Articles

Filter Content

Don’t buy it, bend it

January 21, 2015

By:

Bill Farris, owner of auto components supplier and repair shop Marden Tire & Auto, Rockford, Ill., focused on tires and repairs for many years, staying away from the inventory-heavy exhaust business. All that changed when King Cobra Muffler Centers Inc. approached him with a new way to handle exhaust systems: Stock straight pipe and bend systems when necessary.

Continue Reading

1+1+1+1 = Clarity

January 21, 2015

By:

Selecting a helmet involves more than just pulling one off of a shelf, putting it on, and getting to work. A number of considerations come into play during the selection process — personal safety, wearer comfort, and optical clarity. The latter has moved from something hard to determine without guesswork to something that has true quantifiable benchmarks with the advent of the European Standard EN 379 1/1/1/1.

Continue Reading

The capacity dilemma in custom metal fabrication

January 20, 2015

By:

During this long, slow economic recovery, there’s plenty of churn in the market. Customers are less hesitant to change suppliers to get what they want. In this environment, having insufficient capacity has become very risky.

Continue Reading

Consumables Corner: Causes of centerline cracking in FCAW root passes

January 20, 2015

By: , ,

Q: We are a bridge and structural steel manufacturing shop that uses a mixture of common base materials such as A36, A572, and A992. Recently we’ve been experiencing sporadic centerline cracks in the root passes of fabricated I-beams that we weld with flux-cored arc welding (FCAW). Oddly enough,...

Continue Reading

Arc Welding 101: Put your finger on it

January 20, 2015

By:

Q: I'm a welding instructor at a steel mill in northwest Indiana. We attended the “Train the Trainer” class at the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology 12 years ago to certify in all positions, limited and unlimited thickness plates with backing, using all shielded metal arc welding (SMAW)...

Continue Reading

Aluminum Workshop: Why it’s so hard to weld anodized aluminum

January 20, 2015

By:

Q: I bought some anodized 6061-T6 tubing to make a structural framework and I’m having trouble welding it. The welds are black and ugly. Can you help? A: I think I can help. First, it would be helpful to explain what anodizing is. Anodizing is a reverse plating operation of sorts in which the...

Continue Reading

Producing stainless steel tubing for the medical industry

January 20, 2015

By:

Industry veteran Michael Ferreri provides an overview of the common methods of producing small-diameter stainless steel tubing for medical applications

Continue Reading

Fabrication minus the relaxation

January 15, 2015

By:

No-niche southwest Florida fabricator grows big in small time frame

Continue Reading

Redefining shipbuilding and fabricating with new plasma cutting equipment

January 15, 2015

By:

Great Lakes Shipyard, Cleveland, added a plasma cutting machine to its fabricating operations, which helps it to make more of its own parts without relying on subcontractors that don't always meet delivery dates.

Continue Reading

Managing maintenance for laser cutting machines

January 15, 2015

By:

Unscheduled downtime is an incredible headache for a busy fabricating operation. An adherence to a smart maintenance schedule and empowering a maintenance team can eliminate these production surprises.

Continue Reading

Rethinking the production meeting

January 12, 2015

By:

Metal fabricators are better at manufacturing than holding meetings, but some sort of regularly occurring production meeting is needed to get everyone on the same page. Several fabricators offer their opinions as to what works best for them in their production powwow.

Continue Reading

Improving quality through good change: Metcam tackles kaizen

January 9, 2015

By:

All manufacturers seek to improve processes and ROI. Alpharetta, Ga.-based Metcam, a fabricator of sheet metal components and assemblies, has seen significant improvement since beginning its kaizen initiative in late 2013. What follows is the company’s blueprint for kaizen success.

Continue Reading

Pushing the solid-state laser speed limit

January 9, 2015

Solid-state lasers theoretically could cut through thin sheet at up to 1,000 meters per minute, though no machine in the world can drive a laser at that speed. But new approaches to laser cutting are bringing laser cutting speeds closer to the theoretical maximum.

Continue Reading

Safety and regulatory overview for powder coating

January 8, 2015

By:

Like any manufacturing process, powder coating has the potential to be dangerous if the right safety precautions haven’t been taken. By referencing a few key standards, a manufacturer can keep the powder coating line going and the operators safe.

Continue Reading

Flying high at FABTECH

January 8, 2015

By:

More than 30,000 visited the FABTECH 2014, a show that had several dominant themes: skilled labor, intuitive manufacturing technology, and supply chain collaboration.

Continue Reading