The Best of Maintenance Tips & Tricks

Winner of the 2004 "Maintenance Tip of the Year" is Jason Barron, Diversified Technology, Inc., Ridgeland, MS. He received $1,000 for his suggestion on how to install a pipe under a sidewalk. Runners-up were Craig Deluhery, Formosa Plastics, Illiopolis, IL and Jakob T. Duerson, Matsushita Electric Motor, Berea, KY.


First Place
Second Place
Third Place

Winner of the 2004 "Maintenance Tip of the Year" is Jason Barron , Diversified Technology, Inc., Ridgeland, MS. He received $1,000 for his suggestion on how to install a pipe under a sidewalk. Runners-up were Craig Deluhery , Formosa Plastics, Illiopolis, IL and Jakob T. Duerson , Matsushita Electric Motor, Berea, KY. Mr. Deluhery presented a solution for limiting the charging time on battery-powered tools and Mr. Duerson explained how to remove broken taps. They each received $250 for their suggestions.

First Place

Sidewalk water drilling

Problem: Sometimes it is necessary to run cable or pipe under a sidewalk. Is there a way to do this without tearing up the sidewalk?

Solution: Dig a hole on each side of the sidewalk. Attach a water hose to a threaded PVC pipe and use water pressure to make a hole under the sidewalk. When finished, you have a pipe in place with threaded ends for cable connections.

Contributor: Jason Barron, Industrial Engineer, Diversified Technology, Inc., Ridgeland, MS.

Second Place

Limit battery charge

Problem: The battery life of portable power tools is reduced if overcharged due to the battery over-heating. How can this problem be eliminated?

Solution: Provide the correct number of charging hours by using an outlet timer. When the tool is picked up in the morning it will have the proper charge.

Contributor: Craig Deluhery, Formosa Plastics, Illiopolis, IL.

Third Place

Remove broken taps

Problem: Taps break off, especially when tapping a blind hole. Is there an easy way to remove the tap without damaging the piece part?

Solution: Build up a small welding bead on top of the tap. Then slip a nut over the bead and weld the nut to the bead. Using a wrench, the tap should be easily extracted.

Contributor: Jakob T. Duerson, Matsushita Electric Motor, Berea, KY.

The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2017 Top Plant.
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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

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