Summit Metal Fabricators Receives Recognition for “CHORD”

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Sculpture at Prestigious Cambridge, MA university garners Summit multiple ENR awards.

Summit Metal Fabricators (Summit) received accolades from Engineering News-Record (ENR) for their work on “CHORD,” a sculpture created in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the William Welles Bosworth-designed mathematics building. The awards, Best National Project 2017 and Best Regional Project 2016 (Specialty Contracting), reflect success in sculptural metal art works for Summit, who primarily provide services for the construction and manufacturing industries.

The four-story “CHORD” is visually arresting, stretching from the tiled entryway to the skylight. It stands 56 feet tall and weighs nearly a ton but fits into a 12 foot by 12 foot stairwell. It is comprised of 541 nodes and 905 elements welded together using the Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) process. Designed by British artist Antony Gormley, known primarily for his cellular polyhedral sculptures that resemble abstract and geometric forms found in nature, it took Summit Metal Fabricators just over 2 months to fabricate and install.

Outside of the speed and precision Summit is heralded for, Gormley chose to collaborate with them on the fabrication and installation of “CHORD” because of their AISC certified teams, skilled project managers and the impeccable cleanliness of their shop. The team at Summit Metal Fabricators used Computer Numerical Control (CNC) manufactured templates and specialized jigging equipment to precisely manufacture every node and element before moving the 1,800 pound sculpture to the Cambridge campus in pieces for assembly.

During construction, Summit leveraged a custom-designed hoisting system that was fitted into the mathematics building stairwell. This allowed the sculpture to be assembled in six separate sections -- before being hoisted into position.

Gormley was impressed with how deftly Summit executed new, complex techniques to bring his vision to life.
So, it seems, was ENR.

About Summit Metal Fabricators: Summit Metal Fabricators has been one of the Northeast’s most comprehensive and competitive fabrication facilities since 1998. They are experts in complex structural steel shapes, metal components, pipe fabrication, and offer innovative custom projects featuring quality workmanship and competitive pricing for a wide range of clients.

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Allen Kerr
Summit Metal Fabricators
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