The Web contains a wealth of information that could be helpful for developing your shop or plant, provided that you know where to look. Check out some of the following machining business sites.
Business Industrial Network (www.bin95.com)—The BIN is a suite of services (some commercial) and information about technical, machining-related topics including Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) and PLC network diagnostics, preventative maintenance and others. Its “articles” section contains useful information ranging from more PLC data to tips on getting started with your own Web site. The resource section is substantial and thorough. This is one of those sites that’s worth just diving into and playing “what does this do?” until your mouse breaks.
Download Community (www.download-com.com)—We’re not sure how or why this site provides free downloads of software and files for several manufacturing categories . . . but the fact is that it does. It does a fine job of providing access to solutions for plant control, file translation, facilities management, maintenance, downtime measurement and prevention, and much more. Did we mention that it’s free? This site is definitely worth a visit.
Downtime Central (www.downtimecentral.com)—A part of the Business Industrial Network, Downtime Central is a business site. We don’t normally include business sites in our links repository unless there are good reasons for doing so, and this site provides plenty of them. If you’re looking for help determining the actual costs of downtime resulting from several factors; eliminating equipment downtime; measuring all sorts of manufacturing behaviors (overhead, scrap, tooling, personnel and so on); or even learning why improving your own equipment maintenance program is important, then this site offers an amazing level of quality information. Just select “true downtime cost” in the left navigation bar, get a cup of coffee and relax. You’ll be there for a while.
MotionNET.com (www.motionnet.com)—According to MotionNET, its “goal is to provide engineers and buyers with the most efficient, direct and practical sources available, including products, manufacturers, distributors, standards and reference information.” Fair enough. However, what that doesn’t adequately explain is the value this site brings to machining professionals’ online research experiences. This site is one of the best online directories anywhere and includes lists of manufacturers, a fine list of manufacturing-related associations, and an astonishing wealth of research and reference tools under its “quick references” title. Regardless of your station in machining or manufacturing, you will find immense value in this site.
For more links to metalworking and manufacturing sites, visit MMS Online’s Web Links repository at www.mmsonline.com/links.
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