July 20, 2016 | By Amanda Carlson
The Ask Elmer column, written by Hobart Institute of Welding Technology instructor Elmer Swank, appeared in Practical Welding Today for four years. Even though the column no longer exists, Swank is still in the business of answering questions and developing good welders.
July 5, 2016 | By Ryan Lizotte
Installed and used properly, a reamer minimizes spatter and debris, prolongs consumables life, improves weld quality, and keeps a robotic welding cell productive.
April 4, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Several years ago Groupe Gravel invested in robotic welding and plasma cutting. And from the very start, for most work, technicians never programmed jobs using a teach pendant.
March 21, 2016 | By Ryan Lizotte
A robotic welding cell is a significant investment that improves productivity and weld quality and ultimately reduces costs. These best practices and troubleshooting tips can help you maximize your ROI.
January 19, 2016 | By Tim Tuttle
Setting up for robotic press-to-press transfer systems requires some consideration of distances, bolster height, and stroke length, as well as feed length, die clearance and several other press, tooling and workpiece considerations.
November 4, 2015 | By Tim Heston
Monitoring machine performance in real time is gaining traction in metal fabrication. MTConnect, a machine communication standard that has made serious headway in the machining arena, now has a toehold in the sheet metal business.
October 15, 2015 | By Tim Heston
Rapid-Line Inc., a contract manufacturer in Grand Rapids, Mich., has a long history of early technology adoption. Two years ago it became an early adopter again, this time with an entirely different kind of robot. Regardless of the technology, everyone keeps their eye on what truly matters when it comes to manufacturing efficiency: how long it takes for an order to make it to the shipping dock.
September 8, 2015 | By Tim Heston
Ludlow Manufacturing Inc.’s managers are big believers in automation, but they’re not just interested in shortening machine cycle times. They look at the big picture, from the first order to the final shipment.
August 4, 2015 | By Sue Roberts
The Modula U.S.A. plant in Lewiston, Maine, is the result of a $6 million investment in new equipment, a new focus on manufacturing automated vertical storage (AVS) units, and a renaming by Italian parent company System Logistics. Cost-competitive production resulting from integrated, automatic sheet metal fabricating equipment from Salvagnini was key in the company’s decision to locate in the United States.
Advancements in robotic technology are extending their functionality and improving their performance. Often a robot is expected to do more than move from programmed position A to position B; it must operate “smarter” and act upon other inputs, such as vision systems or force feedback. The applications for integration of vision systems and robots are almost endless but the most common application is vision guidance for the robot
March 25, 2015 | By Tim Heston
In recent years Ashcroft’s Connecticut plant has changed significantly. It’s an operation transitioning from batch-style production to lean part flow, and a new, flexible welding cell has helped the manufacturer prepare for future improvements.
March 11, 2015 | By Tom Whitter
When choosing the best robotic welding system for your operation, make sure to pay special attention to the gun and consumables. One size does not fit all.
January 29, 2015 | By Kate Bachman
Automation trends culled from FABTECH and other products introduced throughout 2014 indicate more integration, acceleration are to come in 2015.
January 23, 2015 | By Tim Heston
New system introduces full automation to structural fabrication, including cutting, beam and plate handling, and welding.
December 18, 2014 | By Nick Hajewski
Structural fabricators have a plethora of equipment options to choose from these days, and all the choices can be a bit overwhelming. Knowing what’s available, as well as keeping a few basic factors in mind, can help a structural fabricator make an educated choice.