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U.S. productivity gain largest since third quarter 2003

August 11, 2009

The Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor today reported preliminary productivity data—as measured by output per hour of all persons—for the second quarter of 2009. The seasonally adjusted annual rates of productivity change in the second quarter were 6.3 percent in...

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The job shop CRM revolution

August 11, 2009 | By David Lechleitner

Implementing a customer-focused strategy can position companies for long-term health. A loyal customer will stick with a company through tough economic times, employee turnover, and even the occasional price increase. This article focuses on how integrated customer relationship management tools can help job shops achieve business objectives.

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Plasma cutting and how it works

August 11, 2009 | By Kent Swart

What is plasma cutting, and when is it your best metal cutting option? What information do you need to choose the right plasma system? This article answers these questions and more about plasma cutting.

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Realigning value

August 7, 2009 | By Tim Heston

The numbers popping up in the media recently draw an interesting, perhaps conflicted picture of the state of business in the U.S. Here's why.First, there's unemployment. Like many, I expected the unemployment rate to continue its relentless rise past the symbolic 10 percent mark. It...

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August hiring to follow recent pattern of gradual monthly improvement

August 7, 2009

Layoffs continue to permeate the labor market, but more companies in the manufacturing and service sectors are hiring compared with the first few months of 2009, according to the Society for Human Resource Management's (SHRM) Leading Indicators of National Employment (LINE) survey for August...

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Global cooling?

August 6, 2009 | By Eric Lundin

Ask 10 people what they enjoy most about summer and you"ll get 10 different answers. Ask 10 people how they measure summer, and I"ll bet you"ll also get 10 different, and probably more interesting, answers. I suppose the younger-than-10-years-old set can"t quite wrap their arms around the...

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Rotary punching revisited

August 6, 2009 | By Paul Williams

New ways to increase production, reduce labor costs, and maximize floor space may be found by revisiting a 50-year old technology—rotary punching. Many part features and patterns can be punched and formed using pull-through rotary units at up to 300 feet per minute(FPM) in materials as thick as 1/16 inch. In addition, cam technology allows rotary punching and forming of material thicknesses up to 0.105 in. (12 gauge). Servo drives empower line speeds as fast as 650 (FPM).

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What have you done for us lately?

August 5, 2009 | By Vicki Bell

Manufacturers are mad as Hades and speaking out about what they believe to be the lack of support from the Obama Administration.Dr. Chris Kuehl, economic analyst for the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA), said he has yet to see "anything remotely resembling a policy" from...

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Manufacturing technology producers greet recent economic news with cautious optimism

August 5, 2009

According to a statement issued Aug. 4 by the Association For Manufacturing Technology (AMT), manufacturing technology suppliers reacted with cautious optimism over reports that Ford posted the first sales gain in two years and that U.S. manufacturing activity slowed less than expected in July....

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Troubleshooting OCTG threading: Part I

August 5, 2009 | By Robert White

High production threading of tube and pipe for use by the petroleum industry is accomplished using either mechanically actuated or digitally controlled, carbide tooled machines. The most effective way to deal with residual stress is to full body anneal each tube prior to machining; however, this may not be economically possible. One alternative is to limit the amount of energy that the tube is subjected to during machining. An examination of the cutting tools that are used to produce threaded product will reveal how the shape of the insert may affect the deformation of the tube.

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Employee training, renovations ready Chicago Assembly Plant for new Ford Taurus production

August 4, 2009

Ford Motor Co. is celebrating production of the all-new 2010 ford Taurus in the historic Chicago Assembly Plant, which has been retooled to build the sedan. Ford invested more than $130 million in the plant for tooling and equipment, along with ergonomic updates."By investing in its Chicago...

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Tooling producer updates, automates processes

August 4, 2009

Situation Addison Machine Engineering, a manufacturer of tube and pipe mills and tooling, found itself struggling to retain new customers and satisfy existing ones. Although the company was long on experience and embraced current technologies, the company had difficulty in expanding its market...

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ISM: New orders, production growing; employment, inventories contracting

August 3, 2009

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector failed to grow in July for the 18th consecutive month, while the overall economy grew for the third consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.The report was issued today by...

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Die Science: 'Bad' steel — the ultimate scapegoat

August 1, 2009 | By Art Hedrick

It seems like every time there is a problem making a good part, the steel is blamed. Often the root problem is the process used to cut and form the steel — the combination of the die, the press, and the lubricant.

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Saying 'yes' when others can't

August 1, 2009 | By Tim Heston

IMEC, a small job shop in southwest Missouri, invests in automation not necessarily to increase capacity, but to increase flexibility.

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