Page 1

New website feature helps potential customers find NOMMA members, pg. 12

Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metal The official publication of the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association

July/August 2008 $6.00 US

Special Feature

Celebrating the rich tradition of the Mitch Heitler award winners page 45 Tips & Tactics

TIG welding fixes, p. 14 Shop Talk

Language of cast irons, p. 18 Member Talk

A showroom serves as a sales tool, p. 55 Conference showcases work of international blacksmiths, pg. 36


July/August 2008 Vol. 49, No. 4

NOMMA member Precision Custom Metals received a silver award in the 2008 Top Job competition for this armillary crafted for Hertz Corp. headquarters. See page 30.

Tips & Tactics

Biz Side

Job Profiles

NOMMA Member Locator . . . . . . 12 A new website feature gives NOMMA members an advantage.

An amazing armillary ................30 A NOMMA member crafts a working armillary for a national corporation.

By Todd Daniel

By Todd Daniel

TIG troubleshooting . . . . . . . . 14 Try these remedies for common TIG welding problems. By Jack Fulcer

Worldwide blacksmithing ......36 Traditional and contemporary works are displayed at international festival. By Rhoda Mack

Shop Talk The language of cast irons. . . . . 18 Cast irons are a versatile, economical engineering material. By John L. Campbell

Special Feature Winning the Mitch. . . . . . . . . . 45 A look at past and present winners of the Mitch Heitler Award.

By Mark E. Battersby

Employees behaving badly . . . . 71 Prepare your company for a possible visit from a regulatory agency. What’s Hot! New Members . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78 Nationwide Suppliers . . . . . . . . . . . 78 Biz Briefs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80 People . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81 Chapter News

Member Talk

Celebrating 50 years of service to the industry.

Alternative funding sources. . . 66 Financing’s available if you know where to find it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82

Show-and-tell method sells . . . 55 A NOMMA member’s showroom is a great marketing tool.

Literature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84

Forging a quiet life . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62 A blacksmith and a sculptor create the perfect country home.

New Products


. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86

By Sheila Phinazee Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87

President’s Letter . . .6 Working together, we make great strides.

Editor’s Letter . . . . . .8 Success comes from facing fear of the unknown.


. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 88

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92

Ad Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93

Reader’s Letters . . . 10 Comments on articles, educational opportunities.

Biz Perspectives . . . 94 Seven strategies for avoiding legal pitfalls.

Cover photo: This sculpture is representative of the unusual and creative work exhibited during the annual Hefaiston Conference held at Helfstyn Castle near the Austrian-Czech border. July/August 2008 



President’s Letter We owe a big “thank you” Dedicated to the success of our members and industry. NOMMA OFFICERS President Terry Barrett Royal Iron Creations West Palm Beach, FL President-Elect Bob Foust Bob’s Ornamental Iron Studio Kansas City, KS

Vice President/ Treasurer Bruce Boyler Boyler’s Ornamental Iron Inc. Bettendorf, IA Immediate Past President Breck Nelson Kelley Ornamental Iron LLC Peoria, IL

FABRICATOR DIRECTORS Frank Finelli Finelli Architectural Ironworks Solon, OH

J.R. Molina Big D Metalworks Dallas, TX

Will Keeler Keeler Iron Works Memphis, TN

Mark O’Malley O’Malley Welding & Fabricating Inc. Yorkville, IL

James Minter, Jr. Imagine Ironworks Brookhaven, MS

Greg Terrill Division 5 Metalworks Kalamazoo, MI

SUPPLIER DIRECTORS Wayne Haas Cleveland Steel Tool Co. Cleveland, OH

Cathee Speaks King Architectural Metals Dallas, TX

Gina Pietrocola D.J.A. Imports Ltd. Brooklyn, NY

NOMMA STAFF Executive Director Barbara H. Cook Meetings & Exposition Manager Martha Pennington

Administrative Assistant Liz Johnson Editor Helen K. Kelley

Communications Mgr. J. Todd Daniel

2008 ADVISORY COUNCIL Doug Bracken Wiemann Ironworks

Rob Rolves Foreman Fabricators Inc.

Nancy Hayden Tesko Enterprises

Rob Webster Web Metal Fabricators Ltd.

Tom McDonough Master Metal Services Inc.


Curt Witter Big D Metalworks

On page 11 in this issue of Fabricator, you will read more about the history and results of the “Climbable Guard” conflict and the outcome. This was a conflict that could have had grave consequences for fabricators and suppliers – and had been building steam for years. For now, let’s just say that NOMMA stepped up to the plate and went to bat for the industry, both members and non-members. No, wait. Let’s rephrase that and give credit where it is due. Our appreciation should be directed to a small band of volunteers who were instrumental in seeing this important issue through for all of us. The group includes NOMMA’s own Code Advisory Council, NOMMA’s Communications Manager Todd Daniel, and a group of fabricator and supplier members from around the country. The hours that these volunteers spent doing research, flying to and attending numerous code hearings, monitoring the work of the independent research group, writing papers, and supporting this issue are more than can be counted. And they did all of this while still performing all of their other tasks at home. You see, it was never NOMMA’s contention that safety issues are not important. Instead, the group’s own research revealed that the arguments put forth by others about climbable guards was not substantiated by data. Unfortunately, NOMMA could not use its own data to combat the issue, as it would likely be rejected as biased. So our band of volunteers brought a list of independent research facilities to NOMMA’s Board of Directors. Included in this list were the pros and cons of each, and a recommendation on how to proceed. Of course, it was a lot of money to spend and, of course, it just had to be done. Essentially, the group had presented a “no-brainer” decision to the board. The board voted unanimously to accept their recom-

mendation and immediately instructed the Code Advisory Council and staff to enter into a contract with the independent researcher. And the rest is history, with our little group receiving compliments from the code writing bodies for the professionalism and thoroughness with which this issue was investigated. Let’s all give this band of volunteers a pat on the back, and also let’s give some credit to the other behind-the-scenes group – all NOMMA members. It is the members of NOMMA Terry Barrett is that provided the president of money for this impor- the National Ornamental and tant research project Miscellaneous through dues and Metals Association. donations... proving, once again, that by banding together, sharing our expertise and our resources, all of us receive benefits far beyond what we could achieve individually. So, when somebody says to me, “I’m not sure what NOMMA can do for me or why I should be a member,” all I need to do is point out this single example and say, “It is NOMMA that helped you stay in business!” And this is just one example of what NOMMA offers to fabricators, suppliers, architects, and designers. For those of you who are NOMMA members — and those of you who have contributed to the NOMMA Education Foundation — I say “Good job!” Take a moment to feel some pride for what has been achieved. To those of you who have been thinking about joining NOMMA, this ought to give you enough momentum to get off the fence and officially join our ranks. And to that band of volunteers I mentioned earlier, thank you. The results of your efforts were priceless. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

How to reach us

Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metal Fabricator (ISSN 0191-5940), is the official publication of the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association (NOMMA). O&MM Fabricator / NOMMA 1535 Pennsylvania Ave. McDonough, GA 30253


Send story ideas, letters, press releases, and product news to: Fabricator at address above. Ph: (888) 516-8585. Fax: (770) 2882006. E-mail:


For information, call Todd Daniel, Ph: (888) 516-8585, ext. 102. Ads are due on the first Friday of the month preceding the cover date. Send ads on CD to: Fabricator at address above. E-mail ads to: (max. 5 megs by e-mail). Or upload ads to our website where a downloadable media kit is available:


In addition to the magazine, enjoy more benefits as a NOMMA member. To join, call (888) 516-8585, ext. 101. For a list of benefits, see membership ad in this issue.


1-35 words: $50 member, $65 nonmember; 36-50 words: $75 member, $90 nonmember; 51-70 words: $100 member, $115 nonmember; 71-100 words, $130 member, $145 nonmember. Send items to: Fabricator, at address above, or E-mail: Ads may be faxed with credit card information to: (770) 288-2006. Deadline: 2nd Friday of the month prior to publication.


Subscription questions? Call (888) 516-8585. Send subscription address changes to: Fabricator Subscriptions,1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253. Fax: (770) 288-2006, or E-mail:

1-year: 2-year: 1-year: 2-year:

U.S., Canada, Mexico — $30; U.S., Canada, Mexico — $50; all other countries — $44; all other countries — $78.

Payment in U.S. dollars by check drawn on U.S. bank or money order. For NOMMA members, a year's subscription is a part of membership dues.

Buyer’s Guide Published each issue. Deadline is Sept. 30. For (888) 516-8585


December as a separate for all advertising materials info, contact Todd Daniel at or

For a quote, contact NOMMA at (770) 2882004 or

Opinions expressed in Fabricator are not necessarily those of the editors or NOMMA. Articles appearing in Fabricator may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express permission of NOMMA. Circulation: 9,000.


Editor’s Letter Tackling the fear of the unknown “You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” — Eleanor Roosevelt How many times have you faced a

challenge and thought, “How am I ever going to do that? I just don’t know if I can.” A career lesson that stands out vividly in my memory is one that a former employer taught me. The mother and daughter had decided to start a neighborhood newspaper, one that was supported by advertising revenues and offered free of charge to its readers, and — most important— focused only on positive, local news. They were told by their loved ones and several well-meaning friends that the idea was cute, but would never fly. Although they surely had their fears about starting their venture from ground zero, those negative comments served to galvanize them into action. Not only did that first paper “fly,” but today that mom and daughter preside over a small publishing empire that has grown to include six neighborhood papers. When asked where they found the courage to face the unknown, the mother said, “You just DO it.” (Yep, she was miles ahead of Nike Inc. with that slogan.) You’ll often read stories in Fabricator about NOMMA members who have been presented with a seemingly “undoable” roadblock in completing a job for a client, starting or expanding a business, or facing a personal challenge. They inevitably find a way to overcome those obstacles on the way to a successful outcome. Surely, the NOMMA members who volunteered to serve on the Code Advisory Council had their fears at times about whether or not they could lay the Climbable Guard conflict to rest (see President Terry Barrett’s letter on p. 6 and Communications Manager

Todd Daniel’s report on p. 11). It took nearly 10 years of dogged and methodical pursuit of the issue, but these efforts resulted in a favorable outcome for the industry. As daunting as the issue was, NOMMA and its representatives “just did it.” Speaking of challenges, NOMMA member Precision Custom Metals had to figure out a way Helen Kelley is editor to craft a working of Ornamental & armillary for Hertz Miscellaneous Metal Corp. headquarters. Fabricator. This massive sundial garnered a silver award in the 2008 Top Job competition. Read about it on p. 30. Also in this issue of Fabricator, we highlight past winners of the Mitch Heitler award (see p. 45) as part of NOMMA’s 50th anniversary celebration. You can also read about a NOMMA member shop that uses its showroom as a sales and marketing tool (p. 55), and learn all about cast irons in Shop Talk (p. 18). We also have some great success pointers in our Tips and Tactics and Biz Side features. Now, back to the fear of the unknown... whatever challenges you may be presented with today, just face them square-on and do the thing you think cannot be done. And may you be pleasantly surprised with your success!

Our apologies! In the May/June 2008 Fabricator, Accent Ornamental Iron Co., mentioned on p. 62 as the winner of a 2008 Top Job bronze award in the Interior Railings - Ferrous category, was mistakenly listed as being located in New Smyrna Beach, FL. The correct location is Cambridge, MN. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

Letters NOMMA member offers encouraging words I just wanted to take a moment to thank you folks at headquarters for featuring our shop in the May/June Fabricator. This afternoon I walked into the office and saw a nondescript cardboard box sitting beside the door. I opened it up without looking at the label. When I saw I had a stack of Fabricator magazines I started to have a clue about what this was about! I feel it is a very special privilege to have found NOMMA, and to have become a member and become accepted among my peers. It’s a wonderful feeling. I feel as we have become part of the "family." I want to thank Sheila for the great job she did on the article. She reported very accurately. She's a keeper — give her more assignments! Also, I want to personally thank each one of you at the NOMMA office for the hard work that you do each day to keep our organization running. Without you, the staff, things wouldn't be as good as they are. You're doing a super job, folks! Have a great day down there in the South and thanks again. ~ Rob Webster Web Metal Fabricators Ltd. Osoyoos, British Columbia CANADA

Tell us what you think Letters are welcomed and encouraged. Please note that letters may be edited for clarity, grammar, and length. Send to: Mail: Letters to the Editor, c/o Fabricator, 1535 Pennsylvania Ave., McDonough, GA 30253. E-mail: Fax: (770) 2882006; Ph: (888) 516-8585. Please include your name, company, address, telephone number, and e-mail on all submissions.


School offers potential benefits for industry My partner Phil Heermance and I just got back from Ed Mack’s school in New York, known as the Center for the Metal Arts, and I felt compelled to write about our experience. We were fortunate enough to be part of a workshop given by Uri Hofi, who is one of the most outspoken, talented, and controversial blacksmiths alive today. To begin with, any visit to Ed Mack’s shop (Fine Architectural Metalsmiths) is an experience in itself and a very humbling one at that. Except by those who know him and have been there, Ed’s shop may be one of the most underappreciated, yet vastly talented and versatile shops that I’ve ever witnessed. A tour of his showroom would be a treat to any artisan, craftsman, or metal oriented individual. In our workshop with Uri, we concentrated on making organic pieces using his combination dies and his special radius dies for really moving the metal fast. Occasionally, we were able to forge fairly complicated pieces in one or two heats. Normally it might take 8-10 heats for this. Uri is very direct, very hands on, and very critical, but at the same time he is a very loving individual. He tells you like it is and then gives some encouragement. Anyone interested in really “fast forwarding” their blacksmith skills or just just looking for inspiration to put them in an artistic mood owes it to themselves to call the school and plan to attend one of their workshops. In addition to Uri Hofi, they attract some of the finest craftspersons to put on their workshops. If you invest in a workshop it will be money well spent and you will make contacts that you will cherish for life. We are planning on sending our entire shop up next year for an intermediate blacksmithing class. Ed also mentioned he is planning to open a full time school in the near future. I am humbled by his generosity in wanting to give back so much of

himself to his craft, because it takes a tremendous amount of time and energy to organize something like this. ~ Art Ballard Art’s Work Unlimited Miami, FL A ‘thank you’ for publishing the Stair Theory article I received my package of Fabricators yesterday and we wanted to thank you. You made my article on curved stairs look wonderful and very professional. I truly appreciate the opportunity you have given me to promote our trade and the help you have provided in furthering the education of all metal workers. Also, thank you for helping to promote our workshops in blacksmithing and the entire program at Peters Valley. It was a pleasurable experience working with you and your staff at Fabricator, and I hope we can work with you again in the future. ~ Dick Sargent Dept. Head of Blacksmithing Peters Valley Craft School Layton, NJ Question of the Month: Specs for mailboxes Question: I am interested in producing a line of mailboxes. Can you provide information on the USPS standards and regulations that must be followed? Also, how would I receive approval? Answer: Rules regarding mailboxes are found in the Domestic Mail Manual, chapter 508, section 3.2.1. According to Postal Service regulations, manufacturers must receive approval of their designs under USPS Standard 7, Mailboxes, City & Rural Curbside. To receive construction standards, drawings, and other manufacturing info, send a letter to: USPS Engineering, 8403 Lee Hwy., Merrifield, VA 22082-8101. Fabricator  July/August 2008

Technical Affairs News

ICC CTC recommends no further action on “climbable guard” review At their May meeting in Baltimore, MD, the ICC’s Code Technology Committee (CTC) voted to accept a Final Report and recommend no further action on the climbable guard issue. The vote effectively ended the CTC’s threeyear review of guard “climbability.” Originally starting with the introduction of “ladder effect” wording in the 1990s, guard climbability became a regular topic at code hearings. In 2004, the ICC took steps to resolve the issue by assigning the subject to the newly formed CTC for further study. The CTC began their review of the subject in April 2005, and shortly afterwards NOMMA became a regular participant at meetings. During the process, both sides of the issue provided extensive documentation on guard safety, which was posted on the ICC website. Since 1999, NOMMA has maintained that current building codes are sufficient to protect public safety; however, the association lacked professionally researched data to support this position. In 2006, NOMMA commissioned Whorton Marketing & Research to conduct a study on the topic. While the report was well received, it soon became apparent that an independent, third-party study was needed. The following year, in February 2007, the NOMMA Board chose the NAHB Research Center to conduct a massive, independent study on the subject. A key finding of the study is the extremely low accident rate attributed to guards, which “is approximately 2.5 per 100,000 children between 18 months and 4 years of age.” Following the presentation of the study in October 2007, the CTC began work on a Final Report that recom-

mended no further action, which was contingent on the completion of a peer review. Earlier this year, NOMMA again retained the NAHB Research Center to conduct a review of the 116page report. As part of the peer review process, the Research Center’s methodology for analyzing injury statistics was replicated on a one-year sampling of data. According The latest version of the to the statistician that conNOMMA guard safety study ducted the analysis, the recontains a 60-page peer review. sults were “remarkably close,” which confirmed the high integrity of the report. On May 21, a representative from the NAHB Research Center presented the findings of the peer review to the CTC during their Baltimore meeting. Following the presentation, the CTC voted unanimously to issue a Final Report on the issue, recommending no further action. The report will be sent to the ICC Board of Directors and CEO. According to Chris Connelly, co-chair of NOMMA’s Code Advisory Council, “After nearly a decade we are delighted to see the climbable guard issue brought to closure. The peer-reviewed NOMMA study provides independent, third-party data which supports the position that the industry has endorsed for many years now — the position that the current ICC codes, as they pertain to this issue, are highly effective and are resulting in the desired effect of — Todd Daniel improved public safety.”

Follow-up: NOMMA Service Project Metal Museum fence is completed

In the last issue we featured photos of the new fence and gates that NOMMA members provided for the Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis, TN. The metal sections, which were installed by members prior to METALfab 2008, were part of a NOMMA service project. Twelve firms provided sections for the project, and roughly an equal number of

companies helped with the installation on March 31. According to Rob Keeler, some fence sections have been rearranged to help with flow, and most of the pieces were painted black for consistency. The end result is a beautiful project that LEFT: Anderson Weldserves as a ing & Sons LLC added a dragon’s head to their showcase of section. ABOVE: This section our indusfeatures a commemoratry’s work.

Big D Metalworks dedicated their section in memory of two employees. LEFT:

July/August 2008  Fabricator

tive plaque, which was provided by Christopher Metal Fabricating Inc.


Member Locator

Tips & Tactics Contact: Todd Daniel NOMMA 1535 Pennsylvania Ave. McDonough, GA 30253 Ph: (888) 516-8585 Fax: (770) 288-2006 Web:

NOMMA introduces an advanced member locator service that makes it easy for homeowners and design/build professionals to find a local member.

While most online systems operate by ZIP Codes, the new NOMMA locator uses latitudes and longitudes for greater search accuracy.

By Todd Daniel NOMMA Communications Mgr. In April NOMMA unveiled its newest

membership benefit — the enhanced member locator. With this service, potential customers can easily find you just by entering their address and selecting a distance. Already, many of our members have submitted material for this program and we’d LOVE to see 100 percent participation. How does it work?

Unlike most locators that rely on ZIP Codes, the NOMMA system uses latitude and longitude for greater accuracy. If a consumer needs a new stair railing or garden gate, all they need to do is enter their address and choose a search range (between 1 to 500 miles). A visitor can also find you by entering your company name, a keyword, or any word listed in your description. When doing a search, one particularly cool feature is the “View in Google Earth” link. If a person has Google Earth installed on their computer all they need to do is click the link and the software will locate the selected shop on a map. Even more amazing is that once a visitor clicks on the placeholder in Google Earth, your company description appears! What are the other features?

Each NOMMA member receives a basic listing that contains contact information and a web link. You can enhance your listing by providing a company description, logo, and keywords (see more details at right). In addition, each member has a mini web gallery, and we are asking everyone to 12

The locator uses Google Maps to help consumers easily find a NOMMA member in their area. A visitor may select a search range between 1 and 500 miles.

Attention Members: Obtain your online member listing in three quick steps! All NOMMA members receive a basic listing. To enhance your listing, please send the following to the NOMMA office:  Company Description - Provide a 250-word description in a Microsoft Word document.  Logo - Can be in any common format and size.  Picture - Provide five pictures for the gallery, preferably in JPEG format.  Keywords - Choose up to five keywords. For a list of available keywords, download the “NOMMA Member Locator” file from the NOMMA homepage ( Send all material to:

For more details and a listing of keywords, visit the NOMMA homepage and download the information sheet.

Fabricator  July/August 2008

send five digital pictures for this section. In effect, every member has their own web page that visitors can easily view. One nice feature on every page is the “Recommend” button. By touching this button a potential customer can email a friend or colleague a link to your page. What’s the next step?

Once we have a significant number


Included in the

of members participating in the listings is a link to program we plan to begin sending Google Earth. BELOW: By clicking on the out press releases and promoting Google Earth link, a the locator to homeowners and design/build professionals. Our ul- company’s location is pinpointed on a map. timate goal is to make the locator a Click the flag and the known place where the public can company’s description appears! quickly find a NOMMA fabricator in their area. In the end, we hope the locator will provide more leads and business for our members, and we hope the system will eventually help to raise the profiles of both NOMMA and the industry. LEFT: A typical member listing. A “Recommend” button allows visitors to send a link to friends. RIGHT: Each NOMMA member receives a mini web gallery that can contain up to five images.

0HPEHU July/August 2008  Fabricator


TIG welding

Tips & Tactics

Having trouble with TIG? Try these fixes to get back to work... fast!

By Jack Fulcer Weldcraft Like any part of the fabricating busi-

ness, TIG welding can cause difficulties for even the most experienced welders — and certainly for novice operators. Still, these problems don’t have to slow you down. Arming yourself with some good troubleshooting skills can help you to get back to work…fast! Plus, these skills can save valuable time and money. Weld discontinuities — imperfections that adversely affect the integrity or strength of a weld — are common problems that can occur during TIG welding. Porosity One such discontinuity is porosity, which is the formation of gas pockets in the weld metal. In many cases, porosity is visible with the naked eye in the form of small holes (Figure 1). 14

In the instance of critical welds, x-ray or other similar testing can identify it. Porosity in a TIG weld occurs as the result of one of more of the following factors:  improper shielding gas coverage  the wrong filler metal or shielding gas  too much heat  a dirty base material. To remedy the problem, be certain that all torch fittings are tightened and visually inspect hoses for cracks that could be causing shielding gas leaks. If you are having trouble finding loose connections, apply soapy water to the hose and fittings until you find the leak and then tighten the fittings accordingly. Replace damaged hoses as needed. Also remember a simple rule of thumb for shielding gas flow rate: use a range of 10 to 20 cubic feet per hour

(CFH) to ensure proper coverage. Rates higher than this can lead to weld puddle turbulence, while rates lower than this will not protect the weld puddle from the atmosphere. Both circumstances can lead to porosity. Another way to avoid porosity is to

For your information  TIG is an abbreviation for Tungsten Inert Gas

 TIG welding is a torch-welding process by which a non-consumable tungsten electrode, making the arc, and a hand-held filler rod, are heated with either a helium or argon shielding gas to make the weld. Believe it or not, you can view how-to videos about TIG welding online. Here are a couple of samples: OfOqyqKR0IU tig_welding_basics/ Fabricator 

July/August 2008

– Help prevent porosity by maintaining a shielding gas flow of 10 to 20 cubic feet per hour (CFH). FIGURE ONE

choose the right filler rod and shielding gas. Specifically, choose a filler rod with the proper designation for your base material. When in doubt, contact a filler metal manufacturer or welding distributor to confirm the best option. Use Argon shielding gas when TIG welding. Do not use CO2. Stay within the 80 to 120 amperage range for 1/8 to 3/16-inch thick material, especially when welding on carbon steel. Too much heat on this material can cause porosity. Finally, be certain that you have properly cleaned your base material. Aluminum, especially, is prone to porosity when dirt, oil, grease, or moisture is present. Be sure to wipe aluminum with a clean cloth before welding, and if the surface appears dull gray, brush it with a stainless steel brush designated for that purpose to remove surface oxides. If you are TIG welding carbon steel, be sure to grind off any mill scale beforehand. Note that a wire brushing will not remove mill scale. Undercutting and lack of fusion Two other common weld discontinuities are undercutting and lack of fusion. Undercutting occurs when a groove forms along the edges of the weld, and is not filled with weld metal (Figure 2). It is primarily caused by uneven distribution of heat on the joint being welded, which is, in turn, caused by an improper torch angle. For example, if, when TIG welding a T-joint, you have 60 percent of the heat directed toward the top piece and only 40 percent toward the bottom piece, undercutting July/August 2008 


Metal Master Premium Coatings for Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals

Same great products with our M e t a l

M a s t e r design...

Sumter Coatings is proud to continue our commitment to the Ornamental Iron Industry. The

M e t a l M a s t e r brand as a way of expressing appreciation to this marketplace.

great products you have been accustomed to over the past years will be recognized by our

mulated for ornamental and miscellaneous metals, will be identified by the M e t a l


Our popular Satin Shield, along with our other industrial coatings which were especially for-


Inquire about water reducible Sure Grip (PFGA) (paint for galvanize and aluminum).



New Distributors are Welcome. Call Chet or Terry for More Information. 2410 Hwy. 15 South • Sumter, SC 29154

Terry Spatz Coleman

(803) 481-3400 • Toll Free: (888) 471-3400

National Sales Representative

(800) 589-5545 15

Adjust your torch angle accordingly to ensure even heat distribution. Also, watch to see that the filler metal flows evenly into the weld puddle, as this is an indication that the heat is being distributed equally to both parts of the joint.

2 3

– Using a proper torch angle is one way to prevent undercutting.


is likely to occur. Subsequently, the joint will be weak. To correct undercutting, follow these steps:

Initiate the arc, establish a weld puddle, and visually check to see that the weld puddle is equally spread across both sides of the joint you are TIG welding.


MARKS USA • 631-225-5400 • 800-526-0233 • FAX: 631-225-6136 •


If the weld fails to fuse to the base material or to the preceding weld bead when you are TIG welding multiple passes, lack of fusion (also called incomplete fusion) results, as does a weak joint (Figure 3). Using too little amperage for a given thickness of material is a primary cause of lack of fusion. A good rule to follow is this: use 1 amp for every thousandth of an inch of material you are TIG welding. Improper joint preparation can also cause lack of fusion, and there are two remedies. You can create a space in the joint or bevel the pieces forming the joint. For example, if you are TIG welding two pieces of ¼-inch



July/August 2008

material, space the pieces approximately 1 /8 inch apart and fill in the gap with weld metal. Doing so allows for full joint penetration. Beveling the joint to a “V” shape can also help prevent the problem because it minimizes the amount of filler metal needed to fill the given space. If you are TIG welding thick aluminum (around 1/2 inch), adding helium to your Argon shielding gas will create a hotter weld puddle, increase weld penetration, and minimize the chances of lack of fusion. Another common weld discontinuity, excessive penetration, results when the weld metal melts or “falls” through the weld joint (Figure 4). It is almost always the result of either a too-slow travel speed or excessive heat. The slower you weld on a joint, the more the heat builds up on the base material. When that heat builds up enough, it can eventually cause the base metal to melt through the joint. To prevent excessive penetration, maintain a travel speed that creates a weld puddle approximately twice the diameter of the tungsten you are using. This may take some practice, but you can look for a few clues to help you along the way. First, if you see that the weld puddle is narrow, high, and crowned, it is an indication you are traveling too fast and/or the heat is too low. Conversely, a wide weld puddle (twoand-a-half to three times the diameter of the tungsten) indicates you are TIG welding too slowly. Adjust your travel speed accordingly in both instances. The most typical culprit of excessive penetration is too high of an amperage for the given thickness of material. Recall your rules of amperage again: use 10 amps for every one thousandth of an inch of metal. Remember, a bit of mindfulness and practice can help minimize the chances of any of these weld discontinuities from occurring at all. Still, everyone makes mistakes, and having the knowledge to correct them can get you back to work sooner than later! Jack Fulcer is product and marketing manager for Weldcraft. July/August 2008 


ABOVE: Figure Three – Avoid lack of fusion by welding with adequate amperage and preparing the joint correctly.

BELOW: Figure Four – Excessive penetration can be prevented by controlling heat and maintaining good travel speeds.

The Best Large Radius Hand Rolling Machines Available As seen on TV Guaranteed Gate - Pro 3” Square only $87500

10 years

Ne Mod w el

MKV Classic 21/4” Cap Rail & Pipe or 11/2” Square $69500

Hand Made in U.S.A.

South 951-928-9453 (Colin) North 509-476-2747 (Brian)

Hawke Bender

Y2K All-Purpose 21/4” Round, Square & Cap Rail $139500 or 21/4” Square $99500

All Tooling Included CA residents add sales tax.

P.O. Box 1247, Sun City, CA 92585 17

Shop Talk

The language of cast irons  Cast irons — with a low melting point, good fluidity, castability,

excellent machinability, and wear resistance — are an economical engineering material with a wide range of applications.

The Iron Block building in Milwaukee, almost 150 years old, has a facade of cast iron plates painted to resemble stone.

By John L. Campbell As I was collecting data for this arti-

cle, I asked myself, “Why would members of NOMMA be interested in alloys they can’t forge or fabricate?” The answer came back: Because they do encounter applications for parts 18

that can be cast economically in great numbers. Moreover, it’s sometimes a benefit to know the differences between the various types of cast alloys being used. This article deals with the characteristics of the most common iron alloys… beginning with gray iron.

Properties of gray cast iron The July-August 1994 issue of Fabricator featured an article entitled, “Cast Irons That Bend Before They Break.” In that article, I told about having a cast iron model T-Ford coupe, a heavy toy my kid-brother tossed down the cellar steps in a fit of Fabricator 

July/August 2008

sibling revenge. When it hit the concrete floor, the roof of the car broke off. I learned early on that gray iron lacks ductility. Thin parts are brittle. Years later, when I sold for gray iron foundries, mechanical properties became important considerations in design and applications. Lack of ductility was a limitation, yet, there are applications where cast iron dampens sound, making it a better material than steel for electric motor end bells, housings, and high speed pump components. Before we started campaigning for cleaner air, cast iron was inexpensive to produce. During the mid-1800s, around the time of the Civil War, cast iron was so

inexpensive that architects and building contractors specified iron panels for cladding buildings, some very decorative. Built between 1860 and 1861, the Iron Block building in Milwaukee still stands in the downtown area on the southeast corner of Wisconsin Avenue and Water Street. The exterior is clad with cast iron panels that resemble stone. Ornate decorative crowns in cast iron cap each window. (The contractor experienced a little setback when the ship hauling the first load from Buffalo sank offshore in Lake Michigan.) Today, there are an estimated 250 similar cast iron structures in New York City. Most of them are located in

the historic Soho section of Manhattan. When these buildings were constructed, cast iron was cheaper than stone or brick. Iron panels were modeled after classical French and Italian designs. Foundries stored the patterns for the panels; if a piece needed to be replaced, they could recast it. The availability of lower cost materials gradually squeezed cast iron out of the architectural business. Without getting into the complex chemistry of cast iron, it’s simply a mix of iron, carbon, and silicon, with non-essential impurities. Whereas steel alloys generally have less than 2 percent carbon, cast irons have over 2 percent. Silicon plays a major role in

This iron-carbon phase diagram shows the eutectic and eutectoid reactions of cast irons. (Reproduced with permission from Jud Ready, Ph.D., Sr. Research Engineer & Adjunct Professor, Georgia Tech Research Institute.) 20


July/August 2008

For NOMMA members it’s important to have a knowledge of cast

components, even though cast iron alloys can’t be hammered or easily fabricated by welding techniques. both fluidity of the metal in liquid form and the precipitation and dispersion of graphite flakes during solidification. These graphite flakes, also known as vermicular graphite, look like small hookworms under a microscope. If you break a cross-section, you’ll see that the iron has a gray appearance. Without the graphite flakes, cast iron is extremely hard and brittle. It’s called white iron, because without the graphite flakes, a fracture looks white instead of gray. Gray cast iron components are section-sensitive; meaning, if the same heat of iron is poured in a quarterinch thick section, it will have higher strength than a section of iron oneinch thick poured from the same heat. That’s because the thinner section freezes faster, not allowing as much graphite to precipitate out of solution. The thicker section cools more slowly,

allowing more graphite precipitation. With today’s electric furnaces, foundries have more control over the chemistry of iron than they did years ago, melting in a closed cupola. Elements like ferro-silicon and chromium can be added to each heat, thereby varying the mechanical properties of the castings being made. Iron alloys are graded and named based on mechanical properties. Gray iron is specified by tensile strength, the maximum stress a bar in uniaxial tension can withstand before fracture. With a brittle alloy, the yield strength and tensile strength are considered the same. Cupola melted iron is generally a Class 20 to 25, meaning its tensile strength is 20,000 to 25,000 psi. It’s a desirable chemistry for thin wall parts like engine exhaust manifolds. A more common grade of gray iron from induction melting furnaces is

Class 30 iron, 30,000 psi tensile and yield strength. With alloy additions of chromium, the tensile strength can be increased (i.e. Class 40 to 50 iron). The graphite flakes in the iron matrix become smaller and the iron becomes harder. Typical of Class 40 gray iron components are hydraulic valve bodies. Because of its lack of ductility, gray iron has limited applications. Around the year 1820, malleable iron, also called American blackheart iron, was introduced. It replaced gray iron for agricultural equipment. Until the middle of the next century, malleable iron and steel were the only cast ferrous alloys that would withstand a bend test without breaking. Malleable iron Malleable iron solidifies as white iron, which is file-hard and brittle. The parts are subsequently annealed at temperatures of 1500°F to 1850°F for several days. During the annealing process, iron carbides break up and




July/August 2008

The facade of the Iron Block (actually two structures) is made of cast iron. The 120 foot front, modelled on the Renaissance palazzo, is constructed of cast-iron modules, which are bolted together. There are four cast iron columns at each entrance on Wisconsin Avenue and Water Street, a main intersection in downtown Milwaukee. Note the ornate cast iron crowns over each window.

glom together, producing rosettes of graphite. The resulting microstructure is ductile and easy to machine, with higher strength and shock resistance than gray iron. From a foundryman’s view point, white iron has ideal fluidity for filling a mold and less sand-bite (mold burn-in), giving smoother looking, thinner wall castings than carbon steel. Malleable iron castings have always been less expensive than steel castings of the same configuration. Fast-forward to the year 1949, when a new revolutionary iron alloy was introduced. Because of the shape graphite took in this new iron alloy, producers and users initially called it nodular iron or spheroidal graphite. Today, it’s called ductile iron. With heat treatment, there are several grades of ductile iron rated by 24


July/August 2008


This photo-micrograph at x100 shows the graphitic rosettes typical of a ferritic grade of malleable iron after annealing.


The microstructure of ductile iron exhibits the graphite nodules, which is why some call it nodular iron or spheroidal graphite.

RIGHT: Here’s a photomicrograph of ADI (austempered ductile iron). The nodules are in a sea of ausferrite, giving it almost twice the strength of regular ductile iron with equal ductility.

July/August 2008 


and a higher strength pearlitized grade. Ductile iron Ductile iron grades do have higher mechanical properties than malleable iron. With a special heat treatment called austempering, some ductile foundries offer ADI (austempered ductile iron) components with the strength of cast and forged steel. Four times stronger than gray iron and with

twice the strength of regular ductile iron, ADI offers both ductility and wear resistance. Another advantage ductile iron has compared with steel is reduced weight, i.e . density of .260 lbs. per cubic inch for cast irons compared with .282 lbs. per cubic inch for cast carbon steel. When we speak of iron alloys, it’s often with sand castings in mind, that being the most common foundry process. However, both gray iron and


New Product Line


strength and ductility. Early speculation predicted that malleable iron was on the way out. Labor costs were increasing along with the costs of fuel to heat annealing ovens for as long as 36 hours. To prevent warping during annealing, malleable foundries manually packed their white iron castings in sand canisters. Loading and unloading was, and still is, labor intensive. Ductile iron didn’t require annealing, or so the first producers thought. Until foundries realized their actual costs, ductile iron castings sold for less than malleable components of the same weight and configuration. That’s not the case today. Ductile iron is more expensive to produce than malleable. Malleable iron is still preferred for thin wall parts like plumbing and electrical fittings. Threads can be cut faster on malleable iron fittings than on ductile iron. However, there are fewer and fewer malleable iron producers. Industry survivors are often captive operations. But as we know, once an alloy specification becomes an industry standard, changes are hard to institute. A case in point is the malleable iron specification for industrial handrail supports. To their benefit, sand cast malleable iron parts continue to show a better surface finish than ductile iron. The difference has been attributed to the fluidity and reduced sand-bite of white iron compared with ductile alloys. Most malleable iron producers offer three grades: an as-cast white iron, used for wear and abrasion resistance; a standard annealed grade;




C OMMERCIAL DOOR MARKET Encon has expanded its extensive inventory to include multiple Chamberlain commercial door operators and related accessories. Call

800-782-5598 to learn more about our exciting new product line.

MODEL H industrial-duty HOIST OPERATOR

Encon is proud to offer the Chamberlain LiftMaster line of commercial door operators.

MORE 800-782-5598



ductile iron are being continuous cast in lengths up to 72”. Round solids are available from 1” to 20” diameters, the larger diameters in shorter lengths. Fed through graphite dies, continuous cast lengths have smooth exterior finishes. There’s no pattern or die cost with which to contend. Equipped with saws for rapid cutting, suppliers of continuous cast iron alloys will provide customized, short run rectangular and square shapes. One way to distinguish gray iron from ductile is to hit the parts with a hammer. Ductile parts will ring when hit; gray iron parts yield a dull thud. Also, both gray and ductile iron alloys are being centrifugally cast in various lengths and pipe diameters. Some investment casting (lost-waxprocess) facilities pour ductile iron, close-tolerance parts with superior surface finishes for firearm components and mechanical door hardware. There is one other iron alloy that I would be remiss in not mentioning. It’s a by-product of ductile iron devel-

opment. In this country, it’s called compacted graphitic iron. CGI is not as strong as ductile iron, but is 75 percent stronger and stiffer than gray iron. In Europe, where diesel engines are popular, foundries licensed by a Swedish firm, SinterCast®, are making engine blocks that are 22 percent lighter than those cast in gray iron. With the increased strength, wall thicknesses and overall size are reduced. The Germans call the material GGV or Grau Guss Vermukular. Nearly all NASCAR teams are running cars with CGI engine blocks or CGI cylinder liners. Hyundai, now the seventh largest auto manufacturer in the world, installed a CGI block in their 2006 V-6 engine. CGI brake drums for heavy duty trucks are 20 percent lighter weight and last 10 times longer than either gray iron or steel. Using CGI for brake discs on fast rail trains has eliminated the cracks and heat checking once common with gray iron.

For NOMMA members it’s important to have a knowledge of cast components, even though cast iron alloys can’t be hammered or easily fabricated by welding techniques. The foundry industry, not the most dynamic, claims to be the second oldest in the world. In this country, their domestic numbers have declined. In the last 20 years, more than a thousand foundries have disappeared, a contraction of 30 percent, to about 2,380 in number as of the year 2004. Some of the largest conglomerates have been operating under bankruptcy protection. Domestic foundries have been priced out of the high volume jobs to concentrating on marketing more specialized and prototype work. A few progressive foundries have discovered increased dollar volume by selling finished machined parts, a controlled and related profit center they fearfully ignored 50 years ago. (The chart on p. 28 shows mechanical properties of gray, malleable, ductile, and ADI casting grades.)

America’s #1 Supplier! Since 1959

Jansen Ornamental Supply Co. 10926 Schmidt Rd., El Monte, CA 91733

1-800-423-4494 26 Fabricator 

July/August 2008

Material BHN



Tensile (ksi)

Yield (ksi)


Gray under 187


Class 20




Gray 170-229


Class 25




Gray 187-241


Class 30




Malleable 110-156 (Ferritic)






Malleable 179-228 (Pearlitic)











Ductile 170 max.






Ductile 156-217






Ductile 187-255






ADI 209-321






ADI 302-363






ADI 341-444






ADI 388-477






ADI 444-555






Malleable 400 plus

Note: High wear resistance is a characteristic of all alloys of iron with hardness values over 200 Brinell. 28

Technical Data on Cast Iron Alloys

Tensile strength is the longitudinal stress a standardized test bar can take before deforming.

Yield strength is the measure of stress at which a test bar begins to elongate before fracture.

Elongation is the amount of stretch in the vicinity of the fracture in a tensile test expressed as a percentage of the original test bar length.

BHN or Brinell is a measure of hardness determined by the width of a depression on a metal surface formed by a tiny ball under known load or pressure. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

This stainless steel armillary graces the front of the world headquarters for the Hertz Corp. in Park Ridge, NJ. Because the unit was functional, the fabricator had to meet demanding tolerances to ensure that it would work properly.

Everything you ever needed to know about an armillary  The craftspersons at Precision Custom Metals became experts on armillaries while crafting this functional sculpture, which netted them a silver Top Job award.

Precision Custom Metals Inc. of Tucker, GA,

a NOMMA member, received a silver award in the 2008 Top Job contest for a project they submitted in the Art/Sculpture category. The winning entry is a working armillary that was crafted for the world headquarters of Hertz Corp. of Park Ridge, NJ. Made of stainless steel, the sculpture took about 320 hours to fabricate. We recently caught up with Vincent Annaloro, the company’s president and founder, and asked him to tell the story behind this fascinating job. Fabricator: How did you obtain the job? Vincent: We actually got it through Art

Initiative, an interior design firm that we work with all the time. They had a sketch of a sundial that was passed on to us, and they said that they wanted something like that in stainless steel. We made a mini-mockup and 30

they came over and looked at it. Their client, Hertz, loved the mockup and, in fact, asked if they could keep the model. We actually ended up making two models. We then hired INOX Design to engineer the sundial for us. They engineered it so that it will tell the time from that exact location on the earth. There is a chart that goes with it, and it tells how to add or subtract time based on the axis of the Earth. Fabricator: What was involved in the

design and pre-planning? Vincent: We had many meetings with the design team, which included our staff, the interior designer, and the Hertz landscape architect, who came to Atlanta twice. The sculpture actually sits over a parking deck and it sits over the previous location of a fountain, which had leaked. So, there were a lot of issues related to weatherproofing and weight. There were also alignment issues — we had to make sure it would tell the time correctly. In addition, there was a lot of co-

For your information

By Todd Daniel NOMMA Communications Mgr.

Project: Functional armillary for the world headquarters of Hertz Corp., Park Ridge, NJ. Shop: NOMMA member Precision Custom Metals Inc., Tucker, GA. CO NTAC T

Vincent Annaloro, president and founder of Precision Custom Metals Inc.

Precision Custom Metals Inc. 4732 North Royal Atlanta Dr., Ste. F Tucker, GA 30084 Ph: (770) 938-5000 Fax: (770) 938-5400

Fabricator  July/August 2008

Job Profile

LEFT & BELOW: Thanks to meticulous planning, the actual installation only took a few minutes, although the team remained several hours for a final cleaning and polishing.

ordination that was necessary, particularly with the stonemason. Fabricator: What materials were used for fabrication? Vincent: We used 316 stainless steel, 2 by 6 by 11 inches thick. The tubes were pre-brushed and sent to a company in Texas that does stretch forming. We had to stretch the shapes instead of roll forming, which would have collapsed the tubes. The entire fabrication process was 6 months, and the design was 6 months as well. We provided engineering and coordination throughout the process.

Fabricator: How did the fabrication process go? Vincent: Once we received the stretched formed tubes, we set up a fixture in the shop to hold everything in place. It was very important to get the axis just right and required extremely precise work. All parts were TIG welded, and the welds were ground down and brushed out. It looks like seamless construction. A highlight of the work was when the project manager called and said the J bolts had been set in concrete. We had built an adjustment feature into the base in case the J bolts were not perfect. The adjustment would have allowed us to adjust up to 10 degrees in either direction. However, the adjustment wasn’t necessary — the job sat exactly right. That was pretty good for a few boys from Georgia. Fabricator: How did the installa-

tion go?

The fabricator’s scale mockup was a hit with the client — they not only asked to keep it, but requested a second model as well. 32

Vincent: The installation went absolutely perfect. We rented all Hertz equipment and delivered the job on a Hertz truck. The customer was blown away. The sculpture sits in front of a glass building. A maintenance guy Fabricator  July/August 2008

LEFT & RIGHT: The job was assembled in a temporary frame. All welds were ground seamless.

came out and informed us that the whole office was watching. Fortunately, the installation went quickly and smoothly.

Fabricator: What did you learn from this project? Vincent: We now know more about sundials than we’ve ever known or ever cared to know.

Fabricator: What was the greatest challenge of this job? Vincent: The hardest part was coordinating with all the different trades. We had to work with many different trades from out of state.

Often imitated, never duplicated!

Fabricator: Please tell us about your company. Vincent: We specialize in the work that no one else wants to do. We provide engineering for the whole project,

and we value engineer the project to a budget that the customer can afford. We manufacture everything we build. We promote ourselves as a mini general contractor for custom architectural accents. We mainly work in metal but we’ll also provide anything that touches our metal. General contractors really appreciate the fact that we’ve taken responsibility for a certain area on their job site.





Many Styles To Choose From We Deliver Nationwide!




Stair Pans • 1” Bending Capabilities Metal Pour Stops for the Industry • Diamond Plate Steps Shearing up to 1” by 12’ long Now Offering Precision Plasma Cutting Services Let us handle your cutting needs with our new, state-ofthe-art 5’ x 10’ computerized precision plasma and oxy fuel cutting system. Call or fax us for a quote today!



(718) 485-2200

Fax (718) 485-0994

366 Herzl St. Brooklyn, NY 11212

CALL OR FAX FOR QUOTE Fabricator  July/August 2008

Job Profile

Blacksmiths from around the world display their work  Traditional and

contemporary arts are showcased against the spectacular backdrop of a 14th century castle at this annual conference and festival.

By Rhoda Mack Fine Architectural Metalsmiths The 26th Hefaiston Conference, an

annual international meeting of artist blacksmiths, will be held this August at the 14th century Helfstyn Castle near the Austrian-Czech border. With its medieval moats, towers, and picturesque ruins of roofless buildings, the Helfstyn Castle provides the per36

fect setting for a festival of the blacksmithing arts. This annual event, in the southern Czech Republic area of Moravia, is Europe’s largest blacksmithing conference, and features works from around the world. Last year, it was estimated that between 12,00018,000 people attended the Hefaiston Conference during the three-day festival.

For your information The 27th Hefaiston Conference, the international meeting of artist blacksmiths at Helfštýn Castle, takes place this summer.  Dates: August 30-31, 2008

 Place: Hrad Helfštýn (Czech Republic)  Ph: +420 420 581 215 052

 Email: Fabricator 

July/August 2008

Eastern Europe’s cultural treasure chest of beautiful ironwork opens up to the world.



Vigorous forging textures play off of 1930’s style on a large grille.

The large grassy castle courtyard is filled with entries for the annual competition, with small sculptures on pedestals, large pieces planted in the grass, and gate and fence samples hung from the rampart walls. Traditional ironwork motifs with the look of well-studied journeyman’s copies, are entered in competition alongside contemporary pieces like Christina Habermann’s boldly abstract 38

forgings. Whimsical sculptural entries, which show their cultural roots in the old use of the arts for storytelling, are displayed beside abstract metaphorical works. Large kinetic pieces move gently against the blue August sky, displaying their open gears and cogs, like the inner workings of old clockworks still seen on many European town squares. Entries also include repousséed pieces, often with a dis-

Details of the center lockplate with offset handles on a completely forged double gate.

tinctly European historical look. In the courtyard of the castle, this eclectic outdoor exhibition of entries into the annual competition can be viewed, photographed and enjoyed at close range. It is an incredible opportunity to examine techniques and workmanship in detail, and to document ideas from many cultures in one setting. During the conference, in a fanfare of medieval pageantry, the Fabricator 

July/August 2008


A study of traditional motifs in one entry is presented alongside one of artist Christine Habermann’s break-out works.


Whimsy is never far from the forge, as many entries show.


panel of judges announces the winning entries in different categories. Organizers of the metal arts festival say they now attract up to 600 blacksmiths from around Europe, Japan, and the Americas, including a handful of ABANA and NOMMA members. During the festival, blacksmiths perform individual demonstrations in the outdoor forge area against a backdrop of medieval castle wall, with a large crowd of spectators crowding the bleachers. The demonstration area at the Helfstyn Conference is made up of twelve forging stations where groups of one or more smiths may set up and have two hours to produce a product of their choice. The forged pieces produced during the demonstrations are then judged in several categories. To add to the international flavor, teams of smiths representing indiFabricator 

July/August 2008


Overlooking a plain near the Austrian border, most of the Helfstyn castle is still roofless, with doors and windows long gone.

LEFT: A protective series of arched entrances lead into an inner courtyard and the basement museum collection.

Stair Pan-Type Risers


• High Quality Products

Tread & Riser

Stair Pans w/Sanitary Cove

Stair Pans With Nosing

• Family Owned Since 1923 • Friendly Customer Service • Custom-Formed Shapes Floor Plate Stair Treads

• Competitive Prices • Prompt Delivery Throughout North America

FREE Stair Tread and Riser Order Form Manual CD Rom




128 Sycamore St., Buffalo, NY 14204

1-800-285-3056 Fax 716-854-1184


vidual countries also forge projects of their choice in a team competition during the three-day event. Several years ago, the American team of Mack Beal and Peter Hapny brought a little Yankee humor to the competition when they forged a cell phone. As the best-known elder of European blacksmithing, Alfred Habermann was instrumental in setting up the original conference in 1982, with six blacksmiths in attendance. Habermann oversaw the installation of a permanent period blacksmithing studio and teaching center at the Helfstyn Castle, presiding over the festival as an honorary head of state. A restored basement area of the Helfstyn now houses an impressive collection of forged art works, and the museum is open to wander through during the festival. Revenues from the event help to finance the reconstruction of this extensive hilltop castle complex, rebuilding walls, removing the Fabricator 

July/August 2008

Olympian blacksmithing: each national blacksmith is intent on their chosen project during the national competition portion of the event.

debris from the system of moats, and, of course, bringing ironwork back as part of the castle renovation. The castle now has a series of gates forged and installed at points of entry to the complex. What is most interesting about all of the new installations is that, while they honor the spirit of fenestration with lethal-looking points, each of the new gates installed has a completely contemporary approach to design. The new ironwork installations at the castle itself are one of the most interesting parts of the exhibit, showing that modern design has something new to say — even about something as medieval as protection from knights on horseback.

Custom Orders

Folklore, myth, and a culture of art as storytellers were the background for many of the Hefaiston Conference entries. July/August 2008 


Same Day Shipping

Online Ordering

See us at METALfab - Booth #516 43

And the winner is ....  As part of our 50th anniversary celebration, in this issue we pay

tribute to the past winners of the Mitch Heitler Award for Excellence, which is the industry’s highest award for Originally called the Gold Star Award, NOMMA’s highest award for craftsmanship was renamed the Mitch Heitler Award in 1978. Mr. Heitler, the award’s namesake, was an industry visionary and one of the pioneers who helped create NOMMA in 1958. The award is given annually to a gold winner in the Ernest Wiemann Top Job Competition that deserves extra merit. Recipients are chosen by the Mitch Heitler Committee, which is made up of highly respected craftspersons. In the following pages we honor the winners of the past 30 years. Note: Some years are missing either because the award was not given or we were unable to locate the entry. A thanks to Todd Daniel and Liz Johnson for their help with this feature.

1983 Kentucky Orn. Iron This elevator cab was shipped to Saudi Arabia. The design was inspired by a picture of a brass bird cage. The fabricator was given rough details, a photocopy of the bird cage, and a vague material spec that read “brass tubing, 3/8” approx.” The large dome is made with a 11/2” x 11/2” x 1/8” bronze tee and molding. The base is made of 3” steel channels. Approx. labor time: 1,500 hrs. July/August 2008  Fabricator

1979 - Harmon Iron Works This cross was made of solid material — steel and brass. Sizes used include 1/2” x 11/2” and 1/2” x 11/4” stock. All work was crafted on a coal forge and rivets were used to secure pieces. The piece measures 41/2 ft. wide and 7 ft. high and is mounted on a granite block. The triple bands were made at the forge. The fleur-de-lis end caps were sand casted at a ship foundry using wood molds made by the fabricator. 45

1984 - Michael Bondi Metal Design Called “The Tree of Life” this residential staircase looks almost like a tree growing from the floor. The lower stringer was made to resemble tree bark and is made of 1/2” plate. All of the forging and texture was done with a 300-pound power hammer. Pockets were created in the side frame to allow the branches to “grow” out without looking like they were attached.

1985 - Axelsson Metal Design These gates measure 6’10” wide by 9’2” high and was designed in-house. The gates feature a growing, flowering, and organic theme and are crafted with traditional joinery techniques. A rough hammer texture was given to the living elements, with the leaves individually forged form 1/2”, 5/8” and 3/4” square bar. The project even features a forged bird, which sits among the branches and flowers.

1988 Wonderland Products The stunning feature of these gates is the string of copper roses, which were all hand forged using special techniques developed by the metalsmith.

1987 - Klahm & Sons Inc. This gate was crafted for a royal burial crypt in Hawaii. Crafted over a 5-month period, the gate is made of six giant iron castings which created a 9’ high gate weighing 1,500 pounds. The framework was made of 1” x 2” forged steel. The six medallions were mechanically attached to the frame using large bronze countersunk machine screws. Of interest, the central shield conceals a locking mechanism and also focuses the eye in the center of a cross symbol. 46

Fabricator  July/August 2008

1989 - Michael Bondi Metal Design Crafted in Art Deco style, this railing is made of stainless steel and bronze. The stainless features an 80-grit satin finish. The elements that make up the fountains were forged and the finish was buffed so that the fire scale remained in the low spots and the high spots were polished. The cap rail was made from 1/2” x 2” brass flat bar. The assembly was TIG welded and one of the challenges of the job was controlling the distortion that occurs when welding stainless.

1990 - Valerius Blacksmithing This grand stair railing was crafted for the Four Seasons Hotel in Chicago. The job features about 125 feet of forged bronze railing and the railing ornamentation was welded and fastened to the 1” square balustrades with 1/4-20 brass screws. The railing was then wire brushed and lacquered.

1992 - Jensen’s Ornamental Inc.

1993 - Alex Klahm Architectural Metal & Design

This early 1900s style gate features a masterful use of castings and medallions. Designed by the fabricator, the gates are 12 feet by 10 feet and each leaf weighs 1,000 pounds. For finishing, an antique finish was hand applied over catalyzed polyurethane black. Though the gate looks old, it features high-tech entry controls and an underground operator. Approx. labor time: 200 hrs.

This massive stair project featured 60-feet of compound-curve bronze rail. The design, fabrication, and installation was done by the fabricator. The finish was a four-step clear urethane. Minimal equipment was used for this job, and included a MIG welder, acetylene torch, drill press, and belt sanders. The bronze castings were provided by others.


Fabricator  July/August 2008

1995 - Paley Studios Inc.

1994 - Welding Works Inc. This project involved the fabrication of massive aluminum architectural ornaments for a large Chicago library. There are seven major foliated ornaments, which comprise of singed leaves and curling foliage. Materials used include 100 tons of sheet, plate, and structural aluminum, and 80,000 pounds of galvanized structural steel. Approx. labor time: 16,000 hrs.

Produced for the Victoria & Albert museum in London, England, this bench was designed by the artist. It was constructed with 6-foot sections of 35/8 inch round bar, which were heated and then hammered. For the finish, the metal was stained and oiled. Approx. labor time: 595 hrs.

1997-Art’s Work Unlimited 1996 - New Castle Iron This railing was completely hand forged. Members of the Mitch Heitler Committee were impressed by the high degree of detail shown in the job.

July/August 2008  Fabricator

The designer of these doors gave the shop staff artistic freedom to reinterpret their drawings as needed. The doors are completely forged and represent about 500 hours of labor time. The finish is fairly complex. First, the assembly was sandblasted, given a metal arc zinc treatment, primed, and then painted with two coats of epoxy. On top of this, the fabricator applied gold and verde gri, and then everything was dry brushed with mahogany satin.


1998 - Wiemann Iron Works This 180-foot stair and balcony railing were designed by the fabricator, and were forged out of hot rolled mild steel and D.O.M. mechanical tubing. The handrail section consists of 44 pieces of 3/8” round, twisted around a 21/2” diameter pipe. Each vertical post is constructed from 15 pieces of 3/8” round. The 3/8” wall mechanical tube forms the collars with each piece turned on a lathe and then heated and hammered along with the bottom 1 x 2 channel to achieve the finished texture. For the finish, all sections were sandblasted and then antiqued with black lacquer and clear coated. Approx. labor time: 5,500 hrs.

STOP Setting Manual Stops

STOP Measuring

STOP Marking Material

Cut Production Time and Reduce Waste with TigerStop


1999 - Art’s Work Unlimited This stainless steel job was for an exclusive yacht. The railings were made from 13/4” OD Sched. 40, 304 stainless steel and the ends were tapered over a 24-inch distance. A solid 13/4 inch round was used and tapered on the lathe. The piece was then heated and forged into several fluid, rope-like ends. Creating the #8 high polish finish was also a challenge and required many stages of hand polishing. Approx. labor time: 1,280 hrs. Fabricator  July/August 2008

2000 - Big D Metalworks

2001 - Big D Metalworks

A series of five balconies was created for this project. The pieces are inspired by the Versailles Palace in France. Finalizing the design for this job actually took more time than the fabrication. Once completed, a custom finish was applied. Approx. labor time: 404 hrs.

This grand stair railing and balcony railing was crafted for a private residence. The rail consists primarily of hand-forged silicon bronze, and is topped with a bronze cap rail. From design to installation, the project took three years, and was a joint effort between the owner and fabricator. There are virtually no posts and very few visible welds throughout the design. Approx. labor time: 5,024 hrs.

2002 - Design Metals This bronze and stainless spiral guardrail and handrail features no exposed fasteners and was actually fabricated at the job site. The finish is a #4 brushed. Approx. labor time: 1,500 hrs.


2003 - Pearson’s Studios This decorative door was engineered, fabricated, and forged by the artist. Making the job unique is the use of a technique called “blown steel,� a process in which compressed air is used on steel in much the same way it is used with glass. The heat allows the air pressure to blow out the desired areas. Various hammers, dies, and punches were also used to create the detail. Approx. labor time: 1,800 hrs. Fabricator  July/August 2008

2004 - Custom Metals Inc. For the owner's love of nature, landings and mid-landings provide a full spectrum of life: At the lowest level, turtles, up through levels of koi fish, marsh grass with a great blue heron, oak trees with a screech owl, further progressing to lunar landscape and finally into outer space itself. All steel items were blackened and relieved. The art pieces themselves are chased and forged. Materials used include stainless steel, brass, copper, and bronze.

2005 - Fine Architectural Metalsmiths This silicon bronze mausoleum rail was designed with a 3-D computer modeling program to construct a casting within the strict geometry of the gothic quatrefoil that could be rotated for both top and bottom positions, and work in both stair and straight conditions. The finished railing was carefully patinated and buffed to bring all elements to the same color tone and to highlight the fine line detailing of the castings. July/August 2008  Fabricator


Job Profiles

2006 - Eureka Forge These doors were created for the stone vestibule of an 80-year-old private residence. The 6 by 9 foot stone opening was squared and framed with a hand-forged steel jamb and bronze sill. Door frames were fashioned from hand-textured stock of varying widths. Bronze sculptural components were cast using the lost-wax process from originals produced in the shop. The steel frame and quatrefoils are painted satin black with hand-applied highlights, and various patinas are employed on bronze, copper, stainless, and brass. Approx. labor time: 1740 hrs.

Beautiful cable railings, indoors or outside. Ultra-tec® cable railing fittings are economical, easy to install and virtually maintenance free. Contact us today to learn how easy it is to fabricate a cable railing you and your customer will be proud of.

Distributed throughout the U.S. and Canada by:

Manufactured in the U.S. by:





The Wagner Companies 888-243-6914 414-214-0450 fax

The Cable Connection 800-851-2961 775-885-2734 fax



2007 - Eureka Forge Inspired by Nouveau designs in a family member's home, the clients commissioned this 83' three story balustrade. Forged newels and handrails fitted and assembled at the job site were returned to the shop and infilled with sculptural elements. Textured and twisted vines form 17 intertwined rootwads that branch into stylized floral details and tendrils. They appear to “grow” out of floors and stair treads to wrap around the rails and posts in individually designed, yet harmonious panels. With the exception of newel bases, the entire balustrade was forged to round from solid square stock and weighs approximately 3500 pounds. The completed work was shot-blasted, patinaed, handrubbed with steel wool, hot-waxed, and buffed. Approx. labor time: 2200 hrs. Fabricator  July/August 2008

Member Talk

Show-and-tell approach boosts family business

Heirloom Stair and Iron’s new building is pictured under construction.

 Heirloom Stair & Iron’s storefront showroom gives

contractors and homeowners a peek at the possibilities. By Sheila Phinazee The Frank Lloyd Wright-style exterior

of the family business that specializes in wooden staircases and ironwork pleasantly surprises visitors to NOMMA member shop Heirloom Stair & Iron in Campobello, SC. “Most of our work comes from builders we’ve worked with, and they send their clients to our iron and staircase shops,” says James Moseley, who heads Heirloom’s iron shop. “We show July/August 2008 


them different designs and come up with new ideas. By bringing them in, we can show them options they’ve never considered because they didn’t know those options existed.” Heirloom Stair & Iron was started by Allyn and Sheree Moseley 15 years ago, solely as a staircase company with wooden circular staircases, custom made staircases, and a crew that fabricated them onsite. Although the company was originally composed of just Allyn and a few employees, over the

For your information Familes like the Moseleys start a major portion of new businesses every year. Here are a few keys to family business success:  Divide roles and responsibilities

 Establish clear, regular communication  Treat family members fairly

 Draw clear management lines  Treat it like a business

 Develop a succession plan 55

LEFT: A door crafted by Heirloom for a non-temperature controlled wine cellar. “I tried to make it appear like you were walking up a copper pathway, through gates with iron branches and grape clusters, to the door,” says Moseley. The door is actually all one piece; it’s 2” thick when viewed from the side. The wood used for the door was found on an old tobacco farm, and is approximately 200-250 years old. “The wood has a lot of character with old nail holes and nails,” says Moseley. “I glued big chunks of wood to look like one solid piece to fit the iron frame.”

years, sons Ben, James, and Travis have joined the business along with more staff and the addition of an iron shop. Getting into iron James Moseley had been helping his dad off-and-on while in school. At the time, Heirloom was outsourcing metal work for iron railings on wooden staircases.

July/August 2008 


“Dad approached me when I was about 19 or 20 and still in college,” says Moseley. “He said, ‘I’ll buy you a welder if you promise to make my money back on it.’” So, Moseley started with a stick welder on the back of a truck; that was five years ago. He now heads up Heirloom’s ironworks and his older brother, Ben, oversees the wood side of the business. “Dad started out with a few other guys, and over time they added the iron,” says Moseley. “Once builders heard about the ironwork, they wanted exterior railing, driveway gates, and spiral staircases.” Separate and shared strengths Heirloom currently has 20 employees altogether. Although both sides pretty much function separately, they share an AutoCAD tech between the staircase and metal shops. Sometimes the two


Moseley’s mom, Sheree, who handles the billing and paperwork, also designed the company’s new showroom, which is still under construction. “It has an arts and crafts house feel to it,” says Moseley. “Some clients say it looks like a restaurant from the outside.” Showroom brings products to life Heirloom’s showroom makes use of lots of tile and hardwood flooring and has a living room area, fireplace, kitchen, and sitting areas. The showroom’s upper level has a large 75-ft. balcony, along with an iron spiral staircase. Special lighting highlights art pieces. Additionally, the showroom will include one large circular staircase on the lower level, while the upstairs will house the design center and offices. “We want to educate clients on what we can do with the custom woodwork and the metalwork they typically don’t see or know about,” says Moseley. The new showroom will help achieve that goal.

“Being able to see a product

is what sells it.” All in the family: (l-r) James, Allyn (dad), and Ben (older brother). Allyn and Ben built this wooden staircase in the shop. James built the iron portion by making a jig from field measurements. The piece was finished in the shop and then set in place. “I have since learned how to do this more easily,” says Moseley.

sides come together for projects, such as building a circular staircase with an elaborate iron balustrade. “I build the railing right on top of staircase before it goes on the truck,” says Moseley. Family members also share their strengths. Older brother Ben, who graduated from The Citadel in Charleston, makes contact with new builders while running the staircase business. While running the iron side of the company, James Moseley also has his hands in other aspects of the business, including management, sales, and cus58

tomer service — plus, he enjoys blacksmithing. Like his father, Moseley says he’s more of a craftsman than a businessman. “Dad gets restless behind the desk and has to get out on the shop floor,” he remarks. “We try to tell him we need him more behind the desk.” Moseley’s younger brother Travis, although still in college, is also involved in the business. Travis laid tile and hardwood floors for the new showroom and is in the process of building a cultured stone half wall to separate the front driveway from the landscaping.

The showroom also creates opportunities for increased sales, by using the power of suggestion, a tactic that’s popular with fast food chains. One of the shop employees likens it to the marketing slogan, “Would you like fries with that?” “Clients come in for a stair rail, but will see a table, other furniture, or a pot rack — and they’ll also want to leave with that,” says Moseley. “Being able to see a product is what sells it. Once clients see it, they’ll say, ‘This will really look good in our dining room.’ But if I just mention other items, they often say, ‘Well, we’ll consider that later.’” Heirloom’s showroom and its offices, which take up about 3000 sq. ft. of the company’s 12,000 sq. ft. building, were added on to the front of the original building. The 3500 sq. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

This custom-designed interior railing at the top of staircase features a nature-themed railing with an organic feel. Moseley crafted newel posts with bars on top of bars to appear as if it grew from the floor. Solid round bars of 11/2”–1¾” diameter were used and then tapered down to a point to create tendrils. Finally, a wax finish with a clear coat was applied.

ft. iron shop occupies the center of the building and is separated from the front portion by a metal wall. The rear portion houses the stair shop and is the biggest part of the building. Heirloom’s ironworks division concentrates more on custom work than on being a fabricating shop, with a focus on furniture and railing. The top portion of its space is a blacksmith shop, where hand forged items are created. “We stay on the high end of the market,” says Moseley. “We are not known in the area for being the cheapest around, but we provide quality work at a good price.”

PORTA-BENDER Now Buy Direct From the Manufacturer Pat. Pending

Don’t leave the shop without it

Works circles around other benders

• Bend • Straighten

No attachments needed Use in any position

Weighs Only 18 lbs.

• Rails • Pickets • Bars

Work is fully visible Works where others won’t


• Use at the job site for perfect fit. • Designed BY a fabricator FOR fabricators. Capacities: • 2” Sq. Tube • 1-1/2” Sch. 40 Pipe

“If you ever want to get better

• 2” Channel • 2-1/4” Caprail

5 Ton Hydraulic Cylinder

Weaver’s Iron Works P.O. Box 6008 Knoxville, TN 37914-6008 Phone: (865) 932-2636 • Fax: (865) 933-6800 60

Location, location, location Situated near Greenville, SC and 10 miles south of the NC border, Heirloom is also close to the well known Cliffs Communities® premier golf and planned communities. The Cliffs® — which are the sites of many multi-million dollar homes and attract affluent residents, many of whom are building their second or third homes — stretch from Asheville, NC to Greenville, SC, and feature mountain and lake views as well as golf courses created by masters such as Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods. This proximity to The Cliffs has been beneficial to Heirloom. Most of the company’s business comes from word of mouth, and they have never put a sign in front of the shop. Moseley plans on eventually doing so, but for now they have all the business they can handle. Most of their work is residential, including grand staircases, big entry gates, and wine cellar doors.

Proud NOMMA Member

at something, always hang out with people who are better than you are.” Current challenges and future plans Moseley hopes to implement powder coating as part of the business by the end of 2008, and already has favorable news from a banker. Heirloom Fabricator 

July/August 2008


This mono string staircase was designed for a contemporary home with an outdoor fountain that begins in the front yard, runs indoors into the living room, and then out into the back yard. The client wanted the area to feel open, with nature-like elements. “All balusters wrap around a pole and each other to look like a vine,” explains Moseley. Fellow NOMMA member Dean Curfman of Big Blu Hammer allowed Moseley to use a power hammer on the 600 ends until around 1 a.m. “This is a good example of the way NOMMA members help each other,” says Moseley — who, incidentally, bought a hammer of his own about a month later. RIGHT:

This spiral staircase was built standing straight up in the shop. It appears to have lots of vines growing on it. The piece was finished by adding “spider webs” created from MIG wire; initially, the homeowner thought the spider webs were real.

will also build a new iron shop. They have been in the current shop for two years but have already outgrown it. Moseley, who just turned 26, values the insight and feedback he’s gotten from NOMMA. “Although I’m young and the iron side of our business has only been running for five years, I have been able to forge relationships with older NOMMA members,” he says. Moseley also takes advantage of NOMMA meetings and training opportunities, and attended his first METALfab convention in Sacramento. “I take all the continuing education courses I can just to better myself,” he July/August 2008 


explains. “Dad always says, ‘If you ever want to get better at something, always hang out with people who are better than you are.’” Heirloom is also planning to create a video tour of the shop for the 2009 NOMMA convention. Another Heirloom objective is to finish the showroom. They are doing all the painting and a lot of work themselves. Moseley notes that “it’s hard to find time to work on the business while working for the business.” Competition and growth are included among Heirloom’s business challenges. “There are many two-or-three-man

iron companies in the area, but we’re well known for higher end work,” says Moseley. “We have grown the most during the past two to three years. One of our biggest challenges is keeping up with the growth and always making sure we’re producing high quality work.” At the end of the day, the company can say they have been striving to reach their main goal. Of the company name, Moseley says, “Heirloom tells of values passed down from generation to generation. We see our work as the same, something to hold onto for many generations.” 61

Member Talk

Forged into a quiet life

 A blacksmith

and sculptor create a comfortable home that not only suits their spirits, but also showcases their work. Editor’s note: This Member Talk feature on NOMMA member Bob Bergman and Nana Showalter originally appeared in the Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel in August 2007. By Nancy Herrick The welcome committee boasted just one member, but what she lacked in compatriots she made up for in enthusiasm. Sheba, a border collie-Australian shepherd mix with impeccable man62

ners, ushered the visitor up the long drive and welcomed her with excited barks to the home of Nana Schowalter and Bob Bergman. But Sheba quieted down instantly on command, and even demonstrated that she knows how to step back and let people through the door first when the visitor was invited in. Like her owners, Sheba was a wonderful host. Schowalter and Bergman are both artists. Bergman is an award-winning blacksmith who is known

For your information About Postville Blacksmith Shop: Postville Blacksmith Shop, owned by NOMMA member Bob Bergman, is located 32 miles Southewest of Madison, WI. The original business, opened in 1856, was strictly a blacksmithing shop. Today, the Postville Blacksmith Shop produces ornamental gates and railings, furniture, tools for the blacksmith trade and does subcontract forge work for many well-known shops across the U.S. For more information, log on to:


July/August 2008

around the country for his ornamental ironwork. Schowalter does colorful and spiritual sculpture work. Together, they have created a setting that reflects their way of life, embraces friends, and provides a more-thancomfortable home for their clever canine. Evolution of the perfect home Bergman bought the property almost 40 years ago. At the time, it consisted of a two-story farmhouse, built in the 1930s and made from a kit. The house and several outbuildings were perched on four acres overlooking the rolling fields south and west of Madison. Raised in New York, Bergman had graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in

Sheba welcomes visitors to Bob Bergman’s and Nana Showalter’s home.

In Stock Ready To Ship. Steel & Aluminum Drive Gates Residential & Commercial Steel Fence Panels Aluminum Fence Panels

House Vents, Balusters, Rail Panels, Castings, Security Doors, and Mailbox Assemblies. Contact Us For A Complete Product Catalog.

5768 Distribution Dr. Memphis, TN 38141 (901)547-1198 Ext. 124 Fax: (901)547-1148 July/August 2008 



congratulates NOMMA on 50 years of service to the industry.

Bergman’s Postville Blacksmith Shop in Blachardville, WI is located just a short distance from home. Here, Bergman crafts what he calls “utilitarian� additions, such as drawer pulls, to his house.

Happy Anniversary NOMMA!



geology. He taught himself the blacksmith trade and works out of industrial buildings that make up his Postville Blacksmith Shop a few miles away from his home. "I decided long ago to focus on the lifestyle, not the bottom line," he says. The lifestyle suits them both just fine. Schowalter, who has two degrees in art from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and also attended the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, has shared the house with Bergman since 1987. She does much of the finish work on her sculptures in a former chicken coop on the property and makes time daily for another sort of artistic expression — gardening. The landscaped areas around the house include a rose garden, herb garden, woodland garden, vegetables, and wonderful water features and sculptures among the perennials. The house is larger now than when Bergman purchased it in 1968. His mother lived with the couple for five years, which precipitated their decision to add on to their farmhouse in 2001, nearly doubling its size. “She recently decided to move to Houston to be with Bob's brother because she wanted a more urban lifestyle — at age 96,� says Schowalter, smiling. The amount of property they own has grown, too, to 40 acres, which includes 35 acres of woods purchased recently to prevent the subdividing of that space. The house has two personalities. The older part is an authentic two-story farmhouse, with overstuffed furniture, rich original woodwork, and lovely pieces of artwork all around. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

The addition is open and lightfilled, with interesting ceiling angles both in the kitchen and bedroom areas. Even the master bathroom has plenty of light, thanks to solar tubes. The new space opens to the wraparound deck that overlooks the gardens. Plying the trade at home Art — and the couple’s work — plays a significant role in the home’s décor. “We have collected work from friends, and our own work is here, too,” says Schowalter. “Art helps define each room, and our garden areas as well.” Bergman adds, “My work is represented only in utilitarian ways: a spatula here, some drawer pulls or brackets there. The work I do isn't really at home in more modest houses like this. More often it goes into grander homes.”

LEFT: Bergman’s blacksmithing talents are put to use throughout his home, such as this chandelier in the dining room. RIGHT:

Schowalter’s studio is located in a former chicken coop on the property.

Moving in a “green” direction When asked what part of the house most reflects him, Berman says it’s his love of the country lifestyle. “The quiet; the solitude. That's definitely my preference,” he explains. “It's a house that suits our needs just fine. I have no desire to have a house where people walk in and their jaw drops.” Bergman says that the home is finished to their satisfaction, and the only additional efforts they are making are in the “green” direction. And if it all becomes too much to take care of and maintain, he’ll entertain thoughts of moving. “We are working toward more rainwater collection and more solar and perhaps wind energy,” he says. “But if we can't be self-sufficient, I could see our energies dwindling and moving to a city sort of setting.” Schowalter quickly adds that they have no grand plans for change. “We are just enjoying what we have,” she says. Copyright 2007 by Milwaukee Journal/ Sentinel Inc. Reproduced with permission of Journal/Sentinel Inc. via Copyright Clearance Center. July/August 2008 



Biz Side

Alternative funding — for fun and profit  Considering

expansion? Even in these lean economic times, there are funding sources available... if you know where to look.

By Mark E. Battersby Despite the uncertainty in the financial

markets, interest rates remain close to their historical lows. Unfortunately, financing for many businesses, including those in the metalworking industry, is increasingly elusive. One problem: the money crunch has translated into lenders and investors being more selective. How then, can anyone hope to find the financing needed to operate and/or grow their business? Any quest for business funding should begin with an understanding of the various types of financing, where that funding can be found, and at what cost. Or, put another way, what type of funding can best help your business? 66

Generally, there are two basic ways to fund the business: debt financing or equity financing. With debt financing, capital is received in the form of a loan that must be paid back. With equity financing, capital is received in exchange for part ownership in the business. Equity financing Equity financing can come from a variety of sources, including the metalworking operation itself or the owner’s pockets, as well as from private investors. Remember, however, that keeping control of your company is more difficult when outside investors are involved. Equity financing is more straightfor-

For your information Interested in a loan from Uncle Sam? Find out what kinds of grant opportunities exist and register to apply for one at There, you can:

 Do a basic search of different types of grants by keyword

 Browse by categories of funding activities or by agencies offering various grants

 Apply for grants and track your applications

 Take advantage of various resources such as tutorials on how to apply for grants, helpful software, and archived webcasts is a central storehouse for information on over 1,000 grant programs and provides access to approximately $400 billion in annual awards. Fabricator 

July/August 2008

ward than subordinated debt financing as the investor need only be persuaded that the funds will increase the equity value of the operation above the price at which the investor is purchasing his equity today. Angels Getting funding of any type from venture capital firms is a long shot for most metalworking businesses. However, there are a number of other sources, including so-called “angel” investors, that can be tapped for equity financing.

July/August 2008 


Even business owners who are aware of

Originally a term used public funding often have misconceptions to describe investors in about who will and will not qualify. Broadway shows, “angel” refers to anyone who now Classed as potential angels are invests his or her money in an entrethose who provide services to the preneurial company (unlike institubusiness, such as lawyers, insurance tional venture capitalists who invest agents, or accountants. Angels may other people’s money). Angel investalso be business associates that the ing has soared in recent years as a owner or business are in regular congrowing number of individuals seek better returns on their money than tact with, such as suppliers/vendors, they can get from traditional investcustomers, employees, and even the ment vehicles. And, contrary to popucompetition. lar belief, most angels are not millionAn excellent financing option exists aires. with more favorable credit terms


offered by suppliers. The trade discounts frequently equate to a shortterm loan at appealing interest rates. The ESOP option is no fable Selling company stock to the operation’s employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) is an often-overlooked and usually misunderstood option. Best of all, it does not mean selling to strangers. Here’s how it works: the incorporated business issues new shares of stock and sells them to an ESOP. The ESOP then borrows funds to buy the stock. The business can use the proceeds from the stock sale for its own purposes. The company repays the loan by making tax-deductible contributions to the ESOP. The interest and principal on ESOP loans are tax-deductible, which can reduce the number of pretax dollars needed to repay the principal by as much as 34 percent, depending on the operation’s tax bracket. Remember, though, that the tax shield does not help with S corporations since they do not pay corporate income taxes. Capital gains deferral, however, can make ESOPs attractive to these pass-through business entities.

Take our word at face value. There’s a new look at Decorative Iron. Our new line of finished accent products are the very expression of uncompromised quality. Put the finishing touches to your home, garden, or patio with this endless selection of components. They are among over 4,700 items we have available online. Our products offer timeless beauty, strength, and the durability to last generations. Trust Decorative Iron with your next project and take our word at face value.


10600 Telephone Rd., Houston, TX 77075 Phone 713-991-7600 Fax 713-991-0022 Toll Free 1 (888) 380 - 9278

Do-it-yourself A surprising number of businesses today have funds available after paying all of their bills — including taxes. One use for those unused profits is to distribute earnings to stockholders in the form of cash dividends. Seldom, however, are all earnings paid out as dividends. Usually a portion is kept to finance future growth or as a reserve. Far more commonly, retained earnings are wishful thinking. In fact, financing with internally generated funds can be a very difficult process to plan for and implement. The main consideration, obviously, is whether or not the business has sufficient internal cash flows to pay for those future outlays. Without outside funding, additional working capital may be necessary to finance inventory purchases and accounts receivable that frequently Fabricator 

July/August 2008

grow faster than payables, which can result in putting the business in a tight cash position. If this growth follows historic patterns, and is built on business relationships roughly similar (at least as to creditworthiness) as the operation’s current base, a revolving line of credit can generally be expanded to accommodate the new credit needs of the business. Hidden in plain sight In addition to those loans that a business often receives from its owner, there are a number of other types of funding available from a variety of lending sources. One method of raising capital involves selling your company’s assets. A sale-leaseback can not only generate needed funds, but it can also help improve cash flow by negotiating favorable terms when leasing that equipment or other business asset. The tax benefits of sale-leaseback transactions are often ignored, both for the business and its owners or executives. Usually, a sale-leaseback is structured to unlock the equity a business has in its buildings, machinery, and equipment. Generally, the operation sells its assets at their fair market value to a financial institution – or to the business’s owner or executives — for a lump-sum payment. The new owner then leases the equipment back to the business. Among the tax advantages of a sale-leaseback is the ability to structure the transaction as a taxable sale, the proceeds of which can be offset by net operating losses that may otherwise expire unused. But keep in mind that the transaction offers the potential to change who the “owner� is for tax purposes and, therefore, who is entitled to depreciation benefits. Uncle’s helping hand Often thought of as a lender of last resort, the U.S. government is actually an excellent source for a wide variety of economical financing. After all, the federal government has a vested interest in encouraging the growth of small businesses. As a result, some loans, particularly those obtained through the Small Business Administration, have less stringent requirements for owner’s equity and collateral. In addition, many SBA loans are for smaller sums than most banks are willing to lend.  7(a) Loans. The biggest and most popular SBA loan program is the 7(a) Loan Guarantee Program. The SBA guarantees up to $750,000 or 75 percent of the total amount, whichever is less. For loans of less than $100,000, the guarantee usually tops out at 80 percent of the total loan. A 7(a) loan can be used for many business purposes, including real estate, equipment, working capital, or inventory. The loans can be paid back over as long as 25 years for real estate and 10 years for equipment and July/August 2008 


Why Choose Wagner? Our Products... ‡ Over 7,800 Standard Catalog Items ‡ Over 55,000 Orders Shipped Annually ‡ More Options Than Any Other Component Manufacturer

Our People... ‡ Wagner People average over 15 years in the metal industry ‡ Wagner People average over 9 years with Wagner

Our Quality... ‡ 7KH :DJQHU QDPH KDV DOZD\V EHHQ synonymous with high-quality products and excellent customer service

Beautiful Railings Begin With

Traditional Railing Components



working capital. Interest rates are a maximum of 2.25 percent over the prime rate when the loan term is less than seven years and 2.75 percent if more than seven years.  504 Loan Program. At the top end of the SBA loan size spectrum is the 504 Loan Program that provides long-term, fixed rate loans for financing fixed assets, usually real estate and equipment. 504 loans are usually made through Certified Development Companies (CDCs) – nonprofit intermediaries that work with the SBA, banks, and businesses looking for financing. Business owners and managers seeking funds of up to $750,000 to buy or renovate a building or buy some major equipment bring the operation’s business plan and financial statements to a CDC. Typical percentages for this type of package are 50 percent financed by the bank, 40 percent by the CDC, and 10 percent by the business (or its owner). In exchange for this below-market, fixed rate financing, the SBA expects the business to create or retain jobs or to meet certain public policy goals such as an Enterprise/Empowerment Zone, a minority-owned business, etc. Funding locally One of the best sources of assis-

tance – and, in many cases, funding for expanding operations — is the many state, regional, and local economic development agencies. There are nearly 12,000 economic development groups in the U.S. The purpose

90 t yco s drive toronto, ontario m6b 1v9 tel: 1-800-461-0060 tel: (4 16) 780-1707 fax: (4 16) 780-1814 e-mail: www. steptoewife . com

Albany Spiral Staircase • Distinctive historic design • Modular components in 4 ft. & 5 ft. dia. • Rugged cast iron construction • Brass or steel handrail • Easy assembly • Complete catalog featuring this and other staircases

of these groups is to provide economic growth and development in the areas they serve. They generally encourage new or expanding businesses to locate in their area – or to remain in the area. Even business owners who are aware of public funding often have misconceptions about who will and will not qualify. Many of these programs are looking for businesses with proven track records. The state, regional, and local agencies are willing to help them expand their sales, which, in turn, will help expand the tax base as well as increase employment. Obviously, financing any business is a complex affair further complicated by the current credit crunch. Fortunately, funding remains widely available to those business owners and managers willing to do their homework. Comparison-shopping for lending alternatives is strongly recommended.

1 0 0 y e a r s b e h i n d t h e t i m e s™



July/August 2008

Biz Side

Employees behaving badly?  Good behavior by decree!

Learn how a simple contract can motivate employees to create a kinder, gentler (more prosperous) workplace.

Ed. Note: Yes, you can legislate good behavior. In this article, Quint Studer, author of Wall Street Journal bestseller Results That Last, explains how to create and use a Standards of Behavior contract that boosts morale, customer satisfaction, and profitability. Consider the things your employees

do that you wish they wouldn’t. Allison, for instance, chews gum — loudly — when she’s on the phone with customers. Calvin consistently forgets to turn off his cell phone at critical times. (Last week it burst into a rousing chorus of It’s a Small World during an important meeting with potential investors from China.) And Joshua’s tendency to aggressively share his religious and political views creates a palpable tension in the office, particJuly/August 2008 


ularly during election season. None of them are bad employees, but they do have bad habits that irritate customers and coworkers alike. If you assume there’s nothing you can do about such all-too-human flaws and foibles, think again, says Quint Studer. You can legislate good behavior—and what’s more, the vast majority of employees will be glad you did. “Don’t assume people will feel that you’re infringing on their rights when you create a set of behavioral rules,” says Studer, author of Wall Street Journal bestseller, Results That Last: Hardwiring Behaviors That Will Take Your Company to the Top. “Most of them are as irritated by the offenders as you and your customers are. Besides, most people appreciate having

For your information What are the 10 employee behaviors bosses hate most?  Abusing sick leave

 Time mismanagement

 Poor personal hygiene

 Cell phones ringing all day  Inaccuracies in reporting

 Sour or uncooperative attitude

 Selling personal wares at work

 Noise pollution

 Too much socializing

 Taking credit for another’s work Source: Author Jan Stringer, Ph. D., on The Employee and Customer Survey Research Blog, The National Business Research Institute Inc. For more information, log on to


Employees who frequently

behave in ways that their coworkers deem inappropriate are certainly not contributing to a happy, unified, productive team.

‘official guidelines’—it eliminates their own confusion as well as that of their coworkers.” You might assume that, say, knocking before entering someone’s office is a “common sense” behavior. But it’s not always. For people who grew up in a family with lots of siblings, few bathrooms, and even fewer boundaries,

HYDRAULIC IRONWORKERS Model BENDICROP 55 Ton Punch 3" x 3" x 5/16" Angle 14" x 1/2" Plate Shear

Rounds & Squares standard. Channel & Beam optional. A unique "built-in" bending section with a maximum ECRCEKV[ QH  Z  ƀCV RNCVG is standard equipment.

WWW.COMEQ.COM Phone: 410-933-8500 E-mail: 72

knocking on doors might feel like a needless formality. In other words, common sense is a subjective concept, depending in part on an individual’s background. Still, it’s very important that every employee display behavior that’s consistent with company standards and aligned with desired outcomes. “Obviously, you want employees to leave a positive impression on customers,” says Studer, who is best known for using evidence-based leadership to help companies “hardwire” leader behaviors that effect culture change and create lasting business results. “And it’s also important for morale to have everyone behaving in appropriate ways. Employees who frequently behave in ways that their coworkers deem inappropriate are certainly not contributing to a happy, unified, productive team. And here’s the real bottom line: If you don’t spell out which behaviors are acceptable and which are not, you can’t hold people accountable for them.” Studer’s solution is simple and amazingly effective. He recommends that organizations develop a “Standards of Behavior” contract and have everyone, from CEO to receptionist, sign it. This document can address any and all aspects of behavior at work: from interaction with clients to phone

etiquette to “good manners” (knocking on doors) to “positive attitude” markers (smiling or saying thank you). Interested in creating a Standards of Behavior contract for your company? Studer offers the following tips:  Seek input from all employees in creating the document. Put together a “Standards Team” to spearhead the initiative and create the first draft. Just be sure that everyone has a chance to review the document and provide input before it’s finalized. Do not have Human Resources write it and impose it on everyone else. You want to create buy-in, and that requires companywide participation.  Align desired behaviors with corporate goals and desired outcomes. Before you start writing, take a look at your organization’s long-term goals and areas that need improvement. You must be able to measure the success of your standards by seeing an impact in many of the key metrics of your operation, whether those are increased customer satisfaction, reduced rejects, or other measures.  Be crystal clear and very specific in your wording. Don’t write “Display a positive attitude.” Do write “Smile, make eye contact, and greet customers by name.” Don’t worry about insulting people’s intelligence. Sometimes people really, truly don’t know what is appropriate behavior and what isn’t. For instance, if you don’t want common “slang” phrases used with customers, you need to identify them right up front. One Standards of Behavior document created by a Studer client contains the phone etiquette directive: Avoid phrases like “OK,” “Yeah,” “Hold on,” “Honey,” and “See ya.”  Hold a ceremonial Standards of Behavior “roll out.” Once you have finalized your Standards of Behavior document, it’s time to implement it. Hold an employee forum or companywide meeting in which you introduce the standards and distribute pledges Fabricator 

July/August 2008

for everyone to sign. You might want to create an event around your CEO and leadership team signing the pledge. You may even hold activities designed to educate employees about some of the points. Make it fun. But do have everyone sign a pledge—it’s amazing how much more seriously people take rules when they’ve signed on the dotted line.  Hold people accountable when they violate a standard. Make sure all employees know they’ll be held accountable for the behaviors outlined in the Standards of Behavior document. Then, just do it. How you hold them accountable is up to you. Sometimes a simple meeting in which you show an employee the signed pledge and point

Fabricate Your Own Architectural Components Hebo invented the modern wrought iron machine and is the worldwide leader in this field. For decorative iron operations including scroll bending, forging, embossing, hammered tube, belly pickets, twisting, texturing. For all applications including steel, aluminum, bronze, copper and brass.

HERE IS HOW YOUR BUSINESS WILL BENEFIT. • Own the same machinery world wide parts suppliers use • Labor cost go down, as your least expensive employees become the most productive • Computerized control makes for fast and consistent results • Create a profit center making custom components • Inventory can be reduced, no waiting for parts • Take your business to new levels of quality • Affordable: less than cost of one $10 hr employee

US Representative, Robert Rayson, Stratford Gate Systems Office 503.658.2881 Fax 503.658.2517 Cell 503.572.6500 Email: hebo Maschinenfabrik, Am Berg 2, 35285 Gemunden-Grusen, Germany. Phone ++49 6453 91330 Fax 49 6453 913355 Email: July/August 2008 



out her error is sufficient. Other times, you might need to write her up or take more drastic disciplinary measures. But one thing is clear: The Standards of Behavior pledge gives you something to hold people accountable to. It’s worth implementing for that reason alone.  Create a designated “Standard of the Month.” Every month, highlight a specific standard. This will boost awareness of the standards in general

The Utmost in Beauty & Performance. Crafted from top quality, all-weather 316 stainless steel, Sta-Lok® tensile rated rod systems are exceptionally versatile, durable, attractive and low maintenance. All Sta-Lok® rods are made to order with special tension fork end fittings that allow adjustability without bulky turnbuckles or exposed threads. Quick delivery and a 30-year track record of excellence make Sta-Lok® the reliable choice for your next project.

ROD ASSEMBLIES Call for a free catalog 800-888-2418 or visit


and will get people thinking about how that specific one applies to their daily lives. Let’s say, for example, that you decide to focus on your policy for dealing with disgruntled customers. At the beginning of the month, a “reminder” e-mail detailing the policy is sent out. Next, you might ask employees to write up real-life or hypothetical scenarios in which they must deal with angry or dissatisfied customers. Finally, you might hold a companywide forum in which you recruit people to “act out” both sides of a conflict: the disgruntled customer and the employee trying to soothe her. Not only is this fun and often hilarious, it can be a valuable learning tool, as it forces people to see both sides of an issue.  Update the Standards of Behavior. The standards are dynamic and will need to be updated from time to time. One or two directives may not work as intended and may need to be changed. You may also discover new standards that need to be added as your company grows and evolves in new directions. Make changes as necessary. Your Standards of Behavior should be a “living document” that serves your company...not the other way around.  Have new applicants sign it right up front. Before you even interview prospective new employees, have them read and sign your Standards of Behavior. You will be able to eliminate people from the race up front if they visibly balk at conforming to your corporate culture. But more important, when you do hire someone, there will be no doubt in his mind what you expect of him. If he is going to have trouble meeting your standards, you will probably know during the initial “probationary” period. Studer says just knowing that a Standards of Behavior document exists—and knowing that their signature is affixed to a pledge to uphold it—is enough to keep employees on their toes. It creates an extra boost of Fabricator 

July/August 2008

Just knowing that a Standards of Behavior document exists—and

named one of the “Top 100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare” by Modern Healthcare magazine for his work on institutional healthcare improvement. Studer was also named “Master of Business” by Inc. magazine. He is the author of Hardwiring Excellence: Purpose, Worthwhile Work, Making a Difference; 101 Answers to Questions Leaders Ask; and Wall Street Journal bestseller, Results That Last: Hardwiring Behaviors That Will Take Your Company to the Top. For more information, visit

knowing that their signature is affixed to a pledge to uphold it—is enough to keep employees on their toes.

awareness that really does affect dayto-day behavior. It creates the same behavior expectations for the entire team. Best of all, it functions as a tidal pull on problem employees, bringing them up to a higher level of performance. Obviously, when overall performance improves, so does the quality of your products and services, the satisfaction level of your customers, and— last but not least—your profit sheets. “You may worry that enforcing Standards of Behavior will create a company of robots—a company in which human differences are discouraged in favor of mindless conformity,” he writes in Results That Last. “That is not true! An office unified by agreedupon standards is a far more pleasant

place to work. Plus, individual responsibility flourishes, because it’s clear what everyone’s responsibilities are. That contributes to an environment of fairness, cleanliness, and good manners—and happy customers who keep coming back for more.” About the Author: Quint Studer not only teaches it, he has done it. He was



Send For Free Brochure

• 2 FREE COVERS with purchase of 4 roller set • Available in 4” & 65⁄8” round or square design

E/Z SLIDE™ Be a star at MetalFAB 2009! Think of how much you enjoy learning about your fellow NOMMA members and their work. They are just as curious about you! Volunteer to be a part of the Video Shop Tours at METALfab 2009. It’s easy to do, and it’s informative for all of NOMMA’s members. These virtual shop tours were a popular education session at this year’s convention in Memphis. For more information on how you can participate, contact: James Minter Jr. Imagine Ironworks 1380 Highway 51 North Brookhaven, MS 39601 Ph: 601-833-3000 Email: imagineironworks@ bellsouth. net

July/August 2008 



• For Wrought Iron, Wood, Metal, Picket And Chain Link Gates • UL 325 Compliant • Patented


10” round fence plier with “hog ring grooves” PADDED NON-SLIP HANDLES $17.90 EACH • 12+ ARE $15.80 EACH FOUR DOZEN OR MORE CALL FOR PRICING

INTERNATIONAL GATE DEVICES, INC. 101 Sycamore Avenue, Folsom, Pennsylvania 19033 (610) 461-0811 • 1-800-557 GATE (4283) • FAX (610) 534-9682 e-mail: • website:

Celebrating Our 25th Anniversary


T h e Be s t W i r e M e s h P r o d u c t s Ava i l a b l e • Family owned & operated since 1928 • NOMMA member since 1976 • Exclusive manufacturer of: Sure-Guard™ • Tartan Weave™ Rod-Guard™ • Mesh-Guard™

web: email:

Call us first for: Railing infill panels, partitions, window guards, stairway enclosures & detention equipment






7920 Stansbury Rd., Baltimore, MD 21222 Ph: (410) 284-9549 • Fx: (410) 282-6499. 75

NOMMAEducationFoundation In partnership with the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association

NEF provides valuable training aids The NEF Educational Video Series now contains nine titles that cover design, stair layout, finishing, and more. Training a new employee? Or do you just want a little

continuing education for yourself? e NEF Educational Video Series is continually growing and covers a wide range of topics. Each video presentation is professionally produced and is led by a well-known industry expert. To order, visit the “Education Foundation” area of the NOMMA website ( or call Liz Johnson at (888) 516-8585, ext. 101. e following is a listing of our current titles, which are available on DVD. Cost: $45 - member; $65 - nonmember. Two DVD set - $60 - member; $80 - nonmember.

Fabricating, Forging, Annealing, Texturing & Coloring Stainless Steel

George Bandarra and his team cover the intricacies of working with stainless steel and techniques for coloration. (101 min. - DVD) (EDU-8) Scrolls Theory & Production

Roger Carlsen discusses the different scroll types and how they are created. It also covers the mathematics of scroll production and aesthetic compatibility. (147 min. - 2 DVD set) (EDU-7)

Uri Hofi Demonstration

Curved Stair Fabrication

This video highlights Uri Hofi’s presentation at METALfab 2006 in Savannah, GA. It includes his Hofi ergonomic techniques for blacksmithing and his power hammer techniques. (105 min. - DVD) (EDU-9)

Led by Chris Maitner, the video covers site inspection, field dimensioning, detailing, making adjustments, stringer layout, floor & pan layout, stringer rolling/forming, shop assembly, fixtures, and transport. (40 min. DVD) (EDU-6)

Stacey Lawler Taylor joins NEF Board of Trustees The trustees of the NOMMA Education Foundation are pleased to welcome the newest member of their board — Stacey Lawler Taylor of Lawler Foundry Corp. Stacey is a third gen- Stacey Lawler Taylor eration employee of Lawler, which is a family business with a long history of NOMMA support and involvement. She currently serves as the company’s sales and marketing director. According to Stacey, “NOMMA is an important organization for fabricators and suppliers, not only because of the opportunity to make important contacts, but because there is so much to be learned from others through membership and participation in the organization.” In addition to her role with NEF, Stacey is active with the Gulf Coast NOMMA Network. She has a strong background in marketing, which will be a valuable asset to the NOMMA Board of Trustees. July/August 2008  Fabricator

Straight Steel Stair Construction

Demonstrator Chris Maitner takes you through the fabrication of a straight stair system, from layout to final fabrication. Also covers measuring, blueprints, tools, layout, and more. (70 min. - DVD) (EDU-5) Garden Gates

Follow the steps for measuring, fabricating, and assembling a walkway gate. Lloyd Hughes introduces joinery techniques and forge work. (50 min. - DVD) (EDU-4) Curved Stair Rail Fabrication

Watch Jack Klahm measure and make templates for a curved stair. He’ll show you ways to save money while also improving accuracy. This production covers many techniques. (70 min. - DVD) (EDU-3) Almost the Last Word in Finishes

Demonstrator Lloyd Hughes goes over how to apply more than 12 different finishes using a variety of chemicals and materials, from oil and wax finishes to hot and cold patinas. (70 min. - DVD) (EDU-2) Straight Stair Railing

Follow Lloyd Hughes through each step of the fabrication process of a straight rail for exterior steps, including measuring, fabrication, adding final details, and installation. (60 min. - DVD) (EDU-1) 79

NOMMA Nationwide Supplier Members New NOMMA members As of June 13, 2008. Asterisk denotes returning members.

Accurate Iron Perkasie, PA Michael Garis, Fabricator ACP Engineering (Wrexham) Ltd. Wrexham, United Kingdom Chris Nelson, Fabricator Disenos Ornamental Iron* Detroit, MI Tony Martinez, Fabricator Feman Steel West Springfield, MA Edward Johnson, Fabricator Frattle Stairs & Rails Inc. Jacksonville, FL Donald Frattle, Fabricator Metal Styles Inc. Doral, FL Gustavo Roelly, Fabricator Rossi Metalcraft* Elk Grove Village, IL Joe Rossi, Fabricator Wilson Forge* Garnerville, NY Robert Wilson, Fabricator Xycorp Inc. Palm Springs, CA Craig Thurman, Nationwide Supplier

A Cut Above Distributing (800) 444-2999 Albina Pipe Bending Co. Inc. (503) 692-6010 Allen Architectural Metals Inc. (800) 204-3858 Alloy Casting Co. Inc. (972) 286-2368 American Punch Co. (216) 731-4501 American Stair Corp. (800) 872-7824 Ameristar Fence Products (918) 835-0898 Apollo Gate Operators (210) 545-2900 Architectural Iron Designs Inc. (908) 757-2323 Argent Ornamental Iron & Steel (678) 377-6788 Atlas Metal Sales (800) 662-0143 Auciello Iron Works Inc. (978) 568-8382 Bavarian Iron Works Co. (800) 522-4766 Big Blu Hammer Mfg. (828) 437-5348 Julius Blum & Co. Inc. (800) 526-6293 Builders Fence Co. Inc. (800) 767-0367 Byan Systems Inc. (800) 223-2926 The Cable Connection (800) 851-2961 Carell Corp. (251) 937-0948 Carl Stahl DecorCable Innovations (800) 444-6271 Classic Iron Supply (800) 367-2639 Cleveland Steel Tool Co. (800) 446-4402 CML USA Inc. (563) 391-7700 Colorado Waterjet Co. (866) 532-5404 CompLex Industries Inc. (901) 547-1198 Crescent City Iron Supply Inc. (800) 535-9842

Custom Orn. Iron Works Ltd. (866) 464-4766 D & D Technologies (USA) Inc. (714) 677-1300 D.J.A. Imports Ltd. (718) 324-6871 DAC Industries Inc. (616) 235-0140 Decorative Iron (888) 380-9278 DKS, DoorKing Systems (800) 826-7493 Robert J. Donaldson Co. (856) 629-2737 Eagle Bending Machines Inc. (251) 937-0947 Eastern Metal Supply (800) 343-8154 Eastern Ornamental Supply Inc. (800) 590-7111 Elegant Aluminum Products Inc. (800) 546-3362 Elite Architectural Metal Supply LLC (847) 636-1233 Encon Electronics (800) 782-5598 Euro Forgings Inc. (905) 265-1093 EURO-FER SPA (011) 390-44-544-0033 FabCad Inc. (800) 255-9032 FabTrol Systems Inc. (541) 485-4719 Feeney Architectural Products, CableRail™ (800) 888-2418 The G-S Co. (410) 284-9549 Geo. Bezdan Sales Ltd. (604) 299-5264 Gerhard Glaser GmbH & Co. (011) 49-607-893-7137 Glasswerks LA Inc. (323) 789-7800 GTO Inc. (800) 543-4283 Hartford Standard Co. Inc. (270) 298-3227 Hayn Enterprises LLC (860) 257-0680

NOMMA Nationwide Supplier Members Hebo/Stratford Gate Systems Inc. (503) 722-7700 Hendrick Mfg., Perforated Metals Div. (570) 282-1010 House of Forgings (281) 443-4848 Illinois Engineered Products Inc. (312) 850-3710 Indiana Gratings Inc. (800) 634-1988 Industrial Coverage Corp. (631) 736-7500 Industrial Metal Supply Co. (818) 729-3333 Industry Ornamental Iron Inc. (800) 915-6011 Innovative Hinge Products Inc. (817) 598-4846 Interstate Mfg. Associates Inc. ( 800) 667-9101 The Iron Shop (800) 523-7427 Iron World (301) 776-7448 ITW Industrial Finishing ( 630) 237-5169 ITW Ransburg (419) 470-2000 Jansen Ornamental Supply Co. Inc. (800) 4-JANSEN Justin R.P.G. Corp. (310) 532-3441 King Architectural Metals (800) 542-2379 Laser Precision Cutting (828) 658-0644 C.R. Laurence Co. Inc. (800) 421-6144 Lavi Industries (800) 624-6225 Lawler Foundry Corp. (800) 624-9512 Lewis Brass & Copper Co. Inc. (718) 894-1442 Liberty Brass Turning Co. (718) 784-2911 Logical Decisions Inc. (800) 676-5537 Mac Metals Inc. (800) 631-9510 Marks U.S.A. (631) 225-5400

Master Halco (714) 385-0091 McKey Perforating (262) 786-2700 Mittler Bros. Machine & Tool (800) 467-2464 Frank Morrow Co. (401) 941-3900 Multi Sales Inc. (800) 421-3575 Mylen Stairs Inc. (914) 739-8486 NC Tool Co. (336) 674-5654 New Metals Inc. (956) 729-1184 Ohio Gratings Inc. (330) 477-6707 Overseas Supply Inc. (281) 776-9885 Paxton & Thau Artistic Supply (205) 290-2790 Precision Glass Bending Corp. (800) 543-8796 Premium Home & Garden Co. Ltd. Xiamen (011) 86-592-588-7573 Procounsel (214) 741-3014 RedPup LLC (928) 422-1000 Regency Railings Inc. (214) 742-9408 Riata Mfg. (915) 533-9929 Robertson Grating Products Inc. (877) 638-6365 Robinson Iron Corp. (800) 824-2157 Rockite, Div. of Hartline Products Co. Inc. (216) 291-2303 Rogers Mfg. Inc. (940) 325-7806 Royal Forge Pte Ltd (011) 656-235-9893 L.E. Sauer Machine Co. (636) 225-5358 Scotchman Industries Inc. (605) 859-2542 Sculpt Nouveau (760) 432-8242

SECO South (888) 535-SECO Sharpe Products (800) 879-4418 Stairways Inc. (713) 680-3110 Steel Masters Inc. (602) 243-5245 Stephens Pipe & Steel LLC (800) 451-2612 Striker Tool Co. (USA) Inc. (866) 290-1263 Sumter Coatings Inc. (888) 471-3400 Taco Metals (800) 743-3803 Taurin Group USA (909) 476-8007 Tennessee Fabricating Co. (901) 725-1548 Texas Metal Industries (972) 427-9999 Transpacific Industrial Supply Inc. (909) 581-3058 Triple-S Chemical Products (800) 862-5958 Tri-State Shearing & Bending (718) 485-2200 TS Distributors Inc. (832) 467-5400 Universal Entry Systems Inc. (800) 837-4283 Vogel Tool & Die, Div. of TES Tube Equipment Inc. (630) 562-1400 The Wagner Companies (888) 243-6914 Wasatch Steel Inc. (888) 486-4463 Michael Wentworth Architectural Metalwork (925) 216-1004 West Tennessee Ornamental Door (901) 346-0662 Wrought Iron Concepts Inc. (877) 370-8000 Xycorp Inc. (760) 323-0333

What’s Hot Inside Biz Briefs . . . . . . . . . . .80 People . . . . . . . . . . . . .81 Chapter News . . . . . . .83 Literature . . . . . . . . . . .84

Education . . . . . . . . . .86 Events . . . . . . . . . . . . .87 New Products . . . . . . .88 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . .92

Biz Briefs

GTO opens the way to historic Stetson Mansion

TS acquires Chicago-based ornamental metals distributor Houston-based TS Distributors, a national distributor of ornamental metals, access controls, and fabrication supplies, has acquired Crescent City Iron Supply of Melrose Park, IL. Crescent City Iron Supply has been a wholesale supplier to the ornamental metal, fencing, architectural, and construction industries for more than 20 years, serving the needs of professional ironworkers, fence installers, contractors, and fabricators nationwide. Contact: TS Distributors, Ph: (800) 392-3655; Web:

Steel prices continue to rise Steelmakers are adding surcharges to cover their costs due to the record high prices of scrap metal, a key raw material, Reuters reported in a recent article. In April, the American Metal Market’s scrap index increased from $162 per ton to $555 per ton. This is 25 percent higher than the November 2004 record rate of $443 per ton. “Steel prices have to go up,” said analyst Charles Bradford of Bradford Research/Soleil. “And it’s not just scrap. Pig iron is going to be higher in June and July.” The current rise in scrap prices has many causes, including high prices for scrap alternatives, the automotive market’s decrease in production, and greater demand for the resource nationally and internationally. “We expect scrap prices in the dealer market (which determine raw material surcharges) to follow the index up sharply,” according to Michelle Applebaum, an independent steel industry analyst in Chicago. Applebaum also wrote in a research note, “Although we believe surcharges are less influential on the sheet and plate markets, which are being driven by a surge in global demand, we do expect to see further price increases for these products due to the sheer size of the scrap price increase and much higher prices overseas.” Major U.S manufactures that use scrap, Nucor and Steel Dynamics, have purchased scrap companies to secure available supplies. However, this is not expected to lower costs. “They still have to pay market prices for the metal. The only thing they get is security of supply,” according to analyst Bradford. (Edited from original article published by Reuters, April 3, 2008.) 80

The Historic Stetson Mansion, located in DeLand, FL, has chosen a GTO/PRO 3000XL to provide dual entrance gates for the home, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Designed by noted architect George T. Pearson and built by John B. Stetson in 1886, the mansion has been undergoing an extensive restoration. The 8,500 sq. ft. home is a blend of cottage, gothic, Tudor, Moorish, and Polynesian details, and sits on more than two acres adorned with a school house, gardens, gazebos, fountains, patios, and a pool. “When we looked at the entrance to the Mansion, we determined that the GTO/PRO 3000XL system with a residential wireless entry intercom/keypad (F3100) would be ideal for the property,” said Michael Solari, installation manager for the Stetson Mansion. “GTO’s dual gate operating system allows our gates to open and close in the majestic manner that mirrors the home and grounds.” Contact: GTO, Ph: (800) 543-GATE; Web: www. Contact: Stetson Mansion, Ph: (386) 985-2491; Web:

Industry Ornamental launches new division Industry Ornamental Iron Inc. announces the creation of a new division,, which will offer entrance and pedestrian gates. According to company president Todd M. Jackson, industry members will receive a 50% discount on listed prices. Contact: Industry Ornamental Iron Inc.; Ph: (800) 915-6011; Web: Fabricator 

July/August 2008

What’ s Hot


Multi Sales announces new branch and staff changes Multi Sales Inc. is establishing a new location in Rancho Cucamonga to serve the Inland Empire, CA area. Located in the Scheu Business Center, the new branch will provide garage door and gate operators, access control products, CHI sectional garage doors, torsion springs, and a complete line of parts for most major brands. Patrick McHatton will be the branch manager for this new location. Alex De León will be working with McHatton to deliver customer service and tech support. Contact: Multi Sales Inc., Ph: (800) 421-3575; Web:

July/August 2008 


Nordstrom conducts training

Patrick McHatton

Encon Electronics’ Training Director, Tim Nordstrom, provided a Gate Operator Installer Crash Course workshop during the recent International Door Association Exposition in Las Vegas, NV. He presented a detailed overview of the UL325 standard. The work- Tim Nordstrom shop covered the four classes of gate operator installation and discussed the significant distinctions between slide and swing gate applications. Contact: Encon Electronics, Ph: 800-782-5598; Web:

Shawhan appointed

Alex De León

HALOX® has appointed Gary Shawhan as its vice president of business development. He will work closely with HALOX’s network of global distribution to develop new markets and will provide product application development support. Contact: Halox, Ph: (219) 933-1560; Web:


What’s Hot

Chapter News

Upper Midwest attendees watch galvanizing demo At their May meeting, the Upper Midwest Chapter featured presentations on hot dip galvanizing and exposed architectural steel, which was held at Germantown Iron & Steel in Jackson, WI. Germantown Iron and Dean Derge Ornamental Ironworks in Kewaskum, WI served as co-hosts for the event. In the evening, the chapter held its annual evening social at The Safe

UMWC Shirts Still Available

The Upper Midwest Chapter still has some commemorative 50th anniversary bowling shirts. You can order them direct by contacting Heidi Bischmann (hbischmann@, 414-2148383).

House in downtown Milwaukee, which featured an evening of magic, TOP: Members of the Upper Midwest Chapter take part in the business music, and meeting prior to the main demos. BELOW: In the evening, the chapter fun. The held its annual social at The Safe House in downtown Milwaukee. chapter typically meets three times a year in May, September, and December. Meetings are held at the shops or businesses of NOMMA members in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, and Iowa. The chapter is currently looking for a shop to host their September meeting. If you are interested, please contact Tina Tennikait or Heidi Bischmann. For more info, contact chapter president Tina Tennikait (618-259-4184,


GET IT CLOSE. HIT YOUR MARK. LOCK IT DOWN. DRILL. THE NEW HMD904S SWIVEL BASE DRILL. It’s tough to line up precise center points especially in horizontal or upside down positions with a magnetic drill. But not with our new swivel base model. Get it close and engage the magnet. Release the swivel’s quick unlock handle. Line up the pilot over the center point and lock the swivel. It’s that simple and only takes seconds. Hougen makes the tough holes easy, again. 1-1/8" 1-3/8"

Patent Pending

800-426-7818 • 82

Fabricator  July/August 2008

What’s Hot

Chapter News

The May meeting of the Gulf Coast NOMMA Network enjoyed a great turnout.

Gulf Coast NOMMA Network features white casting demo Roger gives a demo on white metal casting. RIGHT: Attendees were treated to a crawfish lunch with all the trimmings. TOP:

July/August 2008  Fabricator

At their May 10 meeting, members of the Gulf Coast NOMMA Network were treated to a demo on white metal casting, which was presented by Roger Carlsen of Ephraim Forge. Also during the day, attendees took a short field trip to Anode Inc., where they were given a tour and demos on aluminum anodizing and powder coating. But wait! There were still more activities, including a business meeting, technical update, and a tour of host shop Northshore Steel Fab. in Slidell, LA. Once the demos ended, the eating began, and everyone was treated to a crawfish lunch with all the trimmings. During and after lunch, live entertainment was provided by the group Hi-Rize. A thanks to Charles and Carol Perez of Northshore Steel for serving as gracious hosts for the day.


What’ s Hot


Three-part book details history of ornamental iron Ornamental fabricators already have many reasons to take pride in their trade, and reading Early American Wrought Iron will make you even more proud. The massive, 750-page book contains 3,000 drawings of handcrafted metalwork, which includes door hardware, driveway gates, railings, and more. The story of this book goes back to the 1920s when author Albert H. Sonn set out to record and preserve a great American art form. A noted draftsman and commercial artist, Sonn began sketching and compiling images of early American ironwork. His searches took him to museums, antique shops, private homes, and various collections. For eight and a half years, he traveled along the East Coast and researched and illustrated hundreds of designs for his book. His final work, published in 1928, took up three large volumes. In 2006 Blue Moon Press of Huntingdon, PA reformatted the publications and combined them into a single volume. The current edition serves as a great reference tool as well as a handy idea book for showing to clients. Better yet, the book is great for taking into the smithy to replicate the many designs. The book is printed with a heavy-duty cover and special thick paper, which can be


Proven design Efficient-Reaches 2350 Degrees Versatile Portable Many Models Available

Call for Free Catalog - 800/446-6498

NC Tool Company Inc 6133 Hunt Road Pleasant Garden, NC 27313 336/674-5654


wiped clean after use. A summary on the back cover describes the book as a “celebration of the village blacksmith,” and the author alludes to this in his opening remarks. In the introduction, Sonn points to all the ironwork history that has been lost in Europe and says the same thing happened with early American metalwork. His attempts to save some of this history were noble and extremely difficult, since most early American metalsmiths did not sign or document their work. Volume I of the three-part book provides a fascinating history of the U.S. wrought iron industry, up to 1850. From the earliest landings in the 1500s explorers immediately found iron ore and began pounding metal. Of particular interest, the opening chapter has a great discussion on nails, which were all handmade and looked like tiny railroad spikes. The second chapter covers early American door hardware, and following that are dozens of images that include latches, catches, knockers, and locks. By the time you hit Volume II you are in the center of the book, and are about to view Sonn’s collection of hinges, bolts, and other door hardware. But first, you are in for a treat – the author throws in a short chapter on “stray facts and fancies about ironworkers.” This entertaining chapter takes ironwork history all the way back to ancient times and

New England School of Metalwork 2 0 0 8 S u m m e r S e s s io n Lucian Avery—Door Hardware Dereck Glaser—Traditional Joinery Caleb Kullman—Fireplace Accessories Clay Spencer—Tire Hammer Building M a r l a S t e l k— C o p p e r W e a t h e r V a n e s Don Fogg— Japanese Bladesmithing Bob Alexander—Forged Flowers John Rais—New Forms in Steel Peter Ross—18 Cen. Tool Forging Bob Jordan—Beginners Blacksmithing Muh Tsyr Yee—Japanese Laminated Cutlery Jonathan Nedbor—Proficient Forging Techniques Josh Dow and Lauren Holmgren—Cast Iron Sculpture Wendell Broussard and Doug Wilson—Leaf and Scrollwork (Two Special team taught classes)

Summer Workshop Registration is now Open!! 1-888-753-7502 Fabricator 

July/August 2008

What’ s Hot


even discusses the spiritual properties of the metal. A second chapter then provides an introduction on door components. Most commercial fabricators will probably like Volume III the most. This is where we get into the larger products like balconies, railings, driveway gates, and grilles. In following his same pattern, Sonn begins the volume with a little whimsy by providing a chapter titled, “The Romantic and Historic Charm of Early American Wrought Iron.” This section is then followed by an introductory chapter on larger ironwork pieces. In addition to the traditional large items, the third volume features many other objects like weather vanes, foot scrapers, andirons, cooking utensils, and lighting fixtures. Once you get to the end of this massive book, you’ll probably be exhausted. But you’ll also be greatly enriched with new inspiration and hundreds of design ideas. A thanks goes to Blue Moon Press for reprinting this 1920s book and helping to preserve the history of our industry. Cost: $124. For more info and to order, contact: Blue Moon Press, Ph: (866) 627-6922; Web: www.bluemoonpress. org. — Todd Daniel

Aluminum welding guide

AWS The American Welding Society (AWS) has published the first-ever Aluminum Welding Q&A Resource Guide. Aluminum is one of the most widely used metals due to

its light weight and versatility, but it can present challenges for skilled welders. AWS’s new manual was developed in response to high industry demand for a guide for troubleshooting aluminum welding problems and includes a list of frequently asked questions and answers, general information, changes in aluminum welding due to the emergence of new welding techniques, and codes & standards. The book also provides an overview of the history of aluminum welding and common welding processes and is available in print and electronic formats. The author of the book, Tony Anderson, is a 40-year welding industry veteran. Contact: AWS, Ph: (888) WELDING (888-935-3464); Web:

Stone tools & supplies and architectural metals catalogs

CRL Since the C.R. Laurence Co. Inc.’s (CRL) recent acquisition of Sommer & Maca Industries (Somaca), the CRL Somaca Stone Division has been created to supply customers in the residential and commercial stone, granite,

Diamond Mesh

Rectangular Mesh

We will custom fabricate infill panels to meet your specific requirements. Available in diamond, rectangular and square mesh with or without standoffs.

Square Mesh

Diamond Mesh w/Standoff

Standard frame is 1" x ½" channel with or without banding or “U” edging. 10, 8 and 6 gauge steel. All types of finishes available. Division 5,8 and 10. Call us today and let us take care of your infill panel needs. Call toll free

1-800-609-8296 Visit Jesco Industries, Inc. 950 Anderson @ Fab Road Litchfield, MI 49252-0388 Phone: 1-517-542-2353 Fax: 1-517-542-2501

July/August 2008 



What’ s Hot


and tile industries. A new edition of the CRL Somaca SM07 Stone Tools and Supplies Catalog is available online and in print. They now offer Somaca’s products at all 22 CRL branch distribution facilities located in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia. Before joining forces, Somaca products were only available at six locations in the United States. In an effort to ease the transition, CRL has added the Somaca stock numbers into CRL systems, and posted the CRL Somaca SM07 Stone Tools and Supplies Catalog in pdf format at CRL’s web site where products can be ordered online. CRL has published the new AM09 Architectural Metals Catalog. This 208-page color catalog is available online and in print. The AM09 includes a selection of architectural systems and related hardware for the construction of code compliant building facades, including cladding; column covers; wall, ceiling, and canopy panel systems; sunshades and glass awnings; perforated panels systems and architectural wire cloth; ornamental metals; aluminum and steel canopies and grilles; spider fittings; railing systems; standoffs systems; mall front clamps; windscreens, barriers, and wall protectors; and a variety of tools and accessories. Contact: CRL, Ph: (800) 421-6144; Web:

Lincoln supports welder shortage campaign The American Welding Society (AWS) announced that The Lincoln Electric Company will donate $300,000 to the AWS Foundation to help address a nationwide shortage of welders. In association with this donation, Lincoln and the AWS Foundation will collaborate on new marketing initiatives to promote welding careers and help bolster the ranks of welders. According to AWS and other industry research, the average age of a welder is in the mid-fifties. Fewer graduates entering the profession and the continuing retirement of experienced welders have led to a shortage of skilled welders. Lincoln will donate the funds over a two year period beginning in 2008. Contact: AWS, Ph: (888) WELDING (888-935-3464); Web:

New IAS accreditation program The International Accreditation Service Inc. (IAS) accreditation committee approved new accreditation criteria for inspection programs for manufacturers of metal building systems, AC472. The criteria are endorsed by the Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA). This comprehensive accreditation program for the inspection of metal buildings is based on the requirements of Chapter 17 of the International Building Code and assists code officials with inspection programs of metal building systems. Contact: IAS, Ph: (866) 427-4422; Web:

TUBING BENDERS Hand Tube Bender Rolls: ! 1 1/2” Square Tubing ! 1 x 1 1/2” Rectangular Tubing ! Flat Bar (1/2 x 1 1/2” & smaller) ! Pipe & Tubing


Magnum Hand Tube Bender Rolls:


# 2” Square Tubing 1 x 2” Rectangular Tubing Flat Bar (1/2 x 2” & smaller) " Pipe & Tubing Additional Rollers Available

1-800-200-4685 UNIQUE ROLLING SYSTEM Works with both hand tubing benders

Cap Rails



! Flat Bar (on edge hard way) R&D Hydraulics, Mfg. and Machine Co. 1431 West 5th St. Chico, CA 95928



July/August 2008

What’ s Hot


USINAGEM 2008 conference/exhibition São Paulo, SP Brazil, October 6-8, 2008 The event is sponsored by the Brazilian machining magazine Máquinas e Metais and will present technical papers, guidance on standards, and new technologies for planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of machine tools. Contact: Arandanet, Web: / eventos.

5th annual Fitchburg Forge-In Blacksmith Festival October 18, 2008 The theme for this year’s juried competition for metal artisans is “Along the River.” The event is sponsored by the City of Fitchburg and Achla Designs will take place in Fitchburg, MA. Cash prizes for the decorative panel competition and vendor opportunities will be available. Contact: City of Fitchburg, Ph: (978) 345-9602, Web:

Power hammer tooling workshop October 16-19, 2008 Fred Crist will lead this workshop at the Center for Metal Arts in Florida, NY. The course covers the power hammer and its use in tool making for simple dies for stampking or marking, and dies in application. Call to register for the course. Contact: Center for Metal Arts, Ph: (845) 651-7550.

Trade shows September 8-13, 2008 The International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) 2008

IMTS, “Connecting Global Technology,” will be held at McCormick Place Chicago, IL. There will be exhibits and networking opportunities. Contact: IMTS, Ph: (301) 694-5243; Web: September 18-20, 2008 The Fall Traditional Building Show

The annual conference, which showcases traditional products and services, will be held at Chicago’s Navy Pier Festival Hall. More than 3,000 attendees are expected. Contact: Restore Media, Ph: (866) 566-7840; Web: October 11-13, 2008 Nassau County Museum of Art Show

The American Concern for Artistry and Craftsmanship hosts this 12th annual art festival on the grounds of the Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbord, NY. Contact: ACAC, Ph: (973) 746-0091; Web:

ge d E g y n i c t t a r Cu

u c c A

Direct Drive Saws Combine the speed of an abrasive saw, the precision of a cold saw and the versatility of a band saw. • • • • •

Precision Mitre Cuts - 0º to 60º 8” to 20” Cutting Capacities Pull Down or Hydraulic Cutting Systems ACCU-CUT Blade Guide System Small Footprint

800-323-7503 July/August 2008 



What’ s Hot

New Products

Reproduction shutter hardware; knobs and pulls

New Craftsman and Modern posts

Outwater Outwater Plastics Industries & Architectural Products by Outwater pays homage to tradition with its expanded line of reproduction shutter hardware. The line consists of accurate copies of shutter dogs (in grape, shell, flower, star, “S”, rat tail, and Old Philadelphia style formats), heavy duty L-type shutter hinges, shutter rings, and shutter bolts. A variety of exterior and interior shutters are also offered. Outwater’s new knobs and pulls are designed to complement current trends in cabinets and furniture. New collections are available in various styles, shapes, and materials, and include contemporary, vintage, and traditional knobs and pulls. Finishes include new satin, antique and brushed pewter, copper, nickel, brass, and chrome finishes. Contact: Outwater, Ph: (888)7721400; Web:

Using superplastic forming technology, Alumadesigns creates posts for railing and fencing. Their new Craftsman and Modern shaped decorative posts are created from a single piece of aluminum. The posts may be used in residential or commercial applications and are available in a variety of colors and finishes. Contact: Alumadesigns, Ph: (801)756-8335, Web:


Commercial door operators

Encon Electronics Encon Electronics announces the addition of Commercial Door

Variable Speed Ultimate Tubing Notcher For A Great Piece Every Time

Model 400-VSUADJ w/ Adjustable Height Vise Shown

Notches from 3/4” to 2-1/2” OD


Perfect for Thin or Thick Walled Tubing Perfect Weld Fit Every Time Calibrated Swivel Vise Allows Almost Any Angle Fast Metal Removal 208/220/230 Volt Variable Speed 115 volt Single Speed Available CALL OR CLICK In Use by Over 80 NOMMA Shops Ideal for Prototype or Production Work

for Free Catalog

1-800-467-2464 1-636-745-7757


Operators (CDO’s) to their product line. Encon has expanded its partnership with Chamberlain Professional Products and will be their primary Northern California distributor. Contact: Encon, Ph: (800) 7825598; Web: www.enconelectronics. com. Hebo double-sided drilling machine

Stratford Gate

Hebo USA is proud to present the RBV12 drilling machine from Germany. The RBV12 drilling machine can be used for drilling, flow drilling, thread forming, and taping. The unit can work single or doublesided with tubes up to 2’’ in steel, stainless steel, and aluminum. Contact: Stratford Gate Systems Inc., Ph: (503) 722-7700; Web: Commercial operators for continuous duty

GTO Inc. GTO has unveiled the GTO/PRO GP-SW100 and the GPSL100 AC swing & slide gate operators, new commercial operators for continuous duty applications with built in battery backup. Both operators include maintenancefree, brushless DC motors. The GPSW100 will operate swing gates up to 20-feet long and up to 1,200 pounds, while the GP-SL100 will operate slide gates up to 37-feet long and 1,200 pounds. Contact: GTO Inc., Ph: (800) 543GATE; Web: Fabricator 

July/August 2008

What’ s Hot

New Products

Customizable options cabinet

Transfer adhesive


Scapa For structural and decorative applications, Unifilm(R) U802 from Scapa North America is an acrylic transfer adhesive used to attach architectural tension membranes to a variety of metal frames. The product is also used for seaming and repairing applications in tension membrane buildings, tents, and canopies requiring chemical resistance and long-term aging properties. Contact: Scapa North America, Ph: (860) 228-8056; Web:

Staco’s new FirstLine® options cabinet can be tailored to various power distribution requirements. The cabinet is designed to reduce installation time by providing maintenance bypass, branch circuit distribution, and voltage transformation in one cabinet. With up to 96 branch circuit breakers with or without main panel disconnect circuit breakers, the FirstLine® OC simplifies the installation, moving, or changing of electrical equipment and is UL 1778 listed. Contact: Staco Energy Products, Ph: (866) 261-1191, Web:

July/August 2008 


Citric acid cleaner

IPC International Products Corporation (IPC) announces the launch of their

new Micro® A07 Citric Acid Cleaner for removal of oxide, scale, mineral deposits, milkstone, and inorganic soils. This biodegradable blend of chelating citric acid and anionic surfactants offers a typical pH of 2.5 and is milder than most acids. The product is zeroVOC, phosphate free, non-corrosive, and may be used in CIP, ultrasonic bath, immersion, and mild agitation, and filter membrane applications. Contact: IPC, Ph: (609) 386-8770; Web: Online seminar library

Makino Makino introduces its online seminar library to serve as a multimedia educational resource. The library is organized by topic and provides information on technologies, techniques,


What’ s Hot

New Products

and machining processes. Topics include parts production, aerospace machining, die and mold machining, micromachining, hardmilling, high speed machining techniques, and technological advances. Contact: Makino, Ph: (800) 5523288; Web: Silver welder’s pencil

J. P. Nissen The J. P. Nissen Co.’s new silver welder’s pencil is designed for fine line layout work on all metals. The pencil’s marks illuminate during cutting or welding. Unlike soapstone, the marks will not burn or rub off and the welder’s pencil may be sharpened in an ordinary pencil sharpener. Contact: J.P. Nissen Co., Ph: (215) 886-2025; Web: www.nissenmarkers. com.

Gate trigger™ with “Talk Back”

Kwik-Lok lifting pins

SOS Siren-Operated System’s (SOS) wireless device may be activated with a radio base unit up to one mile away and tells the homeowner via radio VOX when the gate is opening, closing, or aborting. The Gate Trigger™ is available to installers of gate systems such as GTO, Apollo, Door King, and others that use 12/24 volt DC motors that switch polarity to open and close and motor terminals that go “dry” after the gate stops. Contact: Gate Bird of SOS, Ph: (800)767-4283; Web: www.gatebird. com.

Jergens Jergens Inc. presents Kwik-Lok lifting pins for quickchange connections in material handling, construction, utilities, rigging, or other applications. The lifting pins are engineered to provide a five to one strength factor and are stainless steel, with a 17-4 PH stainless steel forged lifting ring to resist corrosion in harsh environments. Maximum lifting loads from 400 to 1400 lbs. are accommodated by a range of pins available in inch and metric sizes. Contact: Jergens Inc., Ph: (800) 537-4367; Web:

Vector Solo™ electrostatic gun

ITW Ransburg The Vector Solo™ electrostatic gun by ITW is designed with cordless portability and ergonomics in mind. The gun has improved throughput with fewer reworks in coating . Contact: ITW Ransburg, Ph: (800) 909-6886; Web: www.itwransburg. com.

Precision center finder

5186-F Longs Peak Road, Berthoud, CO 80513

The “Precision Center Finder” machining tool was invented for working with cylindrical stock by an InventHelp inventor in the Pittsburgh area. The tool is designed to help the user find the center of cylindrical stock before performing milling and drilling operations. The original design is currently available for licensing or sale to manufacturers or marketers. Contact: InventHelp Dept. 06WGH-3289, Ph: (412) 288-1300; Web: www.InventHelp. DISTO™ D2 laser meter

Leica The new pocket-sized Leica DISTO™ D2 laser meter developed by Leica Geosystems is a compact, ergonometric-designed device for measuring distances, calculating area and volume, and measuring hard to reach areas indoors. The DISTO features indirect measuring and a multiuse end piece. Contact: Leica, Ph: (770) 326-9500; Web: 90


July/August 2008

What’ s Hot

New Products helps users choose the right glove. Visitors to the site can learn about cut protection, glove sizing, safety news, and gloves available in each construction category. Contact: Ansell, Ph: (800) 800-0444; Web:

Taper gaging system


Power hammer

Ansell Ansell ProGrade’s interactive site

Dake The new Dake power hammer will stretch, shrink, plannish, dome, jog, bead, and shape sheet metal using standard dies. The hammer’s capacity is up 16 gauge steel and 11 gauge aluminum (annealed 3003H14) and has a speed of 900 strokes-per-minute. The throat is 18” and the maximum vertical opening is 7”. For convenience, the power hammer is single phase and

Since 1925

Brasstown, NC

The new taper gaging system for making angular bends on Cincinnati press brakes features six-axis gage fingers. Accompanying simulation graphics software calculates and displays the correct gaging position. The system eliminates the trial-and-error physical positioning of stops to achieve the three-point gauging needed to maintain correct location of a taper bend line. Contact: Cincinnati; Ph: (513) 3677100; Web: ProGrade web site

John C. Campbell Folk School Join us for weeklong and weekend classes!

mounted on a base with wheels for portability. Contact: Dake Corp., Ph: (800) 937-3253; Web: Journeyman screwdrivers

Klein Klein Tools’ new Journeyman line of screwdrivers consists of seven screwdrivers and a five- or sevenpiece set (Cat. Nos. JSDS01 and JSDS02). Each screwdriver features a hard steel blade machined with a precision ground tip for fit into the fastener. The blade is reinforced by a hexshaped bolster which provides additional strength and stability between the handle and blade. Contact: Klein Tools, Ph: (800) 5534676; Web:


To request a free catalog or register for a class, or call 1.800.FOLK.SCH



Blacksmithing (Beginning to Advanced)

Bladesmithing Traditional Blacksmithing photo by Paul Garrett


July/August 2008 

Design Process & many more!


ABANA PO Box 3425 Knoxville, TN 37927 865.546.7733

$UWLVW%ODFNVPLWK–V Association of North America, Inc. 91

Classifieds Recruiter

Employment nationwide in structural/miscellaneous steel fabrication. ProCounsel is in communication with over 3,000 structural/ miscellaneous and ornamental steel fabricators. We can market your skills (estimator, project manager, detailer, shop manager) to the city or state of your choice without identifying you. Employer pays fee. The right location, the right job, at the right money. ProCounsel: Buzz Taylor. Call toll free (800) 545-5900, or (214) 741-3014. Fax: (214) 741-3019. Help wanted

AutoCAD Drafter, Estimator, Field Measurer, Project Manager & Shop Supervisor. Railing fabricator specializing in aluminum, stainless, and glass railings in central New Jersey looking to expand and grow. Company is 22

years old, with 45 employees in 30,000 sq. ft. facility in Middlesex County, NJ. Architectural metal, miscellaneous iron or storefront experience helpful. We will reimburse relocation expenses and offer excellent pay commensurate with experience and or responsibilities. Full benefits including medical dental life and disability insurance as well as a 401k match, profit sharing and bonuses. Fax resume and salary to (732) 332-1924 or email to

emails should be preempted with a phone call to Chet before sending. Ph: 888-471-3400. Fax: 803-481-3776. Email:

Sales agent/reps wanted

Classified ad rates & information

Sumter Coatings is seeking independent sales agents/representatives for the eastern U.S. to represent our Metal Master Brand Paints. Qualifications would include someone currently selling other type products to ornamental and steel suppliers. Call, fax, or email Chet Dinkins at the number below for more information. Any

Classified ads promote a one-time sale or offer or employment-related opportunities. Rates are as follows: 1–35 words = $65 ($50 member) 36–50 words = $90 ($75 member) 51–70 words = $115 ($100 member) 71-100 word = $145 ($130 member)

Subcontractors Needed

East Coast shop looking for quality stair and rail builders to fabricate misc. metal and small structural steel jobs. We will furnish shop drawings. Please send pictures or web site info. Contact John at Craft Metals. My fax number is (215) 281-3014. Please try us.

Next classified deadline: Aug. 1

Join NOMMA today ...

Get quick access to information and resources by joining NOMMA. We offer educational tools, discounts, networking opportunities, and more... O&MM Fabricator Magazine NOMMA’s glossy magazine offers shop techniques, job profiles, business articles, and more.

Member Discounts Pay lower rates for our educational materials, sales aids, training videos, continuing education classes, and annual METALfab convention.

Members only Website Download technical bulletins and access information on ADA, building codes, driveway gates, etc.

Professional Resources Receive TechNotes, our bimonthly technical bulletin and Fabricator’s Journal, our members only “how to” publication.

Technical Support Get answers to your questions by posting them on the ListServ or contacting our staff. 92

For Membership Information, Call 888-516-8585, ext. 101 or visit Fabricator  July/August 2008

Advertiser’s index A thanks to the following advertisers for their support of O&MM Fabricator magazine ... Pg. 95 21 11 4 27 90 19 89 13 95 36 14 61 94 29 77 69 31 33 70 39 52 61 78 36 35 45 41 64 68 67 91 7 49 44 100 47 26 87 85

Company ............................................................................Website Apollo Gate Architectural Iron Architectural Iron Architectural Iron Designs Atlas Metal Sales Big Blu Hammer Mfg. Blacksmiths Depot Julius Blum & Co. Inc. John C. Campbell Folk COMEQ Inc. The Cable Connection Carell Classic Iron Supply Cleveland Steel Tool Colorado Waterjet Co. CompLex Industries Inc. D & D Technologies (USA) Inc. D.J.A. Imports DAC Industries Inc. DKS, DoorKing Systems Decorative Iron Eagle Bending Machines Eberl Iron Works Encon Electronics FAAC International FabCAD Inc. Feeney Architectural The G-S Co. Hawke Industries ......................................................(909) 928-9453 Hebo - Stratford Gate Hougen Mfg. Hypertherm Inc. Industry Ornamental Iron International Gate The Iron Shop Iron Work Gallery Ironwood LLC/Brian Russell Jansen Ornamental Jesco Industries Inc.

65 99 92 23 2 74 91 93 79 77 15 86 26 86 51 85 16 3 68 63 90 10 57 55 73 64 59 44 53 60 72 89 25 75 92 32 88 88 9 46 42

KAS Direct Building King Architectural Metals Laser Precision Cutting Lawler Foundry Lewis Brass & Copper Co. Liberty Brass Turning Lindblade Metal Works Marks U.S.A. Membership Ad Mittler Bros. Machine & Multi Sales Inc. NC Tool Company National Bronze & Metals Inc. N.E. School Metal P & J Mfg. Co. ..............................................................(419) 227-8742 Pat Mooney Inc. Paxton & Thou Artistic Supply Paxton & Thou Artistic Supply Peters Valley Craft Education Center Production Machinery R & D Hydraulics Mfg. & Machine Red Pup Regency Railings Salter Industries Sharpe Simsolve........................................................................(909) 737-2480 Stairways Steptoe & Wife Antiques Ltd. Striker Tool Co. (USA) Inc. Sumter Coatings Sur-Fin Chemical Corp. TS Distributors Inc. Texas Metal Industries Tiger Stop LLC Traditional Building Tri-State Shearing & Bending..................................(718) 485-2200 Universal Entry Systems Inc. ..................................(800) 837-4283 Vogel Tool & Die Corp. The Wagner Companies Weaver's Iron Works YAC Equipment &

Companies in bold are first-time advertisers.

Advertise in NOMMA’s annual Buyer’s Guide Note: Closing Date for the 2009 NOMMA Buyer’s Guide is September 30, 2008

Advertise in the Sept/Oct 2008 O&MM Fabricator! The Sept/Oct issue of Fabricator will focus on finishing techniques. In addition, we will have our ever-popular regular features including job profiles, shop talks, tips & tactics, front office articles, and more. Don’t miss out! To place an ad, contact Todd Daniel (, 888-516-8585, ext. 102).

Deadline: July 25, 2008 July/August 2008  Fabricator

(Nov/Dec deadline: Sept. 26)

Want your company’s name listed in the Buyer’s Guide? Call Todd Daniel at NOMMA. Ph: (888) 5168585, ext. 102. Check out our online Buyer’s Guide to find detailed listings of supplier products. Visit: and click on “Buyer’s Guide.”

Getting Duplicates? No Longer Wish To Receive Fabricator? Please help us reduce waste by reporting unneeded issues. To remove an issue from our list, simply fax the mailing label to: (770) 288-2006. Or, send an email to: You may also send a drop request by visiting the “Fabricator” area of the NOMMA website. 93

Business Perspectives

Legal pitfalls of starting or buying a business  Use these 7 strategies to successfully avoid legal hazards “2008 is a terrific year to go into business for yourself,” says New York City business attorney Rubin Ferziger. “The key to success is setting up your venture using proven business principles. Just remember to avoid the legal pitfalls when you do.” Ferziger has seen new businesses fail for all sorts of reasons in his years of practice. There are numerous potential dangers for startups. Recent cases and government regulations have created several legal trends that impact many companies. If you don’t have effective strategies for dealing with these issues, your new business can get into trouble quickly. Ferziger has published a special free report exclusively for those who want to work for themselves. How to Successfully Start or Buy a Business in 2008 details 25 specific strategies new business owners can use to succeed. Here are a few of them:

Buy or begin with success. Avoid buying a business that is losing money, or starting one in an industry that is trending downwards. Choose an industry that has been on an upswing for at least three years.


Good employees who put in extra hours can end up being your greatest source of liability. If your people work overtime, have a policy that requires written permission for doing so. Put an accurate system in place for consistent daily recording of hours and payments. If you pay bonuses, have a clear performance-based formula to determine amounts.



The federal Fair Labor Standards Act now imposes greater restrictions on employers with regard to overtime pay. This has recently become a hotly litigated area. If your business is in violation, you can be liable for significant fines and back wages. If you are interested in buying a business and find a pattern of theft or dishonesty by the owners, walk away. Some of the common danger signs include: tax evasion, royalties or license fees that intentionally haven’t been paid, deliberate customer overcharges, or any other type of illegal or unethical conduct. As a buyer, you could inherit legal and tax liability for prior dishonest conduct of the owner.


Know thy partner well. A partnership is only as good as the partner you select. Carefully analyze what skills, resources, and other attributes each of you brings to the table, and whether your work styles and preferences are complementary. Don’t go into partnership with someone who doesn’t put money, or something of equivalent financial value, into your deal. Put your agreement in writing.


Keep your eye on sales. Sales are the lifeblood of any business, and are ultimately responsible for generating the income that pays for everything else. Here are six major factors to consider in evaluating sales: repeat business, secondary products and services, profit margins, existing customer base, new prospects, and collection issues.


Develop alternate financing. If you’re applying for a loan through a commercial lender, work on developing contingency financing at the same time. That way if you don’t get the loan or don’t like the terms, you won’t be stranded. Put together a list of private financing sources that may be willing to participate in your venture, and start talking to them before you apply for commercial funding.


Do a background check on each new hire. In 2008 and beyond, the job market is likely to become even more competitive. If competition for jobs becomes tougher, the incidence of employee misrepresentation on past work experience and accomplishments can increase. Have a professional backgroundchecking agency to do a public records search on each employee you hire. Insist on a drug test, and consider psychological and aptitude testing. Also, new regulations require employers to obtain and check the validity of all personal identification and right-towork documents. If you don’t, as an employer you can be arrested and suffer the consequences of a criminal conviction.


The entire How to Successfully Start or Buy a Business in 2008 report is available free at: www.ferzigerlaw. com/CM/Custom/Business-SpecialReport.asp. Rubin Ferziger is a commercial and residential real estate attorney in New York City. For more information visit: Fabricator 

July/August 2008

2008 07 fab  
2008 07 fab