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Understanding press feeds

February 7, 2006 | By Bruce Grant

Major technology shifts in how stamping presses are fed have allowed press feed technology to evolve, enabling stampers to realize increased processing speeds, improved processing flexibility, easier setup, and better quality and reliability. Even with today's advancements, a press feed must meet three basic and important criteria to be successful: Setup must be flexible. It must deliver the material with sufficient precision into the tool and die. It must feed at the correct time. Advancements in feed technology include pilot release, space-saving line configurations, transfer/progressive operations, and scratch-free processing.

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Happy New Year!

January 10, 2006 | By W.B. "Bud" Graham

How can we make 2006 better than 2005? One way is to adopt a few work-related new year's resolutions. The author lists five factors that hold the industry back--factors that everyone should resolve to overcome for a successful year.

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Optimizing CO2 laser use: Part I

January 10, 2006 | By David Bell

Many factors can affect laser processing efficiency. This article, Part I of a two-part series, stresses laser system maintenance and discusses factors that can affect beam quality and efficiency—namely, impurities introduced by laser gases and gas supply systems and how to prevent them. It also has a supply system requirements list. Part II discusses beam delivery to the workpiece and the gases used to process the material.

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Are company politics undermining your robotic projects?

January 10, 2006 | By Jim Berge

Success with robotics depends on many factors. Purchasing the right equipment is not enough. A company's political environment and policies regarding robotics can make or break a robotic project. This article discusses poor politics and policies and offers suggestions for achieving the right robotic environment.

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Positive ID

January 10, 2006 | By Tom Anderson, Jim Pasmore

Portable technology is available that can help fabricators positively identify the alloys used in a weldment. This is especially critical when a fabricator is trying to match a filler alloy to a base alloy and application.

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Don't fall down on the job

January 10, 2006

Companies should develop a written fall protection plan and maintain it on the job site. The plan must describe how your company will protect workers on a given work site when employees are working 10 feet or more above the ground, other work surfaces, or water.

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Who you gonna call?

January 10, 2006 | By Steve Beckman

Shopping around for a welding gases distributor involves several key issues critical to a successful long-term business-distributor relationship.

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Elements of success:

January 10, 2006 | By Mike Sammons, Bill Giese

Torches, cables, and cooling are three integral components in gas metal arc welding (GMAW) and gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) equipment, and two cooling methods – air and water – are used in their cooling systems. Although GMAW and GTAW are different processes, the advantages and disadvantages of water- and air-cooled systems are the same. For that reason, you should consider similar factors when choosing a GMAW or GTAW system.

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Finding direction for the welding industry

January 10, 2006 | By Stephanie Vaughan

The welding industry may be the only one forecast to show any growth between now and 2012, but growth in the U.S. is threatened by a number of factors: skilled worker shortages, welding rod litigation; and what some consider the need for greed among business executives.

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Fixturing for abrasive jet machining

January 10, 2006 | By Dr. John H. Olsen

Clamping the workpiece against sideways motion and weighting it against vertical motion will prevent part loss and improve part quality in waterjet machining. This article offers practical fixturing suggestions for both cutting from flat sheet and adding features to existing parts.

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Is your business prepared for a pandemic?

January 10, 2006 | By Vicki Bell

A recent CFO survey found that only 7 percent of businesses are preparing for a potential avian flu pandemic. Preparation is important for this and other events that can disrupt business and endanger employees. Guidelines include training and preparing an ancillary work force. Cross-training current employees and documenting processes can help.

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Organizing your chaos

January 10, 2006 | By Joel Pierson

Many fabricators use fairly rudimentary methods to keep turret press punch tooling stored, but often tooling isn't really organized. A common method is to store tooling horizontally and group tooling by station (A-station tools a grouped together, B-station tools together, etc.). Storing them vertically and grouping them by size (all rounds go together, regardless of station) leads to an elegant and simple organization.

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Wading through the world of welding

January 10, 2006 | By Eric Lundin

Two big tradeshows, Schweissen & Schneiden (Essen, Germany) and the FABTECH® International/AWS Welding Show (Chicago) highlighted several of the trends that have emerged in the welding industry during the last couple of years. Senior Editor Eric Lundin reviews many of the recent developments in arc and laser welding, and the growing use of another joining technology, adhesive bonding.

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Positioning your welds

January 10, 2006 | By Geoff Lipnevicius

Robotic welding can improve your productivity, but only if your fixturing design lets you. When you're designing fixtures for your welding application, consider your fixture's material; welding circuit optimization; orientation and deposition rates; accessibility, repeatability, simplicity, and dependability; and alternatives to fixture design when design costs are prohibitive.

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How to prevent press brake ram upset

January 10, 2006 | By Bob Butchart

Every press brake is subject to normal deflection under load. This deflection is corrected by shimming. If you deflect behond design limits, you will put a permanent bend in the ram and this is known as ram upset. You cannot adjust to compensate for ram upset. Remachining of the ram is the only solution. To avoid causing ram upset be careful about bending loads above your tons per inch limit and only air bend if possible.

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