In Carothers Construction, Inc.,1 the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals discussed the contractor’s burden in submitting an “or equal” product. The contract incorporated FAR 52.336-5, Material and Workmanship, which provided in part that:
The Contractor may, at its option, use any [sic] equipment, material, article, or process that, in the judgment of the Contracting Officer, is equal to that named in the specifications, unless otherwise specifically provided in this contract. (emphasis in original)
The contractor sought to substitute a type of acoustical deck roof product that was different from that called out in the solicitation structural drawings. The Government rejected the substitution request, and the contractor ultimately provided the specified decking and sought the increased costs of supplying such material. The Government took the position that it was entitled to strict compliance with the specified specifications.
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