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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Vertical drilling machine

Diversity a blessing for Blessing

May 13, 2008 | By Tim Heston

Diverse customer base—from heavy equipment to medical—key to Blessing Industries' success

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Panel bending workcell

Streamlined scheduling suits fabricator

May 13, 2008 | By Tim Heston

Indianapolis-based Estes Design and Manufacturing has made significant strides in adopting manufacturing-friendly information technology, marrying enterprise resource planning (ERP) and scheduling software to ensure work flows efficiently through the shop.

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Machined-part modeling in 3-D CAD

May 1, 2008 | By Gerald Davis

Columnist Gerald Davis guides the reader through the 3-D design of a coupling that needs to be machined. He starts off with a bad example of how to do it and works his way toward a much better process.

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Laser Marking Safety Mecco

The right trace at the right time

April 15, 2008 | By Dan Davis

You won't find this tale on the DIY cable network, but it's a true story of do-it-yourself success for Ford Motor Co.Despite the sales struggles most North American automakers face, these companies still must move forward with plans to design and produce new models of automobiles. They can't elect...

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Will tube and pipe industry have energy to continue expanding?

April 15, 2008 | By Richard Marando

The current expansion in the tube and pipe industry isn't new, but it bears a close look nonetheless. Understanding the factors that are causing it and how manufacturers are reacting to it provide some guidance to the future of this trend.

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Fabricated aluminum parts

Of cars, this specialty vehicle manufacturer can do it

April 15, 2008 | By Dan Davis

M&M Vehicles Corp., Mexico, Mo., is less a car company and more of a fabricating shop. That's been the case from the beginning when Chris Miller and another employee cut diamond-plate aluminum sheet with a Skil saw blade turned backwards and then hand-bent the sheet to form boxes that graced those early used golf cars.

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CAD pedestal design

3D CAD modeling of sheet metal parts

April 1, 2008 | By Gerald Davis

The main variation in sheet metal modeling technique is when to let the 3D CAD system know that the part is to be treated as sheet metal. Columnist Gerald Davis walks us through three different ways to accomplish this.

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5 tenets for finding and keeping new business

March 25, 2008 | By Jim Romeo

Ann Latham, owner of Uncommon Clarity, a consulting and strategy firm with many industrial clients, has outlined some tenets for firms seeking ambitious marketing goals:1. Select a group to target.You might choose:Those likely to buy your most profitable products.Those within a geographic...

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Engineer using autocad

Work flow goes virtual

March 11, 2008 | By Tim Heston

Mid-West Metal Products, Muncie, Ind., has perfected work flow through ERP and the company's virtual manufacturing plan.

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Resistance weld secondary circuit

Respecting your resistance welder

March 11, 2008 | By Tom Snow

Resistance welding results are only as good as the machine that is completing the process. By understanding how to properly maintain your resistance welding machine, you will be able to prevent unnecessary problems that tend to plague the unit's critical areas.

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Editorial advisory board

Recruit, train, and retain

March 11, 2008 | By Dan Davis

Time has passed, but the times haven't changed that much. A little over two years ago The FABRICATOR's Editorial Advisory Board engaged in a roundtable discussion at the 2005 FABTECH® International & AWS Welding Show in Chicago. The subject that day centered around what industry and...

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What CNC programmers wish you knew

March 1, 2008 | By Gerald Davis

State-of-the-art CNC programming systems speed the first stage of CNC programming by allowing the programmer to import CAD models to define the geometry of the part. That's just the first part, however. To really speed up the design phase, CAD programmers should keep several tips in mind.

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2008 Fabricating Update Graph

Economy edges out other concerns

February 26, 2008 | By Vicki Bell

The fourth annual Fabricating Update subscriber survey revealed that anxiety about the U.S. economy outranks other metal manufacturing industry concerns, including steel prices, the No. 1 concern the previous three years. Beating steel prices by a nose was the skilled-labor shortage. Find out what metal manufacturers think of these and other concerns.

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Marelli Seconn

Nothing standard about this fab shop

February 12, 2008 | By Dan Davis

Rob Marelli left a family-owned metal fabricating company four years ago with the intention of doing things his way. Joined by a loyal group of managers and employees, he's found success at Seconn Fabrication. In the short time the company has been open, it has earned revenues of $9 million. And the company has done this by doing things other metal fabricating competitors aren't.

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Weld nuts diagram

Projection welding for nut and bolt attachment

February 12, 2008 | By John Larsson

Projection welding, also known as resistance fastener welding, is the most common method for nut and M- or T-thread bolt welding. This article examines recent experiments with projection welding of those components to various high-strength steel components.

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