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What’s ahead for Education and Workforce Development?

In recent months, there has been very good news on the jobs front in manufacturing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, manufacturing has averaged an increase of 18,000 jobs per month over the past twelve months. Wages have been increasing in recent quarters as well.

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‘Tis the season for making wishes. What might IMTS exhibitors wish?

Wish #1: Obtain a qualified list of potential customers with quantifiable communication management.
Gift: IMTS Exhibitor Passport

IMTS Exhibitor Passport gives you exclusive access to all contact information for IMTS 2018 and IMTS 2016 visitors. Equipped with built-in analytics and communication tools for sending targeted emails and downloading addresses, IMTS Exhibitor Passport automatically matches exhibitors’ product categories to the visitors’ self-selected interests, which is the magic of this product.

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Augmented reality: the future of field service

Phillips Corporation is now utilizing the potential of augmented reality technology to improve training to its worldwide team of field service engineers, including initial training of new engineers and supporting seasoned engineers, while also directly supporting customers working on their own equipment.

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Midterm elections: How will they influence the 2019 agenda?

When the dust finally settled on the mid-term elections, Democrats gained a net 39 seats, shifting control of the House of Representatives to the democrats. Republicans strengthened their majority in the Senate with a net pickup of three seats. Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Mitch McConnell will lead their respective bodies in the 116th Congress. How will the new faces and a divided leadership impact the policy agenda? Here’s a look at several topics being discussed:

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Changes bring opportunities

This year is rocking the USMTO order books. October is on track to produce a third month in a row with $500 million in orders or better, which hasn’t happened in the history of USMTO program. The supply chain has not caught up with demand pushing backlogs on orders out further. Two other first-time developments also occurred in September as the medical equipment sector became the third largest market by dollar volume and the South East became the largest region by dollar volume for the first time since USMTO began. As 2018 comes to an end, let’s look at other areas that producers, distributors and service providers in our industry might find as interesting opportunities.

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U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders for October 2018
Manufacturing technology orders totaled $467 million in October, capping a three-month total of $1.6 billion since August. That sum represents the largest three-month total since April 1998. The $4.5 billion year-to-date sum is up an impressive 24 percent from the same 10 months in 2017 and bodes well for a strong finish to 2018. The three-month run overshadowed the 23 percent decline in October orders from September and slim two percent increase over October 2017.  (more)
Re-Certified Manufacturing Technology Sales Engineers - CMTSE - 2018
The CMTSE credential signifies a commitment to continuous professional development. To maintain their designation, Certified Manufacturing Technology Sales Engineers undergo a recertification process, which occurs every three years from the date of passing the exam.

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Cutting tool consumption shows signs of deceleration
September 2018 cutting tool consumption was down 5.5 percent compared to August.   (more)
U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders for September 2018
Manufacturing technology orders posted in August and September yielded the second largest two-month total in the program’s history at $1.1 billion, according to the latest U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders Report from AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology. The September surge of $609 million yielded a 50 percent increase over September 2017 and a year-to-date 27 percent increase over the first nine months of 2017. After a record-breaking August, the 17 percent gain seen in September was larger than expected and a testament to the industry’s surge to increase capacity swiftly.  (more)
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3 Chip Management Tips for CNC Machine Operators

There’s one basic rule of shop floor economics that everyone should know: if the machines aren’t making chips, the business is losing money. But the shape of those chips and their removal from the work area is every bit as important as producing them in the first place.

For instance, the bird’s nest of long, stringy chips so common when machining aluminum, stainless steel, and superalloys is not only dangerous to the machine operator, but is a great way to break cutting tools and destroy workpieces when it inevitably becomes wedged in the wrong place at the wrong time. And few machining sounds are more cringe-worthy than the crunch…crunch…crunch of chips being recut, quite possibly signaling a chipped and soon-to-be-broken cutting tool.

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Beckwood Engineers 75-Ton Hot Forming Press for Cutting Dynamics
Beckwood Press Company has partnered with aerospace parts supplier, Cutting Dynamics, to design and manufacture a 75-ton hydraulic press used to hot form titanium structural components.  (more)
Cylindrical Grinding’s Alive and Well

Cylindrical grinding is one of the oldest of all machining technologies. Though credit for its invention remains a bit fuzzy, most attribute development of the first production grinding machine to Charles Norton (ironically, not the same Norton of grinding wheel fame), who worked at Brown and Sharpe and was charged by company founder Joseph Brown with working the kinks out of the “universal grinding machine” he’d been struggling with for some time.

Since that time, cylindrical grinding has evolved into the go-to method for producing extremely precise round components such as shafts, mandrels, bearing journals, and core pins, as well as creating formed shapes and contours on a wide variety of turned parts.

With all the talk these days of hard turning, however, never mind the availability of ever more complex, capable, and above all highly accurate CNC lathes, it’s easy to wonder if cylindrical grinding is going the way of cam-actuated screw machines and high-speed steel tool bits.

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