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More Manufacturers Adopting 3D, Addressing Challenges

Chuck Alexander, Director of Product Management, Stratasys Direct Manufacturing


The pace of change in the 3D printing industry is so rapid and exciting that it’s difficult to keep up. To get a more complete sense of 3D printing’s current and continued impact on manufacturing, we looked to the wider professional attitude that prevailed toward 3D printing in 2015 by authoring an industry report based on a blind survey that was distributed to 700 professional 3D printing users. Full Article

A Smarter Mix of Technology to Meet Your Needs

Michael Defer, Director of Technical Sales, Heller Machine Tools


Shorter value creation chains and higher degrees of component accuracy have helped ignite the trend toward the complete machining of complex workpieces on a single machine. Standard machines are increasingly capable of taking on intelligently expanded technology combinations that promise to optimize piece cost and machine availability. A standard machining center can now be configured to accomplish complete machining, including operations not common to traditional machining centers. Full Article

It’s a Journey: Get Smart About Manufacturing

Brian Papke, President, Mazak Corp.


Whether they realize it or not, many manufacturers already employ some, if not all, of the strategies and technologies necessary to operate as a smart factory. In addition to lean principles, practically every manufacturer has implemented to one degree or another, advanced manufacturing cells and systems—i.e., multitasking, full five-axis machine tools and some level of automation. However, they often lack one key component: full digital integration to achieve free-flow data sharing in terms of process control and operation monitoring. Full Article

What Can We Do Together to Boost Reshoring?

Harry Moser, Founder and President, Reshoring Initiative


US manufacturing could be doing much better and SME and the Reshoring Initiative can play a key role in making that happen by driving reshoring and FDI (Foreign Direct Investment). Manufacturing employment is up 900,000 from the low in 2010 but down almost 5 million since 2000. At least half of that total decline is due to the offshoring of manufacturing jobs. And while the rate of awarding skilled workforce certificates has been rising by more than 20% per year for the last 10 years, we still have an estimated 600,000 unfilled manufacturing jobs. Full Article

In Praise of Manufacturing and Machine Tools

Albert B. Albrecht, Albrecht Associates, Author, The American Machine Tool Industry


The American machine tool industry is vital to the well-being of our economy and national defense. It is an industry that affects all of us and has a long historical background. Its beginning dates back to the early arsenals of the 19th century, when machine tools were developed for the production of muskets and rifles. Yet it is an industry that rarely gets the attention it deserves. Full Article

Deep-Hole Drilling Continues to Evolve

Anthony Fettig, CEO, Unisig Deep Hole Drilling Systems


Mention deep-hole drilling, and most people think only gundrilling machines for processing gun barrels. But the fact is that deep-hole drilling applies to a much wider array of workpieces that are typically impossible to drill with common CNC machining centers. Those of us in the deep-hole drilling machine building business are constantly challenged with new and often unique applications that push us way beyond simple gundrilling. In the medical industry for instance, deep-hole drilling machines are used to drill 2.5-mm-diam holes 200-mm deep in titanium and stainless steel components. Full Article

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