What is Section 179? Is Section 179 Important for you to know about in 2017?

Section 179 - Quantum Machinery Group.png

Great news for machinery buyers: Section 179 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code has been restored to $500,000 for 2017.

In a nutshell:

  • Businesses can deduct up to $500,000 from their taxes on up to $2 million in qualifying equipment purchases.
  • All purchases, financing, delivery and set-up must be complete before midnight on 12/31/2017 for both equipment and software.
  • A bonus depreciation is in place for all businesses who have purchased over $2 million in equipment. They can depreciate 50% of the cost of the equipment they purchase and put into production from 2015 through 2017. (This bonus depreciation reduces to 40% in 2018 and to 30% in 2019.)

This is great news if you’ve been thinking about purchasing new machine tools for your business. But this deduction only applies to machines ordered and delivered by December 31st, so you must act quickly to take advantage of these savings.

The following examples help explain how all this works:

Example of Section 179 Deduction

In this first example, you can see a detailed overview of your savings if you take advantage of the Section 179 tax break. If you purchase $250,000 in equipment, you can earn $87,500 in savings, decreasing the total amount you spend to $162,500. 

  • Cost of Equipment: $250,000.00
  • Section 179 Deduction: $250,000.00
  • Total First Year Deduction: $250,000.00
  • Cost of Savings on Equipment Purchase: $87,500.00
  • Lowered Cost of Equipment After Tax Savings: $162,500.00

Example of Bonus Depreciation

In this second example, you are shown a detailed overview of the bonus savings should you spend over $2 million on equipment and be eligible for bonus depreciation.

  • Cost of Equipment: $2,500,000.00
  • Section 179 Deduction: $500,000.00
  • 50% Bonus Depreciation Deduction: $1,000,000.00
  • Regular First Year Depreciation: $200,000.00
  • Total First Year Deduction: $1,700,000.00
  • Cost of Savings on Equipment Purchase: $595,000.00
  • Lowered Cost of Equipment After Tax Savings: $1,905,000.00

Quantum Machinery Group has a full inventory of Plate Rolls, Cold Saws, Band Saws, Press Brakes, Shears, Angle Rolls, Lasers, Welding Tables, Roll Benders, Ornamental Working Machinery and other equipment ready for immediate delivery.

Ready to move on your next machinery purchase? Call one of our machinery specialists today for a quote. *Flexable Financing Available!* (909) 476-8007 / Sales@QuantumMachinery.com

Everything You Need to Know About Power Hammers

Do a brief search on YouTube for the words “hydraulic press.” You will quickly discover that, strangely, society seems rather obsessed with watching presses smush everything from pencils to even diamonds. Those of us in industry know that’s because it’s easy to marvel at the sheer force hydraulics provide—this metalworking machinery is simply impressive to watch and use.

For as much power as a hydraulic press exudes, it simply isn’t always the best tool for the job. Primarily, it’s slower, and that can slow a shop down so much that it’s no longer efficient. Instead, many shops use high-impact, high-pressure power hammers. Both devices operate on the same technological basis, but there are differences.

Know About Power Hammers

Power Hammer Basics

What the heck is a power hammer, anyway? This technology isn’t new; in fact, it harkens back throughout human history much further than even the hydraulic press. The original power hammer was often called a forge hammer, and it relied on steam to build pressure and propel the device, but today’s versions use pneumatics or electricity instead.

How a power hammer operates is simple: Like a hammer, it quickly travels downward when force is applied on the opposite side, striking whatever object you place under it. Because they use some form of pressure that builds up force first, the strike occurs much faster and with far more force than if you were using a hand hammer or even a hydraulic press.

Power hammers are also very large in size when compared to other equipment. The more force you need, the larger the machinery, and advanced models may take up as much as four cubic feet of space in your shop or more.

These larger machines also produce smoother, more equalized results because the sheer mass of the device absorbs vibration and movements through weight. That’s a boon for operators and the projects they complete—size improves comfort and outcomes all around. You can expect one of these larger machines to weigh up to 12,000 pounds.

Training and Safe Use

As with any other piece of industrial equipment, no worker should have access to a power hammer without proper training. The most common accidents relate to negligence—getting hands in the way of the hammer, wearing loose clothing that becomes caught in the machine, or being hit with flying debris (especially in the eyes). Much like a hand hammer, hitting your fingers will result in injury (and likely finger loss, too). That’s what makes having a safety protocol so important.

It’s also common for workshops to experience too much vibration or movement, even in larger devices. As any equipment company will tell you, the machine can only work correctly if you use it correctly in the first place. If you find your large-scale power hammer is uncomfortable to use with a high amount of recoil, it may be that it’s off-center or that you aren’t placing your dies and pieces in the right zone. Occasional calibration is the best way to keep everyone safe.

Where you place the material isn’t the only consideration; each project will demand a precise amount of pressure and material movement, too. Often, it’s best to run a test prototype before nailing down these numbers, adjusting the rate of fire as you go. Most brands and machines will provide average numbers for common projects within the manual.

If these warnings seem rather doom and gloom, don’t feel too stressed out—truthfully, power hammers are remarkably safe when used correctly. If you follow a proper safety protocol, they may even be more safe than handheld devices! Whether you’re using your power hammer for metalbending or something else entirely, it’s just a fantastic device to have around. If you’re considering a power hammer for your shop, give us a call at Quantum Machinery Group—we can help you explore your options!

Power Hammer Basics

Maintaining Strong Growth in the Manufacturing Industry

Improvements and innovations in technology have been a significant driving force for many industries. Many businesses today fail because of an inability to keep up with the times. The manufacturing industry heavily relies on getting the most productivity out of the least amount of resources possible, especially when it comes to metalworking machinery and metal bending. How much a production business embraces the advancements in technology and education plays a large part in determining their success.

 

Maintaining Growth Manufacturing Industry

Intelligent Use of Analytics

The manufacturing industry has held the same business model for a long time: selling a single complicated and intricate product to a customer with warranty and a service contract for repairs and maintenance. It’s worked for a long time, but it’s become less feasible over time due to changes in technology and real-time data flow.

Many manufacturing companies are moving toward an updated version of this business model to keep with the times. Selling a single piece of complicated machinery is still viable, though many customers want more from their purchase than just a user manual and repair options a phone call away.

New technology and apps enable manufacturers to integrate real-time updating software and components into their products. They use this information to work with their clients daily to tweak performance levels to their needs and know when the product requires maintenance.

Manufacturers that actively work with their clients to optimize the product will see a greater return on their investments. Building customer loyalty and retention opens up opportunities for more lucrative ventures down the road.

Educate Your Workers

Educated employees are always a valued asset for any business, and their worth has only increased with time. It’s imperative that contemporary manufacturing workers are knowledgeable about current trends in technology. Hiring more workers used to be a more feasible solution in the past, but finding employees that know what they’re doing is more crucial now than when manufacturing was in its adolescence.

STEM education is one of the keys to satisfying this need for smart workers. Ensure that your workers have the training and knowledge they need, whether you’re hiring fresh college graduates or providing supplemental education for your current workforce.

Operational Data Is Your Gold Mine

Improving efficiency is the name of the game in the current state of modern manufacturing. Creating more efficient production lines or methods is always beneficial, but maybe you’re hitting a brick wall. Maybe the cost of re-doing your infrastructure is too expensive or requires more research and development. Many manufacturers are facing these challenges, so they’re looking to squeeze every ounce of productivity out of what they have now.

Keep tabs on the operational data of your machines and devices to learn how to get the most out of them. Improving your efficiency by a few percent makes a big difference whether you’re mass producing or focusing on a single item. Your competitors are doing the same thing, so investing into advanced data collection technology is a great way to stay with, or ahead of, the curve. Quantum Machinery Group understands how to implement high-tech solutions to exceed your business standards. Our experienced staff and machinery can help you push your company ahead of the rest and bring innovation to your metalworking machinery.

increase productivity within your manufacturing

Women in Metalworking Machinery Manufacturing

When you think about metalworking machinery manufacturing, you might picture this industry as being a “males-only” industry. However, you would be sadly mistaken. While, indeed, there are more men that work in this particular industrial segment, women still make up a decent percentage of workers.

In fact, women started getting into manufacturing back during World War II (WWII) when men were being drafted for the war effort. Women started taking over many of the positions previously held by men. Globally, there was a significant increase in the number of women working in manufacturing from the period between 1940 through 1943.

Women in Metalworking Machinery

Even Queen Elizabeth II did her part. She joined the UK’s armed forces and worked as a mechanic repairing military vehicles and was also a military truck driver! Here in the United States, “Rosie the Riveter” became an iconic image that promoted women’s roles in manufacturing during WWII.

Many women worked in factories building airplanes, military vehicles, and automobiles. Other women worked in machine shops as machinists producing related parts and components. While the dominance they established during WWII declined after the war, many women continued to work in manufacturing.

Today, women still make up around one-third of the workers in manufacturing. In fact, they have held steady at this rate since the 1970s, with little change. Some women have even started their own metal fabrication and machine shops!

What the Future Holds for Women

As technologies continue to advance, women will need to adapt just like their male counterparts. This means pursuing educational opportunities in computer programming, industry-specific software applications (i.e., CAD, CAM, etc.), and ongoing training to ensure they can operate advanced machinery.

The younger generation of women that is considering entering the metalworking industry needs to focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) coursework and related degree programs through trades schools and universities.

Women will be important to fill gaps being created as technologies continue to advance. Even as artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and other automation continue to grow in manufacturing, the demand for skilled workers to operate the AI, robots, and machines will also continue to increase.

Metalworking Machinery Manufacturing

If the United States hopes to compete globally with other metalworking businesses, they will need to adapt by hiring more women. In fact, U.S. trade schools, universities, and businesses in metalworking manufacturing have started to take more of an interest in recruiting women and encouraging them to pursue careers in this field.

Just in two short years, schools have seen a jump in young women’s interests in going into manufacturing. In 2015, only 12% of women were actively working toward a career in manufacturing. Now, in 2017, this has grown to 29%. It is expected the rate will continue to grow over the next decade and could potentially reach as high as 50%.

Here at Quantum Machinery Group, we applaud women already working in manufacturing, and those women actively working toward a career in metalworking. For all of your metalworking machinery and equipment, please feel free to contact us at (909) 476-8007 today!

Sources

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_World_War_II
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_women_in_World_War_II
  3. https://www.census.gov/newsroom/blogs/random-samplings/2017/10/women-manufacturing.html
  4. http://www.themanufacturinginstitute.org/Initiatives/Women-in-Manufacturing/~/media/3B9BF94AEF0A46A5B755D17F1F1336BC.ashx

 

 

How Tech Is Taking a Front Seat on the Factory Floor

The public perception of manufacturing hasn’t changed much from the factories of the past. Nonetheless, there have been many changes in the industry. Employment rose from 11.5 million jobs in 2010 to 12.3 million jobs in 2016.1 U.S. manufacturing is also being transformed by technology.

Manufacturing output has increased, and The New York Times reported that manufacturers are producing 47% more than 10 years ago. Automation, robotics, and advanced metalworking machinery and other manufacturing technologies are, in part, responsible for the trends.

These modern innovations were merely conceptual, just a few years ago, but are impacting the industry today.

3D Printing: Manufacturers can produce metal and plastic products quickly and boost factory productivity. Design-to-production is more efficient and lead times are reduced. Factories can build machine parts and prototypes less expensively and with less waste than before (3D printing involves building up rather than cutting material away).

Robotics: The adoption of robotics is crucial to maximizing automation and productivity. By 2013, there were 1.2 million robots operating in factories and warehouses around the world, and 1.5 million in 2014.2 Robots are becoming more suitable for complex tasks; in 2016, Everwin Precision Technology4 replaced 650 people with 60 robotic arms at a factory in China, reducing the demand on people to perform often difficult and dangerous tasks.

tech factory floor

Computers: The Internet of Things has shaped a new revolution in which machines and sensors allow communication. Factory equipment can even respond automatically to conditions, such as low fluid levels, and can generate work orders. The process reduces maintenance costs and downtime.

Cloud computing is connecting multiple manufacturing plants and enabling companies to share data across facilities anywhere on the globe. Aside from speeding production, this improves product quality and consistency.

Up and coming tech includes nanotechnology, which is already enhancing material properties at the molecular level and making computers faster. Augmented reality is in its early stages, but the concept of receiving instructions, guidance, and notifications via sophisticated eyewear won’t go away. It also has the potential to improve safety, training, and data retrieval.

Technology Is Adding Manufacturing Jobs

The demand for skilled labor is high. It’s also providing opportunities to participate in specialized programs, including those focused on laser technology. Well-paying jobs can be found without incurring the costs of a college degree.

At the same time, many older workers are getting ready to retire. The students of today are immersed in technology from a young age. As they enter the workforce, they’re already privy to applying computers and tech to their daily lives. One can, therefore, see how easily tech is taking a front seat on the factory floor; for millennials, there is a high potential for finding rewarding and satisfying work.

Manufacturing Jobs

Quantum Machinery Is Helping Fuel the Factory Tech Climate

We offer the latest in metalworking machinery, laser technology, and sawing, bending, shearing, embossing, and welding systems found on factory floors all over the world. For more information about our products and their benefits, contact us online or call 909-476-8007.

Sources

  1. https://www.brookings.edu/blog/techtank/2016/06/02/how-technology-is-changing-manufacturing/
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/08/upshot/the-economy-is-rigged-and-other-presidential-campaign-myths.html
  3. https://www.brookings.edu/blog/techtank/2016/06/02/how-technology-is-changing-manufacturing/
  4. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/william-morrow/6-technologies-transformi_b_10405528.html

What Is CNC Machining as Related to the Manufacturing Industry?

CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machining is a manufacturing process where a solid piece of material is transformed into the finished product. This process is often referred to as subtractive manufacturing because the raw material is cut away at until the desired results are achieved.

Prior to the invention of modern computers, CNC machines had to be programmed using punch cards or punch tapes, where punches corresponded to specific machine functions. The processes were semi-automated and required CNC machine operators to switch out different types of tools in between each tape or card.

 

CNC Machining

Today, CNC machinery can be fully automated to the point where machines can be left to produce output with minimal human interactions. In some machine shops, you will even find the one machine operator managing multiple CNC machines simultaneously.

To create the finished products requires modeling them first using CAD (Computer Aided Design) or CAM (Computer Aided Manufacturing) software. The software apps allow the product to be constructed in a virtual 3D environment to ensure it meets the required specifications.

Then, once the final revision is saved, the data file can be uploaded to the computer in the CNC machine. The CNC machine uses the encoded data in the file to produce the finished product. Different types of CNC machines are used, depending on the product being manufactured.

For instance, a CNC lathe machine transforms raw materials by spinning the material against a drill-like bit to remove the material. On the other hand, a CNC drill machine uses drill bits to drill directly into the raw material and remove material.

While both of these machines can perform specific processes, CNC milling machines offer greater flexibility. They utilize special rotary attachments to cut away the material. Some models can combine lathe and drilling processes as well, which can eliminate the need for multiple CNC machines.

Aside from these types of CNC machines, there are also specialty machines, such as CNC laser cutting machines or high-powered water jets, to function as the cutting mechanisms to remove the desired amount of material to produce the finished good.

CNC Laser Cutting Machine

A CNC Machine Is Only as Good as Its Programming

Since most CNC machines lack artificial intelligence (AI), they must rely solely upon their programming. If the data in the program is off just the slightest, it can result in faulty finished goods. This is why CNC operators must know how to use CAD and CAM software apps, as well as enter in programming instructions manually to the CNC machine when a data file is not available.

Skilled CNC operators also know they should always run a test prior to starting a batch process to ensure the machine is within acceptable operating parameters and there are no errors or issues that need to be resolved. Catching mistakes sooner, rather than later, always costs less.

For more information about CNC machines for your machine or metal fabrication shop, please feel free to contact Quantum Machinery Group at (909) 476-8007 today!

U.S. Manufacturing Expands at Fastest Rate in 3 Years!

Data from the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) indicate improving economic conditions are benefiting U.S. manufacturers. By July 2017, the ISM Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose to 57.8%.1 This was up from 54.9% in June and the highest since mid-2014. The numbers are significant because they provide a measure of how likely manufacturers are to buy products such as metalworking machinery, equipment, and software.

 

U.S. Manufacturing Purchase Managers Index

Significance of the Current Findings

There are 18 industries tracked by ISM. Of those, 15 reported growth in June. The readings are significant because those over 50% show that business and the manufacturing sector are expanding. Numbers below that benchmark indicate contraction.

Nonetheless, the pace has not slowed down. The PMI stood at 58.7% in October 2017,2 higher than June but slightly lower than September’s 60.8 reading. The ISM reported continued growth in new orders, production, employment, and order backlogs. In the October manufacturing report, the institute’s feedback from a panel indicates expanding business conditions, including growth in production, new orders, and export orders.

A slowing of supplier deliveries indicates an improvement, as does a contraction of inventories. In October, 16 manufacturing industries reported growth, including:

  • Paper Products
  • Nonmetallic Mineral Products
  • Machinery
  • Transportation Equipment
  • Wood Products
  • Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products
  • Miscellaneous Manufacturing
  • Petroleum & Coal Products
  • Plastics & Rubber Products
  • Textile Mills
  • Chemical Products
  • Computer & Electronic Products
  • Fabricated Metal Products
  • Furniture & Related Products
  • Electrical Equipment
  • Appliances & Components
  • Primary Metals

Importance of the ISM Index

The index is essentially a survey of purchasing and supply executives. They are surveyed because the rate at which they order raw materials and supplies from manufacturing companies tends to reflect broader economic conditions. For example, the purchase of metal-bending equipment may rise as the economy improves and fall if there may be an impending recession.

Reports are issued monthly, providing a look at the most current business activity.

Markit Reports a Similar Trend

In June, Markit, a financial data firm, reported an increase to 57.3 of its U.S. Manufacturing Purchase Managers Index. Like the ISM index, a reading above 50 indicates economic expansion. The index, output subindex, and read on new orders were all at their highest levels since April 2010, meaning that business for U.S. goods producers was growing a faster rate than it has in a while.3

Factory output, order books, employment, and payroll numbers were rising fast as well, in some cases the most since the recession, according to Markit’s Chief Economist Chris Williamson.

U.S. Manufacturing Expands

What It Means for Business

For machinery providers and software companies/SaaS service providers, the latest economic improvement means an increase in business opportunities. Companies are investing in software and metalworking, cutting, bending, welding, and other machines.

If the demand for products is increasing your need for high-quality, versatile equipment, contact Quantum Machinery Group online, email sales@quantummachinery.com, or call our service department at 909-476-8007.

Sources

  1. https://www.marketwatch.com/story/us-manufacturers-growing-at-fastest-pace-in-three-years-ism-finds-2017-07-03
  2. https://www.instituteforsupplymanagement.org/ismreport/mfgrob.cfm?SSO=1
  3. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-economy-markit-manufacturing/u-s-manufacturing-expands-in-june-at-fastest-rate-in-over-four-years-markit-idUSKBN0F64DO20140701

Why Manufacturing Is Thriving in the USA

The year of 2009 saw a resurgence of growth in the manufacturing industry after decades of decline. The industry is revitalizing itself, but not all manufacturer fields saw an equal amount of growth. Sectors that create or rely on metal bending and metalworking machinery are thriving more than others. Construction and other heavy industries are still relevant, but the biggest growth is in the automotive industry and various high-tech fields.

Manufacturing Is Thriving in the USA

Vehicles Are Still Popular

The automotive industry is perhaps the greatest beneficiary of this growth. Many were worried about the concept of “peak cars” years ago. This fear was due to the perception that Americans owned too many vehicles. Industries believed the populace had reached a saturation level where it was no longer profitable to mass produce cars as they had been before. Americans are, in fact, approaching this level, but we’re not there yet. There are also other factors at work to keep America invested in car ownership.

The reduction and stability of oil prices in recent years spurred investment into the vehicle industry. Population density is less concentrated in urban areas, too, and is spreading outwards into the suburbs and rural areas. These outward expansion trends increase travel time between points of interests and make owning a car almost mandatory. The continued demand for transportation and low prices of oil give value to purchasing a newer vehicle.

Massive Growth in the Midwest

Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan’s automotive producers are growing their workforce sizes and plummeting the local unemployment rate at the same time. Growth rates over the last decade range anywhere from 25 percent to 37 percent.

Detroit holds the record for the largest growth in sheer numbers. Its automotive workforce grew just shy of 31 percent, which is about the median of all growth rates, but it’s the sheer number of people that makes this figure impressive. The Louisville area in Kentucky, which saw the highest growth rate at 37 percent, is home to roughly 60,000 jobs. Detroit now has 240,000 from a prior 149,000.

Technology Is the Future

Silicon Valley is currently experiencing a small boom despite the high cost of living and the burst of the dot-com bubble. Traditional computer processors have a theoretical limit to the power they can provide; we’re quickly reaching that limit now. The solution to this problem directs the focus of research and development to computer companies. The challenges these companies face, concerning packing more processing power into smaller spaces, require innovative solutions.

Current research that attempts to overcome obstacles comes from cutting-edge developments in theoretical physics. Companies are hiring young and bright minds to solve these problems and many others that arise from dealing with the digital world. Technological developments from this research will play a significant role in the evolution of computers and the “internet of things.”

Aerospace and innovative companies, like Tesla, are also seeing plenty of growth with the manufacturing revival. The bulk of the growth remains in the automotive industry and others that rely on technology to manipulate metal. Quantum Machinery Group specializes in metalworking machinery that enables manufacturing industries to thrive and prosper.

Technology Is the Future

Commonly Used Industrial Metals and Their Properties

Nine Inch Nails is the first thing that pops into the minds of non-industry people when they think of industrial metal. While that band is an example of industrial metal music, it’s not the stuff that makes up buildings, appliances, and nearly everything else on which we depend.

Almost everyone knows they want a stainless-steel cooking pot, but they most likely don’t know what materials their refrigerators consist of, and that’s unfortunate. The science behind industrial metals is very interesting, especially if you’re in the industry already.

Here, we’ll discuss some of the most common metals used by metalworking machinery today.

Commonly Used Industrial Metals

Aluminum

Aluminum is a popular metal that’s also known for its light weight. It is highly resistant to corrosion and weathering, making it ideal for indoor and outdoor applications. Aluminum also boasts conductivity and is ductile enough to hammer into sheets and shape into wires.

Aluminum can be used in many ways. Weather-resistance makes it suitable for windows, doors, and other externally facing building components. Outdoor signs and street lights consist mostly of aluminum for the same reason. This metal is also a favorite in automobile parts and bicycles due to its light weight.

Copper

Copper isn’t as glamorous as other metals, but it does remain useful nonetheless. It is highly ductile and malleable, which makes it easy to shape into many different useful forms. Copper is also incredibly easy to solder, and, when used in electronics or plumbing, can create strong bonds and junctions. The orange-tinged metal is resistant to corrosion, especially from water and soil, and features overall flexibility that allows it to handle changes in temperature better than most metals.

Copper comes in soft and rigid variants, depending on its use. Soft copper tubing is present in HVAC systems, refrigeration lines, and heat pumps. Rigid copper is present in water pipes for hot and cold tap water. It’s also the main material found within plumbing pipes, tubes, and household wiring because it’s relatively cheap in comparison to most metals.

Carbon Steel

This variation of steel sees most of its use in heavy-duty applications. Carbon steel gets its name from the fact that it contains very high levels of carbon; this is what gives the metal its strength, durability, and weight. It is tougher and more durable than most other standard metals, giving it great strength, but isn’t as ductile, and, thus, doesn’t always suit small projects.

Carbon steel is the primary material used in massive immobile structures due to its heavy weight. Most applications for this metal exist. It’s what makes up the framework of highways, bridges, and tall or broad buildings, and is an ideal material for support beams and structural framework pieces. Most trailer beds for semis are also made of carbon steel.

Stainless Steel

One of the most common metals is stainless steel. This often-shiny silver metal contains a mixture of steel and at least 10 percent chromium and other alloys. The ratios and types of alloys used depend on the intended function of the object.

Industrial metals

Protecting Yourself from Flying Metal Particles

Working with metalworking machinery requires taking certain precautions to protect yourself from flying metal particles. Specific areas of the body should be protected including the hands, arms, face, and eyes, as well as other areas of the body. Before discussing various bodily risks, your work wear is just as important as personal protection equipment (PPE).

Metalworking Machinery

You should never wear loose-fitting clothes around machinery and equipment that could potentially get caught in moving parts and components and which would result in serious bodily injuries. This also includes employee identification lanyards and neck ties, as these items can swing freely and could accidentally get caught in the machine.

Metal particles of all sizes can contain sharp points and edges. When they become airborne, the amount of force can cause the particles to puncture into different parts of the body without the proper PPE.

Eye Protection

One of the most common types of workplace injuries that could occur without any protection is an injury to one or both eyes. Metal particles can puncture the outer eye as well as get trapped in between the eyelid, resulting in scratched and damaged retinas. Always make sure to wear the right type of safety glasses or goggles to protect your eyes.

Face and Head Protection

There are different types of face masks, hard hats, and other PPE which can reduce the risks associated with flying metal particles.

Hand Protection

When working close to moving parts and components, you want to ensure the hands are protected from metal particles. It is important to choose the right type of work gloves that provide the right protection based upon the type of work being performed. Some gloves are not recommended because they make operating the machinery and handling materials difficult.

Metal Cutting Band Saw

Arm and Upper Body Protection

It is a good idea to wear long-sleeved shirts to protect the arms from accidentally cuts and scrapes from flying metal particles. Coveralls or shop coats would be suitable PPE alternatives to ensure the arms and upper body were sufficiently protected.

Lower Body and Legs

Thick jeans or industrial pants should provide protection from most types of flying metal particles. However, in environments where there is a large number of particles being created, coveralls should also be worn to provide an added layer of protection.

Feet

Let’s not overlook the feet because they also need protection, depending on the angle and direction the particles are being emitted from the machinery. Quite frequently, the particles are ejected downward toward the feet. Thick steel-toed work boots are recommended in many working environments as they provide the necessary protection.

Last, prior to starting work on any type of metalworking equipment or machinery, review the safety precautions and required PPE needed to operate the machine. Never, under any circumstances, enter a production or work area without the proper PPE.

For information on the latest metal fabrication and machine shop machinery and equipment, feel free to contact us, here at Quantum Machinery by calling (909) 476-8007 to speak with one of our sales engineers today!

What Should I Look for in an Angle Roll?

Angle rolls, also known as profile rolls, section rolls, or simply “rollers,” are all names used for the machines metal fabricators use to make round bends in metal profiles. These rolling machines play a very important role in metal fabrication, and knowing what to look for when selecting an angle roller is essential to the success of a given task.

Let’s take a look at how these machines work, what makes the different varieties of rollers different, and how one should select the appropriate roller for the job they have in mind.

Angle roll size

Angle Roll Overview

Angle rolls are very common machines in environments where metal profiles need to be formed to a specific radius or diameter. Angle iron, solid square, solid rectangle, round tubing, and pipe are the most common type of profiles used with this type of equipment.

Because of the wide variety of metals needing to be shaped, and the even wider variety of tasks requiring shaped metal, the fabrication market is full of different varieties of rolling machines, each with its own strengths, weaknesses, and particular uses.

One example of the differences between different angle rolls is capacity. Each rolling machine will be rated according to its strength yield. As an example, rolling machines used to shape plate metal will typically have a yield strength of between 36,000 and 38,000 pounds per square inch (PSI).

Steel mills, on the other hand, often handle metal profiles that require between 48,000 and 58,000 psi. An angle roll that works perfectly well in one environment may not meet the requirements of another.

Another difference between rolling machines is the number of rolls it has. The rolls are the round, spinning parts of the angle roll that allow it to do its job. Every angle roll comes with at least one pinching roll, which is the roll that holds the metal in place and allows it to be fed through the machine. Plate rolling machines come in one or two varieties: single-pinch and double-pinch, referring to how many pinching rolls it has.

Pressing roles, on the other hand, are the part of the machine that does the actual bending. Here there are even more varieties than with pinching roles. Examples of different types of rolling machines based on the number of pressing roles include three-roll double-pinch, four roll double-pinch, three-roll initial pinch, and more.

Angle Roll Overview

When determining which rolling machine is best suited for the task one has at hand, it is important to research what each rolling machine is designed to do, and to understand the materials that one will be working with. Manufacturers can usually provide detailed information about their machines, such as capacity and yield.

Compare the manufacturer’s information about how much force a machine can produce and what kind of metals (sheet, roll, etc.) it is designed to handle, and compare this to your site’s mill certificates or other relevant information to see which angle roll best fits your needs.

Want to find out more information about angle rolls and their uses? Contact Quantum Machinery today at 909-476-8007.

 

Why You Need to Keep Your Metalworking Machine Manuals

Most of us throw away the instruction manual when we buy a new product. Sometimes, we like the challenge of doing it ourselves; other times, we already know how the item works and don’t need to read the same book twice. This works fine for simpler things like vacuum cleaners and bookshelves, but not for more complex machinery. When it comes to advanced equipment, like press brakes and metal benders, it’s very important to keep the manuals somewhere safe and accessible for future reference.

Metalworking Machine Manuals

Specifics

Saving manuals is especially crucial for high-tech industrial equipment like machines and devices used in metalworking. In many ways, it’s just as important as saving a vehicle’s manual written by and for mechanics. There’s too many specifics that vary from car to car to keep track of in your head. If you’re doing that, then you may as well memorize an encyclopedia.

These manuals show you the specifics on how to operate the machine in question. They will include the specific numbers needed for settings, ranges, thresholds, and limitations, how to program it, and how to troubleshoot it if it breaks. It’s nearly impossible to remember and quickly recall this information on your own. This is especially true for metal bending because most bending machinery is heavily reliant on brand-specified numbers.

Diagrams

Machine manuals also contain detailed diagrams that explain the inner workings of the machine itself. Most shops just don’t have the time to reverse engineer or perform an autopsy on a machine when it breaks, especially if the shop didn’t create the machine in the first place. Having access to these diagrams solves problems so much faster.

Breakdowns and Troubleshooting

Every machine suffers from wear and tear. Eventually, the parts inside of it will break down. The parts that go into most metalworking machinery are highly specific and calculated in design, so it isn’t as easy as ordering them from Amazon. You won’t find them at your local hardware store, and you need to know the reference numbers for the manufacturer parts you’re looking for. Your machine manual contains all of this information, and much more, saving you time and reducing the headache of guessing what parts you need.

Compatibilities

Your machine manual will also tell you what type of materials your equipment can handle and to what extent it can be pushed. Metalworking requires precise calculations by its nature, so winging it and experimenting with non-compatible equipment is incredibly unsafe. Simply put: It’s safer for your entire shop to consult the manual before using equipment dangerously and causing an accident.

Show, Don’t Tell

Sometimes, it’s easier to show something than it is to describe it. This is especially true when talking to someone over the phone or writing an email where you can only use words. You can use the manual and make a scan of the specific page in the manual that you need and fax or email it the person you’re working with. This also allows you to draw or circle something on the copy without damaging the original, making it easier to communicate broken press brakes or machine failures to repair specialists from a distance.

Missing a machine manual? Need to find press brakes for sale? Quantum Machinery can help. Contact us today for all of your most important metalworking needs.

Metalworking machinery

Lance Lamberton joins the Quantum Machinery Group team!

lance-lamberton

Lance Lamberton has been in the metal fabrication equipment sales industry for nearly a decade, during that time he brought in a large number in sales and became a recognized top producer with a well-known machinery importer from Europe.

As a top producing Regional Sales Manager, Lance Lamberton worked as a leader training several junior sales staff members during his time with his previous employer. In addition, Lance Lamberton had the largest and highest producing dealer network in the United States for his previous employer. 

As a press brake and plate roll expert Mr. Lamberton has assisted in hundreds, if not thousands of projects domestically. On top of his vast domestic project experience, for many years Lance worked shoulder-to-shoulder with many factories internationally on some of the largest and most difficult jobs. Some of the machine factories around the globe that Lance has spent time in and worked with are located in Turkey, Holland, Germany, China, Taiwan, and Canada. Also working on large international machine sales projects in Puerto Rico, Colombia, Venezuela, Dubai, UAE, Guatemala and Bolivia.

In addition, to his professional achievements, Lance Lamberton is active in his community, supporting local fundraising efforts and volunteering in a private community that is important to Lance. 

At this point in Lance's career he couldn't be more excited to join the sales team at Quantum Machinery Group. He looks forward to many years of continued industry success with Quantum.  

How to Achieve a Perfect Press Brake Bend

Bending metal requires high-tech equipment and a very methodical approach. The steps are linear in nature and cannot be skipped without resulting in failure. Each step of using a press brake depends on the ones before it to achieve success. Use these steps to help you get the metal bend you’re looking for when using press brakes.

Press brake operator

Know Your Materials

Different metals have different properties that determine how they react to stress. Metals will naturally bend back closer to their original shape when force is applied to them. Some metals need to be bent more than others to achieve the same end result. Metal also stretches when bent and at different rates, depending on the material. The measurements of the bend are typically determined by the type of metal being used, its thickness, and the shape of the die it is being pressed against.

Create a Drawing

Create a drawing of your desired bend by determining the shape of the bend you want and the materials being used. You can reference drawings from previous runs, if needed, but make sure the new bend is factually correct and consistent.

Select the Bending Method

Choosing the right bending method that’s most appropriate for the bend you want is vital. Most bending methods are very similar to each other, but they do have slight differences. Be sure the details of your plans will work with the method you choose.

Calculate Tonnage

Once you know your bend, calculate the tonnage needed for the bend based on the material, the bend you want, and the bending method being used. There are tonnage charts readily available to search for if there isn’t already one nearby the equipment you’re using.

Assess Tooling Position

Assess the tooling position of your material on the bend. If you find you need more tonnage than the machines concentrated load limit, then you can still do the bend, but it will have to be off-center. Check the press machine being used to see if it allows off-center loading and the limitations it can handle. It’s possible to finish the job by using these off-center guidelines, but it’s not safe to exceed them.

Install the Right Tooling

Install the correct tooling for the job. Once you’ve made the calculations, it’s time to set up the machine itself. This is typically the most time-consuming part of the process, so it’s important to make sure your numbers and processes are accurate. Manually setting up the various parts will vary slightly from machine to machine. Ask a press brake operator or consult the manual if you aren’t sure how to properly set up the machine.

Enter Your Calculations

Input the calculations into the press brake machine. This step highly depends on the machine you are using. Older machines may require some manual programming while newer ones have many things pre-configured.

Test Your Bend

Do a test run! Make sure everything’s good to go before doing a mass production run. If something doesn’t line up, go back to the previous steps and find the problem.

Keep in mind that some parts will have imperfections when you start your mass production. This is expected, and you should do some post-run testing to make sure the products meet your standards. If you need help choosing press brakes, feel free to contact the team at Quantum Machinery today.

Press brake for sale

Tips for Choosing Welding Tables

Getting the right welding table is a significant component of having a successful shop. You don’t want a table that is difficult to use and understand, nor do you want one that’s filled with poor materials of subpar quality. Quantum Machinery Group offers welding tables that are far above the competition in durability, quality, reliability, and ease of use. Choose from options like steel saw blades, circular saws, table band saws and more to ensure that you have a table that lets you work smarter, not harder.

 

Choosing Welding Tables

Not sure where to start? We’ve put together a handy guide that will help you identify your needs and find the best solution for your shop. It’s that easy!

Why Not Build One Yourself?

Some welders think they can just build a table for themselves. While this isn’t technically impossible, and experienced welders may very well be able to accomplish the task, many others do not have the time or right state of mind to get the job done.

So much work goes into creating a sturdy welding table. You’ll need to consider high load capacity, level surface, and high resistance against stroke impact. Self-builders spend a considerable amount of time working to get the table right, and that time investment can end up being sub-par when compared with purchasing a new table outright.

Why Not Go with a Different Manufacturer?

Plenty of manufacturers are available to make welding tables, so why not go with one of them? Quantum Machinery focuses on the customer. We want to provide high-quality, professional welding tables to you so you can have premium steel options for a high workload. Other manufacturers focus on creating colorful tables that catch people’s eyes. These are fun to look at, but they may not hold as much weight or be as level as they need to be.

The Quantum Machinery Group’s Welding Table Options

All of our tables are made of premium steel. They are plasma-nitrided and coated for maximum durability and longevity. This results in a wear-free, corrosion-resistant surface that resists stroke impact or damage. We also offer a diagonal grid with bored holes for further flexibility or additional clamping options—something many other tables just don’t have. You can choose a 16mm welding table or 28mm welding table, depending on your size requirements.

Need enhanced options? Table kits may be the answer. The System 16 and System 28 welding table sets come with all of the most common accessories you need to use the table to the best of your ability. Clamps, squares, stops, and bolts—it’s all packed in when you purchase for an easy setup.

In addition, we have various kits that feature a variety of items that will make your daily job tasks much easier.

Work smarter (not harder) with a Quantum Machinery welding table. These tables have everything you need to meet your welding requirements and can handle a high capacity on your busiest workdays. Find the best table for your needs by contacting us today for a quote.

 

Quantum Machinery Group’s Welding Table Options

Technology Spotlight: Modular design meets the press brake

"Multi-frame" approach reduces the mass of high-tonnage machines

Originally published in The Fabricator in March 2017. Written by Tim Heston.

A press brake manufacturer uncovers an alternative to the conventional C-frame design. According to the company, the modular design eliminates the need for a conventional crowning system and makes machine installation easier.

The HD Greenbender has a modular design that accounts for deflection using supplementary hydraulics instead of a conventional crowning system.

The HD Greenbender has a modular design that accounts for deflection using supplementary hydraulics instead of a conventional crowning system.

It’s a big leap for a heavy or an industrial fabricator to invest in a massive press brake. It can give a shop some bragging rights, for sure, but installing such massive machines can be arduous affairs. They require foundation work (pit installation), and they aren’t the easiest to transport.

Big press brakes are big for a reason. Such monster machines exert tremendous force, so engineers add mass to the machine frame to deal with that force. The machine frame deflects, hence the need for crowning devices integrated into the brake’s lower beam.

But recently engineers at Portuguese machine tool manufacturer Adira Metal Forming Solutions S.A. developed a way to deal with such force in a different way. According to the company, the approach, designed into its HD Greenbender line, eliminates the need for pit installations by lowering the overall mass of the machine and making the design modular. And as the company explained, the machine has no need for a conventional crowning system.

Most press brakes are built using a C-frame, with two side housings and two beams, one fixed (usually the bottom beam) and one moving. The new approach uses a T-frame, not just on either side of the brake but also spaced evenly across the press brake’s width. The company calls this its “dematerialized” approach.

As Rui César, project applications manager, explained, “On a normal press brake, the bending is supported by the C-frame, which deflects upward when the cylinders are actuating. In this system, since the frame was dematerialized, we cannot use the same strategy, which could compromise structural integrity.

“Since we use different structural modules,” César continued, “we have several support points. Instead of having two lateral C-shaped frames and a central beam, we place intermediate supports. This allows us to minimize deformation. And the distance between frames, which can be critical on long machines, doesn’t present a problem.”

Adira calls this a “multi-frame” design. The space behind the tooling isn’t open. Instead, the T-frames across the machine introduce a throat depth across the bed, like a tandem or triplet machine. Still, sources emphasized that this is not a tandem or triplet system, but instead one machine with one upper and lower beam. Regardless, sources said that the T-frame allows machines to be designed with a very deep throat depth between the tooling and the pillar of the T-frame behind it (see photo).

“The modules are topographically optimized to their size and required loads,” César said. “If a different [open] height or [throat] depth is needed, the same compensation concept may be used, but it would require a new structure.” Using software, engineers can run simulations and tailor the design around a specified throat depth, as well as open height and stroke depth.

On each T-frame are two hydraulic cylinders, one in front and one at the rear of the machine. The two cylinders work in concert and, by doing so, can exert bending force while also compensating for deflection. This, sources said, eliminates the need for a conventional crowning system.

“The rear hydraulic actuator applies an upward force, hence compensating for the normal deflection of the structure,” César said.

“When the main cylinder exerts force, the rear cylinder compensates for deflection and keeps the system balanced. There is also dynamic control between the two [cylinders], using electronic control with sensors.”

Each T-frame is part of a module that includes a hydraulic cylinder in the front and (as shown in blue) in the back.

Each T-frame is part of a module that includes a hydraulic cylinder in the front and (as shown in blue) in the back.

Last year the company introduced a 750-ton prototype, with each of the machine’s three cylinders applying 250 tons of forming force. “The total force will be proportional to the number of modules that you use,” said Filipe Coutinho, product development engineer.

“We can go up to 500 tons with each frame,” César said. Each T-frame is part of a module, and if a machine uses six modules, each exerting 500 tons, the machine would have a total tonnage of 3,000 tons. César added that the limitations would involve the dimensions and weight for transport.

Regardless, they said that the approach may open up the potential for heavy forming to more fabrication facilities, with smaller, manageable modules arriving on-site and then assembled together into a machine that, ultimately, can bend seriously thick plate.