Additive manufacturing (AM) once was called “rapid prototyping.” Its earliest forms made prototype parts—and nothing else. However, manufacturers were intrigued by the prospect of using it to make cost-effective metal parts in production. That day is here.
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Laser welding is a superior technology for repairing defects in tooling, plastic injection molds, stamping dies, blow molds, turbine blades, and nearly any tooling component made of stainless steel, aluminum, copper alloy, cast iron, and all tool steels.
Necessity, as the saying goes, is the mother of invention, and this symbiotic relationship between need and solution was on full display at a recent two-day, two-location event hosted by GF Machining Solutions.
Additive manufacturing (AM) is being used to fabricate parts for applications as varied as aircraft and auto production, dental restoration, medical implants and more.
When Meyer and Ida Cohen founded Meyda Tiffany Co. in the early 1970s based on a family hobby of making stained glass windows, it’s doubtful that they ever thought it would evolve into the leading U.S. manufacturer of custom and decorative lighting.
Manufacturing got smart when companies figured out how to make products in one market and sell them in another. Today, we call this supply chain logistics. But somewhere along the way, the innovation chain connecting supply (manufacturing) and logistics (the supporting infrastructure) started to diverge.
With great power comes great responsibility, the saying goes. And with greater laser power being used to weld sheet metal, tubes, copper and aluminum, operators have a greater responsibility to deliver that power with a precision that avoids defects.
Implementing a comprehensive laser cutting system is not a task for the faint of heart. In addition to the financial outlay, requirements include planning for a complete system, not just the laser, according to Dustin Diehl, laser division product manager, Amada America Inc., Buena Park, Calif.
Metalworking is a great industry that makes a major contribution to the U.S. economy, but it doesn’t typically attract movie idols or sports stars. That changed when NASCAR champion Brad Keselowski joined the ranks of metalworking entrepreneurs.
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