FMA Communications Inc.

Kate Bachman

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

Stamping | Articles

57-year veteran tool- and diemaker “started somewhere”

November 18, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

Of all of the roles 57-year veteran tool- and diemaker Paul Rettberg has had, the one he has enjoyed the most is the one he fills currently … as a teacher.

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Stamping | Articles

Xtreme MRO keeps heavyweight stamper on track

November 18, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

If an ounce of prevention equals a pound of cure, what is it worth when you’re stamping thousands of tons? To Rockford Toolcraft, it’s priceless. The $100 million annual sales stamping manufacturer specializes in stamping heavy-gauge material up to ¾ inch thick. Its maintenance, repair, overhaul program must be topnotch to keep operations moving. The millwrights and electricians who maintain, repair, and overhaul the 60 massive, high-tonnage mechanical presses are highly skilled, very experienced, and ready at a moment’s notice to get the presses back on track ASAP. Here’s how the company keeps its fleet of presses humming.

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Stamping | Articles

Servo press trends

September 21, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

Vehicular weight reductions that automakers have made largely have been attributed to the use of advanced high-strength (AHS) materials—and the stamping manufacturers forming them. Stampers have muscled the Olympian feat via many approaches, including using servo-driven mechanical presses. Servo presses have evolved and moved from the fringe into the mainstream. Four servo press manufacturers weigh in on how servo press technology has advanced to spot stampers in helping them meet the challenges inherent in forming superstrong metals with low formability and high work hardening.

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Automation and Robotics | Articles

High-tech stamping in Amish country

September 21, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

The SUPERB™ factory in Sugarcreek, Ohio performs surprisingly high-tech operations in a traditional village in Amish country, including stamping components for next-generation power grid storage units for Alevo. To meet the demand to stamp and assemble 100 million battery components, the manufacturer installed automated assembly equipment.

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Stamping | Articles

Stamper powers up to do the heavy lifting

July 12, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

Stamping manufacturer StampSource brought in more than $3 million worth of work—a 25 percent revenue increase—with a capital investment of two heavy-duty feeders and three high-tonnage presses. It was the largest expansion in the company’s 66-year history.

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Metals/Materials | Articles

Manufacturer uses servo press to hasten safety part production safely

May 25, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

Ultraform Industries sought ways to increase output of the safety seat belt and air bag assemblies the company manufactures, but speed could not come at the expense of quality. The company installed a servo press to slow the stroke before the draw, perform restrikes.

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Stamping | Articles

Lockset manufacturer gets handle on scrap to boost productivity

May 25, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

When you stamp 2.2 million pieces a day in the manufacture of lockset and doorset assemblies— 550 million stampings a year—smooth, speedy operation is your goal and bottlenecks and obstructions to productivity are your targets. Kwikset developed a unique way to handle scrap that removed a bottleneck and increased output.

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Stamping | Articles

What’s sizzling in hot stamping?

March 28, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

This multisource article touches hot stamping's growth and new technologies and approaches to its further development, including pressure controlled hardening, hot forming of aluminum and magnesium, the option of using a servo-mechanical press that has been modified for hot forming as well as a hydraulic press, and secondary processing performed in-die to avoid having to use a laser cutting machine for trimming.

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Stamping | Articles

Tools for troubleshooting

March 17, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

Trial and error is a difficult, time-consuming, and costly way to try out new parts or find the sources of problems in a stamping operation. Vision systems, “action” cameras, die design simulation, and spectroscopic metallurgy analyzers for material analysis can help stamping manufacturers make adjustments on the front end to save time and money by several magnitudes on the back end.

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Finishing | Articles

Greener metal pretreatment process saves manufacturer time, money

March 1, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

When Quality Industries' 20-year-old pretreatment and powder coat system reached the point t which repairing it was too costly, the manufacturer replaced it with new automated system that was less waste-producing and faster. Upgrading its finishing process is part of the La Vergne, Tenn.-based fabricator's strategy to become a world-class supplier.

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Shop Management | Articles

Have a tool- and diemaker shortage?

February 1, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

The skilled-worker shortage has become a much-discussed topic at industry events and conferences, at FABTECH®, around the water cooler, at association meetings, and in trade publications and in general audience media. It’s even a buzzword in the U.S. presidential campaigns.

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Shop Management | Articles

2015 updates for ISO 9001, 14001 align with other standards

January 26, 2016 | By Kate Bachman

In September 2015, the widely recognized global standards body International Organization for Standardization (ISO) released its 9001:2015 standards for quality management systems (QMS) and 14001:2015 environmental management systems (EMS). Key changes to both the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 standards are that they are structured to align with other standards bodies; are less prescriptive; require greater upper management involvement; and require less documentation but more emphasis on defining processes, risk and opportunities planning, and context.

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Stamping | Articles

Profiles in stamping: John Boughton

November 11, 2015 | By Kate Bachman

When everything hangs on the frame, and you design the frame, everything hangs on you. Profile of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles frame designer John Boughton reveals insights into his 52-year career.

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Stamping | Articles

Manufacturer revives stamping department with overhaul, press rebuild

November 11, 2015 | By Kate Bachman

Quality Industries made a U-turn on its decision to let its stamping department stall and has reignited the department’s restart with a press retrofit, quick die change (QDC) equipment, and a new press.

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Materials Handling | Articles

Beltless scrap conveying has come a long way, baby

July 9, 2015 | By Kate Bachman

Moving scrap via beltless conveyors has been going on for awhile. But what options are available? Which are best for which applications? Do the benefits of beltless outweigh the drawbacks? Is anything new in beltless conveying technology?

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