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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Food-Grade Stainless Scales

September 17, 2010 12:20 pm | Product Releases | Comments

The multi-head scale by CombiScale, Inc. (Opa Locka, FL) is designed so that all contact parts are completely tool-less: pans, buckets, and chutes are all designed for quick and easy removal and feature a food-grade stainless steel construction. All functions are controlled digitally using a microprocessor.

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ERP: An Excellent Strategic Weapon 

September 17, 2010 7:51 am | by Cindy Jutras, Vice-President, Research Fellow & Group Director, Aberdeen Group | Articles | Comments

As optimism increases for a worldwide economic recovery, small to mid-size enterprises (SMEs) once again look forward to revenue growth. As a result, SMEs must seek competitive advantages that enable them to contain costs to ensure that growth of revenues is not at the expense of profits. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) can indeed be a strategic weapon.

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A Fertile Field

September 17, 2010 7:38 am | by Dr. Ronald L. Hollis, President & CEO, Quickparts.com | Articles | Comments

What do you do when you design parts that have a specific purpose? What do you do when they’re not only critical to operations, but they’re expensive, and you only need a few? Well, the aerospace and defense (A&D) industries have been fighting this battle forever.

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Toyota In Talks With Diamler Over Hybrids

September 17, 2010 4:46 am | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota is in talks with Daimler AG about sharing its gas-electric hybrid technology with the German automaker, Japanese media reports said Friday. Toyota Motor Corp., the world's top automaker, said it has a policy of sharing its hybrid technology with other automakers to help make it widespread but declined to comment on any specific talks with other automakers.

World Markets Rise On Tech Company Earnings

September 17, 2010 4:46 am | by Pan Pylas, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

LONDON (AP) — World stock markets mostly rose Friday as positive earnings news from technology companies such as Oracle and BlackBerry maker Research in Motion helped shore up sentiment. Figures showing that U.S. consumer prices rose 0.3 percent in August — roughly in line with expectations — had little impact on the markets on a day when trading is likely to be volatile given that many futures and options contracts have to be settled in both Europe and the U.

Mullaly: Ford Committed To Miss., Plant Still In Limbo

September 17, 2010 4:45 am | by Heather Hollingsworth, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. CEO Alan Mulally told a crowd of business and government leaders Thursday that he's committed to Missouri but doesn't have any news about a new product line for the Claycomo assembly plant near Kansas City. There had been speculation that Mulally might make news when he spoke during a gathering of the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and during a separate economic development conference in Kansas City.

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Biden Defends Stimulus-Funded Manufacturing Projects

September 17, 2010 4:40 am | by Darlene Superville, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rehabilitating New York's Staten Island Ferry Terminal. Cutting a new highway through Nelsonville, Ohio. Building a trio of battery factories in Michigan. In a report being released Friday by Vice President Joe Biden, the White House pushes back against criticism of its $814 billion stimulus program and highlights 100 projects that it says are creating jobs and growing the economy.

Georgia Man Crushed By Stacking Machinery

September 17, 2010 4:38 am | News | Comments

NORCROSS, Ga. (AP) — Gwinnett County officials say a man was crushed to death by machinery at plant near Norcross. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Gwinnett County fire Capt. Tommy Rutledge says the 48-year-old man, whose name has not been released, was employed at the RockTenn plant.

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J&J Exec Retires Amid Another Recall Probe

September 17, 2010 4:37 am | by Linda A. Johnson, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — The head of the Johnson & Johnson division responsible for most of the company's 11 product recalls announced her retirement late Thursday, shortly after a congressional committee probing the recalls invited her to a second hearing on the case. J&J, reeling from an unprecedented spate of recalls that includes more than 135 million bottles of infants' and children's Tylenol and other nonprescription medicines, said Colleen Goggins will retire on March 1 after almost 30 "successful and distinguished" years with the company.

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Harley-Davidson And The Union Debate

September 16, 2010 10:32 am | by by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO | Blogs | Comments

Editor's note: In the interest of gathering better feedback from our readers on what topics interest them, we're going to try and solicit feedback and constructive debate on the topics we cover. A new commenting system will be enabled on this page, with the hope you, IMPO 's readers, will feel compelled to respond.

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Industrial Vending For Anything

September 16, 2010 9:27 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

Apex Industrial (Mason, OH) has announced its SkyHook industrial vending machine, which makes it easier to vend MRO products of irregular shapes and sizes. According to the company, any product with a hang-tab or hole punch can be vended in this system, without repackaging. The system is installed by plugging it into a power outlet and connecting it to the Internet, which allows real-time usage, inventory, and restocking information.

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Your Tool 'One-Stop-Shop'

September 16, 2010 9:27 am | Product Releases | Comments

Pro-Fit Carry Systems (Puyallup, WA) now offers their “one-stop-shop” for tool organization: the Modular Zippered Tech Bag with a removable shoulder strap. The lightweight nylon pouch provides pockets for small tools, and includes three modular Velcro tool panels, which can be easily inserted or removed.

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Faster, Easier Sawing

September 16, 2010 9:26 am | Product Releases | Comments

Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation (Milwaukee, WI) introduces new wood-cutting SAWZALL Blades, in both standard and The Ax profiles, to deliver durability against nail impact and a quick plunge cut, according to the company. A notable change has been the shift from a 6 TPI (teeth per inch) pattern to a more aggressive 5 TPI pattern.

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'Hybrid' Carts

September 16, 2010 9:25 am | Product Releases | Comments

Geerpres, Inc. (Muskegon, MI) has introduced a new high-capacity, powder-coated cart that blends the most beneficial features of stainless steel and modular plastic carts. The “Hybrid” High-Capacity Cart features a powder-coated metal construction and a center divided cabinet that includes locking and non-locking compartments.

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Designing A Dry Material Feeder

September 16, 2010 5:09 am | by Chad M. Lorensen, Pharmaceutical Industry Business Development Manager, Andreas Ludwig, Mechanical Engineering Manager, Schenck AccuRate Inc. | Articles | Comments

Metering dry powders in the pharmaceutical industry is not a new idea. Several common applications have been utilizing gravimetric and volumetric dry material feeders for many years. Until recently, these feeders were customized versions of industrial or food grade equipment or one-off type machines engineered for a specific application.

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The Majestic Plastic Bag

September 15, 2010 7:07 am | Videos | Comments

From the open plains of the asphalt jungle, the clever and illustrious plastic bag faces numerous challenges on its migration to the Pacific Ocean. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department. Have any comments or questions about our Thursday video editions of IMPO Insider? Or do you have a video you'd like to see featured in one of our deployments? Email me at Joel.

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Tinkerers Build A Better Lunar Lander

September 15, 2010 7:05 am | Videos | Comments

Tech Shop, in Menlo Park, CA, provides prospective tinkerers with all the tools they could need to make their inventions come to life — everything from sandblasters to welding equipment. And while some members are there to entertain themselves and build something small, others have big dreams.

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U.S. Manufacturers Can Compete

September 15, 2010 7:01 am | Videos | Comments

Rajan Suri, a University of Wisconsin-Madison professor of industrial and systems engineering, has a strategy that could keep manufacturers strong in the downtrodden economy: quick response manufacturing. QRM can allow manufacturers to reduce lead times, cut inventory, and increase profitability.

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Extreme Maintenance At 1,700 Feet

September 15, 2010 7:00 am | Videos | Comments

After watching this video, you might take that free over-the-air TV or morning radio show a little less for granted. The 1,700-foot towers that broadcast those signals need occasional maintenance, just like any other piece of machinery. That means a brave soul — like the men in the video below — have to make the treacherous journey.

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59 Alabama Pipemakers Laid Off

September 15, 2010 4:55 am | News | Comments

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — American Cast Iron Pipe Co. says it plans to lay off another 59 workers in Birmingham. The layoff announced Tuesday is the company's second in a little more than two months. The Birmingham News reports the Birmingham-based maker of iron and steel pipes used for water, oil and natural gas transmission says the layoffs will take effect Oct.

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