Blog Posts 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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From the Web: Low wages ‘major’ issue; inside a 3-D machine shop; ‘craftsmanship is still around’

January 22, 2015 | By Vicki Bell

Highlights for fabricators from the past week’s Web articles— Low wages a major impediment to labor supply; inside Incodema 3D’s facility; job shop named best business in Blue Earth, Minn.; Mississippi shop grows, invests, hires; and craftsmanship is still around.

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Getting back to basics—Human element enhances a machine’s potential

January 22, 2015 | By Josh Welton

In 2014 media headlines claimed that Toyota was replacing robots with humans in its factories. Not so, but the real story is important and encouraging.

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More from the Floor at FABTECH®

January 20, 2015 | By Kate Bachman

Feeling those no-show-to-go-to blues? Missing the great times you had at FABTECH? Yearn for just a glimpse of what you saw on the floor ... oh, the clanking and whirring of machines, the tastes of happy hour brew?

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Free education and political football

January 19, 2015 | By Tim Heston

Making community college free is a bold move, but it shouldn't be used as a political tool. Unfortunately, that's the reality.

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Dropping oil prices and metal fabricating

January 16, 2015 | By Dan Davis

The drop in oil prices is not the end of the world, and it won't be the end of the world for the metal fabrication industry--at least for those not located in Texas, North Dakota, and western Canada.

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From the Web: Research in 3-D; how manufacturing can gain momentum in 2015; training success stories

January 15, 2015 | By Vicki Bell

Highlights for fabricators from the past week’s Web articles— Sandvik boosts 3-D printing research; one way U.S. manufacturing can gain momentum; training success stories, and introducing young students to metalworking.

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The one collar of the knowledge worker

January 15, 2015 | By Tim Heston

Technological devices are changing the world, but in a very human way. It may not be about what technology can do. Instead, it may be about how technology changes our lives.

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Still Building America—Welding opens up opportunities

January 14, 2015 | By Josh Welton

Taking shop classes to enhance his automotive skills, Tom Howes found a new love in welding, one that opened up a world of opportunity.

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Congress approves manufacturing program--with an asterisk

January 9, 2015 | By Stephen Barlas

Congress fulfilled President Barack Obama's wish to set up a network of manufacturing innovation centers across the U.S., but there is a catch: The effort won't have its own budget. The endeavor will have to be funded through existing budgets in the Department of Energy and the Pentagon.

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Winning with improvisation—Repairing an air compressor part

January 7, 2015 | By Josh Welton

Everyone is familiar with the workaround. You don’t have the ideal part or solution, but you improvise and come up with a workable plan. Here’s how welder Josh Welton used the tools on hand to repair an air compressor part and avoid a trip to a big-box store.

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A new year and a better image for manufacturing

December 22, 2014 | By Tim Heston

As 2015 approaches, manufacturing's image is in pretty good shape, all things considered.

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Is the production meeting a relic of the past?

December 19, 2014 | By Dan Davis

In today's manufacturing world where more is done with less, many metal fabricators don't see the need for a daily production meeting. It's one more example of manufacturers adjusting to the times because of lack of time.

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Seeking normal and missing life—one welder’s odyssey

December 18, 2014 | By Josh Welton

Most of us strive for a “normal” life and look forward to that magic day when everything falls into place. This quest can keep you from living a full life today. Something to think about as you approach the new year.

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The patio furniture reshoring test

December 15, 2014 | By Tim Heston

Businesses are reshoring when it makes sense to do so. This includes items requiring quick-response, such as seasonal items that hinge on less predictable demand factors, like the weather.

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Manufacturing communities program ready for second round

December 12, 2014 | By Stephen Barlas

The U.S. Department of Commerce wants to reach out to more communities in an effort to boost the manufacturing economy.

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