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See the Possibilities

Using an inexpensive Web camera purchased at a local electronics store helped this shop monitor its machines via the Internet.

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When I first contacted MSI Mold Builders after hearing about the way the company has used a Web camera to link its shops in two locations, the company was practically shy about letting me cover this in an article.
 
After all, the solution was seemingly no big deal—involving just a device available in any electronics store. The cost and capability certainly were nothing compared to the shop’s investment in five-axis machining.
 
But in its way, I think the solution is a big deal. If you haven’t considered installing an inexpensive camera to monitor your machines via the Internet, just consider what this step might enable you to do that you’re not doing today. In particular, think about how much more freedom you might feel to run unattended—if only you could look to the Web anytime you had a doubt about whether the process was still OK.
 

This use of cameras in shops is becoming more common. For another article about a shop using cameras, click here. For a video in which two mold shops describe their experiences with Web cameras—and one of them shows how the camera was installed—click here.