FMA Communications Inc.

Eric Lundin

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

Laser Cutting | Articles

Small-scale laser cutting for stent, tube fabrication

October 27, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Metal fabricators have been using CO2 lasers for decades and fiber lasers for years, but these technologies aren’t optimal for making the ultrafine features needed for medical devices such as catheters and stents. Femtosecond disk lasers recently have emerged as a viable technology for such applications.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

A little fabricator grows up

September 2, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Under the stewardship of founders Larry and Gloria Dlouhy, Superior Tube Products grew from a small proprietorship into a midsized fabricator. It is entering its 25th year in business with a new management style, a new strategy, and a new outlook on the future.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Bending one bumper at a time

August 25, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

When Grant Mallicote’s father had a bumper-crumpling collision on the family’s ranch, Grant figured he could save his dad a few dollars by fabricating a replacement bumper. He used some tube, plate, a welding torch, and some ingenuity to make a bumper, and eventually it became a bumper business, Bodyguard Truck Accessories.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Harvesting a bumper crop of bumpers

August 24, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

When Grant Mallicote’s father had a bumper-crumpling collision on the family’s ranch, Grant figured he could save his dad a few dollars by fabricating a replacement bumper. He used some tube, plate, a welding torch, and some ingenuity to make a bumper, and eventually it became a bumper business, Bodyguard Truck Accessories.

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Cutting and Weld Prep | Articles

Oilfield components fabricator finds success in sawing heavy-wall tube

August 24, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

When oilfield components and systems supplier Tri-Alta used an old manual band saw for cutting tube to length, it experienced no shortage of difficulties in blade failures, inaccurate cuts, and part misalignment. The company invested in a modern band saw from Behringer with automated downfeed pressure sensing, blade tension monitoring, and a material handling system.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Minimizing effort, maximizing distance

July 21, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

A golf club shaft looks like an ordinary tube, but it’s not. Quite a bit of engineering goes into manufacturing the tube and drawing it so it has the optimal characteristics—lightweight without being flimsy and elastic enough to pack a wallop. Editor Eric Lundin interviewed Scott Cokeing, director of engineering and global quality True Temper Sports, about one of the company’s manufacturing processes, variable wall technology.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Orion Drilling Co. has rigs, will travel

July 16, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Before purchasing a 3-D CNC cutting system from HGG, oil rig builder Orion outsource quite a bit of its work. In addition to being at the mercy of its subcontractors’ lead times, Orion had to deal with their quality, which often wasn’t sufficient. The machine has been such a productivity enhance that Orion estimates the ROI period to be one year.

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Finishing | Articles

Ag equipment manufacturer switches to corrosion-free, worry-free, couplings

July 15, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Horsch Maschinen GmbH, an agriculture implements manufacturer, experienced corrosion problems related to the tubular couplers used for its hydraulic systems. It switched to couplers manufactured by Voss Fluid GmbH, which are much better at standing up to the corrosive effects of common fertilizers.

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Tube and Pipe Production | Articles

Minimizing scrap on laser welding mills

July 9, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Laser welding on a tube or pipe mill wouldn’t be very effective without a good control system. Eric Lundin interviewed TRUMPF to learn about the capabilities of the company’s SeamLine and SeamLine Pro systems.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Keeping it together at 330 MPH

June 29, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Top Fuel races are a dazzling sight, covering 1,000 feet in little more than 3 seconds. The drivers get the glory and the engines get the attention—they develop approximately 10,000 horsepower—but underneath the car’s exterior is a marvel of modern engineering: a tubular chassis that somehow holds together through 4G of acceleration during the race and the even harsher 5G of deceleration when it’s over.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Fabricators flying ultralights

June 24, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Most people who own ultralight aircraft buy them fully assembled, but this isn't the only option. U-Fly-It, DeLand, Fla., lets the buyer be the builder if he's handy and has about two weeks to spare.

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Arc Welding | Articles

When life hands you lemons, build a sign

June 23, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

After the sign for his auto repair business fell off the building, Dominick Alia tried his hand at fashioning his own sign. One thing led to another, and metal sculpture became a hobby.

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Laser Welding | Articles

Fabricator turns up the heat

June 1, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

When A.O. Smith, the company known for developing the glass-lined residential water heater, had a bottleneck at its resistance welding station and sought an alternate welding method. It had been making a lap welding on galvanized steel by resistance welding, but this trapped vaporized zinc; escaping vapors weakened the weld. A new method, a butt weld performed by laser welding, doesn’t trap the vapors, leaving a visually appealing weld that is essentially free of defects.

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Tube and Pipe Fabrication | Articles

Turning to milling for weld preps

May 26, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Preparing tube or pipe ends for welding with a portable tool is one way to get the job done, but for complex end forms and high-volume work, a stationary beveling machine is the way to go.

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Bending | Articles

Bending and brewing

May 11, 2015 | By Eric Lundin

Sheet metal worker Paul Ziegman puts in long days building stainless steel kitchen equipment for restaurants and other food-service businesses in and around Spokane, Wash. He recently opened his own such business using the same equipment and skill set.

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