FMA Communications Inc.

Tim Heston

Senior Editor
FMA Communications Inc.
2135 Point Blvd
Elgin, IL 60123
Metal fabricator’s product launch proves profitable - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Metal fabricator’s product launch proves profitable

September 2, 2011 | By Tim Heston

A business doesn't have to be glamorous to be profitable. For Zeus metal Works, a Siler City, N.C., fabricator, heavy-duty cabinets, a necessity in many industries, have opened the door (so to speak) to new business opportunities.

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Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Metal fabricator asks what else customers need--and grows

September 2, 2011 | By Tim Heston

This Buffalo, N.Y., job shop is difficult to pigeonhole. It offers contract fabrication services, assembles complex material handling systems, and distributes certain products, including rooftop support systems. The company grew so diverse simply by asking what else their customers needed. In other words, managers followed the market.

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Blog Posts

Metal fabricating with a sense of ownership

August 30, 2011 | By Tim Heston

I really like my job--but not in a corny sense. I don’t wake up and immediately whistle away in gleeful anticipation of the workday. Some days I feel I can’t write another word, while other days I type several pages before I realize that what I just wrote is either unintelligible or just plain...

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Blog Posts

Avoiding a manufacturing traffic jam

August 22, 2011 | By Tim Heston

When do more cars travel on the highway, before or during rush hour?  It’s rush hour, right? Well, it depends on how you interpret the question. During rush hour, plenty of cars flood the highway at once, but they all take more time to get where they’re going. In fact, there’s a good chance...

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Blog Posts

Metal fabrication goes back to school

August 16, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Last week I spoke with Harry Moser, chairman emeritus of GF AgieCharmilles LLC, the machine tool company. He will speak at the upcoming FABTECH expo in Chicago about his Reshoring Initiative. Moser has developed Total Cost of Ownership Estimator software that breaks down the costs and risks of...

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Blog Posts

Debate spending, not debt

August 8, 2011 | By Tim Heston

When Standard & Poor’s officially downgraded the U.S. credit rating on Friday, several conversations ran through my mind. One was with Vivek Gupta, managing director at Texas ProFab, a Dallas-area fabricator, who told me how conservative the company’s balance sheet was, and how the small...

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Putting talent to work - TheFabricator.com

Laser Cutting | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Putting talent to work

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Arin Inc. has evolved from a steel rule blanking house to a modern metal fabricator capable of producing precision, laser cut blanks. Bu workers can see history every day--a tool room for steel rule die remains, as do the mechanical presses. A tour of Arin's shop is a walk through time, a gallery showing what metal fabrication talent has produced over the decades.

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Fabricator finds path to skilled labor - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Fabricator finds path to skilled labor

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Crow Corp. had trouble finding the right person for the job, so company management took a bold step—and outsourced the hiring process. Today, the Houston-area fabricator is feeling the benefits.

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Design for manufacturability opens doors - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Design for manufacturability opens doors

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Dawson Doors, a fabricator in a small town in western New York, has developed a global presence in the high-end enclosure and door fabrication markets. By closely collaborating with customers, the unique fabrication company has continued to grow.

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Fabricator touts precision production - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Fabricator touts precision production

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Diversified Metal Products’ demanding niche—nuclear fabrication—spurred growth throughout the economic downturn. Its mix of production and one-off fabrication may give the contract fabricator a leg up in the years ahead.

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How small batch sizes define modern manufacturing - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

How small batch sizes define modern manufacturing

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

The long-held belief that setups should be amortized over the largest possible lot sizes needs to change. As setup times become shorter, they become less relevant, and, according to some, so does the old notion of economic order quantities.

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Shaking off the albatross of manufacturing’s image - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Shaking off the albatross of manufacturing’s image

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

A northeastern job shop gets a new building and a complete makeover, with bright colors, a sleek front office, a quality assurance room that looks like a laboratory, and with it all, a new image.

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Metal Fabrication Industry: A portrait in prose - TheFabricator.com

Shop Management | Articles | The FABRICATOR

Metal Fabrication Industry: A portrait in prose

August 1, 2011 | By Tim Heston

Three books together paint a good picture of this industry. It’s a combination of technical knowhow, pragmatism, down-to-earth humor, and big-picture thinking.

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Blog Posts

Flexible metal fabrication needs flexible people

July 26, 2011 | By Tim Heston

When I interviewed executives at Mayville Engineering Co., a seven-plant, 1,000-employee behemoth of a contract fabricator, I could tell the CEO Bob Kamphuis was proudest of one statistic. The company delivered on time over 99 percent of the time. On time delivery of quality parts lies at the...

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Blog Posts

Manufacturing for the best minds of tomorrow

July 18, 2011 | By Tim Heston

It was refreshing to see the skilled-labor crisis--an issue near and dear to metal fabrication--grace the front page of the Sunday New York Times last week. It was the first in a weekly series called “Learn to Earn.” That’s such a great title. It hints at a pervasive problem. Recent grads may...

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