FMA Communications Inc.

Tim Heston

Senior Editor
FMA Communications Inc.
833 Featherstone Road
Rockford, IL 61107
The industry gets a quarterly physical - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles

The industry gets a quarterly physical

September 5, 2013 | By Tim Heston

According to the inaugural Forming & Fabricating Job Shop Consumption Report, released in July, business isn’t horrible, but it’s not gangbusters either.

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Complete work instructions keystone of improvement - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles

Complete work instructions keystone of improvement

August 9, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Shops start improving by measuring and documenting what they already do, because they can’t improve what they don’t measure.

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The basics of wheel blasting - TheFabricator.com

Finishing | Articles

The basics of wheel blasting

August 1, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Blast cleaning can be an extremely effective way to prepare a part for coating. But if the machine isn’t set up, maintained, or monitored properly, the operation can go awry.

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Punch tooling strategy for punching thousands and thousands of holes - TheFabricator.com

Punching and Other Holemaking | Articles

Punch tooling strategy for punching thousands and thousands of holes

August 1, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Carter Day International punches thousands of holes to make specialized screens. One screen can take several hours to punch. Problem is, the company doesn’t have enough volume to warrant using a specialized perforation press. So it uses a traditional turret punch press, but with highly durable tooling.

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Blog Posts

The gut-punch of Detroit in bankruptcy

July 29, 2013 | By Tim Heston

In 2009 I landed in Detroit and saw a billboard I’ll never forget. I was on my way to FMA's ALAW, the Advanced Laser Applications Workshop, and there was a massive billboard advertising something you rarely if ever see on the interstate. Metal fabricator W Industries was touting its ability to...

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Metals/Materials | Podcasts

Inspiring fabrication: Making the top of One World Trade Center

July 29, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Kammetal Inc. of Brooklyn, N.Y., just fabricated a bit of history-cladding for the beacon atop the (fittingly) 1,776-feet-tall One World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan. Company president Sam Kusack tells the story. Read the article.

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Blog Posts

Google Glass meets manufacturing

July 18, 2013 | By Tim Heston

We may be entering a new manufacturing age. OK, that’s hyperbole, but it’s one that comes to mind after you step back and think of just how far we’ve come, even during the past 10 years. First, consider the biggest challenges in U.S. manufacturing, most of which deals with high-product-mix...

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Shop Management | Articles

An end to silos and fiefdoms

July 12, 2013 | By Tim Heston

If an organization is looking to streamline its turnaround time—the moment an order is received to the time it is shipped to the customers—it requires healthy communication among employees and, not least, the destruction of silos and fiefdoms.

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Integrating stamping, fabricating, and assembly - TheFabricator.com

Assembly and Joining | Articles

Integrating stamping, fabricating, and assembly

July 12, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Genesee Stampings and Fabrication has undergone a strategic shift from its core stamping and fabricating business. It has added an assembly operation to the shop floor.

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A solid model for modernizing a fabricator - TheFabricator.com

CAD/CAM Software | Articles

A solid model for modernizing a fabricator

July 11, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Matot, a small dumbwaiter manufacturer in the Chicago suburbs, is a microcosm of high-product-mix, low-volume manufacturing. Fabricators no longer make it work on the floor. Instead, they adjust the model to suit the process.

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Blog Posts

The entrepreneur and the engineer

July 9, 2013 | By Tim Heston

In our August print edition of The FABRICATOR will be another installment of Steve Benson’s Bending Basics series. Benson, president of consulting firm ASMA LLC, Salem, Ore., and a press brake guru who runs press brake certification seminars for the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association,...

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Blog Posts

Technology and procedures working in concert

July 8, 2013 | By Tim Heston

At LeanFab Workshop & Tours, organized by the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International, and held last month in Columbus, Ohio, Dave Lechleitner asked attendees to draw a pig. The presales principal at Exact Software, Minneapolis, wasn’t playing an odd joke. Instead, he was...

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WTC - GTAW worker

Shop Management | Articles

Inspired fabrication atop One World Trade Center

July 2, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Kammetal Inc., Brooklyn, N.Y., has seen its work reach the top. The company fabricated the uppermost part of the spire that now sits atop One World Trade Center.

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About good people working together - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles

About good people working together

June 28, 2013 | By Tim Heston

Collaboration between creative minds--employing some refreshing cut-to-the-chase rationality to uncover the best processes for the product at hand--may be why people catch the manufacturing bug.

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Blog Posts

The time between runs

June 27, 2013 | By Tim Heston

A Wall Street Journal article this month gave a good introduction to the basics of equipment ROI, at least for those outside the manufacturing world. These are machines for business. Rationality rules--usually, at least. The article helps clear up a few misconceptions out there, especially when it...

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