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Discussion Starter #1
if someone isn't that handy ( ie me) and they need assistant with building, for example i need to put a reinforced roof and wall up for my fall out shelter, and i would feel more comfortable if a contractor did it, but i was told that there should be a " special" contractor that does shelters, etc.. not just any contractor.
thoughts?
if this is true, where do you think the best way to find the specialized contractor would be?
thanks in advance.
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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The only specialist I can see is someone that specializes in whatever medium you want it built from. Concrete for example. If I was going to have a reinforced concrete building put up, I'd want a concrete specialist rather than a general contractor doing it. Your yellow pages should be a good place to start. Commercial contractors who built overpasses, warehouses and such also have a wide variety of experience that a contractor who builds houses doesn't. They might be worth talking to also.
 

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And I wouldn't call what you want them to build, a 'bunker', either. Tell him it is a root cellar, a dark room to develop pictures, a 'man room' because your DW doesn't like your friends, etc. Opsec ;)
 

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I see a bad moon arising
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No offense intended to the contractors out there that do know
their way around structural engineering, but I would be very
leary of relying on just any contractor to do the structural
design of a reinforced wall and concrete roof.

There's a lot of contractors that know their stuff, and a lot
of them just think they do. It's generally the contractor's job
to build things according to plan, and the engineer's or architect's
job to do the plan design.

I'd get a design by a professional engineer. Regulations may
vary by area, but in many locations, you need a design by
a certified engineer if your concrete wall is higher than 4',
and certainly if you're putting a concrete deck overhead.
(If you're concerned about things like building codes and permits.
But you may not be.)

You can find small engineering companies in just about any
town, just check your yellow pages. You'll probably want a
small engineering company. The large companies typically
don't want to screw around with a small project like that,
and have too much overhead costs to provide you a
reasonable cost on your design. I'd figure on your engineering
costs running you maybe 15% of your total project costs.
 

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Varmit is correct. As a third Gen Design/build contractor I still rely hevily on engineer's to review and stamp the structures we design and build. Although most Civil engineers should be able to do design or spec the load calcs for specific job details, a good contractor should be able to build anyhthing with a good set of plans. Furthermore, of all the builders I know, most have had to be dicreet at one point or another. I would worry less about a reputable builder than the local city/county building dept.
 
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