Shop Management Articles

Shop management encompasses everything from strategic planning to the nuts and bolts of statistical process control. Whether you're an executive, manager, or supervisor, you'll find articles about overcoming challenges and struggles just like yours.

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Back to shcool for welder - TheFabricator.com

Wisconsin fabricator ramps up in-house training

October 12, 2012

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As the skilled labor crisis continued unabated, Schuette Metals launched a unique in-house training program. Sources said that more than anything else, good training will be key to the fabricator’s future success.

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Hundred dollar bill

The incredible economic power of manufacturing

October 8, 2012

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It’s no secret that the U.S. economy is in a precarious state. How did we get where we are, and what can be done to improve conditions? Longtime industry professional Jim O’Leary believes the answer lies in encouraging manufacturing and the time to choose a pro-manufacturing agenda is now.

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FABTECH 2013

Metal fab heads west

October 8, 2012

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It’s been four years since FABTECH® made its debut in Las Vegas, and in that time we have been exposed to a great deal of change. We’ve elected a new president and are on the tail end of another presidential campaign. We saw the end of the recession in 2009, and in the second quarter of this...

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How do welding emissions fit into your emissions inventory? - TheFabricator.com

How do welding emissions fit into your emissions inventory?

September 7, 2012

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Most EPA inspectors used to pay scant attention to welding fumes; these days they warrant much more attention. Regrettably the EPA relies on AP-42, a document that is thorough in some areas but not too detailed in welding processes. This means an overly zealous inspector might rate your facility as emitting more than it really does, forcing you to implement expensive and unnecessary controls

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3-D CAD: Setting up a costing tool - TheFabricator.com

3-D CAD: Setting up a costing tool

September 7, 2012

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Cost analysis within 3-D modeling software won't replace cost estimating, but it still can be a helpful tool.

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Balancing sales forecasts with reality - TheFabricator.com

Balancing sales forecasts with reality

September 7, 2012

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How can a fab shop use customers' sales forecasts effectively for in-house production planning, but at the same time not rely on them too much? It's a balancing act, but if done effectively, it can prove to be highly beneficial for a fabricator.

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The financial benchmark for metal fabricators: Survival of the fastest - TheFabricator.com

The financial benchmark for metal fabricators: Survival of the fastest

September 7, 2012

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The results are in from FMA's 2012 Financial Ratios & Operational Benchmarking Survey and the message is clear: Raw material and work-in-process inventory eats cash. Successful fabricating shops have figured out a way to avoid excess inventory scenarios.

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How quick response drives profits in metal fabrication - TheFabricator.com

How quick response drives profits in metal fabrication

September 7, 2012

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CR Metal Products Inc., St. Louis, follows the lessons of quick-response manufacturing, which preaches decreased capacity utilization of equipment and increased attention on just how jobs can be turned around in the quickest manner possible.

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From the farm to oilfields, mines, heavy equipment, and more - TheFabricator.com

From the farm to oilfields, mines, heavy equipment, and more

September 3, 2012

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Radius Steel-SOO Tractor, Sioux City, Iowa, is looking beyond its agricultural roots as it reaches out to various other industries, such as heavy equipment and oil and gas.

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Child holding US flag

A moral argument for manufacturing

August 6, 2012

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Despite media coverage and political candidates’ speeches about the importance of manufacturing to the U.S. economy, the sector continues to struggle. Why? What will it take to address the various problems plaguing manufacturing? A longtime industry professional offers his opinion founded upon recent historical events.

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3-D CAD: Design optimization - TheFabricator.com

3-D CAD: Design optimization

August 3, 2012

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Columnist Gerald Davis begins his exploration on how cost management tools in 3-D modeling software can be used to deliver cost-efficient and functional part designs.

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Staying safe shipping metal products - TheFabricator.com

Staying safe shipping metal products

August 3, 2012

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The days of a trailer being loaded with metal products before it leaves the shipping deck are over. Because customers want their parts delivered as soon as possible, lighter-than-truckload shipments are a normal part of shipping operations. This, however, requires additional attention to detail to keep both products and people safe.

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Putting a label on metal fabrication - TheFabricator.com

Putting a label on metal fabrication

August 3, 2012

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Micron Metalworks is a classic precision sheet metal job shop, with short runs and numerous job changeovers. To optimize part flow and overall efficiency, it’s the little things that really matter--including a simple label on a drawer.

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Set design meets advanced manufacturing - TheFabricator.com

Set design meets advanced manufacturing

August 3, 2012

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A Broadway and TV set fabricator mixes set-building tradition with advanced manufacturing technologies, from welding and cutting to abrasive waterjet cutting. Complicating matters are the demands of modern performance media--especially high-definition broadcasts.

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Fabricating the American Dream - TheFabricator.com

Fabricating the American Dream

July 16, 2012

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What’s the current state of the American dream? So many seem to work hard and do everything right--but just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.

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