Spinning nuts fast
• Problem: Running nuts on threaded rods by hand can be a time-consuming task, especially when suspending many fixtures or the threaded rod is dirty. Is there a better way to run nuts onto threaded rod?
• Solution: Convert a hand drill into a labor-saving device by wrapping 3 to 6 layers of black electrical tape around its chuck. Be sure to wrap the tape sticky side out. Start the nut by hand then touch the spinning chuck to the side of the nut.
Contributor: Ralph Dewey, BP Solvay Polyethylene, North America, Deer Park, TX.
Get the same grip
• Problem: When using gripping pliers to hold pieces of steel together for welding, the adjustment changes when doing repetitive work. Is there a way to keep the adjustment from changing?
• Solution: Cut off a 3-in. long piece of 3/4 in. rubber hose and slip it over the adjusting screw. This prevents an unconscious hand movement from changing the adjustment.
Contributor: Ron Dieken, Norcraft Companies, LLC, Cottonwood, MN.
Opening cans of solder flux
• Problem: Typical solder flux tin containers can be difficult to open because of a tight fitting lid and lipless bottom half. How can the cans be altered to make them easy to open?
• Solution: Install a sheet metal screw through the bottom half of the tin container. This provides something to grab when opening the container and the screw prevents the contents from leaking out.
Contributor: Larry Lueder, Mechanical Engineer, U.S. Navy, Mantua, NJ.
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey