Selected articles from June 2013 issue published on TheFabricator.com:
Copper is extremely useful in the HVAC industry, but the high and volatile price can wreak havoc on profit margins. Some fabricators have found that they can substitute a couple of aluminum alloys with good results. However, aluminum isn’t as easy to work with as copper. This article tells how Harco Metal Products developed forming and brazing processes for this not-so-forgiving material.
Business owners, accountants, and sales people don’t always agree on the definitions of business terms such as fixed cost and variable cost, and therefore they see business opportunities in different ways. Evaluating every new business opportunity in a way that includes the full burden rate (using fixed costs) seems like a good idea, but this isn’t always the best way to go. If the company is already paying all of its fixed costs, why not use variable costs to analyze a new piece of business?
Matching a consumable to a 300-series (austenitic) stainless steel is fairly straightforward, but fabricators should be aware that the various options (rod for GTAW, solid or metal-cored wire for GMAW, stick electrode for SMAW, or flux-cored wire for FCAW) have huge productivity differences.
After his yacht-building business dried up in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, entrepreneur Scott Gerber decided to build a simple sculpture from tubing. Based on a basic stick figure, the first one was a fisherman. Gerber placed a few around town, encountered some interest, and suddenly a new business was born.
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