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Digital set-out enhances productivity


Gone are the days that plumbers need to rely on stringlines and manual set-out methods. Digital construction technology enables users to work in their design plans without the need to offset and scale off PDFs. According to Lorne Janssen, Project Manager at Axis, “Our Topcon systems give us more control over delivering projects accurately, with a digital record of as-builts.”  

Axis has embraced digital set-out technology in recent years, deploying a fleet of Topcon GT robotic total stations in the business. Recent Queensland projects include Brisbane’s Queens Wharf and the Gatton Correctional Centre, where Topcon technology was used throughout to ensure the jobs were completed accurately to design. Axis completed all initial civil and ground service work on the Gatton project. At Queens Wharf, the same setup was used for internal fit out across all towers.  

Each set-out system includes a combination of the Topcon GT total station and a rover, complete with prism, tablet and MAGNET Field software. The solution eliminates the need to use stringlines and paper-based plans, as workers have a digital version on the tablet that they can work in live. Without the need to calculate offsets and scale from PDFs, Topcon’s revolutionary system guides the operator through the steps to set-out plans with survey-grade accuracy.  

digital set out for plumbers

Lorne explained that the technology empowers Axis workers to take more control over their jobs. “At Queens there was a requirement from the builder to provide as-built surveys at each stage before payment. With the Topcon systems, our team was easily able to provide these, which helped to keep the job running smoothly and minimise delays.”  

Aptella, formerly known as Position Partners, is Australia’s exclusive supplier for Topcon positioning systems. With branches nationwide, in Southeast Asia and New Zealand, the business supports customers to deploy a wide range of positioning and automation solutions to suit their business needs.  

Axis has used other Topcon laser levelling systems for many years, including pipe lasers, rotating laser levels and dumpy levels. Lorne said that Topcon’s reputation for quality in the building trades, coupled with training and support from Aptella, made the transition to Topcon digital set-out easy.  

“We use Topcon lasers because they specialise in accurate measurement and positioning technology – the products are reliable and good quality. When it comes to total stations, you need a good brand that is accurate, but also a supplier that can train our people and give us the back-up support,” he said.  

Axis uses Aptella’s unique Tokara remote access technology, which enables support technicians to login remotely to a customer’s device when they call for support. With the ability to see what the users sees in a real world environment, technical issues can be quickly resolved without delaying work.  

The Axis team has also benefitted from training to ensure workers have the skills and know-how to use the systems confidently. “At Axis, we invest in our people and want to empower them to use technology to do their work smarter and more efficiently. Having the Aptella team conduct regular training ensures their skills are kept current,” Lorne said.