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High-performance coating helps stamper fight downtime

December 7, 2004

Depending on the severity of the application, some stamping dies require frequent reconditioning or recoating. However, some coating processes are done at such high temperatures that the dies become distorted and unuseable, requiring further regrinding. Omni Mfg. encountered this problem in stamping a heavy-duty hinge. It then discovered FortiPhy UltraEndurance™ from Phygen Inc., which increased the hit count on its dies from 20,000 to 200,000 between recoatings. The coating is applied at a relatively low temperature, so distortion is not a factor.

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Racing against the clock

December 7, 2004

Prince Industries Inc., a contract manufacturer of CNC machined components, branched out into CNC fabricated components several years ago when it purchased two turret punch presses, a plasma machine, and a laser with manual loading and unloading. These machines were quickly overburdened with the growing workload, so the company sought a more modern laser with automated material handling.

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Providing a comfortable, safe environment for workers with disabilities

December 7, 2004

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Editor's Note: Much of the following information was taken from a U.S. Department of Justice comprehensive list of questions and answersabout the Americans With Disabilities Act.Does your company have 15 or more employees? If so, it must comply with the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) that...

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Wise words from the mountaintop—Part 12

December 1, 2004

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Editor's Note: This is the twelfth episode in a mountaintop dialogue that Gerald has been having with a "wise business guru." They have been talking about establishing a continuous improvement program."Continuous improvement," I grumbled. There are excellent books on this topic and I have read a...

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U.S. manufacturing – A look at the future work force and its needs

November 9, 2004

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When I entered the manufacturing work force more than 34 years ago, the work environment, work force, and the future of U.S. manufacturing looked a whole lot different.

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Weld repair—Analyze the failure before attempting the repair

November 9, 2004

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When something breaks, you acknowledge the shock, scratch your head, take stock of the situation, and look for the fastest way to repair the item and put it back into operation. The pressure to repair quickly is understandable, but common sense suggests stopping for a moment and trying to understand what caused the break before attempting the repair.

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A tribute to veterans

November 9, 2004

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Editor's Note: The U.S. remembers its armed forces' veterans twice each year— Memorial Day in May and Veterans Day in November. In this article, Marty Rice, a reader-favorite author on thefabricator.com, pays tribute to veterans and describes how one metal sculptor chose to represent an important part of a serviceman's or — woman's life.

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Pay Attention! To safety

November 9, 2004

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Boredom may not appear to be a significant obstacle to a safe workplace, but the problem is that boredom usually translates into poor retention and learning. Workers who are bored by the safety training programs don't learn as well as those who find their training programs interesting and exciting. Failure to retain safety education material can make all the difference on the shop floor or out at the job site.

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The meeting of the manufacturers

November 9, 2004

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A new organization in Rockford, Ill., thinks job shops working together
is a MARRVelousidea.

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Managing Success: The value of rewards

November 9, 2004

Editor's Note: This column was prepared by the staff of Winning Workplaces, a not-for-profit organization that helps small and midsized businesses create better work environments.Employee reward programs can be a great way to motivate staff. If set up correctly, they are a win/win proposition that...

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Successful stamping: It's a 'we' thing

November 9, 2004

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As a consultant and educator, I travel to numerous die shops and stamping plants, and almost all of them have the same basic request:"Can you show these tooling guys how to make the dies run better?"I hear comments like "We sure have a lot of downtime and scrap, not to mention the usual problems...

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On the road again

November 9, 2004

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Contract manufacturer Morton Metalcraft talks about how it faces challenges in fabricating weldments and assemblies for heavy-duty equipment, including ramping up after a slowdown—with machines, manpower, and material, and revising material flow.

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Selecting a tube cutting process

November 9, 2004

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Tube fabricators use a variety of methods—sawing, lathe cutting, rotary cutting, supported shear cutting, dual-blade shear cutting, and laser cutting—to cut tubing from mill lengths into shorter pieces for use in final fabrication. No single method is optimal for cutting the broad range of tubular materials and tubular shapes produced by this industry.

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Know when to fold 'em

November 9, 2004

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Folding machines aren't the fastest machines for bending sheet metal, but for low- to medium-volume production, they can provide an efficient bending process. Because the equipment operator does not support the weight of the material during the bending cycle, folding machines are well suited to large, bulky parts. Also, part quality is not dependent on an operator's skill.

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Challenges and considerations in joining exotic materials

November 9, 2004

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Every day Voss Aerospace faces challenges that vary as much as the materials its welders join and fabrication processes they use.

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