Posted by: Chris Felix 29. July 2015

When Temperature and Humidity Levels Matter

The unit allows easy access to temperature and humidity data.

I thought this story was pretty cool both for the technology and the application. Onset, a supplier of data loggers for building performance monitoring, now has its Hobo MX1101 unit (a data logger that measures and transmits temperature and relative humidity data wirelessly to mobile devices via Bluetooth technology) protecting a copy of the Magna Carta.

Originally issued by England’s King John in June 1215 to prevent civil war between the king and his barons, the Magna Carta is a world-famous symbol of justice, fairness, and human rights. Having inspired and encouraged movements for freedom and constitutional government for hundreds of years, the four remaining copies have been awarded “Memory of the World” status by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The best-surviving copy of the Magna Carta, currently on exhibition in Britain’s Salisbury Cathedral to commemorate the document’s 800-year anniversary, is stored in a glass display case along with an Onset Hobo MX1101.

“Preserving the text is of paramount importance,” says Emily Naish, archivist at Salisbury Cathedral. “Excessive humidity can cause parchment to buckle as it tries to revert to its natural shape. The parchment can expand while the ink remains static, causing ink to lift from the text. As the room in which the Magna Carta is displayed has large glass windows, it is prone to these kinds of damaging fluctuations in humidity.”

Because the display case is sealed and protected by alarm systems, there was no way to constantly monitor temperature and humidity without going through the time-consuming and complicated process of switching off the alarms and accessing the case.

To address this issue, the Cathedral’s exhibition team installed the data logger. The self-contained wireless unit, which works with Onset’s free HoboMobile app for logger setup and data management, enables staff to use a smart phone or tablet to access the environmental data at any time from a distance up to 100 feet, without having to open the display case.

I have a personal connection with this story because I saw the Magna Carta at Salisbury Cathedral back in 2007 when I was in Great Britain visiting 600 Group. Perhaps an atmospheric data logger such as this unit could make a difference for cleanroom applications or other sensitive quality control environments as well.

Salisbury Cathedral

Posted by: Lori Beckman 27. July 2015

Find the Best Parts Cleaning System for Your Shop

Ultrasonics are often specified for a precision cleaning process to both expedite and enhance parts cleaning action.


Knowing the kind of parts cleaning system that best suits the parts manufactured is critical to a successful and efficient cleaning process in any shop. Cleaning equipment with water-based and solvent-based chemicals are the two options out there, and under those categories, there are a number of variables to consider. To read more about selecting a cleaning system, read "Selecting a Cleaning System for Small Parts." Also, read "Selecting Solvents for Precision Cleaning" to learn about stringent standards and solvent selection. 

For more articles about cleaning, including cleaning products, suppliers and more, visit PM's Parts Cleaning Equipment Zone

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 24. July 2015

Opening Young Eyes to how it’s Made

High school students “kick the tires” on machine tools and composites at a tech camp hosted by Fives Cincinnati at its headquarters in Hebron, Kentucky.  

Aiming to influence career choices early, Fives Cincinnati recently hosted 19 students from 17 area high schools attending Northern Kentucky University's Engineering Technology Camp. The students received a guided facility tour where they enjoyed explanations of Fives manufacturing processes.

The campers also received detailed descriptions of aerospace composites technology, layup systems and metalcutting systems being built by Fives for customers. Hands-on exposure to semi-finished aerospace components reinforced the experience.

According to Morteza Sadat-Hossieny, Ph.D., engineering technology coordinator at NKU, "The goal of this camp is to familiarize participants with basic engineering/technology concepts to spark high school students' interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) career fields."

"High school students are often wide-eyed when they see the scale and complexity of the manufacturing systems used to build today's aircraft, and we hope this will positively influence their career choices," says Ed Bisig, director of human resources for Fives. "Visits like this serve a vital educational role in our community. We hope we'll encounter some of these young people again in the future through our hiring process."

Fives considers workforce development and apprenticeship programs for the technology sector a vital function for manufacturers. Since 2005, the company has invested more than $2 million in apprenticeship training alone.

The company also recently participated in the White House Upskill Summit, a national initiative launched by President Obama aimed at equipping workers with skills they need to get, and advance in, higher-paying jobs. 

Posted by: Chris Felix 22. July 2015

80 Tech Tips Added to FeatureCAM Website


Delcam has created a section for technical tips on the website for its FeatureCAM feature-based programming software. More than 80 tips are listed in the new section, which is located at

The tips aim to help users with all aspects of programming within FeatureCAM, including milling, drilling, turning, creating geometry, simulation, and generating NC code. Each tip is saved as a .pdf file that can be read online or downloaded for future use.

The tips complement the videos that are produced for the software’s Learning Zone, which demonstrate extra functionality that has been added to each new release of the program.

The feature-based programming software now offers a range of programs for milling, turning, wire EDM and mill-turn, all with the same interface style designed to be easy to use to minimize training times.

Posted by: Lori Beckman 20. July 2015

'Media Usage in Manufacturing' Survey Results


Gardner Research, the market intelligence division of Gardner Business Media Inc. (Production Machining's parent company), has announced the results of the fifth annual “Media Usage in Manufacturing” survey of industrial professionals. The full report including complete survey results, insights on industrial marketing trends and buyer behavior is available here

The survey, completed in the first quarter of this year, includes a group of 2,288 respondents composed mainly of executives, managers and engineers at companies engaged in durable goods manufacturing.

The survey results include observations and raw data investigating primary trends in business-to-business industrial marketing and media usage. Specific topics include: buying cycle behavior, search, mobile, media usage, social media and vendor selection.

Commenting on this year’s key findings, Rick Kline, Jr. group publisher & vice president noted “Along with delivering insights into how industrial professionals are using media, this year’s survey is a positive commentary on the strength of North American manufacturing. Respondents indicated they are researching products, processes and services more frequently and using more types of media to conduct their research. The strong survey participation and increased research activity illustrates manufacturers’ investment in evolving and expanding their businesses.” 

Read the fully report here

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