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Behind the hype of additive manufacturing

July 7, 2015

Additive manufacturing, otherwise known as 3-D printing, is here to stay. It won’t change the world overnight, but for the right application, an additive process can be a true game-changer.

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Shop technology and 3-D CAD: Document management

July 6, 2015

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Columnist Gerald Davis offers an overview of using document management tools with a CAD workstation.

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R&D Update: Forming aluminum alloys at elevated temperatures, Part II

July 1, 2015

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Elevated-temperature (ET) forming of aluminum can be accomplished isothermally or nonisothermally. In isothermal warm forming, the die, blank holder, and punch are heated. In nonisothermal deep drawing, the die and blank holder are heated, and the punch may or may not be cooled. The die and punch...

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Die Science: Drawing and stretching

July 1, 2015

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When I conduct training seminars on drawing and stretching, I usually bring with me a variety of unusual parts made using those processes. Often, attendees ask how to stretch the metal into a shape such as a deep can or deeply formed part without splitting the metal. I simply answer: “We don’t....

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Forming aluminum on the press brake: Bending soft, not sharp

June 29, 2015

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Air bending soft aluminum has such a low tensile strength that it doesn't take much for a narrow punch tip to penetrate the surface and turn the bend sharp.

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Keeping it together at 330 MPH

June 29, 2015

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Top Fuel races are a dazzling sight, covering 1,000 feet in little more than 3 seconds. The drivers get the glory and the engines get the attention—they develop approximately 10,000 horsepower—but underneath the car’s exterior is a marvel of modern engineering: a tubular chassis that somehow holds together through 4G of acceleration during the race and the even harsher 5G of deceleration when it’s over.

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Ask the Expert: How can I evaluate the performance of recycled lubricant in-house?

June 29, 2015

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Q: I have an issue regarding the consumption of stamping lubricant in our facility. The toolroom is requesting to use only new lubricant rather than recycled, as well as a richer lubricant mix in some tools. This is increasing our lubricant and disposal costs. Is there a test that I can perform...

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Employees set the pace for success

June 25, 2015

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Wisconsin Metal Parts Inc., Waukesha, Wis., has grown its metal fabricating business very aggressively in recent years. The latest machine tool technology has helped, but its employees have made it stay in control and on course.

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Lean manufacturing in producing square, retangular tubing

June 24, 2015

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Tube and pipe mills conventionally use a set of tooling for every tube or pipe diameter, and the tools are mounted to opposing stands. Cage forming provides an alternative forming process that uses a single set of tools.

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Fabricators flying ultralights

June 24, 2015

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Most people who own ultralight aircraft buy them fully assembled, but this isn't the only option. U-Fly-It, DeLand, Fla., lets the buyer be the builder if he's handy and has about two weeks to spare.

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New coil-applied nonmetallic coating protects press-hardenable steel

June 23, 2015

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Press-hardening high-strength steel is an important component in automotive construction to provide crash-worthiness. Several coating options are available today for use on stamped, press-hardened steel parts. However, none of these options are without limitations or challenges, such as cracking, coating transfer, fumes, weldability problems, and the need for shotblasting. A new coating technique has been developed and shows promise. The coating is a very thin (2- to 3-μm-thick), paint-like, rather than metallic, coating. It consists of a siloxane resin acting as the binder with aluminum flake to act as the sacrificial filler, so it meets the requirements to be inorganic and to contain a sacrificial oxidized material.

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When life hands you lemons, build a sign

June 23, 2015

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After the sign for his auto repair business fell off the building, Dominick Alia tried his hand at fashioning his own sign. One thing led to another, and metal sculpture became a hobby.

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Clamp, enclose, laser-weld

June 23, 2015

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Laser welding works extremely well, as long as you have the right enclosure, keep a clean environment, and make sure you have proper clamping to maintain a consistent gap between your base metals. One laser welding technology tackles all three of these challenges.

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Negative pressure yields positive results in resistance welding

June 23, 2015

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A system helps resistance welding lines save water as tip changeouts become more frequent. The technology uses negative pressure, similar to placing your thumb on top of a straw and lifting it out of a glass of water.

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How project management drives manufacturing success

June 23, 2015

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Manufacturing is no longer about making millions of this or that for years on end. It instead entails a team of experts who get together to tackle a project—or, in reality, many projects at once. This exemplifies modern metal manufacturing, and at Duggan Manufacturing, it happens every day.

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