Selected articles from November 2012 issue published on TheFabricator.com:
Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis earlier this year featured athletic prowess and classic gridiron toughness with a little speed and finesse. But also on display outside the stadium throughout the heart of downtown was a combination of strength and artistic flair that only a metal art sculpture can provide.
Interest in incorporating more aluminum parts into final product designs is causing fabricating operations to reconsider how they approach sawing aluminum. Traditionally, the conversation centered around circular saw technology when it came to cutting aluminum, but now new band saw developments have helped to expand the discussion.
Today lean thinking has led many to consider not just manufacturing costs, but also the costs that occur over the entire product life cycle. This is where hybrid laser-arc welding has really stepped up to the plate—literally. The technology can be used to weld high-strength steel parts effectively, which is great news for the transportation industry as they look to reduce the weight of components.
The issue for Laser Access employees wasn't getting the equipment running, it was the time they spent away from the machine, hunting for the right tools and material. That's why the Michigan shop took steps to keep the necessary tools nearby and neatly organized.
The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association 2012 Salary/Wage & Benefit Survey is out, and it proves a lucrative career awaits those fabricators willing to put in the work to hone their skills.
As this Q&A with Plante Moran's Jeff Mengel reveals, an innovative approach to a customer relationship can lead to a very successful supply chain partnership.
The best metal fabricating partner in a supply chain is the one that not only provides on-time delivery of quality products, but also provides complete and open communication. Today the only means to do that is by opening up information technology systems to those important customers.
According to the 2013 Capital Spending Forecast, to published by the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, projected spending for U.S. metal fabricators climbed 4 percent over last year. The total amount is just shy of readers' projected spending before the recession.
Estes Design and Manufacturing, Indianapolis, finds that laser welding produces a joint that is cosmetically appealing to customers. “We’re looking for an appearance that matches almost exactly the outside of a formed corner,” said Jay Reddick, the company's laser welding development manager.
Managing a shop full of a great number of incredibly diverse, short-run, nonrepeat orders can be a complicated undertaking. Fedtech, a St. Paul, Minn., fabricator, stays on top of all the activity by giving customers a single point of contact. Upon receipt of an order, one person shepherds the job through production—from cradle to grave.
Chris Kuehl, economic analyst for the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association and managing director of Armada Corporate Intelligence, Lawrence, Kan., offers a reasonable look at taxes and what they mean to business planners.
Columnist Gerald Davis discusses when formality should enter a CAD operator's workflow and offers up an example of how a simple CAD task might go.
Why calculate values such as bend allowance, outside setback, and bend deductions? Because sometimes you will need to work your way around a bend on a print, and you may not have all the information you need to complete a flat pattern.
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