FMA Communications Inc.

Dan Davis

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

The credit crunch

July 31, 2008

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If you missed the headlines last week, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. stepped in and closed the First National Bank of Nevada and First Heritage Bank N.A. last Friday. That comes just about two weeks after the same folks closed the doors on IndyMac bank.Of course, that led to Treasury prices...

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Waiting for metal prices to fall

July 25, 2008

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When I say everyone is worried about rising material prices, it"s not that far of a stretch.A summer survey of 72 senior-level manufacturing company owners and managers revealed that 93 percent of them consider rising material prices to be the No. 1 cost pressure facing the industry. That"s up from...

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Which direction this election?

July 17, 2008

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Jim Zawacki, chairman of metal stamping manufacturer GR Spring & Stamping in Grand Rapids, Mich., finds himself in an awkward position this election. He"s donated $1,000 to the campaign of John McCain and plans to vote for the Republican candidate for president, but he"s not a big fan of his stance...

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Hyster lift truck

A new look at lift trucks

July 15, 2008

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California is on the leading edge of environmental protectionism, and because it is such a large industrial market, the state's environmental regulations are influencing what metal fabricators might be drivng in their facilities.

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A different perspective on U.S. manufacturing

July 11, 2008

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Never let it be said that I don"t read most of what comes across my desk.I was perusing the 2007 annual report for Fraunhofer USA, the Plymouth, Mich.-based arm of the German research organization, and I came across the farewell address from Dennis Tsichritzis. He was leaving the Fraunhofer family...

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Educating tomorrow's welders

June 20, 2008

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I think the program I have struggled to keep alive was valuable and rewarding to a certain population. Was it enough to rationalize the expense? I don"t know, but to me and my students, it was valuable and rewarding.That"s the message Lebanon (N.Y.) High School welding teacher Tom Callison shared...

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ProNest software

One nesting software for all

June 17, 2008

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Maurer Manufacturing, Spencer, Iowa, purchased a new plasma cutting table in late 2006 and decided it wanted one nesting program to run both the new plasma table and its slightly older Cincinnati laser cutting machine. After a slight stumble, the company found the solution it needed with MTC Software's ProNest program.

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Robotic welding

Auto weld that ends well

June 17, 2008

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Robotically welding a part made sense for Tommy Gate Co./Woodbine Manufacturing, Woodbine, Iowa, so they then made plenty of cents available to invest in a robotic welding cell from Genesis Systems.

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Laser lens cleaning

The dirt on laser lenses

June 17, 2008

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This roundup of laser lens providers gives tips on extending the life of lenses used in laser cutting.

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Manufacturing to the rescue

May 30, 2008

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Today I spoke with Steve Smith, president, It Straps On Inc., a Covington, La.-based manufacturer of stainless steel banding, buckles, and brackets. We were chatting about his company"s E award, an honor the federal government bestows on companies that are aggressive in promoting U.S. exports.He...

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The state of steel: Going up

May 22, 2008

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I"m not sure how fabricators are coping with rising steel prices. I guess it"s like rising gas prices: You deal with it because it"s a fact of life.Unfortunately, there"s little relief in sight. John Surma, U.S. Steel"s chairman and CEO, told financial analysts in April that flat-rolled steel...

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Sport compact racing car

Fabrication business coming up races

May 13, 2008

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Mazworx, a shop that rebuilds engines for racing, fabricates custom parts for racing upgrades, and works on compact cars to prepare them for racing, is also involved in racing. The belief is that it can build up its reputation for racing parts through appearances at NHRA sport compact races throughout the Southeast.

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Roll bender Powder River

New roll bender 'bales' out farm implement manufacturer

May 13, 2008

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Powder River, a Provo, Utah-based fabricator of farm implements, turned to KNUTH Machine Tools USA for a three-roll bender the company uses to make its round bale feeders for horses.

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Time to lawyer up

April 25, 2008

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This week I attended an open house event at ESAB Welding & Cutting Products, Florence, S.C.. I got to see some wonderful welding innovations—many of which you will see in upcoming issues of The FABRICATOR and Practical Welding Today—and had the opportunity to chat with the company"s...

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Hey, buddy, can you spare a pole?

April 25, 2008

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Editor's Note: I'm running late with my blog because I've been out of town. Here's a quick plea from STAMPING Journal Editor Kate Bachman that should tide you over. C'mon, let's make those phones ring. DDD.On the same day, I received a plea from the coach of a youth...

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