Customer Successes

Shop Stretches Manufacturing Abilities with Advanced VTCs

What was once a significant cost for Techniform is now a major profit center. The Mabank, TX, shop specializes in stretch form metal curving/fabrication to produce components used for everything from planes, trains and automobiles to roller coasters and window assemblies in high-rise buildings. Practically all of these formed components require conventional machining - work the shop farmed out to local suppliers. Unfortunately, in doing so, Techniform was subjected to the schedules and often long lead times of those suppliers, not to mention inconsistent part quality from one job to the next.

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Instruments, Shop Make Beautiful Music Together

Each month, the David G. Monette Corp. (Portland, OR) produces four of the most technologically advanced trumpets in the world. The shop’s customer list reads like a “Who’s Who” of trumpet players—from Charles Schlueter, former principal trumpet of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, to jazz great Wynton Marsalis, the artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, to the late Maynard Ferguson, noted Canadian jazz musician and bandleader. Each trumpet is tailored to the musician based on where and how they play as well as their individual sound concept.

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Five-Axis Machine Produces Medical Parts without Wasted Capabilities

When machining unique medical devices used to administer radiation treatments for cancer patients, high quality and fast turnaround is of utmost importance. Luckily, Sanford, Florida-based .(dot)decimal has found a way to achieve both. The shop conducts all its business on a completely digital, automated, internet basis, enabling it to receive job orders before 12 p.m., process them on a variety of machine tools from Mazak Corp. (Florence, Kentucky), and ship them complete by 6 p.m. that same day.

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Meeting the Need for Expert Machinists

A short time ago, Patrick Osborne heard that some local manufacturers were considering moving their operations out of the immediate area unless they found skilled 5-axis machinists. As the Vice President of Training and Education at the Technology and Manufacturing Association (TMA) located in Schaumburg, IL, Osborne took this news personally.

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Reed's Precision Machine

Reed’s Precision Machine (RPM), located in picturesque Logan, Utah, is the epitome of a family run business that continues to evolve. Reed Bindrup, who turned 85 as we went to print, started the business nearly a half century ago, in 1968. Though he plans to slow down some time in the future, he still comes to work at the business each day for about 8 hours! You can immediately appreciate the work ethic Reed installed in his family.

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Manufacturer Gets Aggressive with Automated Machining

Only a few short years ago, automation was somewhat scarce within much of the manufacturing operations at GN Corporations Inc., in Airdrie, Alberta. But the shop, driven by a strong forward-thinking attitude of continuous improvement, recently made a strategic automation leap to further increase productivity and ensure its global competitiveness well into the future.

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Shop’s Machining Capabilities Smoke the Competition

Sentry Industries manufactures parts that hit speeds of up to 200 mph and travel one-eighth of a mile in just four seconds. The Rock Island, Illinois, shop specializes in high-performance components and assemblies primarily for the pro-modified motorcycle drag racing industry, in addition to its other general contract machining and prototyping work.

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True 5-Axis Gives Shop A Healthy Start in Medical Work

When Tim Schneider came on board at OneSource Manufacturing Technology in 2009, he had one mission – lead the Leander, Texas, shop into the medical manufacturing sector. At the time, OneSource worked almost exclusively in the semiconductor industry, but wanted to diversify to ensure a steady, less erratic flow of incoming work.

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Fast Cars to Guitars; Shop Plays the Lead in Manufacturing

Fast cars and guitars may be the makings of a country song, but for Wolfert’s Tool & Machine Co. Inc., they represent the broad spectrum of markets the job shop serves with its advanced machining capabilities. From its humble beginnings, the St. James, Missouri-shop’s diversity and willingness to take on any job kept it busy and growing, even in past economically trying years when most others slowed or were forced to close their doors permanently.

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Advanced Machine Tools Revitalize Cylinder Manufacturing

Hanna Cylinders has experienced several milestones – 100 years in business, moving operations from its original Chicago facility to one in Libertyville, Illinois, then to its current location in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, each time because of increased growth. But in regards to the company’s manufacturing operations, it could be said that some of the most significant changes started around 2011 and continue on today.

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Aerospace Shop Flies By the Seat of Its Parts

Edward Lafferty, CEO and founder of LCP Machine Inc., admits his strategy to win work can be a bit risky at times and one where the shop often flies by the seat of its pants, or in this case, its parts. Instead of quoting a new job based on its existing machine tools, the Bunnell, Florida, shop focuses acutely on the parts to determine what would be the ultimate best-matched technology for producing them. It then prices the job accordingly – regardless if that particular ideal piece of equipment is on the LCP shop floor or not.

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Penske Wins the All-Crucial Manufacturing Race

Two races happen every week for Penske Racing in Mooresville, North Carolina, and the team needs to win both. One is the race at the actual track, while the other is what Penske refers to as the “manufacturing race.” This is the crucial race where highly engineered components that will give the team a competitive advantage must go from design to reality and get to the racetrack as quickly as possible.

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Flow Cells Make for Healthy Medical Device Manufacturing

Constant innovation is the life force behind business success at CONMED Orthopedics in Largo, Florida. The company specializes in medical devices for orthopedic, arthroscopic and laparoscopic surgery. CONMED Largo currently manufactures about 4,300 different part catalog numbers and introduces many innovative new products per year. Competition is tough, and CONMED must continuously boost efficiency and shorten product development lead times to get its innovations to market as quickly as possible.

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Shop Puts Valve Machining in Check with Multi-Tasking

Standard single-process CNC machine tools may be a thing of the past at PBM Inc. now that the shop has acquired its first advanced multi-tasking machine. The Irwin, Pennsylvania, shop manufactures specialty valves, and Stuart Zarembo, company President and CEO, predicts that, as the shop replaces its mills and lathes, it will most definitely do so with machines that provide multi-tasking functionality.

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Multi-Tasking Takes Sled Production Efficiency to the Xtreme

Business is all up hill for Black Diamond Xtreme in Cannon Falls, Minnesota. That’s because the shop relies on Mazak Multi-Tasking machines to manufacture aftermarket high-performance components that transform average snowmobiles into aggressive, supercharged and lightweight extreme mountain machines.

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Medical Shop Fixates On DONE IN ONE Throughput

Lowell Inc, a medical contract manufacturer in Minneapolis, sometimes ignores part machining cycle times, and instead focuses its attention on overall throughput speed. In its current state, the shop could immediately reduce several of its machining cycle times by half, but doing so would add significant amounts of manual processing to the equation.

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Shop Hammers Out Production for Hard Rock Drilling Systems

Typically, directional drilling is associated with extracting oil and natural gas from underground shale formations. But most people are unaware of the fact that directional drilling also plays a key role in actually getting energy resources, such as natural gas and electrical power, into the hands of residential, business and industrial end users, as well as a whole host of others.

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Shop Centers Success on Self-Contained Single-Cell Automation

Ask Michael Olano, president of Dynomach Inc., how to be a profitable high-volume production shop, and his answer will be self-contained single-cell automation – more specifically, twin-spindle machines outfitted with bar feeders and automatic parts catchers.

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Automated HMC Cell Powers Rod Production Flexibility

Automotive connecting rod production is not what it used to be. Gone are the days of vehicle engine platforms that would run for 10-plus years requiring connecting rods that basically remained unchanged design wise. Instead, today’s automakers, in efforts to reduce vehicle weight and emissions, continuously introduce new and smaller engines – with fewer cylinders, yet increased horsepower – at an average rate of every three or so years.

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Shop Gives Props to DONE IN ONE Cellular Manufacturing

Hartzell Propeller Inc, with roots tracing back to a relationship with the Wright Airplane Co. (founded by the Wright Brothers) is one shop that gives the utmost proper recognition to manufacturing cells - in particular those that incorporate multi-tasking done-in-one machine technology. These special types of cells, over the past few years, have not only allowed the shop to continuously boost its aircraft propeller production output, but do so using less equipment and smaller amounts of manufacturing floor space.

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Shop Moves from Manual to Multi-tasking, Simple to Complex

What started with one manual mill and lathe quickly grew into an extremely productive machine shop that attributes its success to CNC and multi-tasking machining capability. With that technology, Industrial Machine Works Inc. in Baker, La., consistently shortened its job turnaround times and increased production capacity. But most importantly, the shop has been able to expand its business because of an ability to efficiently and cost effectively machine parts that are much more complex than any it had ever done in the past.

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INTEGREX Machines Produce Tremendous Gains for MTH Pumps

According to MTH Pumps, a combination of Mazak‘s Integrex machines and their relationship with Machinery Systems Inc. has helped them to achieve amazing growth over the past few years. “The Integrex concept of DONE IN ONE multi-tasking has really helped us achieve tremendous gains in productivity,” said Tim Tremain, President, MTH Pumps.

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Satowfi Machining Solutions

Satowfi Machining Solutions believes in buying high quality, new machines. And they made their first purchase with Magnum Precision Machines just about 3 years ago because of a service. Just this past month, they made their next two purchases with…

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Made in America: Industrial Sales and Manufacturing

Industrial Sales and Manufacturing, a Mazak machine user located in Erie, Pennsylvania, has been a premier manufacturer and supplier of quality machined, fabricated and assembled components since 1967.

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Aerospace Shop Looks for Trouble to Stay Competitive

Hansen Engineering Co. in Harbor City, Calif., constantly looks for trouble to maintain its competitive advantage. As a supplier to the aerospace industry, the shop specializes in tackling those troublesome jobs that other shops have given up on or tend to avoid altogether.

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Manufacturing Automation: The Right Choice for Jobshop

Mention automation, and most people think high-volume production environments in which millions of parts are pumped out on a regular basis. While that may be true in many instances, it is definitely not the case at Choice Precision Inc. in Whitehall, Pa. In fact, the situation is quite the opposite.

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Shop Achieves Primary Objective of No Secondary Ops

Hartman Enterprises Inc. is a business built on multi-tasking machine tool technology. And from the moment the Oneida, N.Y., shop powered up its first multi-tasking machine in the early 1990s, and even to this day, it has one primary production objective for that type of equipment. That objective is to eliminate secondary operations involving multiple machines for as many different workpieces as possible.

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The Happy Captives

At age 16, Tony Nguyen (Nuyen) - cofounder of Fullerton, CA's SoCal Precision Machining, Inc. - was one of the approximately 500,000 Vietnamese boat people who escaped communist Vietnam by way of Indonesia and eventually immigrated to the United States.

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Oil & Gas Boom

The surge in oil and gas directional drilling has business booming at Taylor Oilfield Manufacturing Inc. The Broussard, LA, shop manufactures key components for mud motors, which have revolutionized directional well drilling. These devices, powered by liquid force pumped down to them in a well, turn well-drilling bits and make long-distance angled and even horizontal well drilling possible.

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Metalcutting Mettle at Valent Aerostructures

Valent Aerostructures (Kansas City, MO) meticulously selects every machine tool purchase it makes, and only those machines that provide the perfect combination of reliability, production value and lowest cost per part, as well as the lowest cost of ownership, are even considered. A machine that makes it through the aerospace company's extensive in-house evaluation must then prove its worth as far as performance, accuracy and increased metal removal rates are concerned.

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Mazak Distributor Northwest Machine Technologies

Florence, Kentucky, October 17, 2012 – Mazak Corporation's distributor Northwest Machine Technologies serving Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota and Western Wisconsin has launched a new in-house automation division that will provide customers with complete robot integration services for their Mazak machines. With the added integration service, customers will further benefit from Mazak's comprehensive approach to automation solutions together with the local expert service and support from Northwest Machine Technologies to boost productivity through better machine utilization.

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Manufacturing Cells Keep Manifold Production Flowing

Manufacturing cells that group together machine tools for processing components made from similar materials and families of parts are key to a lean environment, allowing manufacturers to better manage their workflow and ultimately operate faster and more productively. Daman Products Co., Inc., a leading hydraulic valve manifold shop based in Northern, Indiana, has long relied on manufacturing cells to achieve higher productivity levels, improve on-time delivery as well as increase its responsiveness to fluctuating market conditions.

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You may not be familiar with the company called Lifetime. But chances are, you own products that are designed and manufactured by them

This is especially true if you are an avid outdoor enthusiast, as Lifetime makes such products as swing sets, lawn chairs, picnic tables, storage sheds, kayaks, tent trailers, and basketball hoops, to name a few.

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Multi-Tasking Pumps Up Shop’s Machining Capability

Reata Engineering and Machine Works in Englewood, Colorado, took a huge leap of faith when it acquired its first multi-tasking machine. None of the shop’s highly skilled machinists had any experience with such an advanced machine, but the shop was confident that multi-tasking would significantly reduce part setups and eliminate having to use multiple machines in processing the shop’s highly complex parts, in particular, components for peristaltic pumps used in the medical field.

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Advanced Automation Drives Company’s Success

Specializing in high and low volume work, close tolerance machining and leak testing of aluminum castings for the automotive industry, Metal Technologies has spent the past 14 years developing its niche as a second-tier supplier to leading car and truck manufacturers. The company attributes much of its successes to fully automated manufacturing cells that utilize advanced machine tools from top suppliers such as Mazak.

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Precision Tech

More than a third of a century old. Precision Tech was formed more than 35 years ago by two young brothers, Tom at the age of 25 and Terry, just 20 years young. In fact, Terry says, "My father had to co-sign our business license and loan because legally you had to be at least 21 years of age for signature authority."

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Innovative Precision

If you have doubts about American manufacturers' ability to remain competitive in a global economy, you need to look no further than Innovative Precision. The company, based in beautiful Ogden, UT, opened for business in 1998. It was founded by Bryan Cardon at the mere age of 22, when most young men and women are more interested in fun, Facebook, and dating than building a successful business.

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Shop Excels in Severe Service Oil & Gas Valve Manufacturing

During the recent Gulf of Mexico oil spill crisis, CORTEC Fluid Control, in Houma, Louisiana, was called upon to quickly supply two of its severe-service, extreme-pressure valve assemblies. These were needed on the ship that was dispatched to drill a relief well that eased the flow of oil from the spilling well so that repairs could be made. Working around the clock, the shop manufactured the assembly and delivered it in just two days. Typically, such an assembly would take weeks to produce.

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Shop Casts A Critical Role In Heavy Vehicle Fuel Efficiency

Big-name automakers, heavy vehicle/truck manufacturers, as well as those producing marine craft, are all under pressure to develop engines that are more fuel-efficient and expel less harmful emissions. And most often, engine designers achieve these stringent efficiency goals using an emissions reduction technique known as Exhaust Gas Recirculation or EGR.

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Shop Gains Complete Process Control with Automation

Instead of the intention of eliminating the human element from part manufacturing operations, Stark Industrial LLC, located in North Canton, Ohio, incorporates automation to achieve complete part processing control. Automation allows the shop’s highly trained machinists to focus more on inspection and other critical operations rather than consuming their valuable skills and time on menial tasks such as loading and unloading machines.

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Five-axis Machining Gives Shop a Cutting Edge in Medical Work

Matt Dahms isn’t a doctor, but he attends several orthopedic shows every year, often conducts consultations with surgeons and is sometimes asked to be on-hand during orthopedic surgeries. Dahms is an engineer, machinist and the president of Oak View Tool Company LLC that designs, prototypes and manufactures special surgical cutting devices and orthopedic carbide tools. Keeping in close contact with its medical device OEM customers and surgeons is what allows the shop to set itself apart from the competition by continuously creating new and improved tools and devices that work more efficiently and are easier on the orthopedic surgeons that use them and, most critical, on the patients they treat.

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Medical Manufacturing With Backbone

On any given day, there can be as many as 2,000 different components circulating around the production floor at Engineered Medical Systems (EMS). EMS specializes in manufacturing complex medical instrumentation, most of which is used for spine related procedures.

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Keep Up, Or Get Left Behind

Turner Medical Inc. is one of the few tier-I-level suppliers to the medical industry that can boast it manufactures FDA-approved surgical implants and the devices used to install them. Producing both implants and instrumentation is considered rare for non-OEM medical companies, but the shop that once specialized in tool and die work is now a recognized leader in medical manufacturing with upwards of $1.75-million worth of product shipped out of its facility on a monthly basis to customers nationwide.

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Specialty Turbomachinery Shop Gains Vertical Versatility

Barber-Nichols Inc. is not the kind of shop that competes with the average machine shop down the street. The company is quite different in that it produces full assemblies that are so highly complex that there may be only one or two other companies in the world capable of producing them.

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Always Advance: One Supplier’s Attack Plan For Defense Work

ADEPT Technologies operates under a business philosophy of ‘move forward or die.’ Such a simple and direct approach has been the driving force behind the company’s transformation from a stereotypical machine shop to the fully integrated national defense manufacturing facility it is today, and one that could be considered a model for how machine shops might look and operate in the future.

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Pennsylvania Manufacturer Succeeds Through Attention to Detail

At every level, Acero reveals itself to be at odds with the public’s general perceptions of American manufacturing. The company’s facility is well lit and virtually spotless, resembling a laboratory more than a shop floor. In April 2011, the company acquired ISO 9001 and ISO 13485 certifications for continuous quality improvement. While attaining these distinctions proves an exceptional challenge for many, Acero already dedicated itself so fully to quality that the certification process required little effort compared to its existing operations. This dedication is apparent at all levels.

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Insourcing Yields Tremendous Success for Bike Component Manufacturer

The story is a familiar one. Hoping to save money on manufacturing and assembly, leaders in an industry move production overseas. The majority of component suppliers follow, out of the necessity to be close to their customers. Many of these maintain their American headquarters to keep administration, engineering and r&d at home, but the manufacturing jobs disappear. The bicycle industry underwent this transformation through the mid-nineties, shifting the majority of its production first to Taiwan, then to China.

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