MMS Blog

There’s no automatic answer to the question of whether it is better to mill a die cavity in its hardened state or finish it with electrical discharge machining (EDM). Eight years ago, D1 Mold and Tool would have said it is relying on hard milling more and more, and Modern Machine Shop published an article covering this. Since then, things have changed. The shop has shifted back toward using EDM more.

That’s not all that has changed. The maker of die-cast dies moved from its former 12,000-square-foot facility to a new 45,000-square-foot space in Alexandria, Indiana. To fill this additional space, the shop added new machines and capabilities, including a 600-ton die-cast machine that enables the shop to offer sampling services, which it previously contracted out, and even production runs. While the business of working in the automotive and appliance industries, among others, has not shifted, it has expanded.

Esab Welding & Cutting Products and Arc Junkies Podcast have agreed to produce 12 podcast episodes featuring interviews with the Esab’s experts on filler metal. Named Filler Metal Friday, the 30-minute segments air on the first Friday of each month.

The show discusses application challenges related to filler metals, with each podcast focusing on a specific topic. The inaugural episode focuses on challenges related to feeding aluminum filler wire when metal inert gas (MIG) welding. At the end of every episode, the company’s experts answer questions posted on its social media sites.

Registering 58.6 for May, the Gardner Business Index (GBI): Metalworking indicated slowing growth compared to the prior month. The index reading calculated among only metalcutting job shops was also down slightly from April’s reading. Compared to the same month one year ago, the Metalworking Index grew by 2.6 percent. This relatively small increase is due in part to April 2017’s reading being the second highest during that calendar year. Although the latest reading marks the third consecutive month of slowing growth in metalworking, it represents one of the highest readings in the Metalworking Index’s recorded history. Gardner Intelligence’s review of the underlying data for May indicates that strong expansion in supplier deliveries, production and employment drove the index higher. Readings for new orders, backlog and exports lowered the index’s average-based calculation. The new orders reading was nearly the average of the components and had only a minimal impact on the index’s calculation for the month. Excluding exports, all components of the Metalworking Index expanded during the month.

The two components of the index with the fastest growth were supplier deliveries and employment. Gardner Intelligence considers these components to be lagging components after new orders and production. When the rate of new orders increases, manufacturers can make immediate but limited changes to increase production. However, to sustain increased production levels or achieve significantly higher production levels, manufacturers typically must alter supply delivery schedules or volumes and potentially increase employment levels. These efforts typically happen months after the initial change in new orders.

To celebrate Modern Machine Shop’s 90th anniversary, the editors put together nine consecutive articles that consider developments and technologies that have been important through each of the nine decades of the magazine’s industry coverage. In this special collection, the editors look beyond just epochal or event-defining issues of the magazine in favor or “regular” issues because the magazine has always sought to be relevant and helpful to the metalworking business leaders and professionals of the time. Read through our historic coverage.

Also in this issue of Modern Machine Shop:

Sponsored Content 7. June 2018

ERP Systems That Grow with Your Business

A truly painful experience for job shop owners is outgrowing your shop management system and having to start all over again with something new. It’s not just an issue of scalability. A shop control system must be able to adapt as a shop changes its equipment or workflow, or if it adds new business units.

With cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) technology, you can get a better shop management solution without the need for hardware or skilled IT staff to run it. With today’s technology, you can configure a system that fits your business practices and processes, rather than the other way around. You’ll spend more time making parts, and a lot less time on paperwork.

RSS RSS  |  Atom Atom