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American Fabricator

April 11, 2006 | By Kate Bachman

How do you get to Hollywood? Ride a motorcycle when you're 3 years old, start welding at 8, and rebuild a car engine at 9—if you want to be the lead fabricator on American Chopper, that is, one of the most popular metal fabrication-as-entertainment reality cable TV shows airing on the Discovery Channel. Paul Sr. and Paul Jr. Teutul are the highly visible father-son pair usually featured in the media. But it is Vincent DiMartino who is the fabricator behind the bikes, the muscle behind the biceps, the grin behind the guns. Vinnie surmised that the automated waterjet from Flow Intl., Kent, Wash., is probably the most sophisticated equipment he uses, and that much of what he fabricates for the choppers is cut on OCC's waterjet.

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Fastener insertion technology moves ahead

April 11, 2006 | By T. C. Boster

Technological advances have turned simple press brakes and punch presses into productivie systems, now accepted as the norm for keeping fabricators competitive. Fastener-insertion machines are now incorporating many of those same advances to provide better quality and productivity and to eliminate bottlenecks as they work with the other technologically advanced fabricating machines in the shop.

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Die Basics 101: Part VII

April 11, 2006 | By Art Hedrick

Previous articles in this series focused on stamping dies and production methods. This article discusses stamping materials—both ferrous and nonferrous.To process, design, and build a successful stamping die, it is necessary to fully understand the behavioral characteristics of the specific...

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Magical, mystical metal

April 11, 2006 | By Vicki Bell

Richard Wilson's metal art reflects his appreciation for metal's lesser-known intrinsic qualities. This article explains how Wilson became a welder and metal artist and describes the materials and processes he uses. It details one project from start to finish. It also offers insight into the future of the welding labor force from Wilson's perspective as a welding instructor and manufacturing consultant.

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How to perform tack welding successfully

April 11, 2006 | By Elia Levi

Tack welding, a necessary preliminary step in many welding projects, must be performed correctly to achieve optimal results from the final weld and to minimize part defects. Quality is as important in tack welding as it is in the final weld. This article describes proper tack welding conditions.

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What do you monitor to ensure quality?

April 11, 2006 | By Paul Hogendoorn

Most manufacturers measure or test parts to verify that the parts meet quality standards. This conventional approach is time-consuming because testing adds steps and time to the production process. Furthermore, it is only as good as the sample size. A different approach to quality is to use a strain monitor to measure strain on the machine's frame. Comparing the strain with a reference (measured when the machine was known to be producing good parts) is a way to monitor the production process, and it doesn't require extra time or steps.

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Weld inspection before you weld

April 11, 2006 | By Paul Cameron

Although it takes effort and time, procedure qualification testing can help you standardize your welding procedures and know what to expect when it comes to the quality of your manufactured parts.

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Getting a handle on coil handling

April 11, 2006 | By Matthew Watson

Coil handling equipment can take up a lot of space, so it's important to consider different equipment configurations and options that may deliver much-needed floor space.

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Keep it moving

April 11, 2006 | By Dan Zimmerman

Conveyor jam-ups or slow-downs can offset machine tool productivity and damage high-production equipment. The solution: a reliable conveyor system that promotes a smooth, uninterrupted production flow.

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How to get a handle on your inventory

April 11, 2006 | By Frank G. Rubury

Well-managed companies have taken aggressive steps to reduce "at-rest" inventory by revamping their supply chains to support smaller, more frequent shipments. Industry sources have reported that some of the best performing stamping companies are turning inventory 28 times annually.

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When a good tube bends bad

April 11, 2006 | By Tony Granelli

Have you ever started with what you thought was a good tube, ended with a bad bend, and wondered where you took a wrong turn? Correcting for defects requires some detective work, and an understanding of the bending process. This article examines tube defects and offers fixes.

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When a good tube bends bad - Part I

March 7, 2006 | By Tony Granelli

Have you ever started with what you thought was a good tube, ended with a bad bend, and wondered where you took a wrong turn?

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Understanding how rotary tube and pipe cutting works

March 7, 2006 | By Joe Mashione

Innovations and new developments in rotary tube and pipe cutting, such as high-speed cutting, minimal heat generation, special holding collets, and automatic loading, trim and sorting have reduced or eliminated time required for secondary operation, improved efficiency, and reduced costs.

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Female student achieves first for school, state

March 7, 2006

Jessica Jelinski takes pride in doing her best when it comes to welding -- that's what propelled her to win first place in the SkillsUSA Wisconsin state welding competition in 2005. Today she uses that work ethic to further her welding career and teach other young people about the trades.

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Productivity: From pipe dream to reality

March 7, 2006 | By Pete Theriot

As pipe fabricators continue to employ more modern welding processes, they also should consider the role that end preparation plays in productivity. Cutting and clamping methods are two areas to study when it comes to pipe fabrication efficiency.

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