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Chris Koepfer

Chris Koepfer has been involved in metalworking for 30 years. His first 14 were in the machine tool group at Cincinnati Milacron where he honed his technical writing skills in turning, machining and grinding before joining Modern Machine Shop in 1992 as an associate editor. In 2001, he helped found MMS’ sister publication Production Machining, which speaks to the precision machined parts segment of the industry. Chris is graduate of Xavier University in Cincinnati, as are three of his four children, and an XU basketball fan—which can be as daunting as working in metalworking, he says.

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 27. May 2016

Mastercam Sails with America’s Cup

Mastercam is being used to help produce a racing yacht for the 2017 America’s cup

CNC Software, developer of Mastercam software, is part of the development team for Oracle Team USA, which is a participant in the 35th America’s Cup being held in Bermuda in 2017. Oracle Team USA is defending champion of the America’s Cup.

Mastercam software is being used by Core Builders Composites (CBC), which produces the carbon fiber components used in the construction of the Oracle Team USA’s racing yachts. The company has built all of the team’s yachts, including the trimaran that won the 34th America’s Cup.

Part designs originate with the Oracle team and are sent to CBC for production. Mastercam software is the bridge between the CAD file and the CNC machine tool, creating the necessary tool path to produce the part. These parts are produced by CBC on a five-axis machining center with a workpiece capacity of 59 ft. by 20 ft. by 10 ft. 

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 20. May 2016

Add Additive to your IMTS Agenda

 

Registration is now open for the third Additive Manufacturing Conference (AMC 2016), scheduled for September 13-14, this year. The AMC is presented by Additive Manufacturing and Modern Machine Shop magazines, and this year will be co-located with the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) at Chicago’s McCormick Place. View the full agenda or register here.

The AMC’s focus is on industrial applications of 3D printing and AM technologies for making functional components and end-use production parts. The two-day event will include 20 speakers from OEMs, service bureaus, machinery suppliers, research organizations and product developers. Topics will include AM software, automation, robotic additive manufacturing, and the integration of additive and subtractive manufacturing.  

Conference registration also provides access to all AMC technical sessions as well as the Additive Manufacturing exhibit and networking room. Admission to the EOS North American Users Day and access to the IMTS 2016 show floor are also included. New this year, IMTS will feature a dedicated Additive Manufacturing Pavilion to be located at the entrance to the North Building.

Already registered? Follow @LearnAdditive on Twitter for the latest updates, and use #IMTSadditive to connect with others during the event. 

 

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 13. May 2016

A Smart Path to Reshoring

 

To keep pace with its growing business, Hybrid Racing (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) needed a smarter way to manage its supply chain. After failing to find reliable domestic suppliers, the company outsourced its production to China.

The pitfalls of such a move are well known, especially with a growing and rapidly changing manufacturing business. William Davidson, founder and CEO, describes them as communication, cash flow and lead times.

In 2015, with business booming, Hybrid was reluctantly planning to send more work to China when the company stumbled across MakeTime. This relatively new company, based in Lexington, Kentucky, features an on-demand virtual machining platform designed to help companies such as Hybrid better control their supply chain by enabling the use of domestically sourced manufacturing.

In a nutshell, MakeTime offers buyers instant access to a network of thousands of prequalified suppliers with production hours available on their CNC machines. This allows companies like Hybrid to overcome production shortages, eliminate risk in the supply chain and rest easy with guaranteed lead time and quality. 

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 6. May 2016

SkillsUSA Heads to Louisville

June 20-25, 2016, Louisville, Kentucky, hosts the 52nd annual National Leadership and Skills Conference. Once again, this year’s conference brings together more than 16,000 people, including students, teachers and business partners, who will participate in this weeklong event.

All of the students involved in the skills competition are winners from their respective states and vie for the national title in 100 different trade, technical and leadership fields. Students work against the clock and each other proving their expertise in various occupations, including electronics, CAD, precision machining, medical assisting and culinary arts.

These kids are already winners and represent a future source of skilled workers to keep industry moving forward. The SkillsUSA winner will move forward to compete globally at the World Skills Competition being held later in the year in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Click on the video to learn more about this important competition and visit skillsusa.org.    

 

Posted by: Chris Koepfer 29. April 2016

One Year to Go

 

No matter how one slices the calendar—days, weeks or months—it all adds up to the fact that The Precision Machining Technology Show (PMTS) is only a single year away. The 2017 edition runs from April 25 to 27, 2017, and will occupy the Columbus Convention Center in the heart of the city’s entertainment district.

Since its inception in 2001, the PMTS has grown and continues to grow. Its target audience is the precision machined parts industry, and after a record setting show in 2015, it is already on target to be even better.

A year goes by fast. Therefore, it's not too soon to begin making plans to attend PMTS 2017. Go to PMTS.com to learn more about the products, services, process innovations and players in our industry segment. Time is ticking.

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