Blog Posts

thefabricator.com has a team of bloggers that cover the challenges and rewards associated with a life in metal fabricating. Topics typically addressed by contributing authors include political and demographic trends affecting the fabricating industry, the business side of running a job shop, the culture of the welding community, and detailed looks at what happens on the shop floor.

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Moving pains

December 6, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

Things change and businesses move. Change and moving aren’t always easy, but acceptance and good planning can help make the transition as seamless and painless as possible. Remember, it is what it is. Make the best of it.

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Being your own boss versus working the “day job”

December 5, 2016 | By Josh Welton

While being self-employed is a dream of many who are “working for the man,” doing so isn’t always as idyllic as many think. Here’s a dose of reality for those who are pining away for the greener pastures of being your own boss.

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Job-related injuries and workers’ compensation—the more you know, the better

November 30, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

Unless you work in human resources or have been involved in a work-related injury, you probably don’t know much about workers’ compensation. The leading reasons for claims just might surprise you.

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Repeat orders are manna to a job shop

November 29, 2016 | By Nick Martin

Job shop business is often cyclical. There are times of feast and famine. Repeat customers and jobs are the lifeblood of most shops. Finding and keeping them is a high priority.

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FABTECH® 2016: Closing the loop

November 21, 2016 | By Tim Heston

When it came to new technology, FABTECH didn't disappoint. But this year, one theme dominated: closing the loop--or improving the entire process, from the initial quote to the final shipment.

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FABTECH® 2016 Highlights—Day 3

November 18, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

The sun has set on FABTECH® 2016. If you weren’t there, you missed an amazing show. Each year I wonder what could possibly be new? And each year I am overwhelmed by the amount of innovation. Ours is a creative industry.

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FABTECH® 2016 Highlights—Day 2

November 17, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

A new theme surfaced in today’s FABTECH® booth visits: collaboration. Find out who’s collaborating and why. Also read about what’s next in laser cutting technology and some interesting welding product introductions.

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FABTECH® 2016 Highlights—Day 1

November 16, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

Product improvements and introductions were on display in abundance on day one of FABTECH® 2016. Here are just a few of many that can be seen at the show.

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Bright lights, big city, metal fabrication, and memories

November 15, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

It’s that time of year again. Fabricators are hitting the road to see the sights and sounds of the biggest show in North America devoted to metal fabricating. FABTECH® opens tomorrow. Will you be there?

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Metal fabrication and the metals markets prepare for a Trump presidency

November 15, 2016 | By Tim Heston

The presidency usually doesn't have much immediate, direct impact on the economy, despite the campaign rhetoric we hear. But is this time different?

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Medical device manufacturing and the need to adapt

November 9, 2016 | By Vicki Bell

What effect does the evolving nature of materials used for fabricated medical devices have on those who manufacture them? Are shops able to use the same processes and equipment with newer materials?

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60 isn’t old, and other things I learned from dad

November 1, 2016 | By Josh Welton

If you reflect on who and where you are in life, chances are you’ll find yourself thinking of your childhood and those who had a significant influence on your development, both in terms of character and career. Maybe you followed in someone’s footsteps?

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Still Building America—Randy follows the money and loves what he finds

October 30, 2016 | By Josh Welton

People choose careers for many reasons. Sometimes it really is about the money. It truly is a thing of beauty when following the money leads to a career you love—the reverse of the oft-given advice: Do what you love and the money will follow. It happens.

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On the crazy train to SEMA

October 27, 2016 | By Josh Welton

Some people are busy, and some are crazy-busy. Crazy-busy coupled with serious challenges isn’t for the fainthearted. Yet, the show must go on, and Josh Welton is on the road with the fruits of 100-hour weeks. Take a look.

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Running a shop in the aftermath of a hurricane

October 26, 2016 | By Nick Martin

We hear a lot about disaster preparedness, but sometimes conditions are such that even the best plan isn’t enough. Hurricane Matthew had a devastating effect on many southeastern communities and businesses.

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