED (organisation) are doing through their data dictionary and through their work with BRE are doing and just see where it takes us.

TINA: Break it down into 3 stages: 1) having the correct data 2) working out who needs what form of data and why and what sort of methodology they require it in and then underpin that with the ethics and GDPR. This stage can be broken down into job role types and their specific needs. Also, what contribution the main contractors put into that data correlated between Gateway number one and two primarily and three in adjacent to what the manufacturing requirements will be input into that encryption. 3) regarding the resident and what residents require from that data equally because of the whole notion of transparency and risk aspects.

WILL: We could do a Round table exercise where we walk through populating. We can do a lot of pre work to get the bulk of the technical stuff populated, but then we can get the tier one contractors and whichever stakeholders including the residents we feel necessary.

RICHARD: we’ll be setting up a Competency workstream soon.

CHRIS: I think is vital that when we’ve got an interface of different systems eg. There's no point of emergency lighting existing unless there is a fire alarm to warn people to get out: the interface of the way the different systems need to need to work together, which turns the competence level into something precarious. People need to look on a wider basis of the implications of the different technologies.

GEORGE, as an addition to Will’s suggestion, mentions Data Dictionaries and progress he’s making with developing a housing templater database. Data templates can then be set up that reflect the needs of all the different stakeholder groups. An additional functionality now in the templater is to see who the actor is and when they are likely to need information. Therefore, at different work stages, you can present a different set of data to each actor and they will be able to action it.

George suggests to look at 2 or 3 assets that work in concert, but X says the group should be cautious about this.

GEORGE: how we can get the attributes within the declaration of performance into the data dictionary? It’s very significant that the declaration of performance for a smoke detector will have different essential characteristics on the declaration of performance for an AOV.

RICHARD gets an (apparent) agreement from the group to take up Will’s proposal to take one (or 2) product/s very granularly as a first stage. Then, if necessary, move it through to a work stream.

TINA will check with her technical teams to confirm that it’s OK for her company to participate. The most likely product she would propose is fire alarms. X may supply insulation products.

Manufacturers need to know how to fill in a template.

CHRIS: we need to have identified those bits which are predetermined by the product standard and those bits which are additional and perhaps relevant particular applications. Eg. the essential characteristics, the construction products regulation.

Each individual european working group (there are ‘thousands’ of them) determines what the essential characteristics of products should be.

Tina’s products have a lot of PD data. Her biggest selling product is the combined heat & smoke alarm optical. Will suggests that this should be the product they work on in the manufacturing group. Tina has to check with her company. The product number is Ei3024. It is BIM ready.

RICHARD suggests that the other product should come from a manufacturer without the kind of facilities that Tina’s company (Acre) has, to show challenges.

TINA will check with her company to see if any of their data is in machine readable form, a database.

WILL suggests that in the next meeting in early May they should pick a product and try and populate that template as a kind of first instance. Subject to how that goes they could then move on to Tina’s proposed ‘stage 2’ and invite key stakeholders, get their input, and find out what additional data they need and how they need to consume it.

David Emery -Supply Chain School

Will Perkins -SE Controls

Richard Freer -IceFire Portfolio

Charles Morriss -Kingspan

Chris Watts -Wavelength Fire Safety

Liam Wheatley -Nuliving

Tina Mistry -Aico

Nick Haughton -Sapphire Balconies

George Stevenson -ActivePlan

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