No modern fabrication shop would be complete without computer-aided design (CAD) or computer-aided manufacturing (CAM). This technology area has information on 3-D modeling, nesting, machine control, and process simulation.
August 7, 2014
Fabricators sell their ability to produce the right part in the right quantity and at the right time, and to do that requires good information. Communication troubles arise if front office systems don’t communicate with each other, and this can include CAD and ERP.
February 28, 2014
So much of metal fabricating activity today is focused on the elimination of waste, and one of the bigger steps a company can take is integrating its CAD/CAM software with its job shop management software.
January 13, 2014
In all honesty, nesting software that works for CO2 laser cutting machines also works for fiber lasers. The speed of the fiber laser, however, forces the fabricator to think more deliberately about software options that help to maintain the continuous flow of laser-cut parts.
October 9, 2013
SHoP Construction Services sought out a nesting program to help it create exact-sized panels for the huge Barclays Center project in Brooklyn, N.Y., and the effort resulted in an award-winning architectural and fabricating effort.
September 5, 2013
Country music legend Willie Nelson is credited with saying, “The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese." It’s unlikely that Willie was reflecting on manufacturing. Regardless, his quote still summarizes perfectly one of the greatest challenges sheet metal fabricators face: When nesting, is it better to be early, or just in time?
June 3, 2013
Advancements in nesting software development have made a real impact in terms of increased material utilization and machine uptime, but for a fabricator to get the most out of the nesting software, it needs to be fully integrated with the design and shop management software systems.
April 19, 2013
Conductix-Wampfler, Omaha, Neb., developed software that integrates information from CAD, product data management, ERP, and customer relationship management. Built on the company's success, the software is now available for others interested in ensuring everyone in the business is on the same page.
April 17, 2013
The speed of fabricating is increasing at a rapid pace, but the press brake remains a bottleneck for many companies. Laser cutting and punching machines can run unattended if necessary without the need to program a robot, but the same can't be said for a press brake. Human operators still are pretty much a necessity. Advancements in bending software, however, can help to streamline the bending process. Fabricators only need to give it a try.
December 3, 2012
Hard tooling for traditional fixtures often depends on costly milling and other non-sheet metal processes. So how can these costs be minimized? The simple answer is to marry the processes and machinery you already have--including laser cutting, waterjet cutting, and punching--to the appropriate CAD system.
September 7, 2012
It sounds like a no-brainer in electronically connected world, but shops don't have the ability to integrate their 3-D modeling capabilities with nest creation. As more shops jump into 3-D modeling with the goal of decreasing turnaround time for jobs, they are looking at a more formal connection between the design and production world.