John has been with ASSEMBLY magazine since February 1997. John was formerly with a national medical news magazine, and has written for Pathology Today and the Green Bay Press-Gazette. John holds a B.A. in journalism from Northwestern University, Medill School of Journalism.
Threaded fasteners are, by far, the most common method of assembling parts. According to ASSEMBLY magazine's annual Capital Equipment Spending Survey, screwdriving is performed at 58 percent of U.S. assembly plants, making it more popular than welding, pressing, adhesive bonding or riveting.
A&H Meyer, a manufacturer of cable management systems for furniture, approached RNA Automation Ltd. to design a flexible automation system to sort, separate and feed busbars. The company wanted a system that could handle 12 different lengths of flat and crimped busbars with minimal changeover time.
The shop floor was hopping in mid-January at Dukane Corp.'s headquarters in St. Charles, IL, 35 miles west of Chicago. Technicians were busy assembling, tooling and testing a variety of machines, including the latest product in the company's arsenal of plastics assembly technologies: a hot-gas welding system.
An assembler wanted to automatically feed and orient synthetic corks at a feed rate of 200 parts per minute. These corks are difficult to feed due to the sticky film that remains on their surface after the manufacturing process.
There are many ways to crimp or flare a lip on a cylindrical part. For example, it can be done with a press or an orbital forming machine. However, the problem with those processes, particularly the former, is that they require a good deal of force.
Airbus has inaugurated a highly automated fuselage assembly line at its A320 factory in Hamburg, Germany. The new line features a digital data acquisition system, 20 robots, automated guided vehicles, and automated positioning by laser measurement.
Incredibly, the decade has ended with a moment of bipartisanship. On Dec. 10, after more than a year of deadlock, Democrats and Republicans agreed to revisions in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) that should enable the trade pact to win approval from Congress and get signed into law by the president.
In September, Toyota announced that it will invest $391 million in its truck assembly plant in San Antonio. Hyundai announced that it is investing nearly $300 million in its factory in Montgomery, AL. Brake manufacturer Bendix Spicer began construction on a $65 million expansion of its assembly plant Bowling Green, KY. And, automotive supplier Hirotec Group said it will invest $48 million to build a new assembly plant in Fayetteville, TN.