Registered Design Professional

National Lampoon’s Vacation

In the iconic 1983 movie National Lampoon’s Vacation, the Griswold family plans a trip to Wally World to see Marty Moose

Just like the Griswold’s plans, sometimes best laid plans for buildings don’t come out just as anticipated. Wrong turns are made, dimensions sometimes go astray. Face it. In life, stuff happens.

And sometimes, when the stuff has happened, there is a Building Official who wants proof the stuff which has happened will work. Or, some higher authority to come up with a “fix” or “repair” to make what is referred to “as built” on the jobsite stand up structurally.

Most Building Officials are not as forgiving as Wally World owner, Roy Wally in the movie

Engineers SealWhen a pole building is constructed from engineered plans (not just the use of prefabricated metal connector plated trusses, built from engineer sealed truss drawings), oftentimes the Registered Design Professional (RDP – engineer or architect) can provide a brief letter to the Building Official, in the event things have gone astray. Sometimes a sketch needs to also be provided, but (provided this method is acceptable to the Building Official) this fix is going to prove far less expensive than having to rework one or more pages of the blueprints.

The calamity occurs when a Building Official wants an engineer sealed fix or repair for a set of plans which was not designed by a Registered Design Professional. There are very few RDPs who are willing to take on this type of work, when they are not the Engineer of Record for the building. A “letter” from the engineer is probably not going to be forthcoming. In most cases, the solution is going to result in having to hire an RDP to do a complete analysis of the structure.

Can you see the $$$$?

I believe Hansen Pole Buildings to be an exception to the norm – as we use the very same structural design programs as our engineers. The difference between a Registered Design professional sealed set of plans and calculations, and the non-sealed plans….the engineer’s review and seal.

This is not the case if an individual has drawn up something of their own, or purchased a building kit from their local lumberyard. Even otherwise “reputable” pole building kit package suppliers often have significant differences between their non-engineered and engineered buildings.

The easiest solution is to have a plan which is checked out in advance. Don’t just rely upon Clark Griswold’s knowledge base (and become the next National Lampoon comedy of errors) – invest in a pole building kit package which comes with plans specific to your building, sealed by a Registered Design Professional.

3 thoughts on “Registered Design Professional

  1. Would you Google ‘MQS’ buildings/pole barns and compare them to Hansen Pole Buildings, please???

    1. admin Post author

      We’d love to do a compare and contrast for you. I have sent your email info to our building design team. Someone will be emailing you for specifics in what you want to build.
      Pole Barn Guru

    2. admin Post author

      I’ve done some due diligence for you: MQS is a registered contractor in MT, ID and WA although they do not list their registration numbers on their website. They do not have a Workers’ Comp account in WA. It is possible they use all subcontractors to assemble their buildings, which would exempt them from needing to cover any construction employees (although their sales force should be covered). They are not members of the NFBA (National Frame Building Association), so do not contribute to advancing the post frame industry. They are not listed with the Better Business Bureau. They do not advertise providing complete kit packages, they are appear to be builders only. Hansen Pole Buildings is not a contractor, we provide only post frame building kit packages. We are NFBA and BBB members.

      MQS appears to construct what we refer to as 4 & 8 buildings – single truss every four feet, columns every eight feet. Columns every eight feet places severe limitations upon future abilities to add sidewall doors, if desired. The trusses rest upon truss carriers ( which tend to result in insufficient connections of trusses to carriers and carriers to columns. Here are some thoughts on their system: MQS buildings utilize diagonal bracing: No mention is made as to how MQS laminates their columns – my best guess is nails, construction adhesive or a combination of the two ( Hansen Pole Buildings come with either solid sawn or true glu-laminated columns depending upon each particular building’s requirements. Hansen Pole Buildings come with a limited lifetime structural warranty. 2×4 #2 girts flat on the outside of columns every 24 inches do not meet Building Code requirements for deflection, even with minimal wind loads: In order to have siding be high enough to avoid having concrete driveways, sidewalks, etc., poured against steel siding or base trim, bottom of the siding needs to be at 4-5/8″ above grade. With the MQS 2×6 splash plank (skirt board), this leaves only 7/8″ area to place bottom of panel screws. We’ve found this leads to screws splitting out, so Hansen Pole Buildings come with minimum 2×8 splash planks. The least design wind speed anywhere in Montana, for low risk buildings is 105 mph ( see Figure 1609.3(3)).

      If each MQS building comes with engineer sealed plans specific to exactly the building being constructed then kudos to them. Every Hansen Pole Building does, along with complete calculations.

      Hansen Pole Buildings utilize widely spaced columns (typically every 12 feet) as well as true double trusses:

      MQS might be an excellent company to do business with. If hiring any contractor to do work for you, I always recommend following this process:


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