Selected articles from June 2008 issue published on TheFabricator.com:
Being able to quickly and accurately identify the source of GMAW consumable problems will save you both money and frustration.
This roundup of laser lens providers gives tips on extending the life of lenses used in laser cutting.
Lean manufacturing has a negative, often unexpected, impact on the balance sheet--but those negative effects are short-term.
Tooling manufacturers have introduced tooling designed to overcome the longstanding problems associated with staged bending.
Columnist Gerald Davis reveals the usefulness of unfolding parts on the computer screen.
Robotically welding a part made sense for Tommy Gate Co./Woodbine Manufacturing, Woodbine, Iowa, so they then made plenty of cents available to invest in a robotic welding cell from Genesis Systems.
Developed during the 1960s by MIT graduate students, the staggered-truss system avoids the use of interior columns to transfer loads to the foundation; instead, trusses themselves carry the brunt of the load transfers. More than anything, the steel design method has potential to take various hotel, condo, and office-building projects away from other construction materials, like concrete, and that's certainly good news for structural steel fabricators everywhere.
Although economic growth in recent years has resulted in fewer business bankruptcies, increasing signs of economic slowdown may mean that fabricators will soon see more of their customers or suppliers file for bankruptcy.
Maurer Manufacturing, Spencer, Iowa, purchased a new plasma cutting table in late 2006 and decided it wanted one nesting program to run both the new plasma table and its slightly older Cincinnati laser cutting machine. After a slight stumble, the company found the solution it needed with MTC Software's ProNest program.
How can laser technology make metal fabrication more efficient? The efficiency comes not only from advances within the laser itself, but also in new ways to integrate those lasers for optimal part flow on the shop floor. Several presenters at ALAW 2008 hammered this point home.
Three decades ago bottoming with penetration, or coining, was the only way to achieve high accuracies on press brakes, and this meant fabricators endured high tooling costs. Over the years precision air bending with CNC hydraulic press brakes using precision-ground tooling evolved to become the dominant forming method in the precision market. However, it took some significant machinery advances to get there.
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