Dec 5, 2018 9:46 pm

​Center for Automotive Research Report: ​​Impact of Overseas Tooling Sourcing

By |2019-01-06T16:22:11-05:00Dec 5, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

​​Abhay (Abe) Vadhavkar of CAR writes about the impact of sourcing tools overseas on the US tool & die sector.​  The report​​ ​states that new tooling sourced in Low Cost Countries such as China and Taiwan may cost 20 percent lower than US sourced tooling, with similar time-to-completion, even with shipping. ​ Among other things, the report highlights ​the​ advanced age of US tool & die workers and potential for US-based shops to become [...]

Nov 30, 2018 10:54 am

The Aluminum-Steel Battle in Automotive Applications

By |2018-11-11T12:43:55-05:00Nov 30, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Steel and aluminum alloys are looking to be the chosen metal in auto bodies. Why? There are 2 tons of sheetmetal purchased for 17MM vehicles sold each year in the US - there is no other industry with such high-volume sales opportunities. Read about strength, stiffness, and joining in my article in the May 2018 issue of MetalForming Magazine at

Nov 13, 2018 12:22 pm

Nissan – Smyrna uses a LOT of Sheet Metal

By |2018-11-13T12:22:53-05:00Nov 13, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

​Nissan's plant in ​Smyrna, TN makes 640,000 vehicles a year, which is more than 1 per second.  The stamping plant goes through 15 tons of steel and over half a ton of aluminum EVERY HOUR.

Nov 8, 2018 10:21 am

February, March and April 2018 issues of MetalForming Magazine: Sheet Metal Terminology Parts 1, 2, and 3

By |2018-11-08T10:21:48-05:00Nov 8, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

The February issue (Part 1) discusses some of the general terms you’ll encounter.  Remember, it’s important that you and your supplier both use the same language to be sure you’ll get what you need. The March issue (Part 2) describes the limitations of ordering AISI 1008/1010, and why you might need to change to something like SAE J2329 for more consistent performance. The April issue (Part 3) highlights terms you’ll [...]

Oct 26, 2018 9:59 am

Failure Modes & Effects Analysis in Sheet Metal Forming

By |2018-11-08T10:22:56-05:00Oct 26, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Scrambling to fix production problems can lead to a host of other issues. FMEA, or failure modes and effects analysis, can help align your efforts with the issues that can cause the most headaches. Failures come in all degrees, with some more important than others. Preparing to work on your first FMEA may appear to be a daunting task. Many things can go wrong, including some that you had not [...]

Oct 20, 2018 7:45 pm

The More You Know

By |2018-10-20T20:40:42-04:00Oct 20, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

I’ve had the great honor of writing for MetalForming Magazine for just about a year. My first column was published in December 2017, and gave you insight on my perspective of the MetalForming industry: With so many variables present in today’s forming system, the metalforming industry must move from trial-and-error to a science and engineering approach. Experience remains vital, but we must recognize when to incorporate new information into the [...]

Dec 22, 2017 5:58 pm

Now Writing For MetalForming Magazine!

By |2018-06-27T20:45:40-04:00Dec 22, 2017|Blog|0 Comments

I’m now writing the monthly Science of Forming article for Metalforming Magazine – it’s a great honor to be taking over from Dr. Stuart Keeler. See my first article, The More You Know, on page 36 at Optimizing sheetmetal flow to form a stamped part requires understanding the interaction between the sheetmetal, surface characteristics and tooling. Consider where we were in the 1970s. Back then, we could choose between seven grades [...]

Oct 16, 2017 5:57 pm

As Materials and Technologies Change, Your Workforce Requires Different Skills and More Adaptability

By |2018-06-07T20:41:32-04:00Oct 16, 2017|Blog|0 Comments

Introduction / Summary The type and depth of knowledge required to form sheet metal changed along with the industry. Experience is no longer the only measure of an employee’s capabilities. During the past 25 years, thousands of new grades of steel were introduced, aluminum components became more common, forming technologies evolved, and computer analysis began to supplement traditional processes. Gone are the days of only forming a handful of [...]

Aug 6, 2016 5:57 pm

What Caused Job Losses in the Steel Industry?

By |2018-06-07T20:38:27-04:00Aug 6, 2016|Blog|0 Comments

Tim Worstall, a contributor to Forbes magazine, recently wrote an opinion piece, “It’s Not China Or Trade That Killed The Steel Jobs But Recycling.“ The crux of the piece was that the job losses in the steel industry over the past half-century can be attributed to the rise of more efficient minimills capturing business that was once held by integrated mills. I think this is an oversimplification of the [...]

May 5, 2016 5:56 pm

New Press Hardening Steels with Hot Dipped Galvanized Coating

By |2018-06-07T20:37:59-04:00May 5, 2016|Blog|0 Comments

One of the challenges with direct hot forming a galvanized PHS is the risk of microcracks in the coating and an associated restricted process window. Steel company voestalpine has with their phs-ultraform® product developed a process that they have termed phs-directform®.  The process steps are similar to conventional direct hot forming with one significant difference – the use of a non-contact “pre-cooler” which cools the heated blanks to around [...]