FMA Communications Inc.

Dan Davis

Editor in Chief
FMA Communications Inc.
833 Featherstone Road
Rockford, IL 61107

Blog Posts

The unfortunate event of retirement

July 22, 2010 | By Dan Davis

As I write this, I'm sitting at a restaurant checking e-mail and doing some other work. Even though my eyes are working perfectly fine, I'm heading to the eye doctor. I'm watching about 30 senior citizens enjoy their morning coffee and cool temperatures before the summer sun becomes unbearable. It...

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Blog Posts

Manufacturers provide value, not just jobs

July 16, 2010 | By Dan Davis

When metal fabricators get together and talk about improving the image of manufacturing, the talk normally progresses to politicians. The fabricators lament that the elected officials just don't understand the value that their shops bring to the community and, as a result, don't support their...

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Blog Posts

Who you callin' a protectionist?

July 9, 2010 | By Dan Davis

If you haven't read this opinion piece by Andy Grove, co-founder of Intel, you should probably check it out. In the editorial, Grove makes the point that the U.S. has outsourced not only tons of jobs to Asia, but also the ability to innovate. He thinks that manufacturing companies that grew and...

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So you want to be a certified welding inspector? - TheFabricator

Testing and Measuring | Articles

So you want to be a certified welding inspector?

July 8, 2010 | By Dan Davis

Not many people who enter the welding profession think about their long-term career path. A certified welding inspector may be the next logical step for the right welder.

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Blog Posts

Don't worry about the double-dip, worry about the new 'norm'

July 2, 2010 | By Dan Davis

The talk about the ol' double-dip recession continues. I don't buy it. I think it's just  the Unremarkable Recovery. I don't think that name will stick, but it's probably for the better. It doesn't do much for raising the morale of society. The simple fact remains that consumers aren't spending....

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Doing what was always done doesn't cut it - TheFabricator

Shop Management | Articles

Doing what was always done doesn't cut it

July 1, 2010 | By Dan Davis

ABMyr, Belleville, Mich., is a manufacturer of finishing systems for its automotive clients, but at the heart of the company is its fabricating talent. That is what will serve the company best as it looks to rebound from the recent downturn.

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Blog Posts

Chinese current events and U.S. manufacturing

June 25, 2010 | By Dan Davis

My co-worker Tim Heston stole a little of my thunder for this week's blog post with his coverage of China's decision to adopt a more flexible approach to how it values its currency. U.S. manufacturers have been clamoring for years for some shift away from China's currency manipulation, but to no...

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Blog Posts

Understanding the cost of ownership

June 17, 2010 | By Dan Davis

There is a reason that I work for someone else: I don't have that desire to strike out on my own to build a business. The entrepreneurial gene can't be found in my DNA. So when I'm chatting with business owners, I'm doing so with a lot of respect for their accomplishments. If the shoe were on my...

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Blog Posts

So the government shows up and says, 'I'm here to help'

June 11, 2010 | By Dan Davis

Ask any metal fabricating business owner or manager what the government can do to help them out, and the response is pretty typical: "Stop trying to help." The last attempt that comes to mind is President Barack Obama's offer of a tax incentive to hire people. Business owners found it laughable....

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How to set up an internship program - TheFabricator

Shop Management | Articles

How to set up an internship program

June 8, 2010 | By Dan Davis

Insight from a metal fabricator and the head of Kansas State's Advanced Manufacturing Institute provides companies with good tips for setting up an internship program.

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Blog Posts

Speak up but don't hold your peace

June 4, 2010 | By Dan Davis

The continuing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is silently eating away at my insides. My grandmother purchased a camp in Clermont Harbor, Miss., back in 1969 after Hurricane Camille dramatically rearranged the Gulf Coast. Growing up I spent most of my summers down on the white beaches of the...

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Blog Posts

Making It in America

May 28, 2010 | By Dan Davis

I'll have the American flag flying outside my house this holiday weekend. It's not a statement of my patriotism so much as a view of summer as a time when all of those fun, all-American activities take place: baseball, competitive hot dog eating, and parades. It's the perfect time to let Old Glory...

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The Wisconsin Family Robinson - TheFabricator

Shop Management | Articles

The Wisconsin Family Robinson

May 28, 2010 | By Dan Davis

Anyone that works for Robinson Metal Inc. learns the business from the ground up. This approach has served it well as the De Pere, Wis., company has grown to become one of the largest fabricating job shops in the U.S.

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Blog Posts

What I did on my vacation to Detroit

May 26, 2010 | By Dan Davis

I took a day trip to Detroit last week, and I have no joke about it. I actually enjoyed my time in the Motor City. Whereas others like to use Detroit as the poster child for what's wrong with big-city politics, the U.S. automotive industry, and public education, I see the city as one that may be...

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Blog Posts

Fabricating to the rescue yet again

May 5, 2010 | By Dan Davis

By now everyone has heard about the massive oil spill taking place in the Gulf of Mexico, a result of an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig April 20. If you haven't, you'll also be shocked to know that bell bottoms have come and gone out of style again and that Abe Vigoda is still alive ....

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