• Problem: Removing fan blades or other pieces of equipment that are held in place by 1/4-in. squarehead setscrews can be a problem because of limited space. Is there an easy way to loosen these setscrews?
• Solution: Make a compact setscrew removal tool by using a 5/16-in. allen wrench and a 5/16-in. socket with a 1/4-in. drive. They can reach into a small space and quickly loosen the setscrew.
Contributor: Roger Kamps, Technician, Nor-Lake, Inc., Hudson, WI.
• Problem: Sometimes it is necessary to locate a specific spot from one room or floor to another. How can you drill through a wall or floor even when it is up to a foot thick without making a mess?
• Solution: Make a piece of straight wire from a heavy coat hanger and cut to length. Cut one end to a point and chuck the blunt end. Now you can drill a small location hole through a wall or floor.
Contributor: Michael Strong, Maintenance Supervisor 2, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.
• Problem: Many times a small caulking bead is required in a corner. Usually the tip of the cartridge is cut to provide a larger bead. How can a small bead be laid without getting your fingers messy?
• Solution: Put a small amount of caulk in a plastic sandwich bag and zip it shut. Cut off one of the corners to the size of bead required. Squeeze the sandwich bag to lay a small bead without making a mess.
Contributor: Richard Johnson, All Tech Engineering, Brookfield, IL.
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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