Selected articles from October/November 2012 issue published on TheFabricator.com:
Founded in 2003, American Hydoformers Inc. arrived on the scene a little too late to catch the first big wave of interest in hydroforming. A few automobile manufacturers had been oversold on the technology and were cautious to continue to convert parts to hydroforming, but AHI didn’t stumble and fall. Wise investments in equipment gave the company a unique and thriving position in the industry.
Annealing traditionally is accomplished by using a fuel (natural gas) to heat the annealing chamber; another method is to use an electrical coil to induce a current in the item to be annealed. However, these aren’t the only processes. A third method, plasma annealing, has been found to be beneficial in annealing small-diameter stainless steel and nickel alloy tube and pipe.
Seeing bins of parts lying around in your shop? Maybe it’s time to get away from the large-batch method and try one-piece flow. Rather than make a large quantity of Component 1, then Component 2, then Component 3, while a welder downstream waits for Component 3, you could set up a system of one-piece flow that sends a kit of three components. The key to implement this strategy is the bender software.
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