June 3, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Merrill Technologies Group, Saginaw, Mich., has implemented a strategy that managers hope will double the size of the company over the next five years.
June 2, 2016 | By Tim Heston
If Richards Sheet Metal Works had taken the conventional path, it would have invested in a new flat-sheet cutting laser, especially considering its 5-kW workhorse was more than a decade old. But Richards isn’t a conventional metal fabricator. Today it has one of the largest tube cutting lasers in the country.
May 24, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Large-scale dust and fume collection can be somewhat inflexible. A fabricator moving, adding, or removing a few work centers can throw off the airflow balance and make the entire system less effective. A new technology aims to change this.
May 23, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Waiting for a callback to discuss a major design change is one thing; but waiting hours just to see if a hole can be moved a little farther from the bend radius—that’s something else. One industry project, iFAB, aims to make design for manufacturability far more efficient.
May 19, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Fabricators aren't selling just parts anymore. They're selling their ability to partner and communicate with customers.
May 16, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Metal fabricators are driven to compete, but they also want to do the right thing.
May 12, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Manufacturers have serious turnover when it comes to front-line workers. And then there's the issue of pay.
May 11, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Revenue growth from 2014 to 2015 was essentially flat, depending on the fabricator's customer mix, but most are predicting busier times ahead.
May 9, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Koester Metals Inc. conquered its growing pains after the recession. It moved to a new facility to follow demand, improved and formalized training, and invested in new technology.
May 2, 2016 | By Tim Heston
During their presentation at the FMA Annual Meeting, attorney David Jones, along with Doug Raff, owner of Paragon Industrial Controls, showed a lot about what a fabricator can expect during an OSHA inspection after reporting a major injury. They gave insights as to how companies can best navigate the OSHA inspection and citation process.
April 27, 2016 | By Tim Heston
MECO, a metal manufacturer in east Tennessee, has a history both in product line and contract manufacturing. Moving forward, company leaders consider R&D the key to future growth.
April 27, 2016 | By Tim Heston
As cutting productivity rises to unprecedented levels, fabricators tackle their next bottleneck: bending. Today, panel benders, folders, and press brakes with automated tool changing are expanding forming possibilities and making new levels of bending productivity possible.
April 13, 2016 | By Tim Heston
In September 2015 contract fabricator BTD expanded to the Southeast with its purchase of Impulse Manufacturing. The deal hints at just how scalable custom metal fabrication may be.
This year’s FMA Annual Meeting, held in San Diego in February, celebrated the technology companies need to compete and the worker skill shops need to sustain that success through the generations.
April 4, 2016 | By Tim Heston
Several years ago Groupe Gravel invested in robotic welding and plasma cutting. And from the very start, for most work, technicians never programmed jobs using a teach pendant.