Articles is the digital home of The FABRICATOR magazine, the metal fabricating industry’s foremost authority on manufacturing technology. Technical articles, case studies, and company profiles from The FABRICATOR and its sister publications, Practical Welding Today, The Tube & Pipe Journal, and STAMPING Journal can be found on this site. Additionally, has a team of subject matter experts that write exclusively for the website, covering topics such as welding skills and metal forming basics.

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The wiper die's feathered edge

June 13, 2006 | By William Q. Tingley III

The mechanical aspects of rotary draw tube bending haven't changed since modern tooling was developed 50 years ago. Likewise, the role of the tooling (mandrel, pressure die, bend die, and wiper die) hasn't changed. However, tube fabricators these days have many choices in regard to the tooling, especially wiper dies. Choices include material, rake angle, and whether the wiper die's feathered edge is fully machined or honed by hand.

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A closer look at self-piercing riveting

June 13, 2006 | By Yingjie Xu

Self-piercing riviting, an alternative sheet joining method, is being used more to join aluminum sheets. The finite element method can be employed to study the SPR process and joints, perhaps even leading to the elimination of physical testing of these mechanical joints.

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Cutting right to the point

June 13, 2006 | By Ken Hall

Experience and education are allowing metal fabricators to become more familiar with circular saw blades and the saw designed to run them. Choosing and applying the correct blade, along with proper maintenance, can provide an efficient method for a metal cutting operation.

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Implementing Press Automation

June 13, 2006 | By Dean C. Phillips

To compete in a global market, all stampers need adapt their manufacturing processes. By mixing automation with electronic controls, job shops can increase output and exceed past manufacturing goals.

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What associations really do

June 13, 2006 | By Kristen Darby

Ever wonder why associations exist—what purposes they serve and why people join them? This article explains just what an association is, traces the history of associations, and describes how these organizations benefit members and the general public.

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Poor Boy Blacksmith

June 13, 2006 | By Bob Nichols

Generations ago blacksmiths served long apprenticeships and acquired the knowledge to make their own tools. Today blacksmithing often is pursued by untrained hobbyists who need economical tools. This article is about a seasoned blacksmith who uses his skills to make tools and then markets them using the latest technology.

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Fabricator puts the brake on bend inconsistency

June 13, 2006 | By Eric Lundin

Well-known for agriculture, Nebraska also has a strong manufacturing base. OEMs include Kawasaki, Husqvarna, Eaton, Thermo King, Claas, and Case New Holland. Standard Iron & Wire, a Minnesota-based fabricator, opened a manufacturing facility in Grand Island, Neb., to take advantage of this fertile manufacturing environment. Chief among its concerns was finding a press brake that would produce accurate, consistent parts. It purchased two LVD press brakes with the company's adaptive bending technology.

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Job diversity through a waterjet

June 13, 2006 | By Dan Davis

Pacific Metal Cutting of Placentia, Calif., wasn't struggling when it bought its first waterjet in May 2004. After two years of waterjet ownership and the addition of a second table, the metal cutter is struggling to keep up with new business.

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Structured sheet metal

June 13, 2006 | By Ajay Yadav

Editor's Note: This article is Part II of a two-part series discussing structured sheet metal and different structuring processes. Part I compares various structuring processes. This column was prepared by Michael Mirtsch and Ajay Yadav of the Engineering Research Center for Net Shape...

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The regrind process for tube mill tooling

June 13, 2006 | By Chris Miller

Although most tube and pipe producers don't get too involved in the regrind process, it is crucial—reconditioning roll tooling can extend its useful life by 15 or 20 times. The regrind process reduces the producer's overall out-of-pocket tooling expenses, while helping to ensure the tooling continues to produce a consistent-quality product at the required speeds. A better understanding of the process, especially familiarity with the types of flaws that reconditioning can and cannot resolve, can go a long way toward a better working relationship between a tube and pipe producer and its regrind contractor.

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10 steps to winning a government contract - Step 7

June 13, 2006 | By John DiGiacomo, Jim Kleckner

Once you're ready to write your proposal, you must know all about the three basic types of solicitations and how to write your proposal based on what type of solicitation you're working with.

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Examining the finer points of 6010, 6011, and 7018

June 13, 2006 | By Marty Rice

Knowing which rods tend to do what in the field can save you time and make for better results when the job is through.

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Right on schedule

June 12, 2006 | By Dan Davis

QC Metal Fabricators of Elkhart, Ind., witnessed improved scheduling and shipping with the implementation of new job shop management software.

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Microwelding: Then and now

May 15, 2006 | By Stephanie Vaughan

Like the molds he repairs, Five Star Tool Welding owner Joe Canfield finds that the welding equipment he uses at his company is getting smaller and smaller. Over the years GTAW equipment has evolved to better meet the needs of its tool and die welding users.

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Troubleshooting Guide for Cleaners

May 15, 2006 | By Mike Pelham

Rust, wear, and dirt cost tube fabricators and producers millions of dollars annually, and they can be the bane of tube processes. Analyzing the criteria for selecting the lubricant, cleaner, and rust preventative can help provide maximum protection.

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