Indianapolis Chapter CSI


Indianapolis Chapter CSI Newsletter

November 2011

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Happy Turkey Day Month to you all.  May we all give thanks to the opportunities we have everyday to try to better the built environment and work with those who make us all better people.

As always, please send comments, articles and suggestions to me as they may come up.


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 Indianapolis Chapter CSI Newsletter Editor

Fire Suppression
Education/Programs Committee



This month we have a very unusual topic in fire suppression.  


The afternoon will be the opportunity for you to attend an informational seminar at the offices of Ryan Fire Protection Sprinkler Training Lab.  Click the link below for more information


Our November Program will feature Mark Riffey, VP Business Development, Ryan Fire Protection with a presentation on issues relating to active fire suppression. This evening program will follow an Education Seminar earlier in the day at Ryan Fire Protection's Noblesville facility. 


Upcoming Events


Indianapolis Chapter CSI Education Seminar: Fire Protection Demonstration

Thursday November 17, 2011 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM EST

Fire Protection Demonstration

Ryan Fire Protection, Inc.


Indianapolis Chapter CSI November Chapter Meeting: Fire Protection

Thursday November 17, 2011 from 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM EST


Indianapolis Chapter CSI Holiday Party

Thursday December 8, 2011 from 6:00 PM to 9:30 PM EST

Usher in the Holiday season with the Indianapolis Chapter CSI.

Skyline Club



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View from the Tower
Pete Kerfoot, CSI, CDT


Last month was CSI Indy's annual Trade Show and many thanks go out to all the volunteer efforts over the last year.  The hard work of many individuals created quite an impressive event.  And a special thank you to Henry Stellema for coordinating all the efforts. 


New Member Orientation will be included in November's Chapter Meeting on Thursday, the 17th at the RiverWalk Banquet Center in Broad Ripple.  New members will be receiving invitations to attend the orientation which starts promptly at 5:00 and lasts approximately 35 minutes.  Orientation includes insightful presentations by seasoned members who explain CSI's history, current significance in the construction industry, future goals, and how to get the most from your CSI experience. If you are not a new member and have not attended an orientation, contact Orientation Chair Mike Brannon or myself and we'll make sure you have a seat.


Every orientation month gives existing members an opportunity to remember what compels them to invest their time in CSI.  The new members are given a general introduction to the Institute, the Region and the Chapter.  If you can remember your orientation, the new members are then told from individual perspectives what CSI can do for them, the individual.  An explanation of the networking, certification, continuing education and camaraderie is placed before them.  My question to you, Indy CSI member, is what have you done with that knowledge?  Have you joined a committee?  Have you increased your group and leadership skills?  Have you placed yourself into positions to better your presentation of yourself or your ideas?  Have you invested your ideas and energy into making some difference in the construction industry?  What have you done in the CSI network that has made you a better professional?  It takes interaction to create change in one's life.  If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less.  Look over the committee opportunities one more time; involve yourself.  If you have any questions about events or committees just give me a call (317) 557-4057 or email


I am looking forward to November's presentation on fire suppression.  The program will be delivered by Mark Riffey, VP of Development, Ryan Fire Protection. The evening program will follow an Education Seminar earlier in the day at Ryan Fire Protection's Noblesville facility.  Check our website for details on how to reserve your spot at the seminar.


Concise is my favorite of CSI's three C's, so my articles will never be exceedingly wordy.  To see who was determined to make it to the end of this article I offer a Starbuck's $10 gift card for the first email to my address above with the subject heading 'Coffee'.   It's going to be a fun year.  See you Thursday! 

Holiday Party

Skyline Club - 1 America Square

December 8, 2011

Cost: $25 per Guest due by December 5th


The Holiday Season is upon us and your CSI Chapter and its Design Professionals, Product Representatives, Owner and Contractor Representatives will usher in the Holiday Season at the Skyline Club on the 36th floor of the One American Building. You will enjoy a panoramic view of Indianapolis and share in the highest standards of tradition that have become our mantra!

6PM         Cash Bar & hors d'oerves
7:15PM    Holiday Buffet Dinner Begins
8:30PM    Entertainment (provided by the Indianapolis Children's Choir)
Skyline Club
One American Building-36th Floor
1 American Square, Indianapolis, IN 46282
Parking is complimentary in the garage that enters off of Illinois.
Bring ticket for validation
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Basis of Design

by Edmund L. Brown, CSI, CCCA


Specifications are used to indicate the quality levels of materials used in a building, providing instructions for contractors. Part 2-Products list material and products that can be used in a project. They can indicate what materials can be used, if substitutions are allowed and how materials are to be installed. Specifications give architects a level of control over how a building is to be constructed. One of the methods that architects and specifiers use to determine the quality of a material is to specify a material as a basis of design. This article will discuss how basis of design is used in specifications and how it can be improved. This article will also touch upon the other methods of naming products.


Basis of design allows drawings and specs to be focused on a product without limiting competition. It is one of five methods to name manufacturers and products. The other four are "required", "acceptable", "available", and "no named". "Required" is used to match an existing product, usually on renovation projects. The product is typically wanted by the owner. When "required" is used, it is used for products that fulfill the design criteria. With this method, the contractor is obligated to provide the named material. One downside to this method is that it is not allowed on public projects unless the owner says otherwise. The other downside is that there is a risk of higher cost for the named product. Competition only takes place between installers and not manufacturers. Substitutions can be used if allowed by the specifications.


"Acceptable" and "available" are similar methods. "Acceptable" lists a certain number of products which fulfills the design criteria. The contractor is required to furnish and install one of the named products. If a contractor wants to use a product that is not named, he must submit a substitution request. With this method, competition exists between the named manufacturers and installers. There are a number of ways that a product becomes "acceptable". Have there been a positive past experience with the product? Are there any objections with using this product? Is the warranty appropriate for this project? Is it suitable for the location in project? Does the product have a good performance history?


"Available" lists a number or products that comply with the design criteria. The contractor can furnish and install one of named products or another product that complies with specifications. This method results in competition between all manufacturers and installers. Substitution is not required for products that are not named. "No named" is the same as using "available" in naming products. Substitution is also not required for any product.


Many specifiers would name a product and add "or equal". This method has been around for many years but there are issues with this method. The question becomes who determines what is equal. It should be the architect since he is the one that write the specifications. The phrase should be "or equal as determined by Architect." It implies that products are exactly the same when no two products are actually equal. Instead of using "or equal", the word "equivalent" should be used. It works better with basis of design. "Equivalent" implies that products are almost exactly the same. There is a wider range of design making ability.


There is no CSI definition for "basis of design". It is used many times to name a single product that is known to fulfill the design criteria. I have used it to specify a preferred product. The specifications must include physical, functional, and performance requirements. The named product must fulfill the requirements. If the "basis of design" product also includes a list of "acceptable" manufacturers and products, the Contractor is required to both install and furnish the "basis of design" product or one of the listed products. There would be competition between the manufacturers and installers of named products and "basis of design". Substitution requests for products not named. If it is included with named "available" products, the Contractor is to furnish and install "basis of design" product or a named "available" product or any other product that complies with specifications. Substitution is not required for any product. The used of "basis of design" with "no named" products is the same as using "available".


There is suggested wording for specifying products using "basis of design".

  • *"Contract Documents are based on products specified below to establish a standard of quality. Other [acceptable][available] manufacturers with products having equivalent characteristics may be considered, provided deviations are minor and design concept expressed in Contract Documents is not changed, as judged by Architect."


"Basis of design" product named becomes the quality standard by which other products are evaluated. The key to utilizing this method correctly is professional judgment. That judgment is typically made by the one who creates the contract documents, usually the architect. Personally I prefer to use "basis of design" if I am specifying a product or manufacturer that I know can fulfill my design requirements. 

Table Top Prices

Ralph R Pitman, Jr., CSI, CDT

Indianapolis Chapter CSI


The Indianapolis Chapter of CSI is accepting reservations for Table Tops for upcoming Chapter meetings.  The list of programs for upcoming Chapter meetings is published in this newsletter, the web site, or contact Program chairman Andy McIntyre, so if you would like to target a particular meeting, make sure to get your reservation in early.  We do have a limit of four spaces available for Table Tops in a standard meeting room and 10 if we have a double room.


Table Tops are an opportunity to promote your company, products, or services to all attendees of our regular chapter meeting during the social hour.  There is a maximum of 20 minutes for Table Top presentation at a regular Chapter meeting.  You have the floor for maximum of five minutes during the dinner to communicate to the entire group if there are four presenters. If there is a greater demand, the 20 minutes will be divided by the number of presenters and rounded down to the nearest 30 seconds.


The Table Top presentations are FREE, one time, to new members, and cost current Indianapolis Chapter members only $75.  Non-members get the same opportunity for $125.  A 30 by 60 table with a cover and skit will be included.  All proceeds go to support the Chapter.


Another opportunity for a Table Top is during an Education Seminar.  The cost is if you combine it with the Chapter meeting and Education Seminar the cost would be $100 for current members and $150 for non-members.


If you would like to schedule a Table Top for a future meeting or seminar, contact Ralph Pitman, Sebree Architects, Inc., via e-mail at (317) 272-7800 or Matt Maier at (317) 846-6060 make sure to put 'Table Top Request' in the subject line.  

Certification Quiz
Jack Morgan - Quizmaster

1.  Project Specifications should be directed to which of the following:


a. The Owner

b. The Contractor

c. Contractors, Subcontractors, and material suppliers

d. The Owner's legal counsel


2.  What is the one document of all contract documents that legally obligates the signing parties?


a. The Bid Form

b. The Conditions of the Contract

c. The Agreement

d. The Contract Forms


3.  The term that refers to the Bonding Company is:


a. The Surety

b. The Principal

c. The Obligee

d. The Payee


4.  Liability Insurance provides coverage for which of the following:


a. Damage to the insured's forklift caused by another

b. Damage to the insured's product

c. Damage to the insured automobile

d. Damage for loss arising out of legal ability to others


5.  A convenient way to alert the specifier to options found in reference standards,

and point out cross references is:


a. Notes to the specifier.

b. Master guide specifications.

c. Use of more narrow scope sections.

d. Memo sent by e-mail.


Answers located at the end of this newsletter....


Pertl Hired to Lead Blakley's New Division

Press Release


Blakley's announced that Ron Pertl has been named Masonry Restoration Division Manager for a new division of the company formed due to a recognized need for masonry repair not addressed by Blakley's Concrete Restoration Division, FE Gates.


Pertl brings over thirty years of experience in the masonry business to Blakley's. He began his career as an estimator and project manager and helped grow E&H Restoration into one of the most recognized names in the Iowa-Illinois market. Locally, Pertl has led development and growth in theIndiana market at Mid-Continental Restoration Company for the past ten years.


Professional organizations include: The International Concrete Repair Institute (ICRI), The Sealant Waterproofing and Restoration Institute, The Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) and Building Owner and Managers Association International (BOMA).


Mike Blakley, CEO, "Ron Pertl brings a level of expertise and professionalism we have been looking for to expand our presence in the restoration business. With Pertl's experience, Blakley's is poised for growth."


The Blakley Corporation, known as Blakley's, is a century seasoned family-owned business, a specialty trades contractor for commercial flooring, dimensional stone including granite, marble and limestone, concrete restoration & repair (Gates division), architectural wall systems & building exteriors and now masonry restoration & repair.


For additional information contact:

Marj Sparks, Director of Business Development

The Blakley Corporation




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Chapter Photos
October 2011




We hope you have enjoyed seeing these previews of the latest images from our events.  To view more, visit our online photo album.
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Charitable Donation

Education Foundation 


The Indianapolis Chapter CSI Education Foundation is nearing the opening of the Scholarship "season" and will be sending out applications to students across the state.  This is a great benefit for the students in the construction industry.


For the first time, you have the opportunity to donate directly to the foundation in a secure way.  The donations to this foundation are tax deductable.  If you are considering this good deed and have any questions about the tax aspect, please don't hesitate to contact the Foundation.



Call for Help!
Technical Committee 


The Product Representation Practice Guide Task Team needs authors for the following modules:

  • Project Delivery
  • Design Phase
  • Construction Phase
  • Green Building

 The Facility Management  Practice Guide Task Team is also looking for authors to work on its volume.


We have members with the expertise to assist in these volumes.  It's an opportunity to work with some of the most knowledgeable and respected CSI members.  The Task Team will provide resources and assistance to authors, including previous versions of the PRM and current Practice Guide versions for comparison.  If you have the time and desire to bring together state-of-the art knowledge in these areas, CSI needs your help.  You have the opportunity to guide CSI's message, guide the industry,  and get your name in a published book.


Contact Paul Sternberg with questions!

notebookBoard of Directors' Minutes
September 2011 


Minutes of the Indianapolis Chapter CSI Board of Directors can be read here.  Please contact the president with any comments or questions.


Quiz ANSWERS:  1. - b; 2. - c; 3. - a; 4. - d; 5. - a 
In This Issue
Holiday Party
Table Tops
Meeting Innformation

November 17, 2011

Riverwalk Banquet Center

Members: Free
Guest: $20
Students/Retired: $10
5:30 Social Hour
6:30 Dinner
7:15 Mtng/Program 
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