Shop Management Articles

Shop management encompasses everything from strategic planning to the nuts and bolts of statistical process control. Whether you're an executive, manager, or supervisor, you'll find articles about overcoming challenges and struggles just like yours.

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Heavy Plate Fabrication Welder

Ultrafabrication, ultraexpansion

August 26, 2008

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Ultra Machine & Fabrication, through significant capital outlays, has built an infrastructure ready to complete in the heavy plate market.

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Lori and Traci Tapani Closeup

Cycling through a business transition

August 26, 2008

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Lori and Traci Tapani, co-presidents of Wyoming Machine, aren't your typical metal fabrication managers. Together, they've managed to diversify their family business into a thriving, stable enterprise.

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5S—The foundation for lean and safe

August 26, 2008

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Lean, a popular term in manufacturing, most often is associated with organizing and eliminating waste on the shop floor. However, lean is also very effective in the office environment. Having a lean operation across the board improves efficiency, productivity, and safety. This article discusses the benefits of 5S and how to implement it.

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ASME and AWS welding codes—Similarities and differences - TheFabricator.com

ASME and AWS welding codes—Similarities and differences

August 26, 2008

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Welding codes are designed to improve the quality and efficiency of welding and are used to qualify welders. Predominate among welding codes in the U.S. are those authored by ASME and AWS. This article provides a brief overview of the similarities and differences in these codes.

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Angle Grinder

Shake, rattle, and the toll

August 26, 2008

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Operating an angle grinder is a tough job. Find out what angle grinder manufacturers are doing to make the tools more user- friendly, including lightening the weight, enhancing antivibration measures, and improving safety.

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Ace Metal crafts executives

Getting lean, job shop style

August 26, 2008

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Ace Metal Crafts has promoted its own brand of lean that, more than anything, gives employees ownership over the process.

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SeaWorld Orlando

(Un) memorable fabrication

August 12, 2008

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Oceaneering's structural fab operation has built "dark ride" vehicles for theme parks around the world. It has custom-fabricated and erected aluminum components for a mammoth advertisement overlooking Times Square. It has welded a structural mount that holds up the recovered World Trade Center antenna, now on display at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. And it has fabricated and erected duplex stainless steel bridges over killer whale pools at the San Diego and Orlando SeaWorld® parks. That's quite a portfolio of jobs, and all of them quietly have gotten their start at a structural fabrication facility on the outskirts of Baltimore.

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One easy piece to model

August 1, 2008

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Columnist Gerald Davis believes it's a shame when a shop doesn't use its 3-D CAD software to its fullest potential. That's why he takes the reader through a modeling tutorial.

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Intelligent business investments in uncertain economic times

July 29, 2008

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When the going gets tough, businesses have a tendency to make broad, sweeping budget cuts, sometimes without taking into consideration the long-range effect of the proposed cuts. Key investments in certain areas can streamline processes, improve operations, and ultimately have a positive effect on the bottom line.

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Car body frame

Getting work from the New Domestics

July 15, 2008

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Stampers can take some steps to position themselves for work from automotive "transplants." In some cases, it's just a matter of being there, literally, by locating nearby. Furthermore, it's important to adhere to the unique requirements for materials and practices.

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3-D CAD Modeling Figure 1a

Getting a handle on 3-D CAD modeling

July 1, 2008

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Columnist Gerald Davis provides the reader with a brief overview of some of the handy 3-D CAD tools he uses when doing basic modeling techniques.

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Chemical Containers

What fabricators need to know about REACH

June 30, 2008

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The registration, evaluation, and authorization of chemicals (REACH) legislation enacted by the European Union is a complicated chemical management program that could affect manufacturers worldwide, including metal fabricators. This article sheds light on the legislation and provides resources to answer fabricators' questions about REACH.

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defibrillator

A matter of life or death

June 30, 2008

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Journalist Tim Russert's death from a heart attack caused many of us to think about what might transpire should a cardiac arrest or other life-threatening event happen to us at work. Responsible, sensible companies have first-aid programs designed to minimize damage and increase the likelihood of survival.

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Kaikaku pie chart

Automotive toolmaking tricknology : Applying NUMMI's concepts to tool and diemaking

June 17, 2008

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In 1984 the Fremont, Calif. GM assembly plant shuttered under the strain of horrible management-labor relationships. Toyota offered to reopen the plant in a joint venture with GM implementing its Toyota Production System. Tool and diemaking shops can apply the same NUMMI concepts to revitalize their companies and reinvent themselves.

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Bankruptcy empty pockets image

When customers and suppliers file bankruptcy

June 17, 2008

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Although economic growth in recent years has resulted in fewer business bankruptcies, increasing signs of economic slowdown may mean that fabricators will soon see more of their customers or suppliers file for bankruptcy.

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