MMT Blog

Industry 4.0 is is alive and growing within the moldmaking and die making industries. Though some may not realize they are doing it, companies large and small around the world are embracing components that factor into what Industry 4.0 (also known as The Internet of Things) represents: data-driven manufacturing. 

Think about it for a minute. If your company builds molds and you place a device on each one so that you and/or your customer can monitor production cycles for proactive maintenance purposes, you are using data to optimize production. If you use enterprise resource planning (ERP) software to streamline and better manage the movement of jobs and the use of equipment and supplies through your shop, data is helping you achieve your goals.

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By: Heather Wintle 8/23/2019

Amerimold Action 2019

Amerimold’s 20th anniversary offered a look back, some new beginnings and loads of technology advancements and education, not to mention networking and fun. We celebrated a new Leadtime Leader, released the coveted “Top 10” t-shirt, roared through the Roaring 20s with a speakeasy-style networking party and so much more. Here are some highlights (visit moldmakingtechnology.com for many more).

 

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By: Heather Wintle 8/22/2019

Tech Trends: WESTEC-Bound

Tech Trends: WESTEC-Bound

For this week’s Tech Trends, we’re heading to the west coast! Below are products offered by companies that will be attending and exhibiting at WESTEC 2019, the leading manufacturing event in sunny California. This year’s event will not only be held in a new location (September 24-26; Long Beach Convention Center, CA), but will also include interactive Knowledge Bars, topical keynote addresses and informative product demonstrations by exhibitors.

 

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Like many shops Rockford, Michigan-based Byrne Tool + Design entered the world of 3D printing with an FDM machine, a Stratasys Fortus 250 MC to be exact, to produce prototype parts for its customers, to build fixtures and nests to aid the manufacturing process and to reverse engineer damaged parts and quickly print new ones.

Cost and lead time reduction for one of Byrne Tool + Design’s larger customers was the impetus for bringing more additive manufacturing (AM) technology in house, namely a Stratasys Polyjet J750 color printer to print molds that can run the actual part material. “We wanted everything in house to maintain control of the entire process,” says Marc Mitchell, Byrne Design Center manager. “No more waiting around for a quote or sending the work to outside vendors.”

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Including June’s results, the 3-month moving average reading for new orders and production continues to expand. The expansion in new orders remains hampered by weakness in exports. Exports have been contracting modestly since the middle of 2018, the timing coincides with the start of tougher U.S. trade regulations with certain trading partners.

Employment data provided by survey participants to the Moldmaking Index continue to report strong growth after setting a recent low at the end of 2018.  June’s employment reading was the highest since March 2018, placing this month’s employment activity change on par with the level of activity recorded at the peak of the latest business cycle.

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