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Reinventing the caster wheel

October 30, 2014

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It sounds funny, but casters really are the wheels that assist in the smooth part flow that lean manufacturing demands.

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The human side of selling a business

October 30, 2014

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Cancer greatly altered the ownership sitatuation for GH Metal Solutions in 2005, but several years of hard work to put the company on a new growth path helped the fabricator to find just rhe right owner.

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The bright side of proper fume extraction

October 30, 2014

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All Rite Industries, Lake Zurich, Ill., found success when it added robotic welding capabilities to its high-volume stamping business, but also found that its older fume extraction system couldn't keep up with the new cells. A new ventilation system helped to remove the shop floor haze.

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Arc Welding 101: Hands-off MIG education

October 30, 2014

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Q: I recently bought a gas metal arc welding (GMAW) machine, and I’ve also just completed a beginner’s welding course at the local college. Unfortunately, the basics don’t explain enough about the controls, such as voltage, wire speed, and stickout, and how they affect the weld penetration,...

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Where is your press brake tooling?

October 30, 2014

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An organized workspace is an efficient workspace. Press brake technicians should have all the tools they need to perform a changeover. Unlabeled punches and dies, stored haphazardly on a rack, on the floor, or in boxes, only make their jobs harder.

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Don’t underestimate MIG welding skills

October 29, 2014

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Plenty of welding training programs start with gas metal arc welding, or MIG welding, because it’s fairly easy to start laying a pretty consistent bead—under very simple and consistent conditions. As a result, most people look at gas tungsten arc welding, or TIG welding, with its need to use both hands while simultaneously operating a foot pedal, as a more complicated welding process. In a large-scale metal fabricating operation’s world, those people would be wrong.

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More than a metal warehouse—Behind the scenes at Pacesetter Steel

October 29, 2014

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Metal service centers are a vital part of the fabricating world, and their fortunes are closely aligned with their customers’. Here’s a look at how one center fared during the Great Recession and where it’s headed with its young CEO at the helm.

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Arc Welding 101: Determining correct gas ratios

October 29, 2014

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Q: For years we have used 75/25 argon/carbon dioxide during gas metal arc welding (GMAW). I was told by my supplier that I needed to change to 90/10. Will one gas mixture provide better welding penetration than the other? Most of our work is mild steel (A-36), 0.1875 to 0.25 in. thick, although we...

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Arc Welding 101: Finding the 'best buy'

October 28, 2014

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Q: I’m looking for a Consumer Reports-type study on gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW) machines. As a small-business owner, I would like to know what would be the best buy. Have you done any reports on welding machines in terms of best makes and models? Glenn H. A: To answer your question, no, I...

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Arc Welding 101: Preweld cleaning tips for TIG

October 27, 2014

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Q: My primary function is to go into commercial kitchens and gas tungsten arc weld (GTAW) stainless steel that is covered in grease, dirt, and dust. In open areas I can grind the grease off, but I have a problem in tight corners that I can’t get into with a grinder. Can you recommend any cleaning...

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Arc Welding 101: API 1104 qualifications

October 24, 2014

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Q: What is the procedure to qualify welding procedure specifications (WPS) as well as a welder to American Petroleum Institute (API) Standard 1104, Welding Pipelines and Related Facilities? What tests are necessary to qualify? A: Your questions are good ones. I often receive similar questions...

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Arc Welding 101: A WPS lesson for beginners

October 23, 2014

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Q: Recently I was given a weld procedure specification (WPS) from a contractor to review. It’s still lying on my desk. Do you have any tips for a beginner like myself on how to review a WPS? Habeeb R. A: It’s time to pick up that WPS off your desk and give it a good, hard look. The first...

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Uncovering waste with an all-encompassing metric

October 22, 2014

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Manufacturing critical-path time, MCT, is a broad metric that encompasses the entire enterprise. The shorter an organization's MCT, the more adaptable and successful it can be.

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Plasma cutting or laser cutting? How about both?

October 22, 2014

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Not all parts need the tight-tolernace edge that laser cutting provides; now a fabricator canhave the fine touch of laser cutting and the poweful force of plasma cutting for thicker materials in one machine.

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Giving a welding robot some eyes

October 22, 2014

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Vision systems for a welding application usually are reserved for critical jobs associated with high costs of failure. New technology developments, however, may be introducing this technology to a new audience.

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