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A healthy alternative

May 10, 2005

Employee wellness programs have a positive and wide-reaching impact on a number of bottom-line issues, from lowering absenteeism to reducing health care claims. This new evidence paired with the steady rise of health care costs has cast employee wellness in a new light.

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Revitalizing the U.S. tool and die industry

May 10, 2005

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The U.S. tooling industry has received quite a bit of press in the past few years documenting its demise. Many people believe the rise of lower-cost tooling industries in foreign countries is the main culprit.Unfortunately, it's not that simple. The U.S. tooling industry's future is precarious, but...

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Making a clear-cut decision

May 10, 2005

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Deciding what automated cutting equipment is best for your small or medium shop depends on many factors: part size, part thickness, part accuracy, parts quantity, computer skills, and machine payback, or return on investment.

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Abrasives that make the grade

May 10, 2005

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Efficient and economical metalworking, from cut-off and grinding operations to blending welds to final finishing, depends on selecting abrasives of the right kind and grade and using them safely.

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Welding zirconium and zirconium alloys Part II

April 11, 2005

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Editor's Note: This is the second installment of a three-part series on welding zirconium. Part I addresses metallurgy, weld preparation, and shielding techniques. Part II covers welding technique. Part III discusses additional methods of joining refractory metals.

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MIG welding tips and resources

April 11, 2005

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Photo courtesy of AlcoTec Wire Corp.Motorcycle- and hot rod-building shows on TV have put welding in a very positive light lately. In fact, Jesse James, the star of Discovery Channel's "Monster Garage," was named the American Welding Society (AWS) Welder of the Year because of his contributions to...

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Innovative die setup and maintenance methods for tube mill cutoff

April 11, 2005

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Figure 1Tube Mill Cutoff - Left to Right - Single CutA comprehensive tooling plan that includes setting up and maintaining sufficient tools according to the original design manufacturer's (ODM) specifications is critical for efficient high-speed tube mill operation. The tube mill cutoff component...

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Using AC for Al

April 11, 2005

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Figure 1Orbital gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) has been used in many industries since its introduction in the 1950s. Developed by the aerospace industry for welding small fittings to tubes, the process was limited by its large power supplies and cumbersome fixtures suited only to workshop...

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Tension control in tube and pipe production

April 11, 2005

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On a tube or pipe mill, the incoming strip is formed by about 24 pairs of tool stands. To help ensure such a line runs smoothly, the strip must be pulled between every pair of stands. The parameter that indicates if or how much the strip is pulled is tension.Traditionally, tension is controlled by...

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Companies with solid training programs will survive the future

April 11, 2005

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Every week I receive a phone call that goes something like this: "I need someone in here to train my guys now. We're behind in filling our customers' orders; our defects are way up; we can't keep the equipment up and running; and the guy who knew how to fix all of this retired six months ago."I try...

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Die Basics 101: Part I

April 11, 2005

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This article is one of a 16-part series on the fundamentals of stamping. Descriptions of all the articles in this series, and links to them, can be found at the end of this article.

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The Big Three's 2005 cost challenges

April 11, 2005

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A decline in the Big Three's market share, combined with rising health care and retiree costs, is contributing to extreme cost pressures for the Big Three and their suppliers.The Sales Situation2004 was a tough year in Detroit. The overall U.S. market for light-vehicle sales increased more than 1.4...

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Rising to great heights in Great Falls

April 11, 2005

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When Waterjet Extreme Technologies (WET), Great Falls, Mont., was asked to bid on a large and lofty fabrication project as part of the Great Falls International Airport redesign, co-owners John Kramarich and Rip Rippetoe viewed the inherent challenges as opportunities to explore the limits of their capabilities while dealing with a limited budget.

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Automatic lubrication application

Optimizing spray nozzle performance for lubrication:

April 11, 2005

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Although mandrel bending is the method most likely to produce a high-quality bend, it is by no means an exact science. Material, size, bend dimensions, and machine variables make it necessary to consider each application individually—and some of these considerations require experience and...

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Evaluating in-house coil slitting

April 11, 2005

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As the cost of steel rises and profit margins shrink, small to medium-sized stampers are looking for ways to reduce costs and streamline operations while maintaining quality.One area to consider is the cost of slitting steel.Shops that run 10,000 to 50,000 tons a year usually outsource slitting....

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