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Metal forming certification

FMA jumps on the certification bandwagon

March 13, 2007 | By Jim Donaldson

Many industries and careers rely on certification programs to train workers. The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, Intl.®, has identified a need to certify precision sheet metal workers and is launching a certification program. This article explains the program's goals, outlines the development process, and describes how industry professionals can participate.

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Interlocks diagram

Interlocks as machine safety devices

March 13, 2007 | By Gary M. Hutter

Interlocks serve as safety devices on industrial equipment and many consumer products. This article explains some applications, describes different types of interlocks, and provides recommendations for resources that can help you determine the requirements for interlocks, along with their advantages and disadvantages.

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Roller leveler

Roller leveling 101

March 13, 2007 | By Brownie Cox

Every metal coil has unique characteristics. Leveling is achieved by precisely bending metal strip back and forth as it's passed through a series of small-diameter offset rolls.

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Brazing diagram

Brazing copper and copper alloys

March 13, 2007 | By Myron T. Havis

It is important to be able to identify when brazing is suitable for joining copper or copper alloys, how it is applied, and which filler metals to use.

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R&D Update: Servo press forming applications - Part I

March 13, 2007 | By Taylan Altan, Ph.D.

A servomotor gives a press slide motion flexibility in terms of accurate speed, motion, and position control. This flexibility produces infinite slide motion variations that may improve part quality and operations such as painting and assembly during one press stroke.

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What's all the 'flux' about?

March 13, 2007 | By Ron Smith

Becoming knowledgeable about the different types of flux-cored stainless steel electrodes, what their capabilities are, how they are classified, and how to handle and maintain them safely can offer welders many benefits.

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Electronic sensing device

Error-free tube fabrication

March 13, 2007 | By Dave Bird

Manufacturing processes are prone to variances, resulting in manufactured products that do not conform to specifications. Dozens of types of electronic sensors and measurement systems are available that fabricators can use to verify that their products are not defective. Understanding what types of sensors are available and how they work are the first two steps in implementing electronic sensing devices for quality control.

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Tube images

Tube drawing principles

March 13, 2007 | By Laurence Shaheen

Five tube drawing methods are sinking, rod drawing, floating plug drawing, tethered plug drawing, and fixed plug drawing. Choosing the right method or combination of methods for a particular application requires understanding the characteristics of each. Tube producers also have a choice of feedstock: seamless or welded tube. Likewise, choosing the right one is a matter of understanding the differences.

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An exception to the industry rule

March 13, 2007

IRMCO, a 93-year-old manufacturer of environmentally friendly lubricant technologies for the metal forming industry, is not only surviving but thriving in an industry that's facing tough times with plant closures, downsizing, and fierce foreign competition.

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Manufacturing training image

The adult learner: Training your labor force

March 13, 2007 | By Phil Evans

Training programs enhance worker skills, encourage employee/employer loyalty, and help reduce employee turnover. This article defines what is important to an adult learner, describes the different types of adult learners, and details the components of an effective training program. It also discusses trainer requisites.

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Proper weld speed

Improving manual plasma cutting quality

March 13, 2007 | By Don Keddell

Some tips and suggestions for best practices that will increase your efficiency and precision and prolong the life of your plasma cutter and consumables include: Take the time to read the manual thoroughly; develop a "preflight routine" visually follow the arc that is coming from the bottom of the cut—the arc should exit the material at a 15- to 20-degree angle opposite the direction of travel; and maintain a 1/16- to 1/8-inch distance between the tip and the workpiece.

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Laser cutting

Air cutting revisited

March 13, 2007 | By Erin Chasse, Mickey Lawson

Fabricators are increasingly using compressed air in laser cutting, instead of relying on laser assist gases such as oxygen and nitrogen. Recent findings reveal that shop air can be used on more material types and thicknesses, including parts on which the edge quality is visible.

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Abrasive fiber disks figure 1

Easing the grind of cost reduction

March 13, 2007

In early 2005 SPX CONTECH decided to evaluate the abrasive disks used in its 22 workcells for aluminum grinding in its Auburn, Ind., facility. By the end of the year the new disks had increased the number of parts processed and exhibited improved life per disk.

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Automated parts removal

Flexible automation of laser cutting, material handling

March 13, 2007 | By Elizabeth Kautzmann

What's the point in purchasing an expensive laser cutting machine if you are going to waste money-making opportunities by unloading parts manually? Good nesting software, proper maintenance, and the latest unloading technology can help to make automated laser cutting and unloading a reality.

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Automated tube bender

Reducing tube bending cycle times

March 13, 2007 | By Sabine Neff

Because any multiple-step manufacturing process is only as fast as the slowest machine, fabricators interested in purchasing an automated tube bender might suddenly find his production line saddled with bottlenecks. It's necessary to analyze the entire production line and learn about the equipment that is available before automating the bending process.

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