Followers of our blog will know that Plastic Surgeon’s cosmetic repair work takes our Finishers to a wide variety of locations – in sectors such as retail, education, health and commercial as well as residential – but the scope keeps broadening, as do the logistical challenges connected with the contracts.
In fact my conversations with some of our operatives over the past few days have illustrated that their skills in repairing all the different building substrates which suffer accidental damage during projects (as well as after occupation) are only part of the picture; and an equally crucial aspect to our effectiveness relates to managing everything from the van stocks to the purchase of special equipment.
This planning and preparation will often begin when one of our regional managers or technical sales staff visits site to assess the scope of the work, which includes not just the time required to complete it, but also any special means of access, the quantities of material involved or, perhaps, the need for particular spraying equipment.
In terms of access this may mean calling in one of the Finishers who is trained to drive a cherry-picker (hydraulic platform) or erect a tower scaffold; while finishing large areas might warrant sending one of our Super Vans which carry the kit to mix large quantities of any RAL colour; as well as the High Volume Low Pressure spray guns we first sourced to work inside a credit card data processing centre.
Working outdoors, our Finishers also often have to rig up temporary shelters to protect the area being treated from the weather, which can mean the cold as well as the rain – with stone or other substrates sometimes needing to be warmed before they are filled or tinted.
One of the most interesting challenges in recent times has arisen from our repair work on ocean liners, where not only have we had to have bespoke trolleys fabricated to meet the cruise company’s guidelines on moving materials around the passenger decks, but the electricity supply has also caused problems.
This is because marine generators generally provide a power supply running at 60 rather than 50 Hz, which unfortunately compressors just can’t cope with; though not all the ships are the same. So the two Finishers assigned to each cruise, and the management running the on-going contract have to ensure the correct compressor is put on board with the pallets of materials required for the trip: the longest of which so far has run to 17 days. You can’t just nip down back to the warehouse for something you’ve forgotten when there’s a thousand miles of water in all directions.