Lori Beckman

Lori has been working “behind the scenes” of Production Machining since 2003, writing and editing the Products, News and Case in Point sections of the magazine, editing other staff members’ articles, and more recently, writing a column for PM’s e-newsletter, Inbox Insights. She began her journalism career in the trucking industry, writing technical articles for two trade publications. She has a B.A. in Communications from the University of Dayton.

Posted by: Lori Beckman 23. November 2015

Video Series Demonstrates Gun Part Manufacturing

Okuma’s new video series demonstrates CNC machines used in gun part manufacturing, spotlighting high-speed, precision cutting, live tooling, milling and drilling. Okuma’s gun part manufacturing video series includes:

  • Rifle Stock Mold: Okuma’s five-axis MU-500VII vertical machining center cuts a custom-designed rifle stock mold
  • AR15 Upper: An MB-4000H horizontal machining center machines an AR15 upper
  • Gun Barrel Extension: Cut on an Okuma LB3000-EXII horizontal lathe, the machining of this gun barrel extension uses a variety of cutting tools and operations
  • Commemorative Plaque: Using a GENOS M460-VE, this video shows the CNC milling of a gun shaped plaque for a firearms event
  • 1911 Trigger Housing: Machining of a 1911 trigger housing, using an Okuma MB-56V vertical machining center equipped with a Lyndex Nikken rotary table
  • Gun Cylinder: A .50 caliber revolver cylinder is cut on an Okuma LT3000 EX, 3 turret horizontal lathe 

(Special Note: Some videos are filmed without the use of coolant, to better show the cutting capabilities of the machine, without visual interference. CNC machine operation without coolant is not recommended.)

To see Okuma’s gun part manufacturing video series, click here.


Posted by: Lori Beckman 16. November 2015

Oktoberfest Draws Attention to Rotary Transfer and Turn-Mill Technology


Where do you find the latest rotary transfer technology and mill-turn centers as well as German food, beer, live music from a German heritage band under one roof? At the biennial Hydromat Oktoberfest open house event. This year, the event was held on Oct. 21-23 at the company’s St. Louis headquarters.

As guests viewed the machines while they were being built, Hydromat associates continued to work on projects in various stages of completion, giving attendees a glimpse of the assembly process up close, and an opportunity to interact with both technicians and sales personnel.

The open house highlighted the company’s Epic Gen II, the new variation of the Epic R/T platform that was first introduced at Hydromat’s open house in 2003.

Also, the ICON 6-250 was well represented with three machines on the assembly floor, one in its final stages of the build process, and two more in the first stages of construction that will be delivered next year.

Derek Korn, senior editor at Modern Machine Shop, PM’s sister publication, attended the Hydromat Oktoberfest this year. Read what he learned about Hydromat’s technology at the event here


Posted by: Lori Beckman 2. November 2015

Increasing Demand Calls for Automation

The robot indexes the parts through the nests, loading a blank and unloading a finished part after each machine cycle, and depositing the finished parts onto a conveyor belt.


Glacier Tool and Die in Stevensville, Montana, recently won a defense contract to make the trigger/hammer assembly for the M16. The contract was for 65,000 pieces, with the possibility that the order could increase in volume. Within the first year, the order increased to 485,000 pieces. The additional volume placed a heavy demand on the equipment and the employees. The company quickly realized it needed to find a way to meet production demands, make it easier on the operators and reduce the overall cost per part.

To find out how Glacier explored automated processes with a robot they previously purchased but had yet to use, and you missed this article in the September issue of PM, read “Fast ROI Convinces Shop to Add Robotic Automation” online here

Posted by: Lori Beckman 26. October 2015

Machine Monitoring Software Gives Helpful Alerts

Programmer Sean Svajcsik enters a downtime reason code into eNet.

The benefits of modern technology are everywhere, so you might as well take advantage of these in your shop to make jobs more efficient. This technology makes your job easier as a manager or operator.

A shop’s machine monitoring software is an advantageous tool for any shop, especially when using the alert system. Operator log-ins, machine status, cycle times and preventative maintenance information can be monitored in real-time. When a machine is down, the operator can be required to put in a code corresponding to a predetermined list of reasons. An alert can then be sent to specific distribution lists via email or text message. 

If the code for “out of material” is entered, a material handler can be alerted. If the code for “tool breakage” is entered, the tool crib can be notified. Down codes and notification distribution can be customized according to each customer’s application. Real-time monitoring also tracks how often a machine is operating during a shift, holding operators accountable for their production rates. By requiring operators to log in to the machine, management can more accurately track labor costs for a given part number or machine cycle.

To read more about the benefits of machine monitoring, see “Machine Monitoring Helps Job Shop Become Lean,” from PM’s October issue.    

Posted by: Lori Beckman 12. October 2015

Facebook, Millennials in Manufacturing and Video

I bet you didn’t know PM has a Facebook page. For all you social media buffs out there, the PM staff wants you to have a convenient way to find the most current metalworking news without much effort on your part. While scrolling daily through your newsfeed, you will not only run across Cousin Grace’s latest pictures of her kids, but if you “Like” Production Machining, you may also stumble upon Chris Koepfer’s recent encounter from EMO Milan 2015 or watch a video about a machine shop you’ve seen featured in a PM article. We plan to keep it interesting, relevant, light and most important, current.

While millennials are being hired in our workforce, it’s important to attract and keep their interest in the metalworking industry. Using social media is one way to get their attention, and so we introduce PM’s Facebook page.

Speaking of millennials, check out a recent video we posted on our Facebook page that features Precision Plus Inc. interns talking about their experiences with working in this precision machining company.

Please “like” and visit our page, and comment on our posts. We enjoy the interaction with you, our readers.

« Prev | | Next »

Looking for Precision?

Click to see our Ground & Polished

Subscribe to these Related
RSS Blog Feeds

Channel Partners
  • Techspex