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CONTENTS

EXPRESS VOL. 1/10

FEATURE

8 A new kid on the block PORTRAIT

When Projects Inc. in Glastonbury, Connecticut brought the TruLaser 1030 onto their shop floor, it was a test to see if the machine would perform to expectations and have an impact on the bottom line.

TOPICS 12

18

SOLUTIONS

12 Jaguars, horses and chickens: oh my! NCS Jaguar, a successful company based in Mexico, operates in a hacienda-like environment. CUSTOMER FOCUS

18 No dark days here It’s no joke; friends can go into business together and succeed. PROFILE

21 Creativity and quality Metal and art make for a creative cocktail at TMCO, where coffee is a lifestyle. FABRICATING

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24 Lighting the way This New York-based company has a presence in just about every noted museum in the world. ANNIVERSARY

26 Celebrating 50 years of laser technology Fift y years of the laser were enough to change the world.

Special TruServices and Spare Parts XChange Starting on page 15

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STANDARDS 03 04 28

TO THE POINT PANORAMA PERSONALITIES

30 30 31

STORIES IN SHEET METAL CREDITS CLOSING POINT Express Vol. 1/10

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TO THE POINT

Rolf Biekert, President and CEO

Where do we go from here? Rebuilding business after the recession

One glance at the unemployment numbers and it’s a little difficult to Self reliance is typically rewarded with success, and I believe small believe the worst economic crisis this country’s seen since the Great business owners have to immediately embrace a paradigm shift and tap Depression is truly behind us. into their pioneering spirit. Yet all official indicators point to the U.S. economy being on the If ever there was a time to take stock of how you can leverage your rebound. In fact, you might remember last fall the chairman of the company’s resources—talent, equipment and capabilities—it is now. Federal Reserve announced that the recession was “technically” over. Spend some time assessing your organization, and pretend that you’re Still, caveats such as, “It’s going to take awhile to see any real recovery,” viewing it with fresh eyes for the first time. Let your imagination wander. seem to punctuate the positive statements. Where are the opportunities? What new business might you be able to And along the lines of “no pain, no gain,” some forecasters even warn recruit if you invest in a certain piece of equipment or market to a that while the economic crisis is technically behind us, the difficulties customer outside of the industries that you typically serve? we will have to endure during the recovery phase will be worse than the And there’s more. In addition to assessing your existing resources, angst we suffered during the recession itself. you may need to reconsider them. It’s likely that you will fi nd, as you What does all of this mean when you’re in the trenches of small change your operation to focus on new, revenue-generating projects, the business and you’re trying to figure out next steps to take? need to get rid of certain equipment, and to realign your talent and Several leading analysts have said that business is in the process of expertise. These things are never easy to do, yet the other option, which fundamentally changing. They claim that what we’re going through is is to wait and see if your business returns to its pre-recession position, may prove too costly. not part of the normal business cycle but a new reality. This issue of TRUMPF Express profiles several successful companies Collectively, as a nation, we’ve never experienced anything like this. But where do we go from here? There is no precedent to follow, no proven that have exhibited stamina during tough times. They have expanded business model to embrace. their focus while keeping business costs contained. One company has There are several government proposals that offer solutions to help introduced in-house laser cutting into its offerings, another has embraced small businesses, such as lending programs and tax incentives. But at 24/7 operations when many of its competitors during the past year were this stage, most are in the idea phase. “dark” on Fridays, and still another has a creative Art & Metal Division, Will these ideas eventually be brought to fruition? Even if they are, which puts it in a unique class among job shops. will they actually help small business? And perhaps the most important These are all customers whose stories prove that if you diligently search question of all: Do we have enough time to see if they’ll work? for the next Big Idea for your small business, you will likely fi nd it. Express Vol. 1/10

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PANORAMA

Putting it to the test When it comes to adding value for its customers, Jan-Air doesn’t put on any airs

Jan-Air’s new air flow testing chamber will be a valuable asset to the company’s R&D initiatives.

Jan-Air, Inc., a company that produces high-quality and affordable air movement products, is more than half-way home with an important project. The Richmond, IL based company is building and installing a new “air flow testing chamber,” which will be a valuable asset to its R & D department. The chamber is an impressive steel tube structure approximately six feet in diameter and 14 feet long, and it is being built with the help of TRUMPF TruLaser 2030 and TC 2000R punch machines. “The idea first came about in February 2009,” said Jan-Air’s President, Mark Sattersten. “Some of the first pieces were fabricated in September of that same year, and we expect the testing chamber to be fully operational by June 1st of 2010.” The new chamber, with computer-automated data acquisition, will help Jan-Air refine existing designs and create new designs. This addition will help Jan-Air better meet the needs of their customers in an ever-changing business environment. > Additional information: www.jan-air.com

Innovative product hits the hearth

The EDGE delivers good looks with functionality.

Hearth & Home Technologies combines beauty and functionality with renewable fuel The EDGE™ 60 by Quadra-Fire®, a brand of Hearth & Home Technologies Inc. and a TRUMPF customer, was named to Professional Builder magazine’s 100 Best New Products list for 2009. It is the first pellet-burning fireplace ever to hit the market. The 100 Best New Products Award recognizes the most significant and innovative products introduced in the past year, as well as the manufacturers who invested in their research and development. “Free standing pellet stoves and inserts have been available for several years, but until now, consumers could not purchase a pellet fireplace,” said John Shimek, vice president of Marketing for Hearth & 4

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Home Technologies. “The EDGE 60 offers the beauty and functionality of a fireplace, while providing homeowners with the piece of mind that they are heating with renewable fuel in a clean-burning, low emissions hearth product.” Delivering a whopping 60,000 Btu of heat, the EDGE 60 can provide warmth to over 2,500 square feet of living space. It is designed for zero clearance installation and does not require a chimney. > Additional information: www.quadrafire.com


PANORAMA

E Media

TM

Creative communicating Tapping into the power of social media

Hey, there! What’s happening? If you can answer that question in 140 characters or less, chances are you’re familiar with Twitter. Twitter is a free service on the World Wide Web that helps you keep in touch with people through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What’s happening? This easy-to-use tool also helps companies keep in contact with their customers and others in meaningful ways by sharing bits of information on a timely basis. It’s a way to learn about products and services, and to gather feedback and build relationships. And that’s why you’ll find TRUMPF on Twitter under the name of TRUMPFinc. Visit www.twitter.com and join today to start receiving TRUMPF’s tweets.

In addition to a presence on Twitter, TRUMPF Inc. has also debuted on YouTube, the video sharing website, where individuals, organizations and businesses can view and upload videos. TRUMPF Inc. now has its own official channel on YouTube. To access it, visit http://www.youtube.com/user/TRUMPFINC. Although TRUMPF is using its YouTube channel to post helpful product videos, for those interested in a piece of YouTube trivia the most-watched YouTube video in 2009, according to PC World magazine, was British singer Susan Boyle. Her first clip on YouTube, where the singer appeared on Britain’s Got Talent, garnered 120 million hits around the world.

Touch, try and experiment LaserLab is coming to the U.S. How are laser beams created? Where can we find lasers in everyday life? How can a laser shine around a corner? These are just a few of the questions that visitors will find answers to when they visit TRUMPF’s LaserLab. Th is extraordinary exhibition, which comes from the TRUMPF Group’s global headquarters in Germany, will make its debut on the U.S. East Coast in late May when it launches at the Connecticut Science Center in downtown Hartford, and in early fall at the Museum of Science in Boston. Children and adults can experiment and explore the world of lasers to their hearts’ content. A highlight of the exhibit is a laser foosball table where visitors can put their newly-acquired understanding of lasers to use. The laser foosball game works just like regular foosball. However, the ball is a laser beam that has to be directed into the goal with the help of adjustable mirrors. TRUMPF mechanical engineering students from the Stuttgart University of Cooperative Education in Germany developed the concept for the LaserLab. Can’t get to Hartford or Boston to experience the LaserLab in person? Then follow it on Twitter at TRUMPFinc, where interesting facts about lasers and the exhibit will be tweeted beginning in late May. > Additional information: www.us.trumpf.com

LaserLab offers hands on opportunity.

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PANORAMA

Crowning glory TRUMPF receives Stevie award for customer service TRUMPF’s Customer Service Department recently received a Stevie® Award in the Customer Service Department of the Year category. Stevie Awards organizes several of the world’s leading business awards shows, including the prestigious American Business Awards. Nicknamed “Stevies” for the Greek word “crowned,” winners were chosen from among nominated customer service and sales executives in the U.S. and several other countries attended the event. More than 500 entries from companies of all sizes and in virtually every industry were entered in this year’s competition. “We implemented important changes in the Service Department and made big steps toward delivering excellence in customer service,” said Kevin Domingue, TRUMPF’s Vice President of Customer Service. “This wouldn’t have been possible without the dedication and hard work from my people and I would like to say ‘thank you’ to my team.” “This year’s honorees demonstrate that even in challenging economic times, it’s possible for organizations to continue to shine in sales and customer service, the two most important functions in business: acquiring and keeping customers,” said Michael Gallagher, president of the Stevie Awards. > Additional information: www.stevieawards.com/sales/

TRUMPF’s Vice President of Customer Service, Kevin Domingue (left), accepts a Stevie Award on behalf of the customer service department.

Helping soldiers come home safely Detroit Tool makes military vehicles with might Detroit Tool Metal Products (DTMP) has announced that the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee has approved $1.6 million in funding to develop an improved manufacturing process for the use of advanced titanium metal in military vehicles. The funding is part of a $214 million appropriation package ushered through the Senate Appropriations Committee by Missouri Senator Kit Bond to be used in important defense projects. With the funds, DTMP will work with the department of energy to design and develop state-of-the-art processes and equipment to make tactical vehicles lighter, stronger, safer and more reliable by incorporating titanium into their structures. Many of the vehicles are manufactured using TRUMPF equipment. “This is exciting news for all of us at DTMP,” said Julie Ply, Director of Engineering. “It is a great way for us to diversify and enhance our capabilities. Projects that can help our government and country are special and tend to bring out the best in all those working on them. They can also lead to other projects both for the government and the private sector down the road.” DTMP will play a key role in helping military vehicles be lighter, stronger, safer and more reliable.

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> Additional information: www.dtmp.com


PANORAMA

Rebuilding a Nation A little tool; a lot of help Relief International, a non-profit agency which provides emergency relief and assistance to victims of natural disasters and other deprivations, has arrived in Haiti. With them traveled ten of the lightest and hardiest profi le nibblers in the world, the TruTool PN130. Together, they tackle the destruction left in the wake of the earthquake that devastated the area on January 12th, 2010. When the 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck, it is estimated that 1 million people were displaced from their homes. Of those not displaced, many remain living near their damaged or destroyed homes in makeshift shelters. Relief International’s shelter program,

Relief International helps in the Haitian rebuilding efforts.

funded by the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, is using the tools to assist approximately 20,000 individuals in reconstruction efforts. Donated by TRUMPF Inc., the tools help clear existing metal structural components, such as corrugated metal roofs, which have been damaged and rendered unusable by the quake. With the new tools in hand, Relief International will help many families begin building a new home and new life in Haiti. > Additional information: www.ri.org

Analyst: Steel Prices to Decline Reduction expected third quarter 2010 The steel price will decline in the third quarter, and it will happen rather quickly, predicted industry analyst John Anton, director of steel services for IHS Global Insight Inc., who was a panelist during the SBB Steel Markets North America conference March 11-12 in Chicago. Steel prices rose at “an amazing rate” in late 2009 and early 2010, he noted, spurred on by double-digit increases in the cost of scrap, iron ore and freight. While current demand is better than it was last year, it remains well below normal. Moreover, Anton expects China to tap the brakes on its runaway growth in the second half, lowering steel consumption there. With North America, Europe and South America all experiencing continued sluggishness, the price hikes of the first half simply aren’t sustainable, he said. The predicted price decline will not be a catastrophe for steelmakers, he added. Prices for raw materials will likely fall as well, with scrap dropping into the low $200 per ton range. Moreover, steel prices will still remain above 2009 levels. (Source: Metal Center News) Express Vol. 1/10

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Paul Marchand, vice president

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PORTRAIT

A new kid on the block TRUMPF’s TruLaser 1030 delivers at Projects Incorporated

A

s David Swanson talks about the new TruLaser 1030 that Projects Incorporated installed on its shop floor, he beams like a proud new papa. After all, it is his baby. When his bosses asked David to oversee day-to-day operations of the new laser cutter, there was no hesitation on his part. “I immediately said ‘Yes.’” Projects Incorporated, a 120-employee company which spans 45,000 square feet and encompasses two facilities, is located in Glastonbury, Connecticut. Today, the company that got its start as a supplier of screw machine products is a leading supplier of general machining, thermocouple and pressure probe assemblies for the aircraft, gas turbine and commercial industries. Their customer base is global. Last year was the company’s 50th anniversary year, and they had plenty of reasons to celebrate—with the installation of the TruLaser 1030 being chief among them. David Swanson has heard the stories of the day when the machine arrived, several months ago, and his fellow employees gathered around it oohing and aahing. Indeed. Even after having the laser for five months, a visitor to the shop floor can still sense the almost-palpable excitement over the technology. “It just looks so cool,” David says.

No experience required But David, a Federal Aviation Administration certified welder, was nowhere in sight the day of the delivery. Instead, he was at TRUMPF’s North American headquarters in Farmington, Connecticut, where the TruLaser 1030 was conceived, created and born, receiving training. “I had never run a laser before, and I had no previous experience operating

one.” But it didn’t matter. One of the benefits of the Trulaser 1030 is its ease of operation. “There was zero percent learning curve,” says Paul Marchand, vice president of Projects Incorporated. David concedes that he does have a computer background, which may have helped him become acclimated very quickly to the operation of the laser cutter; however, he said that the soft ware loaded in the TruLaser 1030 makes it easy for anyone, with or without experience, to jump right in to the operator’s seat. “My background maybe reduced my training time by a week, but that’s all,” he says. And the ease of operation is just what TRUMPF’s engineers had in mind when they designed the TruLaser 1030. New opportunities in a historic venue In fact, TRUMPF’s most recent innovation opens the doors for manufacturers—such as Projects Incorporated—to easily incorporate in-house laser cutting into their mix of fabricating services. When the TruLaser 1030 was just a gleam in the engineers’ eyes, the intention was that it would be a machine like no other in the marketplace, one that featured TRUMPF technology at an incredible price. Mike Kenyon, president of Projects Incorporated, and Paul Marchand, decided that the company would serve as a beta test site for the new TruLaser 1030. The agreement was that TRUMPF would install the machine in their shop for six months. Projects Incorporated would evaluate its usefulness within their operation. TRUMPF Engineers could use the situation as a learning opportunity and make any necessary adjustments before embarking on a wider launch of the > Express Vol. 1/10

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PORTRAIT

David Swanson is the operator of the TruLaser 1030 at Projects Inc.

”Turnaround time has gone from three to four weeks, to less than one week.” product—and at the end of the six-month install when compared to our other machines, period Projects Incorporated could either according to Paul. “The installation went really return the machine to TRUMPF—or purchase smoothly.” it. Apparently, the TruLaser 1030 is staying put. “It’s a no-brainer,” says Mike. The figures speak volumes A big plus for Projects Incorporated was the The company’s cost analysis of the TruLaser 1030 small footprint of the TruLaser 1030. Housed has shown a quick return on the investment. in a 10,000 square foot historic building— The machine has helped to significantly lower the former J.B. Williams Soap Factory (circa the total cost of laser cutting. Although Projects 1800s), the laser cutter entered through a door Incorporated has been using laser technology barely larger than your garage door at home for the past 10 years, before the TruLaser 1030 and requires half the floor space of a typical 5 x they had outsourced all laser cutting to another 10 foot machine. It was “significantly easier” to job shop. 10 Express Vol. 1/10

“We’re able to serve our customers at a higher level now,” says Paul, noting the dramatically reduced lead time required as a result of bringing the process in-house. Turnaround time, he explains, has gone from “three to four weeks, to less than one week.” In addition, “We saw at least a 50 percent reduction in overall costs when factoring in hourly pay rates, gas rates and electricity consumption.” Even employees who don’t work directly with the laser cutter are keenly aware of its efficiency. “Why aren’t we using the laser for this project?” is something, according to Paul,


PORTRAIT

The historic building where the TruLaser 1030 sits may be compact, just like the machine on its shop floor, but also like the TruLaser 1030 it has

his employees are not afraid to ask if they think the TruLaser 1030 would provide the best process for a job. With gross sales of $26 million, Projects Incorporated hopes to use their new laser cutting machine to generate additional revenue. In fact, they have begun to sell the technology to existing customers with the intention of broadening their product base. The TruLaser 1030, Paul says, “Exceeds our expectations.” So, yes, it’s a keeper. The laser cutter is definitely staying on at Projects Incorporated. Meanwhile, over at the machine’s control panel, David Swanson, who is probably one of the TruLaser 1030’s biggest fans, is programming a job. He looks up briefly, and with the kind of enthusiasm you hear in a proud parent’s voice when they’re anticipating a child’s next big moment, he says, “I might get to learn to do the maintenance on it.”

a uniqueness all of its own—and has long been a location where innovative manufacturers have created enterprising products. The small building is part of the complex that was the home of the former J.B. Williams Company, a manufacturer known worldwide for its soaps. Williams experimented with soaps to determine which ones were the best suited for shaving. His research eventually led to the creation of Genuine Yankee Soap, the first manufactured soap for use

Projects Incorporated

in shaving mugs. J.B. Williams’ products were

Who:

widely known throughout the U.S. and Canada

Projects Incorporated, Glastonbury, Connecticut. Established in 1960. www.projectsinc.com

What: Experts in metal fabrication, Projects Incorporated provides precision machined parts, thermocouples, and RTDs to the commercial, power generation and aerospace industries worldwide. How:

in the late 1800s, and in the 1900s they became a worldwide name. One interesting note: The J.B. Williams Company is responsible for the creation of Aqua Velva, the men’s grooming product.

TruLaser 1030

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The property of NCS Jaguar in Espiritu Santo, Mexico is reminiscent of a hacienda and includes a stable and working farm.

Jaguars, horses and chickens: oh my! Quality products and neighborliness are integral to the culture at NCS Jaguar.

A

t first glance, NCS Jaguar’s offices, located in Espiritu Santo, a mountainous region 35 miles west of Mexico City, might seem like more of a retreat than a corporate headquarters with cutting-edge fabricating capabilities and a sophisticated customer base. The company, which produces racks built to customer specifications for the IT and telecommunications industries, is located on a former estate, which served as a horse stable for its previous owner.

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SOLUTIONS

The Toscano brothers who own NCS Jaguar—Enrique, Antonio, Roberto and Ricardo—made extensive renovations to the property and are committed to keeping alive the spirit of the former residence their company now occupies. Even though the property is not a true, historic hacienda, it still has hacienda-like qualities and remains, at least on a small scale, a working ranch. The name of the little farm located on the acreage is called Ocote del Valle. “Ocote” is a type of tree and “del Valle” means “at the valley.” Horses, sheep and chickens are already part of the landscape there, and soon rabbits will be added to the mix. A full-time caretaker, Homero Guzman, has charge of the menagerie. Community spirit Just like Mexico’s haciendas, the country estate even has its own fanciful legend. In fact, locals mention sightings of multicolored fireballs, which

they attribute to souls wandering the property. Some employees also claim to have witnessed these fiery spirits. Ensuring that NCS Jaguar is a good corporate neighbor and an integral part of the community is important to the Toscano brothers. For example, “We are committed to practicing environmental stewardship,” said Antonio, who is director of the company. He also said that continuing the tradition of ranching at the farm, even on a small scale, helps the company integrate into the community in a relaxed manner. Eggs from the hens, he mentioned, are sold to employees, and sheep are sold to the locals. Many faces of business But the chief business that takes place at the former country home is not agrarian. It’s manufacturing. When they launched in June of 1997, the Toscano brothers chose their business’s name to mirror that of the Jaguar, the most powerful > Express Vol. 1/10

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SOLUTIONS

The company, which now has approximately 55 employees, serves three categories of customers that include data centers, networking infrastructure users and telecommunication companies. NCS Jaguar recently established an office in San Diego to service U.S. customers in southern California, Arizona and Nevada.

NCS Jaguar’s general manager (left) talks to one of the company’s owners, Antonio Toscano.

”Being able to manufacture a very high quality product in Mexico makes us all very proud.”

cat in the Western hemisphere. It is an animal revered by the indigenous population of Mexico for its strength and beauty. The precursor to NCS Jaguar also imported racks for IT and telecommunications equipment. However, the Toscanos realized that in order to remain competitive in the marketplace they needed to find a more efficient way to import their product. Their business situation required the men to import large amounts of products without many different configurations. But problems ensued. They were routinely receiving deliveries that were damaged during transit, dealing with warehouse space issues and facing other business obstacles. All of this led the brothers to the decision that it would be best to manufacture their own product. And so NCS Jaguar was born. Antonio and Enrique are involved more directly with all decisions concerning the business. Roberto and Ricardo are owners who participate in monthly board meetings and in strategic decision making, but they are involved in other projects outside of the company on a daily basis. 14 Express Vol. 1/10

Advantages and expectations “We have two primary competitive advantages,” said Antonio. “The first is our being able to deliver custom-made solutions within a shorter lead time and with a very high standard of quality, and the second advantage we bring is a competitive cost/benefit ratio.” Customers of NCS Jaguar include high profile companies such as HSBC de Mexico, Alcatel–Lucent and Metro-Bus. Last year was challenging for the business; however, things began to pick up during the second half of 2009, a healthy trend that continues in 2010. “Overall, last year was strong for us,” Antonio said. “Not so much because of standard products, an area in which we actually saw a reduction in sales, but because of special projects that came to us.” These days, much of NCR Jaguar’s fabricating work is done with TRUMPF’s TruMatic 2010R. The company initially set up shop in a small industrial space, and workers were tasked with assembling components and parts made to spec by contract manufacturers. “We knew we had potential,” recalled Antonio. “We gained momentum around 2003, when we re-engineered the product and dedicated added effort to the sales side. And that’s when we began buying machinery to manufacture the product ourselves,” he said. However, because of budget constraints at the time, NCS Jaguar purchased equipment that was limited in terms of versatility and not very user-friendly in terms of quick set-up times. In 2005 the Toscano brothers began evaluating a new machine for their punching operations, an area of the business that proved to be a bottleneck. They evaluated machines for their flexibility; their ability to make short production runs and then switch to the next run in a short time; availability of local service; level of technology; and very high on their list of expectations was the desire to purchase a machine with enough production capacity to support them through a growth period. “The TruMatic 2010R exceeded our expectations,” said Antonio, who added that the company hopes to add more TRUMPF equipment to their shop floor in the near future. “Being able to manufacture a very high quality product in Mexico and one that can compete with international companies successfully makes us all very proud and motivates us to continue this venture,” he said. NCS Jaguar Who:

NCS Jaguar, Espirito Santo, Mexico, Established in 1997. www.ncsjaguar.com/mx

What: Manufacturer of fabricated metal products. How:

TRUMATIC 2010R


SPECIAL

In today’s challenging and competitive manufacturing environment, we know our customers can’t afford a hitch in their production schedule.

With two programs that are setting standards in the industry—

TRUMPF’s Service Agreements and the Spare Parts Xchange program —we give our customers a solid sense of security.


SPECIAL

Securing the Future TRUMPF customers have more than just leading-edge equipment and technology on their shop floor. They have a sense of security with TRUMPF’s Service Agreements and TRUMPF’s innovative, Xchange, a four-year pro-rated warranty plan. TRUMPF’s TruServices Group offers a bundle of different service agreements to help keep your machine up and running smoothly and at optimum levels. Xchange reduces the cost of ownership by providing a warranty on higher value parts. And customers qualify simply by owning a TRUMPF machine.

SERVICE AGREEMENTS There are four service packages available to TRUMPF customers, including the Basic, Classic, Special, and Premium. These packages build upon each other and increasingly include additional services at a fi xed price. All four of the service packages include: ■ Online telediagnostics and trouble-shooting; and ■ Access to a service hotline, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Basic package offers customers a sense of security that fits with practically any business’s budget, including online telediagnostics and trouble shooting, and a service hotline available around the clock. The Classic service agreement focuses on prevention instead of repairs by including periodic preventive maintenance visits. The Special agreement builds on the previous packages and also includes all labor costs and expenses for repair visits.

In addition, a user-friendly soft ware package helps customers stay current on ways to keep their TRUMPF machine even more productive. Services include: ■ Regular updates to TRUMPF’s TruTops soft ware; ■ Teleservice and Telediagnostics to keep downtime and service visits to a minimum; and ■ Access to TRUMPF’s internet portal, where customers will find many tips for user applications. For more information, please contact: service.contracts@us.trumpf.com.

“Xchange is like having free insurance. It shows TRUMPF’s solid confidence in the quality of the products it produces and their parts.” – Claudio Schutz, Director of Spare Parts and Logistics

The full service package, which is the Premium agreement, enables customers to have complete control over their maintenance and repair costs by including all labor costs and expenses for maintenance and repair visits, as well as covering costs of spare parts and consumables.

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XCHANGE The Xchange program is all about providing value to TRUMPF customers through an extended warranty program. It reduces the cost of ownership of TRUMPF machines and lasers by providing customers with a four-year, pro-rated warranty on


Basic Special Service

Classic Preventive Maintenance

Special Maintenance and Repair

Premium Full Service and Spare Parts

Software Regular Updates

“We offer a variety of agreements so you can select exactly what you need. They

higher value parts. It is the most innovative extended warranty offered in the market, simply because customers aren’t required to purchase coverage. Xchange is a standard feature of all TRUMPF equipment. If a high-value part fails the first year of machine ownership, the replacement part is free. If the part fails during the second year, it can be returned for a 75 percent core credit. In years three and four, the credit amount is 50 percent and 25 percent, respectively. Qualifying parts on the TRUMPF machine will display the Xchange sticker, so there are never any surprises when it comes to determining what parts may or may not be covered.

range from extended service support to all-inclusive support.” – Daniel Maerklin, Key Accounts Manager

The pro-rated Xchange warranty is based on the actual age of the spare part, and not on the purchase date of the original machine. That means customers enjoy the benefits of the program for as long as they have a TRUMPF machine. hin ne. More information may be found at: www.us.trumpf.com/Xchange. So should a problem arise, with TRUMPF’s ’ss Service Agreement and the four-year, prorated ratteed rate warranty program, Xchange, rest assured u re red yo red your ou urr machine will be back online—in no time. e.

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CUSTOMER FOCUS

Mark Engel (left) and John Peterson, co-presidents of Atlas Manufacturing.

No dark days here Friendship is serious business at Atlas Manufacturing.

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Atlas keeps a rigorous schedule, even during tough economic times. The company has been running three shifts, seven days a week since January 2009.

”It was a bold move. But it worked.”

I

t’s been said that business partnerships, even under the best of circumstances, can be difficult. And the general rule is to never go into business with your friends. Still, if you’re going to go on a wild ride, it’s kind of nice to have a good friend along. Just ask Mark Engel and John Peterson, co-presidents of Minneapolis-based Atlas Manufacturing. The two men have a friendship that dates back more than 30 years. They met when both worked for a $2 billion publicly-traded company and used to joke about the day they would run their own business. Finally, after two decades of corporate boot camp, it was no longer a joke. Mark was ready for a change and accepted an offer to head the privately-held Atlas Manufacturing. “Four-and-a-half years into it,” said Mark, “I approached the owner to see if he wanted to sell, and they actually made me an offer.” And Mark immediately thought of his good friend, John Peterson. The skills that each man brings to the job complement the skill set of the other partner. John, a civil engineer with an MBA, brings great insight to the financial end of the business, and Mark, a mechanical engineer, understands how machine tools work. “As co-presidents,” said Mark, “each one of us can run the company.” There have, he said, even been periods where one co-president or the other has been away from Atlas for an extended length of time. They have been able to leave without thinking about the company during their absence, and upon their return found business operating smoothly as usual. The duo has been business partners since 2002. “Eight years into it, and we’re still friends,” Mark said. “We still laugh every day.” During the time they spent working for the large international company, both men

managed a sales function and traveled the globe—experiences that Mark believes groomed them well to run Atlas Manufacturing. “We’re not sheet metal people,” said Mark. “Some of our competitors running similar organizations are second or third generation sheet metal fabricators. We’re business people.” Something else that sets Atlas apart is that during the economic downturn, the company never changed its production schedule. On Fridays last summer and fall, when other companies would shut down or operate with a skeleton crew, Atlas kept its pace. It was business as usual. And since January 2009 they have been running three shifts, seven days a week. “We run when everyone else is dark,” said Mark. It was a bold move. But it worked. There is something about a company that keeps moving forward, even during challenging economic times, that lures new business. However, it hasn’t been easy. As was the case with most companies, the numbers at Atlas dramatically plunged during the fourth quarter of 2009 due to the economic crisis. But things began to pick up in January, and according to Mark February bookings were the highest in company history. The uptick, he explained, was due to the procurement of some key contracts. Still, as good as that news sounds, a challenge for Atlas is to successfully meet the new business demands without driving up the cost of doing business. One of the recent contracts is from a company that provides store fi xtures—something that Mark believes is an auspicious sign that the retail industry is beginning to bounce back. In addition to retail, Atlas serves OEMs in telecommunications, technology, industrial, > Express Vol. 1/10

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CUSTOMER FOCUS

medical and commercial industries. Lot sizes only thing that matters is that the equipment at Atlas range from 10 pieces to 5000, keeping you purchase is right for your operation. in mind that in some cases that’s 5000 pieces Achieving that kind of objectivity was the every week. catalyst for Mark and John to create their own At one point, in 2006, Atlas was running checklist to help them evaluate prospective five turret machines and two lasers to produce equipment purchases (see sidebar). flat blanks. But that’s all changed. The turrets have been sold, as have 22-Point evaluation For purchasing a laser cutter the company’s old lasers. Today, Atlas Developed by Mark Engel and John Peterson, Manufacturing produces f lat blanks Co-presidents of Atlas Mfg. exclusively with their TRUMPF TruLaser 2030. The company also has some interesting combination parts that are produced with Laser Evaluation Part sorting intensive punch features on the TruPunch Quality of the Load/Unload 5000, which are then laser cut using Atlas’s organization Terms precision locating pins on the TruLaser 2030. Service The company has installed a Stopa tower to Installation cost Responsiveness integrate the TruLaser with the TruPunch to Trade-in achieve even greater efficiency. Knowledge Interface load table One element that has played an integral Reliability “green with TRUMPF punch part in the $10 million company’s business light time” Machine access success is the “Twenty-Two Point Evaluation” Cost to operate for purchasing the right laser cutter for the Speed of cut Footprint business. The point system was developed by Cut quality using Mark and John, who are willing to share it with Ease of use compressed air other fabricators who may find it useful. Dynamic nesting Warranty Mark explained that sheet metal fabricators software Drive maintenance are often enamored at trade shows by the razzle Operator interface and dazzle of the machines on exhibit—and Price Application versatility then wooed even more over expensive dinners. But at the end of the day, as he pointed out, the 20 Express Vol. 1/10

TRUMPF, according to Mark, scored “way above everyone else on knowledge,” which was the deciding factor when it came to choosing TRUMPF over other brands. There’s no doubt that Mark and John are extremely pragmatic businessmen who pay close attention to the details of their business. “I get up at 4 o’clock every morning,” said Mark, the father of 4-year-old twin girls and another set of twins who are 24-years-old, a boy and a girl. In addition to checking his e-mail and working out during the early morning hours, Mark checks his web cam from home to confirm that the TruPunch is doing its job on the shop floor. And who could blame him? “If I put in a million dollar sytem, I want to see it run,” he said.

Atlas Manufacturing Who:

Atlas Manufacturing, Minneapolis, MN www.atlasmfg.com

What: Complete contract manufacturer, specializing in precision, cosmetically finished sheet metal fabrication. How:

TruLaser 2030 and TruPunch 5000 with Stopa tower


Dan Moore, manager of TMCO’s Art and Metal Division, and colleague Tom Spahn, take one of their fabricating jobs out for a spin.

Quality and creativity Respect for the creative craft is a priority at TMCO.

C

reativity is more than a concept at TMCO. It drives the production of tangible parts and products. Dan Moore, manager of the company’s Art and Metal Division, discusses the important role creativity plays in the day-to-day business of Lincoln, Nebraska-based TMCO. What is TMCO’s Metal and Art Division? It was born from an idea to create profit from scrap generated by the machining and metal fabrication divisions. It opened the doors to an increasingly diverse customer list. The initial plan was to create products using our drop materials and market them. Initially, we made things like key chains and corporate gifts. Then work turned toward garden racks and items for a billiards distributor. TMCO still has a few of these early items in production. However, it was in the division’s second year that furniture and outdoor sculpture started to find its way onto the product list. Shortly after that, > Express Vol. 1/10

21


”The diverse backgrounds of the employees blend well with the scientists and engineers we deal with on a daily basis.”

Metal and Art found its way into local architectural, advertising and real estate development firms, which brought the work to another level. How do you integrate Metal and Art with TMCO’s production area? There are some small custom jobs that come through that may not be a good fit for the production areas, and we will handle those in Metal and Art from start to finish. But to shine and be profitable we want to do large-scale custom projects. The Metal and Art Division works with the customer throughout the entire process. This allows the best possible outcome for all parties involved. What is your background? When TMCO purchased their first laser many years ago, a TRUMPF L2503 LaserCat, I was lucky enough to be hired as the operator. You might be familiar with the old saying “give a person a hammer and the whole world becomes a nail”…that laser was one sweet hammer. My background is a broad collection of experiences. The short list is something like this: automotive machinist, trade school (tig welding, CAD), factory laborer, college student (English & art), avionic inertial navigation specialist (USAF), high production machine operator (printing industry), college student (psychology), metal artist, and laser operator. If you mix them together my job as Manager of TMCO’s Metal and Art Division seems to make sense. You endearingly call employees who work in the division “eccentric and artistic.” Why? TMCO is made up of an incredibly talented workforce. That being said, I’m fairly certain the drum beat of its Metal and Art Division is less cadenced and more jazzed. The employees are very talented in different aspects of the fabrication process. Pretty much all of them still ride a bicycle and the majority of them ride to work more than half of the time. Coffee isn’t a luxury in our shop; it’s more of a lifestyle. Whole bean, roasted locally and ground fresh every morning and afternoon. Quality of life is a term that comes up a lot. You mentioned that your employees use both their left and right brains. How so? National Cereal Chemistry is an equipment line that was purchased by TMCO in the mid 80’s. The equipment was originally designed in the 30’s and 40’s. It’s primarily used in the development and quality control of bread products. Metal and Art was growing out of its current building and National employees were getting close to retirement age, so combining 22 Express Vol. 1/10

the two divisions worked out well. All of the Cereal Chemistry equipment is assembled and tested by the guys who are also working on the latest art-related project. The attention to detail is an absolute must in both fields and the diverse backgrounds of the employees blends well with the scientists and engineers we deal with on a daily basis. About 65% of the National-TMCO Cereal Chemistry equipment gets sent overseas for new labs that are creating better food standards worldwide.


PROFILE

The Garden Dome at the Sunken Gardens in Lincoln, Nebraska, fabricated by TMCO’s Metal & Art division.

TruLaser 3030. The job went so well that we were asked to build the balconies for the side of the building, and to supply balconies for two more historic buildings the following year. Do most of your customers require function as part of the creative design, or are most of the projects you work on driven by creativity alone? I would say that 99% of the projects we work on perform a function, and sometimes that function is art. I’m sure that you’ve seen art that left you wondering “why?” (and maybe that was the “function” the artist was trying to achieve). As far as I can tell we have only worked on machines, furniture, signage, and art that perform the intended function. Metal and Art / TMCO has been blessed with the task of fabricating sculptures for a few renowned artists that have been installed both locally and internationally. These are amazing pieces driven by the creativity of the artist but designed to function in the space of destination. Some of these pieces are in major airports and international hotels. Metal and Art helps tailor the fabrication process and then takes on the quality control aspect of the construction. The artist is the designer and installer. Do you pay attention to design trends in the Metal and Art Division? The trends that are reflected in our work and designs are directly related to the sweet new “hammers” that Roland, TMCO’s owner, keeps surrounding us with. When TMCO gets a new machine we can’t wait to use it. Oftentimes we will gravitate toward that new method and hit all the new projects with it. One of our newest hammers is TRUMPF’s TruLaser Tube 7000, which was just installed a couple of weeks ago. From the endless arcs of the laser to the infinite number of textures that the new punch machines can generate, I can’t wait to see what next year’s technology will bring us. Total Manufacturing Company (TMCO) Who:

Can you talk about one of the Metal & Art Division’s noteworthy projects? The TipTop building in Omaha was where the original TipTop hair curlers for women were manufactured back in the 50’s and 60’s. A developer turned the old factory into ultra-modern living spaces. We were offered the opportunity to design and manufacture the railings for the five-story atrium, rooftop deck, penthouse, and outdoor hot tub / movie theater. We started the design around the skeletons being produced on the TRUMPF

Total Manufacturing Company, Lincoln, Nebraska. Estabished in 1974. www.tmcoinc.com

What: A one-stop, concept to completion metal fabricating company. As a division of TMCO, Metal & Art is a unique, full service fabrication studio created by innovation, unlimited imagination and the desire to bend metal. How:

TruLaser 5030 with LiftMaster, TruLaser 3030, TC 5000 (TruPunch 5000) with dual cart SheetMaster, TC5000 Punch (TruPunch 5000), V2300 press brake (TruBend 5230), V130 press brake (TruBend 5130), V85 press brake (TruBend 5085)

Express Vol. 1/10

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George Closs, executive vice president of engineering/operations at Edison Price Lighting.

Lighting the way Edison Price charts a course that is lean and looking up.

I

n 1952, Mr. Edison Price began a small, privately held company in an old ice house on E. 60th Street in Manhattan. From the heart of New York City, this skilled lighting designer lived his passion for bending light and making fi xtures. With a hands-on approach in the factory, he built a company known as Edison Price Lighting. By continuously designing and manufacturing innovative architectural lighting, the company gradually matured into the 100-employee operation it is today. Still owned and operated by the Price lineage, it is now Edison’s daughter, Emma, who provides the glow which illuminates the company. Trusting in technology Fast forward nearly 45 years to the late 1990s, and Edison Price Lighting had become well established across the world in the areas of design and fabrication. Familiar with long-run punch press operations but encouraged by the potential of laser cutting, the company purchased its first laser, the TRUMATIC L2530 (TruLaser 2525). George Closs, Executive Vice President of Engineering/Operations, recalls, “The laser brought completely new technology into Edison Price Lighting”. George was hired in 1997 to manage the purchasing department and assist in the implementation a new ERP computer system, and although not actively involved in the laser purchase, he remembers that AutoCAD fi les allowed the company to make parts quickly. “While technology was not in the forefront for Edison Price Lighting at the time, over the next decade it increasingly became a focal point for us.” > 24 Express Vol. 1/10


FABRICATING

Edison Price Lighting sets the bar high for its industry.

The reliability of lights-out operation has been vital for long term custom products. Recognized by the US Department of Commerce Since then, for its lean approach, Edison Price, according to George, is “a company the laser has proven that is truly customer driven. We do not keep inventory.” He explains, itself essential in keeping the “When an order enters into the system, it flows into the production line, company competitive. George explains, “We through assembly and shipping. Everything is built to order and a few needed to react quickly to the customer demands; sometimes days, at most, is all Edison Price needs to get the order out the door.” running thousands of parts, sometimes just a few orders. Before, special variations had to be done by hand and we needed a better way to Staying lean accommodate unique projects. Technology was the answer.” In 2001, shortly after the laser purchase, Edison Price consolidated it’s But these technological advancements did not solely influence laser operations into its current location in Long Island City, situated just cutting at Edison Price. By 2008, the company was due for an upgrade across the Queensboro Bridge. It’s no wonder they decided to stay close to to its press brake and punching technologies. For George, there had been Manhattan. New York City boasts some of the best lighting designers and a noticeable shift in fabrication from hard tooling to advancements in architects in the world. When a lighting project is in development, the soft ware design. “Skilled tool and die makers have become increasingly expertise at Edison Price is just a short train ride away, which provides more difficult to find,” he explains. “At the same time, college graduates the opportunity for many of the world’s top lighting designers to visit the have become much more successful working with computers.” And with facility and work directly with Edison Price Lighting designers. this shift in mind, Edison Price purchased a TruBend 3066 and TruPunch However, real estate in Metropolitan New York is expensive so it’s no 2020, which allowed them to transfer parts to the new machines and surprise that running a lean operation is important to Edison Price. With eliminate older technology. upgrades to technology and a limited inventory approach, the company TRUMPF’s TruTops soft ware has become the connecting link between has been able to reduce facility requirements by one-third since settling the design and production departments at Edison Price. “Now, we design in Long Island City. This location allows Edison Price to stay close to the everything in Solidworks and with TruTops running on our machines, pulse of the industry without compromising its production capacity. we easily convert these fi les and start the production process,” explains George. Increased speed in adapting parts has provided Edison Price Seeing the light with a distinct advantage. “We have competition in the Far East who do Whether in special commercial space across the world, New York galleries not want to customize, but our willingness and ability to do so has kept or the National Archive in Washington D.C., whenever he sees something us going, especially in the depressed economy.” Edison Price has helped create the moment is always awe-inspiring for Quick customization has been the key for Edison Price. With the George. “It’s something you become proud of,” he explains. And while flexibility and the interconnectivity of the technology on their shop floor, he prefers to spend his personal time outdoors camping and enjoying the “We can adjust a Solidworks fi le and within minutes have parts running fresh air, inside, George says, he finds himself always “looking up.” on our TRUMPF machines,” says George. In addition to a quick turnaround for part modification, the updates Edison Price Lighting in technology also increased Edison Price’s capacity to run lights-out. Who: Edison Price Lighting. Long Island City, New York, George estimates that about one-third of the company’s projects are Established in 1952. www.epl.com specialty projects. While being flexible to customize has been essential, lights-out production capabilities have allowed Edison Price Lighting What: Designs and manufactures innovative, energy-efficient architectural to keep pace with some of their larger projects. “Right now, we are quite lighting fixtures. busy with a few major projects in Las Vegas as well as some large notable How: TRUMATIC L2530 (TruLaser 2525), TruPunch 3066, museums. We set the program up and run the punch all night. In the TruPunch 2020 with automation morning, we are ready to continue with assembly.” Express Vol. 1/10

25


50TH ANNIVERSARY

A reason to celebrate At 50 years, the laser reaches a milestone

26 Express Vol. 1/10

When laser technology was first introduced in the 1960s, it was an invention in search of an application. Today the laser is an integral part of our everyday lives—in obvious ways and also in ways that may surprise you. TRUMPF, which began in 1923 when Christian Trumpf and two partners purchased the engineering workshop Julius Geiger GmbH in Stuttgart, Germany, has evolved into a world market leader in industrial laser technology. In 1978, the new chairman of the Managing Board at TRUMPF, Berthold Leibinger, returned from an information-gathering trip in the U.S. with a special piece of luggage: a 1 kW CO2 laser. The following year TRUMPF introduced the fi rst combined punch-laser machine, with CO2 lasers featuring 500 and 700 watt output from the U.S. as the beam sources. TRUMPF built its own 1 kW CO2 laser in 1985, and in 1989 TRUMPF presented the square folded high performance CO 2 laser—still today’s best-selling multi-watt laser. In 1999, the disk laser greatly increased the performance potential of diode-pumped solid-state lasers. TRUMPF unveiled its first lab resonator at a European trade show. Ten years later, in 2009 TRUMPF demonstrated the first highly brilliant multi-kilowatt industrial laser with high performance laser diodes as a direct beam source. Here are just a few examples of how lasers have changed the world.


50TH ANNIVERSARY

Using a laser to cut sheet metal has many advantages. It puts less strain on the material and is economical for small batches, too. Blanking the artistically perforated brake discs used on high-end mountain bikes would warp them. If cut by a laser, they remain perfectly flat.

Invisible seams with superb precision. The laser has a lot to offer when welding plastics, too. One example is sealing remote control keys for cars. Laser transmission welding is particularly ingenious. This entails light passing through transparent plastic, plasticizing the mating part underneath – which in turn heats up the transparent plastic. This technology was pioneered in the automobile industry to weld sensors, dashboards and liquid reservoirs made of plastic.

Foodstuffs have traditionally been marked either with labels or on their packaging. Nowadays there is a trend towards direct marking. Here a laser marks information such as country of origin and sellby date straight onto fruit, cheese, or eggs. This is hygienic, fast and so economical that some foodstuffs are now being used for promotional purposes – like the apple bearing an advertising logo.

Garbage is a valuable source of raw materials but only if it is properly separated. Today this is a job for special sorting machines that sort garbage with the help of laser beams. Each material responds with its own special fingerprint, which is particularly useful in distinguishing various types of plastic.

Malaria is a dreaded infectious disease in Africa. A laser gun has now been developed to kill off the Anopheles mosquitoes that transmit this disease. A camera detects the mosquitoes and shoots them down with a weak laser beam that is harmless to other insects and – of course – to humans, as well. Its inventors claim that just a few such lasers will be sufficient to rid entire residential districts of mosquitoes once and for all.

Lasers can melt steel but laser light can also be used for cooling. It can bring an atom’s temperature down to almost absolute zero. While this may sound like a contradiction, it does work. With the correct frequency setting, the laser will slow down an atom’s vibrations and this in turn lowers its temperature. Basic researchers use laser cooling in complex devices. Physicists in Bonn recently demonstrated that this principle also works in a sort of miniature refrigerator. It cools things down in seconds and could well become the “mirror image” of the microwave oven.

Is that sausage fresh? How clean is that water? Laser spectroscopy will answer questions like these. Lasers stimulate the atoms in a specimen and a special device measures what kind of energy is absorbed or reflected, indicating whether harmful substances are present. One laser gun currently in development will be able to identify spoiled meat – through the outer packaging – by detecting chemical changes on the surface of the meat.

Express ExpressVol. Vol.1/10 1/10 27 27


High power Eugene Watson son began a love affair with science and technology in at continues today. the 1950s that

28 Express Vol. 1/10


PERSONALITIES

”When the CO2 laser with its ability to generate average power came along, Earl and I immediately realized the significance of it.”

In the 1950s, American Eugene Watson began a love affair with science and technology that continues today. The founder of Coherent Inc., a world leader in laser technology, discusses his experience as a pioneering laser entrepreneur.

for whatever reason. I came across the DuPont radiation. So we got some mirrors and directed Company, which wanted “a white-light ion laser” the beam out the door and across the street, for a holographic data storage development onto the garage door of my neighbor, who project. In the mid 60’s no one made such a I didn’t like because he always complained. laser. That’s how Coherent got started, based Sure enough a brown spot began to appear on on my “if you really believe this, you better act his garage door and we said, “Hey, we’ve got on it” philosophy. a laser!” The laser’s potential seemed limitless How did you become interested in lasers? In the early 1950s during the Korean War, I back then. was drafted into the Army and became a radar What truly convinced you the laser would be officer. I was never exposed to technology a useful technology? What opportunities did you envision? before, but I really took to it and became My friend and business partner, Earl Bell, Early on I was challenged by the notion that infatuated with science. The thing I liked most and I would often discuss the problems and lasers could be revolutionary in medical about science was that once you discover a applications for lasers. For example, we thought applications. And I thought the laser would scientific truth it remains forever true. When back to the demonstrations of the ruby laser be an important tool in optical spectroscopy I got out of the Army, I went back to the San punching a hole in a razor blade and began to applications, which it is. But the ubiquitous Francisco Bay area and sought employment develop the idea that you could do materials applications please me the most. Today, every home has lasers in it somewhere. at a number of technology-based companies, processing if you had enough average including Varian Associates. Varian was heavily power. The problem was the rubyy laser involved in microwaves, which fit with my radar didn’t have average power. When en the background, so they hired me. nerate CO2 laser with its ability to generate average power came along, Earl and I ance immediately realized the significance How did you get started working in of it and he said, “Well, Gene, that’s hat’s laser technology? After the 1958 Physics Society meeting where the first laser that can do real work.” k.” It Charles Townes and Arthur Schawlow proposed turned out to be true. Our first CO2 that a laser was possible and described what laser customer at Coherent was as a it would take to make a laser, it was the four- Boeing manufacturing research lab ing minute mile. We thought no one could run that wanted to investigate cutting ser a mile in four minutes until one guy fi nally and welding titanium. The first laser did, then everybody started doing it. Nobody that could do “real work,” remains ns could make a laser work until 1960 when Ted a workhorse. Maiman did. We built a helium neon laser on a breadboard at Varian immediately following Tell me about the first Coherent the development at Bell Lab. laboratory set up at your house. Instead of renting space, we moved d Did you have applications in mind for the laser into my house. A 220-volt plug wass needed to power the laser, so wee or just a faith in the technology? Both. The ion laser was the next important laser set up in the laundry room. Wee for a number of reasons, one of which was it used the power available for the produced more power than a helium neon clothes dryer to do CO2 laser laser and people wanted more power. Also, experiments and the water for the helium neon laser was characteristically the washing machine to cool red, but the ion laser ran the gamut from blues the thing. But we didn’t have a to reds. It was pretty fundamental to believe sufficient distance to throw the that people were going to want different colors beam to see if we had coherent Express Vol. 1/10

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STORIES IN SHEET METAL

CREDITS

Steel on the battlefield

TRUMPF Express Vol. 1/10 Magazine for Sheet Metal Processing Published by TRUMPF Inc. Farmington, CT 06032

Knights in shining armor.

www.us.trumpf.com Responsible for the content

Steel has long functioned as a protective barrier against one’s enemies. From the steel plate full-body armor worn by knights in the Middle Ages to the titanium-steel armor that covers today’s military combat vehicles, steel is proven as a battle-worthy material with a fascinating history. Before the introduction of plate armor, another type of armor called mail was worn as a full outfit or in pieces covering the head or limbs. According to the website of the Higgins Armory Museum in Worchester, MA, (www.higginsmuseum.org), mail is composed of interlocking iron rings and is still used in butchers’ gloves. Mail is an armor form that’s more than 1000 years old. Sword blows were unable to break the rings, and the holes in the mail armor were too small to allow the penetration of blade tips; however, mail provided little or no protection from crushing weapons. Plate armor then replaced mail, partly because it spread the force of the weapons over a wide area and deflected blades better. During the Middle Ages, knights who could afford it had their full-body plate armor custom-made; however, most had to buy their suit readymade and then modify it to fit. The price of a suit of armor cost about one-quarter of a knight’s annual income. Some men could only afford to buy a few pieces of armor to cover parts of their body, such as their legs or arms, and still others had to “borrow” pieces they found scattered on the battlefield. 30 Express Vol. 1/10

According to the Higgins Armory Museum’s website, combat suits consisted of more than 200 individual pieces of plate steel. Amazingly, if the suit fit properly, a knight who was struck from his horse during battle could easily remount—even though the armor typically weighed between 45 and 80 pounds. The armor of earlier ages was no more of a hindrance to those who wore it back then than is the equipment that modern-day soldiers carry on the battlefield, which weighs about 90 pounds. Because of the steel forging techniques that were used, a full plate armor protected soldiers from arrows, swords and also early firearms. When they were felled to their death, knights typically succumbed to blunt weapons that could send sudden jolts of force through the plate armor, which resulted in injuries such as hemorrhage of organs, broken bones and head trauma. Although the age of the knight has long been over, steel continues to be used on the battlefields to fight the wars of the 21st century. It’s found in an array of weaponry and protective gear--from body armor to armored personnel carriers. However, as sturdy as steel is, it also has a softer side. Think “knight in shining armor” and the code of chivalrous conduct for those who entered the knighthood. That code dates back to the Dark Ages and requires virtuous conduct that not only includes bravery and combat skills, but also faith, hope, charity, valor, and gallantry toward women. Steel forging techniques protected soldiers from arrows, swords and early firearms.

Sheila LaMothe Editor Melanie McMillan 860-255-6112 melaniemcmillan@us.trumpf.com Editorial staff Patti Charette Mike Gordon Susan Grohs Sheila LaMothe Design and production John Mik, MIK Advertising & Design Printing and assembly Paladin Commercial Printers, LLC Contributors Pr + co. gmbh, Stuttgart Photography Steve Adams Photography Chip Duncan on behalf of Relief International Matthew J. Glawatz, Clark Enersen Partners Scholz Images Inc. Lance Juusola Ludwig Photography Emilio Toledo


CONTENTS

EXPRESS VOL. 1/10

FEATURE

8 A new kid on the block PORTRAIT

When Projects Inc. in Glastonbury, Connecticut brought the TruLaser 1030 onto their shop floor, it was a test to see if the machine would perform to expectations and have an impact on the bottom line.

TOPICS 12

18

SOLUTIONS

12 Jaguars, horses and chickens: oh my! NCS Jaguar, a successful company based in Mexico, operates in a hacienda-like environment. CUSTOMER FOCUS

18 No dark days here It’s no joke; friends can go into business together and succeed. PROFILE

21 Creativity and quality Metal and art make for a creative cocktail at TMCO, where coffee is a lifestyle. FABRICATING

24

28

24 Lighting the way This New York-based company has a presence in just about every noted museum in the world. ANNIVERSARY

26 Celebrating 50 years of laser technology Fift y years of the laser were enough to change the world.

Special TruServices and Spare Parts XChange Starting on page 15

2 4

Express Vol. 1/10

STANDARDS 03 04 28

TO THE POINT PANORAMA PERSONALITIES

30 30 31

STORIES IN SHEET METAL CREDITS CLOSING POINT Express Vol. 1/10

5


Vol. 1/10

Magazine for Sheet Metal Processing in North America

Small, but mighty TRUMPF‘s TruLaser 1030 is unlike any other laser cutter on the market

Metal and art Functionality and creativity at TMCO

A light accent Downlights, accent lights and wallwashers add ambiance

Fifty years A milestone for laser technology

Powering Industry Japan is much more than sushi and sake. Its influence is worldwide, in industries like automotive, aerospace, electronics, textiles, and semiconductors. With one third of Japan’s electricity coming from nuclear power, safe and continual operation of the plants is essential. Engineered Systems Group (ESG), with help from their TRUMPF

equipment, designs and fabricates stainless steel strainers to help supply cool water to nuclear reactors across Japan and around the world in the event of a Loss of Coolant Accident. If there’s an emergency, the strainers allow reactors to shut down safely – keeping the lights on for industry and the future bright for people everywhere.

Special TruServices and Spare Parts Xchange—going beyond the sale

TRUMPF Express V 1-10  

TRUMPF Express features news and information about TRUMPF and our customers.

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