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.
September 26, 2016 | By Nick Martin
There’s nothing quite as gratifying to a small-shop owner as seeing healthy capacity levels. However, when limited workspace becomes an impediment to growth, it’s time to think about expanding. Wilson, N.C.-based Barnes MetalCrafters has reached this point.
September 26, 2016 | By Josh Welton
Who doesn’t like music? It has charms to soothe the savage breast and also can make a workday more tolerable. Thanks to modern technology, listening to your personal favorites in the shop is getting safer and more comfortable. Here are some options.
September 13, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Why is college so expensive? Sky-high demand may have something to do with it. Other businesses could learn a thing or two from custom fabricators and other manufacturing sectors, where a four-year college degree isn't the only ticket to success.
September 13, 2016 | By Vicki Bell
Frustrated by politics, the economy, or other things over which you have no control? Focus your energy on doing something positive for your industry. Participate in Manufacturing Day. You’ll be glad you did.
September 7, 2016 | By Vicki Bell
Love unions or not, they are responsible for many improvements in working conditions in the U.S. They also are responsible for our most recent Federal holiday. However, many workers are not able to observe this holiday the way it was intended.
August 31, 2016 | By Vicki Bell
One in three small businesses have felt the impact of storms or extreme weather, and nearly 40 percent do not reopen after being hit by a natural disaster. Preparation is key to survival.
August 29, 2016 | By Josh Welton
You may be able to tell certain things from a photo, but not everything. No one knows that better than Josh Welton, whose weld photos garner a lot of attention and feedback.
August 26, 2016 | By Nick Martin
Most job shops encounter situations in which the customer provides inadequate drawings and details. You are told, “This is all we have, make it work.” These jobs can be frustrating and costly.
August 25, 2016 | By Josh Welton
Welders work on all sorts of projects. Sometimes their efforts keep us safe in ways we probably never think about. Meet Devin March and learn about his contributions to our safety.
August 18, 2016 | By Vicki Bell
What do you think of your boss? Is he or she a good motivator? Do you feel valued? Does your relationship with your boss affect your job performance and satisfaction? Some “Fabricating Update” readers took the time to share their thoughts about bosses they’ve known and what makes a good boss.
August 18, 2016 | By Dan Davis
Painting and powder coating come at the end of the line, but that doesn't mean it should be the last thing that fabricators think of if they are interested in running an efficient fabricating operation.
August 17, 2016 | By Josh Welton
Have you ever thought about how quick we are to notice and point out mistakes? Doing so seems to have become de rigueur in today’s society. When even the most trival mistakes generate a deluge of hostile corrections, maybe it’s time to take a closer look at the practice and the reasons behind it.
August 16, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Manufacturing built the middle class, a consumer class. Today, this "middle" consumer class is fading. For a consumer-based economy, that can't be a good thing.
August 10, 2016 | By Vicki Bell
Have you been watching the 2016 Olympic games? If so, you have witnessed some examples of teamwork at its best. All teams are not the same. Some are dynamic and successful, and others have the makings for disaster. How is your job shop team?
August 9, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Metal fabricators are swimming in data these days. The trick is collecting the right data and focusing on what matters: global objectives (shortened total manufacturing time) instead of local efficiency (inches per minute at a specific machine).