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Quality springs forward with 3-D printing

January 29, 2015

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Newcomb Spring Corp. makes its quality assurance more efficient by upgrading its inspection equipment and investing in 3-D printing. The company’s move shows how advanced inspection and additive manufacturing work together.

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7 Press automation trends lean toward continued integration, acceleration

January 29, 2015

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Automation trends culled from FABTECH and other products introduced throughout 2014 indicate more integration, acceleration are to come in 2015.

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Shop technology and 3-D CAD: Metal marking

January 28, 2015

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Columnist Gerald Davis walks the CAD operator through the process of creating a drill index.

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The hiring question in metal fabrication: Experience or potential?

January 28, 2015

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Should you hire people with experience or rookies with good potential? It depends on the situation, but training and developing the inexperienced has become more important than ever. There just aren’t enough people with experience to go around.

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Safety catchers protect hydraulic, pneumatic press

January 28, 2015

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Safety catchers prevent a load from crashing down at any position of ascent if a hydraulic or pneumatic pressure system fails, or if a rope, chain, belt, or toothed drive breaks.

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Done-in-one meets structural fabrication

January 23, 2015

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New system introduces full automation to structural fabrication, including cutting, beam and plate handling, and welding.

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Proactive maintenance, predictable performance in metal fabrication

January 23, 2015

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At Midland Metal Products, all machines have asset tags on them. So do calipers and tape measures—and even brooms—and it’s all tracked in a computerized maintenance management system. Tracking asset downtime has made life on the shop floor much more predictable.

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Developing a national, international bending standard for tube and pipe

January 23, 2015

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An update from an article that ran in the September 2013 TPJ, this column describes a research project intended to help eliminate trial-and-error setups, conserve programmers’ time, and help get products to market faster by helping everyone involved in a bending project home in on the optimal bending process before getting started.

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Art in motion

January 22, 2015

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Welder and artist Ed Kidera uses his engineering background to create unusual works of art, many of which are dynamic rather than static.

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Metal fabricators spend big to build capacity

January 22, 2015

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Overall projected capital spending growth has slowed from the dramatic rebound seen postrecession, but the growth continues, especially in capacity-building equipment.

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Automated tooling setup for press brakes

January 22, 2015

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As metal fabricators look to increase throughput in their bending departments while also facing a dearth of seasoned press brake operators, they may find their answer in the form of automated tooling change technology now found on the latest generation of brakes.

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Stamper reduces reliance on appliance with 3-D die design software

January 22, 2015

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SolidWorks-based Logopress3™ software with blank prediction, flattening and unbending, round draw, dynamic interference detection and animation, and strip layout capabilities helped Universal Metal Products accelerate its die design and improve accuracy.

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Taking plasma cutting training to the next level

January 21, 2015

During their visits to welder-education facilities, Hypertherm associates observed a lack of consistent, comprehensive, accurate training in plasma cutting. Not all welding instructors had the knowledge or resources to teach the technology. The company decided to help.

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Using continuous plasma for cleaning, surface activation of tube, pipe

January 21, 2015

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When fabricators need to remove lubricants or corrosion inhibitors from tube or pipe, they have no shortage of choices, both mechanical and chemical. However, they have a third option: Thermal. The intense heat developed in a plasma cleaning processes makes greases, oils, and contaminants inert.

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Don’t buy it, bend it

January 21, 2015

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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.

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