Industry News for 11/2017
FANUC Corporation, supplier of robotics, CNC and factory automation has announced the production of its 500,000th robot. The company is working toward ramping production up from 6,000 to 11,000 units per month. To that end, FANUC is building a new factory, which is scheduled to open in August 2018.
Photo etching is a fast, efficient and cost-effective method for the manufacture of small precision metal parts using etchant chemistries. It is well-suited for development, prototype and production volumes, and has the ability to ramp up from low- to high-volume runs extremely quickly. Photo etched parts are burr and stress-free, the complexity of shape is unlimited, and there is absolute flexibility to change the design at any time as the process uses easily altered digital tooling.
Regal Cutting Tools, Roscoe, Ill., has been part of Hononegah Community High School’s Workplace Readiness Program for years, including job shadowing and training workshops. The company also is very involved in Beloit Memorial High School’s technical programs, providing mentorship, summer apprenticeships and internships. The success of the programs with Regal Cutting Tools and other companies has created a problem. “I never have enough students to make my level three machining class run,” said a machining and welding instructor at Beloit Memorial. “The reason why is because they’re pilfered off the machining two class to work for these different companies. It’s an excellent sign of demand.”
ShareAmerica introduces Rochelle White, an example of a next-generation manufacturing worker: "White, 28, of Chicago, represents the next generation of American workers getting groomed for advanced manufacturing jobs. She is in the final phase of a free, 13-month program at Building Self Determination Industries, which operates a manufacturing company on the city’s South Side, where unemployment and poverty rates are high. Once White completes the program, she will be a certified robotics technician."
Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence today announced its support for Workshops for Warriors (WFW), a non-profit school created to train military veterans in the field of advanced manufacturing. Hexagon has contributed several portable ROMER Absolute Arms to help expand the program into metrology education with industrial grade equipment and expert mentoring.
Drilling has long been the cornerstone of the machining process, consuming roughly 50 percent of all tools and creating 75 percent of all chips. So it comes as no surprise that shops interested in reducing costs and increasing productivity should look first toward the full optimization of their holemaking processes with today’s advanced solid-carbide and indexable-insert drill technologies.
The McKinsey Global Institute released new research this week that outlines opportunities to boost manufacturing by up to $530 billion, or 20 percent, over current trends by 2025—and create more than 2 million jobs. The report also provides fresh details on why the US manufacturing sector has suffered steep declines.
Combining operations in a single tool is a significant trend sweeping through the metalcutting industry. Combining cutting operations reduces the cost per hole by eliminating tool changes. It improves production efficiency and machine utilization, ultimately increasing manufacturers’ speed to market.
Why does INDEX afford itself the luxury of installing a second rotary encoder on the Z-axis in its lathes for full-surface machining? The answer is safety and accuracy—two unbeatable arguments that customers treasure.
A novel 3D printing process that relies on melting aluminum wire and manipulating it with electromagnetism is no longer just another lab project. Vader Systems, which developed the process, has announced the first commercial sale of its signature Mk1 3D printer to Becker CAD-CAM-Cast, a tier-one supplier of engineered aluminum automotive components.
"Who says American manufacturing is dead? The young innovators on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list in Manufacturing and Industry are finding plenty of opportunities to design useful new products, make factories more efficient and create better materials." More at the link.
Manufacturing technology orders in September continued their upward trend, ending the third quarter on a strong note. According to the latest U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders Report, bookings for September 2017 were up 6 percent from August and posted a year-to-date figure 5 percent higher than the first nine months of 2016. The monthly total of $403 million fell short of September 2016 by 26 percent, a typical drop-off in odd-numbered years when IMTS, the largest manufacturing technology show in the Americas, does not occur.
For today’s industrial manufacturing applications, it’s all about output. The goal is to machine as many parts as possible in the shortest amount of time to maximize profitability. In industries that regularly take huge blocks of metal and machine them down to a part that’s approximately 10 to 20 percent of the size and weight of the original piece, that process generates high volumes of metal chips, shavings, grindings and turnings.
Like most of us, Jay Hegemann deletes a lot of emails every day. Everything from miracle cures for baldness to special offers from credit card vendors go right into the trash. However, something about the email from Keyence’s sales engineer earlier this spring caught Hegemann’s eye and he decided to take another look. It’s a good thing, because the product advertised in that message has been a game changer for this small manufacturing firm.
Historically, the round tool cutting industry hasn’t offered many educational events to customers for collaboration. 3M is on a mission to change that.
User error is a more common cause of unplanned downtime in the manufacturing sector than almost any other sector, according to a new Vanson Bourne global study, sponsored by ServiceMax from GE Digital. Unplanned downtime triggered by user error is 23% compared to as low as 9% in other sectors. (And did that robot just snicker?)
Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in October, and the overall economy grew for the 101st consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business. The October PMI registered 58.7 percent, a decrease of 2.1 percentage points from the September reading of 60.8 percent. This indicates growth in manufacturing for the 14th consecutive month and continues expansion consistent with pre-hurricane levels.
Stephen Winn, owner of Winn Manufacturing Inc., blogs about how his search for information on bending formulas came up short when he relied on the popular Internet search engine. "It was about that time that I saw my 20th Edition of the Machinery’s Handbook sitting in the corner of my desk," he writes. "Within about 10 minutes I had the bending formulas that I vaguely remembered and the standard method of measurement for the pitch diameter of the V-Groove of a “B” size pulley groove." Read his entire post on the satisfaction of kickin' it old-school at the link below.
Walter Dunkmann, head of the vacuum automation business area for J. Schmalz GmbH, Glatten, Germany, answers queries about digitization.
Sandvik Coromant hosted a “Digitalization on Machining” panel of leading digital manufacturing industry experts on Nov. 1, 2017, at the Center for Manufacturing Innovation in Greenville, S.C. Participants included William Sobel of VIMANA and representatives from GE Power, Cisco, Sandvik, Okuma, Microsoft, Mastercam, Rockwell Automation, MakeTime, Praemo and the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing.