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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Automation Solves Welder Shortage Issue For NPK

March 24, 2008 10:23 am

NPK Construction Equipment Inc. (NPK), based in Walton Hills, OH, manufactures attachments for heavy machinery equipment. In the past few years, sales and production have grown exponentially, and the company's manual welding process was experiencing growing pains.

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Cumberland Eliminates Spillage And Dust Problems

March 24, 2008 10:20 am

Cumberland Pencil Co. (located in Borrowdale, in England’s picturesque Lake District), started as a cottage industry in the mid-19th century to make pencils from locally mined graphite. The company now produces some 750,000 fine art and graphic pencils per week, sold worldwide under the brand name of Derwent.

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Q & A With Barry Jaruzelski, Booz Allen Hamilton

March 24, 2008 10:11 am

Jaruzelski : On balance, 2007 was a solid year for industrial manufacturers, despite a slowing U.S. economy in the second half and fear of a 2008 recession. As of late November, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index had both gone up four percent. Unfilled orders for U.

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Wanted: Emotional Intelligence

March 24, 2008 10:01 am | by Mike Collins

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } Many of today’s management are having trouble leading their company through the battlefields of globalization In his 35 years in manufacturing, Mike Collins has helped companies make the transition from being defenders-focused on process change and cost-cutting-to prospectors-focused on finding new markets and profitable growth.

Small Town Workin'

March 24, 2008 9:57 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } ATP crosses industrial manufacturing tracks using technological and time-saving tactics to cut costs, raise quality, and head into a new marketplace By David Mantey Operations Manager John Jones (left) and Vice President and General Manager Bernie Stritzke (right) of ATP Engineered Rubber & Plastics.

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The OEE Deficit

February 28, 2008 6:19 am

The paper is based on manufacturers’ experiences and research conducted by Activplant Chief Product Strategist Dennis Cocco. In this body of work, Cocco introduces an evolution in thinking: the most efficient way to increase productivity is to focus on product flow through the process.

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Automated Warehouse Handles Increased Volume For FUJIFILM

February 21, 2008 5:43 am

FUJIFILM U.S.A., Inc., began manufacturing operations at the 500-acre Greenwood, SC campus in 1988, when the company announced the construction of its first U.S. factory for the production of pre-sensitized plates for the graphic arts market. The manufacturing complex is currently comprised of five high-tech manufacturing plants, as well as the Greenwood Research Laboratories, and the largest FUJIFILM distribution center in the world.

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Polaris Faces Flooring Challenge

February 21, 2008 5:28 am

Roseau, MN is the birthplace of Polaris, and the sport of snowmobiling. Polaris’ Roseau facility houses both its high-tech product testing lab and manufacturing operations for its ATVs, snowmobiles and Ranger UTVs. The state-of-the-art testing lab in Roseau is a series of glass-walled rooms where engineers can re-create real-life stresses on engines to study their effects on components. While Polaris parts have proven to stand up to virtually any adverse condition, the lab’s flooring, ironically, has repeatedly failed the stress test.

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Contouring Lighting Control

February 20, 2008 12:34 pm | by Scott Jordan, Product Manager, Commercial Lighting Control, Square D/Schneider Electric

Increasing energy efficiency and cost savings in an industrial facility often comes down to a keen understanding of the manufacturing process, and contouring an appropriate strategy to maximize available opportunities. Case in point is the Menasha, WI, facility of Albany International Corp., a worldwide manufacturer of paper machine clothing, where a unique lighting control strategy was implemented in 2002 during a lighting retrofit.

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Never Fear Change

February 20, 2008 12:10 pm

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } Two-time AME award winner, Batesville Casket, Manchester, TN, finds consistency in change.

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Consistent Efforts, Consistent Results

February 20, 2008 11:53 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } AME President Ralph Keller outlines the path to award success AME president Ralph Keller sees the annual Manufacturing Excellence Award as a recognition for long term, continuous improvement that is rooted in company culture.

Stuck On Stick?

February 20, 2008 11:34 am | by Mike Crawford, Stick Electrodes Product Manager, Hobart Brothers

Because variables such as storage techniques, electrode diameter, and flux composition all contribute to stick electrode selection and performance, arming yourself with some basic knowledge can help you minimize confusion and better ensure stick-welding success.

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Practical Growth: The Quad Plan

February 20, 2008 9:59 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } A planning process designed specifically for small and mid-sized manufacturers In his 35 years in manufacturing, Mike Collins has helped companies make the transition from being defenders-focused on process change and cost-cutting-to prospectors-focused on finding new markets and profitable growth.

Q & A With Rob Fenton and Steve Zumbusch

February 20, 2008 8:28 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } Representatives from Eaton’s electric and hydraulic business units reflect on the respective advantages of both types of drive power "Theoretically, anything you can do with hydraulics you can also do with an electric drive.

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A Different Take On Tracking

February 20, 2008 7:51 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } Optical technology as an alternative to RFID By Mitch Silver, CEO, Sky-Trax, Inc .

The 30-Inch View

January 25, 2008 8:30 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } The 30-Inch View How to connect lean thinking with ergonomics By Mike Wynn, VP and Ergonomics Engineer, Humantech, Inc.

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More For Less

January 25, 2008 8:24 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } More For Less The growing trend toward efficiency has designers engineering motors to absorb less energy while maximizing output By Carrie Ellis, Editor, Product Design & Development magazine According to the Department of Energy (DOE), "Over half of all electrical energy consumed in the United States is used by electric motors.

Taking On Strategic Planning

January 25, 2008 8:05 am

h4 { font: bold 14px Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000; } .byline { font-style: italic; margin-bottom: 4px; } .caption { font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; margin: 4px; } .sup { position: relative; bottom: 2px; font-size: smaller;" } Taking On Strategic Planning People in industrial manufacturing companies do not generally communicate with long narrative reports or plans.

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Q&A With Bart G. Bartholomew, Vice President, SKF® Reliability Systems North America

January 25, 2008 7:19 am

/* Q & A With Bart G. Bartholomew, Vice President, SKF® Reliability Systems North America Bart G. Bartholomew is Vice President, SKF® Reliability Systems North America, a business division of SKF USA, Inc. In his 20 years with SKF, he has served in a variety of successive positions, ranging from sales and business development, to distribution management and new product launches.

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Management Commitment And Employee Involvement

January 25, 2008 7:04 am | by Scott Stone, ATS Human Resource Manager

Providing a maintenance professional with a safe work environment can be an extremely challenging task. The nature of the job requires the technician to put him or herself in different situations every day. This adds additional risk that might not be present in other professions. So how do we keep these employees safe? 

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