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 Column 1 is called the timesing column.  Column 2 is the dimension column, in
 Column 1 is called the timesing column.  Column 2 is the dimension column, in
Column 1 is called the timesing column.
Column 2 is the dimension column, in which the
measurements are set down as taken from the
drawings.
Column 3 is the squaring column, in which are set
out the calculated volumes, areas, etc., of the
measurements in column 2.
Column 4 is the description column, in which is
written the description of the work to which the
dimensions apply, the extreme right-hand side
of which (known as waste) preliminary
calculations and collections are made.
All dimensions are in one of five forms : 1. Cubic measurements 2. 3. Square or
All dimensions are in one of five forms : 1. Cubic measurements 2. 3. Square or
All dimensions are in one of five forms :
1.
Cubic measurements
2.
3.
Square or superficial measurements
Linear measurements
4.
Enumerated items
5.
Items
Occasionally the SMM requires the insertion of an
item; this is a description without a measured
quantity, e.g. testing the drainage system.
 It is usual to set down the dimensions in the following order : 1) Horizontal
 It is usual to set down the dimensions in the following order : 1) Horizontal
It is usual to set down the dimensions in the
following order :
1) Horizontal length
2)Horizontal width or breadth
3) Vertical depth or height
It is valuable in tracing measurements later if
a consistent order is maintained.
 Dimensions should not be calculated mentally. Not only will the risk or error be reduced
 Dimensions should not be calculated mentally. Not only will the risk or error be reduced
Dimensions should not be calculated mentally.
Not only will the risk or error be reduced if the
calculations are written down, because they will
be checked, but another person can readily see
the origin of the dimension.
These preliminary calculations, known as waste
calculations, are made on the right-hand side of
the description column.
The term waste used for this part of the column
might be thought to imply ‘useless’ but in fact
implies ‘a means to an end’.
 Where a dimension has been set down incorrectly and is to be altered, either it
 Where a dimension has been set down incorrectly and is to be altered, either it
Where a dimension has been set down
incorrectly and is to be altered, either it
should be neatly crossed out and the new
dimension written in, or the word nil should
be written against it in the squaring column
to indicate that it is cancelled.
 Where a deduction is to be made, the description is preceded by Deduct which is
 Where a deduction is to be made, the description is preceded by Deduct which is
Where a deduction is to be made, the
description is preceded by Deduct which is
often abbreviated to Ddt.
To add emphasis to the words ‘Deduct’ and
‘Add’ used in this context they are often
underlined.
With cut and shuffle taking-off it is necessary
to keep deductions on separate slips, with the
fact that they are deductions being clearly
indicated.
 Measurement from fully figured drawings must necessarily be more accurate. Furthermore, the quantity surveyor owes
 Measurement from fully figured drawings must necessarily be more accurate. Furthermore, the quantity surveyor owes
Measurement from fully figured drawings must
necessarily be more accurate. Furthermore, the
quantity surveyor owes a duty to the client to prepare
an accurate bill of quantities and it could be regarded
as negligent not only to undermeasure but also to
overmeasure.
In setting down the dimensions the figures should
normally be taken to the nearest two places of
decimals, the excess or loss in measurement thereby
obtained being usually very slight in proportion to the
whole, particularly when the total bill quantity is
usually given to the nearest metre.
 If the taker-off wishes to insert an item and finds that there is no room
 If the taker-off wishes to insert an item and finds that there is no room
If the taker-off wishes to insert an item and finds
that there is no room for it in its proper place and
is forced to put it elsewhere, a reference should
be made on the dimensions in the correct place
so that the item can be found and vice-versa.
It has been known for projects to be postpone
for a year or two after tenders were received,
and even the taker-off will then need some
references and notes to refresh the memory.
 A regular order of length, width and depth (or height) should be maintained in writing
 A regular order of length, width and depth (or height) should be maintained in writing
A regular order of length, width and depth (or
height) should be maintained in writing down the
dimensions.
In measuring areas of floor finishes, the dimensions
horizontal on the plan could be put first, followed by
the vertical ones.
For instance, in measuring six doors each with four
squares of glass, all timesed for two floors, the
dimensions should be timesed as follows:
2 / 6 /4
When timesing becomes complicated, it will help
considerably in tracing items if the method of
timesing is consistent.
The making of notes by the taker-off on the dimensions is of the utmost value. Such
The making of notes by the taker-off on the dimensions is of the utmost value. Such
The making of notes by the taker-off on the
dimensions is of the utmost value. Such notes
are usually one of three kinds.
a.
Explanatory for use in writing the specification
or adjusting variations.
b.
For reference before the taking-off is finished,
e.g. notes of items to measure or queries to be
settled.
c.
Instructions for preparing the bill.
 When using the cut and shuffle system, each description is written in full and each
  • When using the cut and shuffle system, each description is written in full and each description with its dimensions is written on a separate slip of paper.

  • When the measurement is complete, the slips are sorted into bill order and the slips containing the same descriptions are brought together and totalled on one slip.

  • Provided that care is taken in framing

descriptions, and with some editing, the bill can

be typed straight from the sorted slips.