Blogs

Filter Content

New manganese exposure guidance

February 15, 2013

By:

Metal fabricating companies that seek to provide the safest work environments for their employees might be interested to know that the job might get a little harder in the welding department. The leading industrial health and safety organization that regularly issues guidance for certain toxic...

Continue Reading

Mr. Bureaucracy, tear down this wall

February 12, 2013

By:

This morning I talked with Paul Luber, CEO of Milwaukee-based Super Steel, a contract fabricator on a serious rebound. In 2010 the company went into receivership. Now, the fabricator recently has completed a serious growth spurt--it doubled revenue in just 12 months--and is preparing for 15 percent...

Continue Reading

The effect of parental influence

February 8, 2013

By:

I have a 14-year-old who's a freshman in high school this year. He's already 4 inches taller than I am and possesses more knowledge about Civil War history than I have after 44 years on this earth—with all of my schooling taking place in the South where the Civil War is still recalled almost...

Continue Reading

The scoop on U.S. worker confidence

February 6, 2013

By:

In the early days of 2013, January 3, to be exact, Randstad released the results of its December U.S. Employee Confidence survey that painted a rosy picture heading into the new year. The Confidence Index was 55.4, one of the highest levels of optimism recorded in 2012. The Index, which...

Continue Reading

Retirement: A quaint idea

January 31, 2013

By:

Don’t you just love it when you read an article on a major news site that makes you go, “Well, duh!” Such was the case today when I read a feature story on nbcnews.com about how fewer Americans count on retiring by 65 (unfortunately, the link to this article no longer works). As reported by...

Continue Reading

The story behind the story

January 30, 2013

By:

The latest big-picture economic assessment is out, and the headlines don’t tell a pretty story. As measured by gross domestic output (GDP), the U.S. economy contracted slightly during the final quarter of 2012. A surprise? Yes, even for many economists. A reflection of the national mood at the...

Continue Reading

Taking control of training efforts

January 25, 2013

By:

A&E Custom Manufacturing, Kansas City, Kan., isn't much different from other metal fabricators today. It is looking for the right skilled employees. "If we could find the people, we would probably add four to five employees," said John Jaixen, A&E's general manager, in December....

Continue Reading

Debt and equity

January 23, 2013

By:

A couple of weeks ago, my esteemed fellow blogger and close watcher of all things economic, Eric Lundin, wrote a post entitled “We’ve all fallen off the fiscal cliff.” Commenting on the last-minute deal Congress approved to avoid sending the U.S. economy off the fiscal cliff, Lundin said,...

Continue Reading

The real costs behind miscommunication

January 22, 2013

By:

At the last FABTECH® show, I ran into an engineer who works for GE Appliance & Lighting, looking for products that would speed that all-important art-to-part time--that all-important product-development time. Their comments make sense in light of recent growth of the company’s Louisville,...

Continue Reading

Good teachers make good welders

January 16, 2013

By:

It may have been the 11 young welders competing at the AWS/SkillsUSA U.S. Invitational Weld Trials at FABTECH® 2012 in Las Vegas who were in the limelight, but behind each of those students was a teacher who helped them get to that point. Six of those 11 welders were vying for three spots to...

Continue Reading

The Stingray returns

January 15, 2013

By:

A 6.2-liter engine, 450 horsepower, zero to 60 miles per hour in less than 4 seconds, and a redesigned exterior that exudes cool from bumper to bumper. It’s not a foreign car with a funny-sounding name and a price tag with as many digits as the federal debt. It’s a domestic model guaranteed to...

Continue Reading

Focusing on information waste

January 15, 2013

By:

Yesterday the Brookings Institution, along with the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, proposed a program that would involve the federal government designating 20 “manufacturing universities” to prepare students for the sectors that need engineering help. Most intriguing, perhaps...

Continue Reading

Mexico's other competitive advantage

January 11, 2013

By:

It used to be just labor cost, but apparently Mexico has another secret weapon in trying to expand its role as the world's manufacturing partner: It can churn out engineering and manufacturing talent for the large multinational manufacturers looking to locate in North America. Don't believe it?...

Continue Reading

We’ve all fallen off the fiscal cliff

January 10, 2013

By:

If the headlines from a week ago are to be believed, Congress got its act together and cobbled together a last-minute deal to avoid sending the U.S. economy off the fiscal cliff. Needless to say, I don’t believe it. Yes, superficially, the new legislation prevented the U.S. economy from becoming...

Continue Reading

New Year, less money

January 9, 2013

By:

It’s a New Year, and we escaped falling off the fiscal cliff, thanks to the very last-minute, drama-laden efforts of Congress to pass a bill to avert a much-portended catastrophe. In fact, if you went to bed too early on New Year’s Eve, which I apparently did, you fell asleep thinking we were...

Continue Reading