Beyond the ‘Bot:  What Really Goes into Cobot Implementation?

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Mar 8, 2019 3:58:00 PM

    Cobots are taking the machining world by storm, with demand growing by more than 40% annually.  The futuristic Cobot “arm” is becoming more widely recognized, but what else really is needed to take a Cobot out of the box and into common applications like machine tending?

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    Topics: cnc machining, machine shop, Cobots, automation

    Introducing Fusion Cobotics:  Helping Machining Operations Improve Productivity!

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Mar 1, 2019 4:01:00 PM

    Fusion OEM, a leading manufacturing and machining services partner in the Chicagoland area, is branching out with the introduction of Fusion Cobotics.  The new venture officially “opened its doors” this year, with the expressed mission of helping the many CNC machining operators in Northern Illinois leverage the incredible technology of cobots.  Cobots are becoming much more common in a variety of production applications, and CNC machine tending is perfectly suited for the safe, reliable and flexible efficiency of the cobot.  Cobots differ from traditional industrial robots in that they incorporate onboard safety measures that allow them to be in place, side-by-side, with human counterparts.  In a machining environment, that means that the Cobot “worker” can work simultaneously in the same work center as a skilled machinist performing setup and checking part production.

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    Topics: process improvement, cnc machining, Cobots, automation

    It’s a Matter of Time:  Tips for Efficiency in Machining Operations

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Feb 22, 2019 4:02:00 PM

    Machining is a complex business.  While some operations have sharply focused specialties, most apply their expertise and technology in a wide range of applications and types of jobs.  As such, being efficient with varied jobs can be a challenge, but is paramount to ensure competitiveness.  Here are some concepts that can be applied across even the most disparate of work:

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    Topics: lean culture, cnc machining, time management, machine shop, Cobots, automation

    D.I.Y. or D.I.F.M?  Getting started with Cobots on your Manufacturing Floor

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Feb 15, 2019 4:15:00 PM

     

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    Topics: manufacturing services, cnc machining, engineering, Cobots, automation

    Cobots and the Human Workforce:  Can they Coexist?

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Feb 8, 2019 5:37:47 PM

    As the topics of Artificial Intelligence, Automation, Machine Learning and Robots/Cobots gain more and more attention, so does the concern about how these technologies will affect the human workforce.  While speculation is wide and deep about potential negative impacts, there are some facts that really must be understood for a full perspective on this technological evolution.

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    Topics: manufacturing in china, cnc machining, culture, machine shop, Cobots, automation

    Manufacturing 2025:  How America is Back in Production

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Jan 25, 2019 4:00:00 PM

    It’s no secret that the United States’ once prominent and thriving manufacturing base has suffered over the past 4+ decades, as global competition eroded American competitive advantages.  However, as global standards of living have improved and thereby increased the cost of overseas manufacturing, American manufacturers have embraced technology to regain competitive position.  This adoption of automation, robots/cobotics, and data analytics have combined with manufacturing-friendly governmental policy to spark growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector.  So what are these technologies and what do they project for the manufacturing sector at the quarter century milestone of 2025?

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    Topics: reshoring contract manufacturer, Asian contract manufacturing, contract manufacturing services, legacy manufacturing, lean manufacturing

    The Cobots are Coming!  How Cobots are Expanding the Manufacturing Workforce

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Jan 19, 2019 4:00:00 PM

    Old science-fiction movies and even Saturday cartoons (The Jetsons, anyone?) used to portend of a future where nearly everything was done by a robot.  While the world hasn’t quite made the leap all the way there (yet), robots and artificial intelligence are definitely playing a bigger part in modern industry as well as ordinary day-to-day activity.  With these advances, concern has arisen in some areas that robots will eventually eliminate jobs and work, leading to perpetual unemployment for wide swaths of the population.  The reality, however, is that the opposite has proven to be reality. 

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    Topics: cnc machining, virtual machines, Cobots, automation

    Why Engage with a Manufacturing Partner?

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Jan 4, 2019 3:15:00 PM

    As many startup businesses evolve, they follow a common pattern.  An entrepreneur is inspired by an idea or market opportunity and “starts in a garage” or a basement (or their parents’ spare room).  That entrepreneur at the beginning “does it all”, from product design, to marketing and sales, to customer support to manufacturing and shipment or in person delivery.

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    Topics: reshoring contract manufacturer, manufacturing services, original equipment manufacturer, contract manufacturing, private label manufacturer

    Cobots and the Changing “Face” of American Manufacturing

    Posted by Todd Stukenberg

    Nov 30, 2018 3:00:00 PM

    Robots have been an important part of manufacturing on a global basis for nearly 50 years.  Perhaps most widely recognized for their place in automobile production, robots have been used to improve efficiency, quality and safety.  Historically, traditional production robotics has been out of reach for mid- and small-market manufacturers due to their cost, scale and specific capability limitations.  However, as the global economy has changed due to the reach of e-commerce and its enablement of these small and middle-market firms, interest in manufacturing improvements has grown, and this in turn has ignited the “cobot” movement. So what is a “cobot” and how does it compare to a traditional full scale production robot? 

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    Topics: contract manufacturing, process improvement, cnc machining, Cobots

    Top 3 Reasons to Use Wire Ferrules

    Posted by Jacob Miller

    Jan 12, 2018 2:00:00 PM

    Read Time: 4 Minutes

    A wire ferrule is a copper plated tin tube that slides over the stripped end of a stranded wire. It is available in both insulated and non-insulated versions.  The insulated wire ferrule contains a nylon extruded jacket intended to reduce signal leakage, creepage and reduce gas intrusion.  The nylon jacks are color-coded by wire AWG (American Wire Gauge) or the Cross-Sectional Area of the conductor in millimeters squared (mm²).   The color code will either follow the Industry Standard, which is commonly found throughout North America, or the DIN Standard (German Institute for Standardization) commonly found throughout Europe.

    There are many benefits to using wire ferrules that far outweigh the minor cost per piece and additional labor and tools required to install them.  Below is a list and explanation of the more common benefits, to help you make an educated and informed decision before using or omitting them.

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    Topics: engineering

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