FMA Communications Inc.

Kate Bachman

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

Ridin' the storm out Part I

August 8, 2007

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While other automotive suppliers are struggling or going under, Tier II supplier of ride control components Tennessee Stampings established a lean program that merited a regional manufacturs' award and helped them grow 23 percent per year.

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ALAW

Lifestyle trends expand use of lasers, ALAW presenters say

July 10, 2007

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ALAW 2007 was held April 17 to 19, in Plymouth, Mich. The second two days of the conference focused on laser technology in automotive research and applications and were geared mostly to manufacturing, production, product design, and R&D engineers.Societal demands driving greater dependence on laser technology are energy and environmental concerns, as well as customization.

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Waterjet image

Waterjet accelerates pace, provides speed secret

May 8, 2007

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Joe Gibbs Racing sports three Nextel Cup teams, winning three Cup championships in a seven-year period. Its drivers Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, and J.J. Yeley are well-known race stars. Preparing the cars for each week's race is literally a race between races, as new components-speed secrets-are engineered and fabricated between Sunday night and Thursday. The company relies on a Flow waterjet to accelerate its manufacturing pace to meet the grueling deadlines

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Steel tube and pipe image

Finishing stainless steel tube and pipe efficiently

May 8, 2007

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One big challenge in stainless steel tube finishing is the growing expectations about the surface finish. Tools and abrasives have improved to achieve better surface quality in less time. At the same time, fabricators require finishing methods that address health, safety, and environmental concerns.

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High speed cutting tools

High-speed cutting, end-finishing

April 10, 2007

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Leading Edge Hydraulics improves tube cutting efficiencies with a high-speed cutter, plus integrated end forming for its fluid power tube manufacturing.

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Hansen steel services

Big shoulders, long strides

February 13, 2007

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Family-owned Hansen Steel Services started six years ago with a 600-ft. long empty building and a combined 144 years of experience and built it into a thriving job shop that shoulders large plate fabrications.

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Press brake safety

Safety still pressing for press brakes

January 9, 2007

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The leading trend in press brakes safety is to ensure safety without sacrificing speed or hampering operators' ability to work efficiently, say press brakes manufacturers. This starts with tooling, including segmented or sectionalized tooling that is lighter and easier to handle; safety features that prevent unsecured tooling from falling, and fewer tool changes. It is further achieved with light curtains, camera and vision-based sensors, and mechanical side and rear guards, as well as automation and robots.

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Carbon steel prices 07

Metals upsets, offsets, and onsets in 2007

January 9, 2007

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Metal fabricators should see price relief on U.S. carbon steel hot-rolled band prices going into the first quarter of 2007, with prices expected to bottom out at $500 to $540 per ton early in the first quarter, depending on the mill source. In February through April, prices should begin to rebound...

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China's Unusual Tax Move

January 9, 2007

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The Chinese government's control policies are currently focused on controlling exports by increasing export taxes, said Patrick McCormick, World Steel Dynamics (WSD) managing partner. Normally, a value-added tax (VAT) is refunded on exports."Because of the growth of steel, and because they're...

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Luminous aluminum makes light work

October 10, 2006

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Hapco Aluminum Pole Products, Abingdon, Va., fabricates aluminum light posts that must be beautiful while standing up to wind, and the forces of nature.

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Stud-maker throws church building a curve

September 12, 2006

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Radius Track, a fabricator specializing in its patented curved metal studs, replaced many of the heavy-gauge beams in the a church's dome frame with light-gauge steel studs. As a result, the dome was light enough to be supported without view-obstructing columns.

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Mission: Spectacular scrap handling operations

July 11, 2006

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Stampers, precariously squeezed by tight margins, high material costs, and increasing pressure to be leaner, have issued a request: we want our scrap handling operations to be faster, trouble-free, and more productive. Fortunately, the latest generation of scrap handling equipment makes that mission possible. New machinery, trending toward a greater use of invisible forces and high-tech gadgetry befitting a spy thriller, is equipped with sensors, edge-guide systems, automation, and magnetic forces, equipment manufacturers say. In addition, significant improvements have been made to the scrap handling equipment itself to save space, minimize jams, and to keep it moving.

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Hot forming: Strong meets light

May 9, 2006

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Cosma International applies its own hot-forming technique to stamping automotive metal components such as A and B pillars, roof headers, roof rails, rockers, door intrusion beams, and bumpers, to meet new CAFE standards for weight, NHTSA requirements for strength, and to counter problems with springback in UHSS components.

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Metal fabricating in a new millennium

May 9, 2006

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The forming and fabricating of the 925-foot BP Pedestrian Bridge located at the east section of Chicago's Millennium Park, and the Jay Pritzker Pavilion is explored.

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Metalfab: All that glitters is metal

April 11, 2006

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Lights. Camera. Fabricate?! You get home from work after fabricating all day, kick back with a cool one, and turn on the tube just to see more metal fabrication, on-screen, as entertainment. If it's not "American Chopper" or "Monster Garage," it's "Biker Build-Off," "Monster House" or "American Hot Rod." What's the fascination with fabrication? Do shows like these put a new spin on the image of metal forming and fabricating? Have they inspired younger generations to consider metal fabricating as a profession? Why have TV producers zoned in on these types of shows?

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