Blog Posts

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.

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White House shines spotlight on manufacturing

October 27, 2014 | By Tim Heston

The White House released a list of manufacturing initiatives today that involve various government agencies. A few programs in the release really stand out.

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Metal sculpting for SEMA—Derelicts and Hellcats

October 23, 2014 | By Josh Welton

Metal artists find inspiration in many places. Derelicts and Hellcats inspired Josh Welton to create his versions of classic vehicles and motorcycles to be displayed at SEMA’s Art Walk in November.

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Mission NOT accomplished

October 17, 2014 | By Eric Lundin

A brief look at some unemployment and employment numbers provides reason for optimism for the state of the labor force. It's too soon to say "Mission accomplished" or anything like that, because getting people back to work is an ongoing process, but the trends are encouraging nonetheless.

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High-powered fiber translates into a more versatile tool

October 16, 2014 | By Dan Davis

A new 6-kW fiber laser cutting machine holds the potential to expand the cutting opportunities for metal fabricators.

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Still Building America: Calling young metalworkers

October 16, 2014 | By Josh Welton

I’d like to introduce a new project I’m working on for The FABRICATOR®, “Still Building America.” I will continue to write my normal bimonthly posts about welding in addition to starting a new series focusing on youngish (under 35), skilled tradespeople, manufacturing entrepreneurs,...

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Open your eyes at FABTECH

October 15, 2014 | By Nick Martin

From an attendee’s perspective, FABTECH is akin to Christmas morning, when all the new toys and possibilities are revealed, complete with a soundtrack. At least that’s how Barnes MetalCrafters’ Nick Martin sees it.

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From the Web: Harley jewelry; U.S. manufacturing renaissance or fantasy?

October 14, 2014 | By Vicki Bell

Highlights for fabricators from the past week’s Web articles—Utica, N.Y., company decorates Harleys; manufacturing renaissance—maybe, maybe not; women provide manufacturing muscle; and predicting metal costs.

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The information age of automation

October 14, 2014 | By Tim Heston

These days automation and efficiency are givens. Today, more executives are talking about something that, in the high-product-mix world of metal fabrication, can be incredibly complex. They're talking about information.

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Every day should be Manufacturing Day

October 11, 2014 | By Dan Davis

Manufacturing Day has come and gone, but if metal fabricators really want to see people forget the old stereotypes associated with manufacturing, they should take every opportunity to welcome the general public into their facilities--not just waiting for one special day out of the year.

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Humans and machines: The possibilities are endless

October 9, 2014 | By Josh Welton

The strength of human will and spirit joined with the power and permanence of machines could be a fascinating future.

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From the Web: Sisters making it in the USA; welding after midnight; improving 3-D printing

October 8, 2014 | By Vicki Bell

Highlights for fabricators from the past week’s Web articles— Ohio sisters passionate about manufacturing; a look at some Manufacturing Day events; 3-D printing still evolving; and welding after midnight.

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Waiting for a mega-payday

October 8, 2014 | By Eric Lundin

Mega-payday isn't the day a lucky lottery winner claims the Mega Millions proceeds. It's one of 15 or so Fridays every year that 90 million people receive a check of some sort, whether it’s from an employer, the Social Security Administration, or some other government agency. Some retailers have a vested interest in the mega-payday cycle, but the reasons for this expose the downside to current economic trends.

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Manufacturing Day, and the joy of making things

October 3, 2014 | By Tim Heston

Manufacturing Day celebrates continuous improvement, excellence, and, perhaps most important, the tinkerer in us all.

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Skilled labor crisis, or a crisis of character?

October 1, 2014 | By Tim Heston

We call it a "skilled labor crisis," but is it really about skill? Skills can be taught. The real challenge may be much broader.

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From the Web: Manufacturing Day and comebacks

October 1, 2014 | By Vicki Bell

Highlights for fabricators from the past week’s Web articles— Obama to participate in Manufacturing Day; Wisconsin fabricator wins #MfgDay14 video contest; students take to the road for heavy metal tour; an industrial ghost town seeks rebirth; and Rockford, Ill.-based Roper Whitney experiences a comeback.

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