FMA Communications Inc.

Dan Davis

Editor in Chief
FMA Communications Inc.
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6 ways to make large-sheet-bending easier - TheFabricator.com

6 ways to make large-sheet-bending easier

September 5, 2013

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Bending large sheet metal parts does not represent the majority of work for most metal fabricators, but it can be a significant portion for those shops that have the capability to do it. These equipment considerations and processing tips can help make a big bending job easier to accomplish.

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Working to attain the dream

August 30, 2013

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Wednesday marked the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. People might debate whether King’s “dream” has materialized truly in today’s society, but at the very least, a majority of Americans have more freedoms today than they or their ancestors...

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Could this be it?

August 16, 2013

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Welcome to the wonderful world of stability. At least that’s how many metal fabricators see their business. In the inaugural Forming & Fabricating Job Shop Consumption Report from the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, 43 percent of fab shops surveyed indicated that the business...

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All for one and none for all

August 9, 2013

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Metal fabricators don’t have a lot in common when trying to compare one job shop to another. The same goes for the customer segments they serve—with one major exception. Most don’t, and have no desire to, work with the automotive industry. That’s quite the statement given the desire of...

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Fabricator finds versatility in panel bender - TheFabricator.com

Fabricator finds versatility in panel bender

August 9, 2013

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In the early 2000s, Innovated Machine & Tool Co., Newport News, Va., tried a robotic press brake for a bending job and found that it worked out well--for that job. Unfortunately, when the contract ended, so did the useful life of that robotic press brake. Since then, the shop hasn't had to worry about machine obsolescence because its panel bending technology is helping it stay on top of all sorts of bending work.

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It's the fabricating process, not the fabricated product - TheFabricator.com

It's the fabricating process, not the fabricated product

August 1, 2013

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In the Japanese language, monozukuri means "the way something is manufactured." Japanese fabricators realize that it is the means by which they consistently make quality parts and keep ahead of international competitors.

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Safety: The never-ending battle - TheFabricator.com

Safety: The never-ending battle

August 1, 2013

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A fabricating shop floor can be a very dangerous place even when all types of safety precautions are taken. Fab shops that ignore safety are putting their employees--and ultimately the business--at great risk.

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Laser focus on an ever-changing market

July 25, 2013

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“We don’t think one size fits all. It depends on the application,” said Al Bohlen, national sales manager, Mazak Optonics Corp., to a crowd of fabricators attending a seminar during the company’s Laser Technology Days event in late July. The days of a fabricating shop owner deciding he...

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Skilled-worker shortage?

July 12, 2013

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After multiple e-mails from readers over the past couple of months claiming that our constant referencing to the skilled-worker shortage is a disservice, I figured it’s best to come clean. They are right. It’s not a skilled-worker shortage; it’s a...

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Special tooling makes short work of large-part production - TheFabricator.com

Special tooling makes short work of large-part production

July 12, 2013

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Any fabricator that has had to wrestle with large panels or thick plate in a press brake has to wonder if something can be done to make the job easier. In many instances, specialized tooling can help.

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Improving welding quality in a dramatic way - TheFabricator.com

Improving welding quality in a dramatic way

July 11, 2013

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What happens when new owners of a metal fabricating business find out that they have to improve the shop's welding performance or risk losing its biggest customer—in the first week they take over the business? They have frank conversations with employees, find the root cause of the problems, install new processes to ensure quality, and ramp up training so that everyone can deliver acceptable welds on a consistent basis.

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Laser cutting

Customer input influences metal manufacturer’s growth

July 8, 2013

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Artisan Industries Inc. began life as a metal former in Streetsboro, Ohio, but like other stamping houses, it recognized the need for diversification. Since jumping into the fabricating business, the company has found itself constantly evolving to become a one-stop shop for its customers.

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Rethinking manufacturing education

June 21, 2013

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The discussion moderator of Strengthening Manufacturing Education: An Experience Summit in late June posed a question that sums up the battle to replenish the ranks of retiring manufacturing workers: “How do we get young people interested in a career in welding?” The question was focused on...

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Learning about another culture

June 13, 2013

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Got a culture clash in your metal fabricating operation? That’s a terrible situation, because if the workforce is unsatisfied with their environment, their negative attitude is probably carrying over to their work. More than likely, that then affects the customers of that fabricating company....

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Race team embraces waterjet cutting - TheFabricator.com

Race team embraces waterjet cutting

June 3, 2013

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When John Force Racing took most of its manufacturing operations in-house in the early 2000s, the focus was on controlling quality and lead time. However, it didn't have a quick-response fabricating tool for 2-D cutting. It has since found that tool with its new waterjet

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