DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. plans to close two U.S. pickup truck plants for two weeks in July at a time when pickup sales are starting to wane and trucks are stacking up on dealer lots. The company said the shutdowns at the Flint, Michigan, and Fort Wayne, Indiana, factories have been scheduled for months to do maintenance on equipment and help to outfit the Flint plant for a third shift that's coming in August.
DETROIT (AP) — Honda Motor Co. said Tuesday that it will cut the global carbon dioxide emissions from the vehicles it makes by 20 percent by the end of this decade. The company said in its annual environmental report that it was setting the goal to address climate change and energy issues. The cut is based on 2000 emissions levels.
Mayekawa Mfg. has developed an automated chicken de-boning system that is able to accurately and repeatedly strip breast meat from carcasses that are fed into the machine. According to the company, it’s ten times faster than doing the work manually. Putting aside the debate between robotic and human work, it’s sort of mesmerizing to see the machinery in action.
CIMCOOL Fluid Technology (Cincinnati, OH) has created CIMTECH 609, a hybrid fluid developed for grinding performance and improved machining ability. According to the company, it works with most aluminum alloys, titanium, exotic alloys, cast iron, carbon steels, high speed steel, high alloy steels, and stainless steels.
OHAUS Corporation (Parsippany, NJ) has announced the Defender 3000 Series of wheeled bench scales, which combine the OHAUS 3000 Series indicator with the Defender “T” wheeled platform. According to the company, the Defender 3000 is designed with an ergonomic platform to allow moving without lifting the scale.
The TechAngle Electronic Torque Wrench from Snap-on Industrial (Kenosha, WI) now comes with a cycle-counting feature to keep track of calibration cycles. The wrench allows users to set the torque value in Newton-meters, foot-pounds, or inch-pounds, and angle of rotation. The cycle counting feature helps users meet the ISO standard 6789:2003, which specifies calibration requirement for torque wrenches at one year or 5,000 cycles.
The Metallized Carbon Corporation (Ossining, NY) has developed cast iron pillow blocks and flange blocks with self-lubricating, carbon-graphite bearing inserts for applications where oil/grease lubrication cannot be used. According to the company, the bearings provide and a long, maintenance-free life in high-temperature applications were grease would melt or carbonize.
The following is a true story but told with time compression — a nine month period shortened to three — in order to cover the events as painlessly as possible: Paul was a shift supervisor with 32 years on the floor. Hitting schedules was his job. His manager, Bob, related this to me: “Paul is a hard worker who has held nearly every position in production.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa based ready-mix concrete company has pleaded guilty to participating in a price-fixing scheme for the sale of ready-mix concrete. The U.S. Department of Justice says Rock Valley-based Tri-State Ready Mix Inc. pleaded guilty Monday to one count of conspiring with another company to fix prices for ready-mix concrete.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Three employees who say they fear losing their jobs at Boeing Co.'s North Charleston plant were allowed on Monday to have limited roles in a federal labor dispute over the company's 787 passenger jet line. The National Labor Relations Board has decided to allow the employees to file a brief in the case once an NLRB hearing in the case is completed, according to the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, which is helping the employees with their legal case.
CORDOVA, Ill. (AP) — 3M is investing $90 million to expand its plant in the western Illinois community of Cordova. Officials from 3M broke ground Monday on the expansion, which is designed to help the company meet increasing demand for its next generation of technologies. Pat Thornton is the plant's site manager, and Thornton tells the Quad-City Times that the decision to expand in Cordova is "a vote of confidence" in the plant's employees.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Labor regulators are set to propose sweeping new rules Tuesday that would dramatically speed up the time frame for union elections, a move that could make it easier for struggling unions to organize new members, and cut the time businesses have to mount anti-union campaigns. A copy of the planned rules, to be announced by the National Labor Relations Board, was obtained by The Associated Press.
TOKYO (AP) — Toyota said it will hire 3,000 to 4,000 temporary workers in Japan to be ready for a recovery in vehicle production as automakers bounce back from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Toyota Motor Corp. will start recruiting the factory workers in July, as production is now gradually recovering and expected to surge by October, company spokesman Shigehiko Okamura said Tuesday.
BLUFFTON, Ind. (AP) — Franklin Electric Co. Inc. said it plans to close an Oklahoma City factory and move the equivalent of 125 jobs, primarily to a facility in Linares, Mexico. Franklin Electric, which makes systems and components used to move water and automotive fuels, said it will move some of the 260,000 annual man-hours of work to another Oklahoma City facility.
Industrial Production Forecast to Grow 6 Percent in 2011, 4 Percent in 2012 Arlington, VA. — A host of factors, ranging from the tsunami in Japan to higher oil prices, have conspired to weaken the outlook for the overall U.S. economy, yet the manufacturing sector continues to forge ahead, according to the Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI U.
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The former CEO of a defunct Pennsylvania soft drink company pleaded guilty to tax evasion, mail fraud and money laundering for using two sets of books to obtain $875 million in credit for the company. Federal prosecutors in Pittsburgh say the scheme orchestrated by 51-year-old Gregory Podlucky, of Ligonier, resulted in $628 million in losses to various lenders and equipment companies that did business with Latrobe-based Le-Nature's Inc.
WASHINGTON (AP) — LightSquared, a Virginia-based company that plans to build a nationwide wireless broadband network, is proposing to adapt its network so as not to interfere with GPS systems. The company plans to move some of its operations to a different slice of airwaves and to transmit signals at lower power levels to ensure that its network would not interfere with GPS systems that rely on nearby wireless spectrum.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Exports of goods and services in Virginia are growing and having a large impact on the state's economy. Virginia exports increased 8 percent in 2010 to $29 billion, ranking it as the 22nd-largest exporting state in the U.S., according to recent data from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership's international trade office.
LE BOURGET, France (AP) — Boeing Co. announced more than $11 billion worth of orders and commitments for 56 jets on Monday as the Paris Air Show, the industry's main event of the year, got under way. The Chicago-based aerospace and defense giant opened a day of one-upmanship with traditional rival Airbus by announcing Qatar Airways had ordered six 777 jets in a $1.
PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — The world's largest maker of construction and mining equipment, Caterpillar Inc., reported another strong month of global sales growth in May when sales improved 52 percent over last year. Still, the results were slightly weaker than the recent months. The company provided an update on its sales Monday in documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.