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Tough optics for extreme laser welding

July 29, 2014

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Engineers at EWI have developed laser welding optics tailored for high-power applications.

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Keeping sheets and parts moving with automation

July 29, 2014

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Modern laser cutting technology can achieve speeds of more than 400 inches per minute, and that puts pressure on the automation used to load sheets and unload cut parts and skeletons. If the automated material handling system can’t keep up, the fabricator won’t be able to maximize uptime on the laser cutting machine.

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Fiber laser lights the way for new business direction

July 29, 2014

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To bring in more high-volume work, Deltec Inc., Batavia, Ohio, needed to expand its laser cutting capacity. New fiber laser cutting technology proved to be the right fit.

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A matter of asking the right questions

July 28, 2014

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Some purchasers may view a fabricated metal product as a commodity, and if it’s a simple enclosure or flat piece-part, it may well be. But they’re not buying products, really. They’re buying expertise, both in fabrication and in capacity management.

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Refurbishing servo-drive triaxis transfer systems cost-effectively

July 28, 2014

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Upgrade transfer systems’ controls, drives, and bearings without complete replacement with a refurbishment. An appliance-maker had new rail connections, new wireless electrical connection methods for part tracking, electronic torque monitoring, and new kinetics drives installed as part of its press modernization program at 75 percent of the cost of new transfers.

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New Machine, Same Tooling

July 28, 2014

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In planning the recent expansion,it was important to the company that it be able to continue using its large pre-existing inventory of punching tooling.

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Getting Automated: Transitioning from hand-held to CNC plasma cutting

July 28, 2014

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Transitioning from the manual plasma cutting process to CNC plasma cutting process might seem like a daunting task. However, if you enter into the process prepared and with the facts, you’ll find that the switch can be relatively painless and one that can help grow your business.

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A second-chance career

July 28, 2014

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A maritime welding program, jointly created by Vigor Industrial and South Seattle College, is part of a greater initiative in Washington state-to return idled workers to gainful employment. The class doesn’t just help the underemployed, it also helps feed the resurging shipbuilding industry in the greater Seattle area.

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Differentiating in a commoditized market

July 24, 2014

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There are four principles to understand about differentiation and the buying factors that go beyond price: They always exist; they have economic value; they vary by customer; and they change with time, because yesterday’s differentiators can be tomorrow’s commodity.

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Success breeds success as hardbanding service provider evolves into equipment vendor

July 21, 2014

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When Dave Milo set out to build a portable hardbanding unit, the former trucking company owner knew little about welding and nothing about hardbanding. After updating the hardbanding unit design a few times with consulting help from Lincoln Electric, Milo thinks he’s ready to change direction. Rather than providing hardbanding services, his goal is to sell hardbanding machines.

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Safety first at McAlpin Industries

July 21, 2014

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A consultant told the management of McAlpin Industries, Rochester, N.Y., that it was only a matter of time before the metal fabricator suffered a major safety incident. That spurred the shop to take steps to create a safety-first environment. Today, McAlpin Industries has been recognized with one of the top safety awards in manufacturing: the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association’s Rusty Demeules Award for Safety Excellence.

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Cutting opportunities in hollow structural sections

July 21, 2014

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The construction industry’s use of hollow structural sections (HSS) has been on the rise since the recession. Because of their high strength, HSS allow engineers to use less material, extending the maximum unbraced length between structural members. It’s in this environment that the tube cutting laser is beginning to open up new opportunities.

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Consumables Corner: Examining weld cracking, Part II—Stress, hydrogen cracking

July 16, 2014

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Editor’s Note: This is the second column in a two-part series. Q: I work in a midsized job shop, and we weld with the FCAW, GMAW, and SMAW processes. Occasionally we encounter weld cracking issues. What causes weld cracking, and what can I do to prevent it? A: Stress cracking is similar to hot...

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Consumables Corner: Examining weld cracking, Part I—Hot cracking

July 15, 2014

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Editor’s Note: This is the first article of a two-part series. Q: I work in a midsized job shop, and we weld with the FCAW, GMAW, and SMAW processes. Occasionally we encounter weld cracking issues. What causes weld cracking, and what can I do to prevent it? A: To ensure that the measures you...

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Customized lift truck provides safer, quicker unloading of tube, pipe, other long loads

July 10, 2014

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BSS Industrial, a plumbing and heating products distributor, was accustomed to using slings affixed to its fork lifts to lift tube bundles from truck beds. The drawback was that on occasion the load would swing, creating a tipping risk for the lift truck. Lift truck manufacturer Combilift developed a truck with standard-length forks for placing and picking inventory, and a longer set of forks for lifting tube bundles from the delivery vehicle’s bed.

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