Industry News for 01/2018
While spectators filled the Berry Bowl for Logansport (Ind.) High School’s Friday night basketball game, job seekers and employers gathered in the gymnasium next door. Nearly 20 manufacturing companies, schools and other workforce organizations partnered for the high school’s first advanced manufacturing night to promote skilled trades positions available in the area. Gov. Eric Holcomb attended the event. His “Next Level Agenda” emphasizes Indiana’s need to strengthen its workforce with high-wage, high-demand jobs.
A bachelor's or graduate degree is not the only route to a financially rewarding career. There are good-paying technical jobs in fields like health care and other skilled trades that require some postsecondary training, experience or education but not a college degree. Policy leaders, including the National Academy of Sciences, have made it a priority to better understand how to prepare more adults for work in these fields. Data from Gallup Inc. and Strada Education Network's Education Consumer Pulse shed light on who advises students in vocational programs about fields of study and how helpful that advice is to students.
Plenty of companies need specific machining done. For some, the best bet is to buy machines and work in-house. But that actually can cause turnaround to slow down. When you have to maintain machines that are expensive, large and difficult to manage, production can hit a snag out of the blue. When production stalls, consumers and clients can grow impatient. That’s why you may want to take a different path. Companies that don’t want to deal with the hassles that come with machining in-house can benefit by sending jobs to a CNC machine shop.
"Politics weighs more heavily on foreign companies in China than it has in nearly three decades," writes Joe McDonald, an Associated Press business writer. "The latest flashpoint was Beijing's fury last week at hotel keeper Marriott and other companies that labeled self-ruled Taiwan a country on websites or customer materials. But companies face pressure on many sides from President Xi Jinping's more nationalistic stance and twin campaigns to tighten the ruling Communist Party's political control and have it play a direct role in business."
The Rhode Island Manufacturers Association has chosen Henry D. Sharpe Jr. to receive the inaugural Samuel Slater Lifetime Achievement Award, writes Kate Bramson in The Providence Journal. He was a longtime president of Brown & Sharpe and the third generation of the Sharpe family to run the machine tool powerhouse.
Grayson College has unveiled its $1.4 million Advanced Manufacturing Lab for the school’s Career and Technology Center, writes Rhea Bermel in the Herald Democrat. The lab will provide space for large industrial machinery, classrooms and storage and will be used largely to educate students participating in the Advanced Manufacturing Program.
Baker Industries Inc. has installed a 5-axis Mecof PowerMill to begin large-scale machining operations. The 11-month construction and build project garnered a financial investment of $3.4 million and has positioned Baker Industries to take on some of the largest machining programs in the industry.
Like most businesses, manufacturing is subject to cycles of stagnation and acceleration. Historically, improved manufacturing has led to the growth of the service sector, which in turn has led to a diminished manufacturing base. Manufacturers will no longer be able to produce a “one size fits all” product and hope the buying public will respond. Consumer input will be required, and processes will have to be adaptable to quickly respond to changes in demand.
Since 2013, members of the MIT Media Lab community have set out from their research groups every summer to observe work in about 10 factories in China. Last summer, they went with a different approach—not just to visit but to collaborate on experimenting and cooperative design with two facilities in or near the city of Shenzhen. The hacking manufacturing summer course in August focused on the theme of soft robotic materials, and three instructors and seven lab students worked with a digital knitting factory called K-Tech and a flexible printed circuit board manufacturer called King.
There was nothing at their first meeting that suggested to Chris Salow that Amanda Hutchings would one day be president of his Peak Manufacturing Corp. and take it to record revenue. It was 2007, and she was applying for a job as marketing manager at his Shop Rat Foundation, a Jackson area-based nonprofit that teaches area high school kids how to operate factory machinery and prepare for skilled, well-paying jobs upon graduation. She was 22, and although she had graduated from Baker College with a degree in business administration with honors, she was so nervous about the interview that she had broken out in hives.
Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute opens its manufacturing floor to the community
The Chicago-based Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute is opening its manufacturing floor to manufacturers and academic institutions that need to quickly test process improvements. “We are seeing a manufacturing renaissance in Chicago, and the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute is adding to that momentum,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said. “By opening their doors, sharing equipment and providing expertise to small businesses, startups and students, DMDII is ensuring Chicago’s advanced manufacturing ecosystem will be stronger for generations to come.”
If a spindle breaks down, what is your company’s plan of action? Is it the most practical and efficient way to deal with a down spindle? Spindles need maintenance at varying intervals based on the length and design of their operation. Normal use of any machine will cause wear and tear, the spindle being the component that receives the majority of the wear. It is necessary for spindles to run at the right speeds and feeds to minimize wear. Because of this, a good spindle program should consider the specific operational information of each individual spindle.
Manufacturers are optimistic about what 2018 will bring, according to a survey. Jensen Werley of BizWest Media LLC writes that one of the three main areas of priority is talent and that half of participants said they expect to increase hiring despite the top barrier to growth being a labor shortage. The most important strategies for attracting and retaining talent are listed as increasing compensation packages, conducting internal training and apprenticeships, developing strategies to reduce turnover and being more deliberate about succession planning.
John Dauber and Kevin Tucker of Camfil APC, Jonesboro, Ark., have written a white paper about airborne mists emitted during machining processes, which pose numerous risks to human health and safety. It is important to understand the regulations that limit these emissions, as well as the various technologies available to achieve compliance with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and other regulatory agencies. This paper discusses what you can do about mist collection issues in your facility, how to evaluate which type of collection system is most suitable for your application and how to establish an overall safety program that will best protect employees and equipment.
When is the best time to sell your CNC machine? How should you prepare it to sell? How can you optimize your profit? Chicago-based Machinery Marketing International addresses these questions in the e-book "Selling CNC Machines." The guide covers considerations for selling old CNC machines.
Dormer Pramet is launching a webinar series to occur the fourth Friday of every month. The first three sessions are open for enrollment. These 30-minute sessions, which will be led by round tool and indexable product experts, are free and designed to expand participants' knowledge of cutting tools. The webinars are geared toward professionals in the fields of sales, technical support and customer service.