Shop management encompasses everything from strategic planning to the nuts and bolts of statistical process control. Whether you're an executive, manager, or supervisor, you'll find articles about overcoming challenges and struggles just like yours.
June 15, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Ironform Corp. formed in 2013 after Wynnchurch Capital purchased two large metal fabricators. But Ironform’s story is more about scaling up metal fabrication through acquisition. It’s about adapting the principles of lean manufacturing to custom metal fabrication—on a large scale.
June 15, 2016 | By Tim Heston
General Sheet Metal Works has experienced double-digit growth in recent years. For a $70 million operation, that’s saying something. And yet, the company has few growing pains to speak of—thanks to a new business structure that has made scaling up much easier.
June 9, 2016 | By Michelle Howell
If you need more workers and you’re having a difficult time finding them, perhaps you should explore equipment options that can mitigate the need for more help. For example, some welding tables can eliminate the need for extra hands.
June 3, 2016 | By Jeff Sipes
Keeping all employees engaged all the time isn’t easy, but the benefits are substantial. Ultimately, such engagement unleashes employee talent.
June 3, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Merrill Technologies Group, Saginaw, Mich., has implemented a strategy that managers hope will double the size of the company over the next five years.
June 2, 2016 | By Josh Kurtz
If you are considering a lighting retrofit, chances are you're already aware that tax incentives and rebates are available, and you're counting on them to shorten your ROI.
June 2, 2016 | By Jeffrey Dean
Power hammers are pieces of equipment that hark back to the earliest days of metal fabricating. Today’s power hammers allow fabricators to lean on the technology, not purely on brawn, to deliver the shaping blows. While power hammers are not found in many precision sheet metal shops, many operations do employ them. In fact, they are a key part of the operation.
May 26, 2016 | By Eric Lundin
Many small businesses grow quickly in the early years, but eventually growth hits a plateau. Big gains in additional growth come from gaining new customers or acquiring another company. In Going to Market, a presentation at The FABRICATOR®’s Leadership Summit, Lisa Wertzbaugher, sales and marketing manager for fabricator Superior Tube Products, discussed a four-part strategy for expanding the company’s sales, revenue, and profitability.
May 23, 2016 | By Dan Davis
The goal of forward-thinking fabrication shops is to be closely involved in a customer's supply chain, where perhaps it participates in part designs and design for manufacturability activities. If a shop is to be an active supply chain partner, it needs to be able to stay on top of engineering change orders and part design discussion. Cloud-based product life cycle management software can help.
May 23, 2016 | By Jeff Sipes
Manufacturing is all about flow, both of physical products and information. You can plan for good flow. But if you let it evolve on its own, you will be dealing with the waste and efficiency that evolution creates.
May 23, 2016 | By Gerald Davis
Columnist Gerald Davis reviews methods for creating walk-through animations. The use of a camera following a path is discussed.
May 12, 2016 | By Dr. Jan Antonis
Coordinate measuring using robust camera technology means that fabricators may no longer have to construct jigs or learn programming software to conduct quality checks of parts.
May 9, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Koester Metals Inc. conquered its growing pains after the recession. It moved to a new facility to follow demand, improved and formalized training, and invested in new technology.
May 2, 2016 | By Thom Romer
A metal fabricator checks incoming raw material before signing off on it. Doesn't it make sense to pay as much attention to the material leaving the facility? The potential return on the effort suggests "yes."
April 27, 2016 | By Tim Heston
MECO, a metal manufacturer in east Tennessee, has a history both in product line and contract manufacturing. Moving forward, company leaders consider R&D the key to future growth.