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thefabricator.com is the digital home of The FABRICATOR magazine, the metal fabricating industry’s foremost authority on manufacturing technology. Technical articles, case studies, and company profiles from The FABRICATOR and its sister publications, Practical Welding Today, The Tube & Pipe Journal, and STAMPING Journal can be found on this site. Additionally, thefabricator.com has a team of subject matter experts that write exclusively for the website, covering topics such as welding skills and metal forming basics.

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Maintaining good cut quality when using an abrasive saw

May 2, 2016 | By Scott Allen

A fabricator that can find the right abrasive wheel for the job, can figure out the right cutting speed and downfeed rate, and can find the right saw with enough power likely doesn’t have to worry about poor-quality cuts while abrasive cutting.

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Reporting to OSHA after a severe injury

May 2, 2016 | By Tim Heston

During their presentation at the FMA Annual Meeting, attorney David Jones, along with Doug Raff, owner of Paragon Industrial Controls, showed a lot about what a fabricator can expect during an OSHA inspection after reporting a major injury. They gave insights as to how companies can best navigate the OSHA inspection and citation process.

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Do you manage scrap properly?

May 2, 2016 | By Thom Romer

A metal fabricator checks incoming raw material before signing off on it. Doesn't it make sense to pay as much attention to the material leaving the facility? The potential return on the effort suggests "yes."

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Applications: Deburring machinery improves quality, speed in flame-cut part production

April 28, 2016

Situation Eisen- und Stahlhandel Straub GmbH, a family-owned company based in Lichtenau, Germany, processes more than 4,000 tons of steel per month. The core business is cutting and bending concrete reinforcement steel and cutting, drilling, and sandblasting steel profiles. The company also...

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Tennessee metal manufacturer ramps up research

April 27, 2016 | By Tim Heston

MECO, a metal manufacturer in east Tennessee, has a history both in product line and contract manufacturing. Moving forward, company leaders consider R&D the key to future growth.

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Right-size your waterjet cutting machine

April 27, 2016 | By Jim Fields

Most fabricators choose waterjets with large work envelopes because they process large parts, but there’s a productivity element to consider as well, especially when it comes to material loading/unloading. Myriad other factors play a role, too, including horsepower and the number of cutting heads.

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The sheet metal bending department evolves

April 27, 2016 | By Tim Heston

As cutting productivity rises to unprecedented levels, fabricators tackle their next bottleneck: bending. Today, panel benders, folders, and press brakes with automated tool changing are expanding forming possibilities and making new levels of bending productivity possible.

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Making metal forming math more meaningful

April 25, 2016 | By Bill Frahm

In the world of metal forming, relying on assumptions can lead to expensive disasters. That’s why activities such as die tryout need to be based on solid math. The results of these mathematical efforts then need to be shared in a language that decision-makers can understand.

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Plater-fabricator partnership thrives on three key strategies

April 18, 2016 | By Eric Lundin

Establishing an effective plating process for demanding applications is one thing; running a successful plating business is something else altogether. The former requires technical know-how; the latter requires soft skills and business acumen. Gatto Industrial Platers has established itself as adept at both of these endeavors.

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Tips on designing tubular parts for bending

April 18, 2016 | By Jon Canfield

Designing components, assemblies, and finished products is one thing; designing them for ease of manufacturability is something else altogether. Designers and engineers can use the tips in this article to design bent tubular parts to be as simple, and therefore as economical, as possible.

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Best practices for laser cutting tube, pipe, profiles

April 18, 2016 | By Eric Lundin

Interviews with BLM, LVD Strippit, Mazak, and TRUMPF reveal tips and tactics for buying, handling, cleaning, cutting tube. Other topics include machine maintenance, software upgrades, and operator training.

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Heartthrob finds a less exhausting way to clean parts

April 18, 2016 | By Eric Lundin

Cleaning the inside of long, bent tubes is a chore, especially when it has to be done outdoors in inclement weather. Nobody knew this better than the staff at Heartthrob Exhaust Accessories, Litchfield, Minn., when they had to use a pressure washer outside during winter months. An ultrasonic cleaning machine brought the process indoors while making it faster and less labor intensive.

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Shop technology and 3-D CAD: A review of animation tools to improve the work flow for moviemaking

April 18, 2016 | By Gerald Davis

Columnist Gerald Davis reviews methods for creating animations. The use of dedicated software is discussed.

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Ask the Stamping Expert: Do die repairs require full lockout/tagout?

April 18, 2016 | By Dennis Cattell

Editor’s Note: Regular readers of this column might recognize that Mr. Cattell answered a similar question in the May/June 2010 issue of STAMPING Journal®. Since this question reflects a common concern among stampers—and is asked of Mr. Cattell quite frequently in his work—we felt it would be beneficial to address the issue again.

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Ask the Stamping Expert: How can I form titanium successfully?

April 15, 2016 | By Thomas Vacca

Q: We are getting more and more inquiries for components made of titanium. We have never worked with this material. Any advice? A: Titanium can be cold- or hot-formed on standard equipment using techniques similar to those used on stainless steels, but you need to consider two main issues: The...

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