Jeremy Bout Edge Factor Interview

Jeremy Bout Edge Factor Interview - Shop Floor AutomationsIt is pretty difficult these days to find someone who does not have a NetFlix, YouTube or Hulu account. They are gateways not only for entertainment but also a good resource to learn about different cultures than our own, in the instances of “how to” videos, reality programming (well, some of it) and documentaries. Now, there is a network of programming online for the manufacturing industry, MFG Day & the Made in America movement similar to these platforms called Edge Factor.

The introduction video to Edge Factor is a great window into what they do. It starts with the point of view of the parent, the educator and the employer. It all focuses on how manufacturing jobs are the perfect middle ground for the frustrated parent who paid for a child’s education who does not have a job in that career field, while the employer gets skilled workers, and the educator can get the resources they need to teach in this realm.

Jeremy Bout Edge Factor Interview - Shop Floor AutomationsThe Founder of Edge Factor Jeremy Bout was a typical high school graduate who didn’t quite know what he wanted to do. What was atypical about him was that he experimented with manufacturing by trying out a five-axis machine. He said the experience changed his life significantly.

In an interview with Shop Floor Automations, Jeremy spoke about how the first piece he ever built with a machine set him on a path that would change his life, as well as the lives of others. For Disney, it was all started by a mouse, and for Jeremy, it was all started by an end mill.

“A standard, four flute end mill which looks so simple really became a catalyst for just recognizing that everything is made in using that one tool. Boy oh boy, you can make an awful lot of different parts [with it]. The diversity of things that an end mill can create is shocking and astounding, so for me, the end mill was a gateway to a much, much bigger journey in life.”

Read more after the page break below! 

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Legacy SFA Blogs – Edition 2

Shop Floor Automations specializes, among many things, in legacy machines on the manufacturing shop floor. In the same spirit of preservation, we present Edition 2 of our Legacy SFA Blog Series from the Shop Floor Automations blog!

Shop Floor Automations blog - Legacy SFA Blogs - Press Coverage - Media CoverageIn February of 2016, MoldMaking Technology published an article about our machine monitoring solutions through Scytec DataXchange. “Scytec DataXchange software from Shop Floor Automations (SFA) is a machine monitoring software that provides detailed data collection and real-time reporting on a dashboard, enabling users to instantly track productivity, and plan for increased efficiency and time savings on the shop floor.”

You can read the whole article here. The same article was also published in the March 2016 MoldMaking Technology issue on page 47.

Recently, Shop Floor Automations made a brand new hire for a new position. Amanda came on board as our Digital Marketing Coordinator (she is now simply our Marketing Coordinator) and AMT (the Association for Manufacturing Technology) published the announcement here.

As a bit of a throwback, Advanced Manufacturing (formerly known as Manufacturing Engineering Magazine) published this piece on us in October of 2014. Patrick Waurzyniak writes “More people than ever are looking to automate their processes, said Greg Mercurio, president of Shop Floor Automations Inc. (La Mesa, CA), a reseller of Predator Software’s manufacturing data collection suite and of the cloud-based Scytec data monitoring solution. ‘Time is money, and now there’s more in-process probing and automatic collection of data,” he add. “The key is everything is done at the machine tool.’” You can read more here.

Want more information on the solutions we offer? Call us at (877) 611-5825 or chat with us on social media

Multi Connect IMTS 2016 Press Release

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The Multi Connect is latest in the Connect Series that combines a PLC, Wireless, Ethernet, Serial RS232 & MTConnect

La Mesa, CA (June 1, 2016) – Shop Floor Automations (SFA) is excited to announce the release of our latest tool in the Shop Floor Automations Connect Series at IMTS 2016 in Chicago, IL. The Multi Connect is a turnkey device, able to continuously monitor the machine’s operating state and other necessary data, while making this information readily available over a network connection using the industry standard MTConnect protocol. The Multi Connect is compatible with a wide range of machine monitoring software packages, including Scytec’s DataXchange, Predator’s Machine Data Collection, and more!

What originally required two different devices combined for the desired result, the Multi Connect replaces in one product! This “configure & go” hardware connects to a variety of equipment via built-in digital I/O, which can be overlaid on existing signals for monitoring cycle start, cycle stop, alarm, and status indictors, such as stack lights. These inputs support 10 to 30 VDC signals and may be configured to detect on/off/pulse type signals. The user can then map the data signals to the MTConnect standard data items.

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SFA Product Featured in MoldMaking Technology

We are excited to see our company’s press release featured in MoldMaking Technology, the most comprehensive magazine for mold, tool and die shop managers. Click here to view the article on the MMT website or read our full press release of Scytec

La Mesa, CA – January 28, 2015 – Shop Floor Automations (SFA), a leader in automation solutions and technology is excited to announce the release of a new product version of Scytec DataXchange Software.

DataXchange is simple and easy-to-use machine monitoring software that can increase efficiency and save time on the shop floor. Detailed data collection is no problem with a monthly billing system and no long term contracts. DataXchange also offers real-time reporting presented on the user dashboard in order for shop owners and operators to instantly track productivity and plan for increased efficiency in their shops.

DataXchange version 2016.01.27 offers new features and functionality. With the addition of an Application Program Interface (API), DataXchange can easily integrate with other software and hardware. Additionally, new charting and reporting functions have been introduced as well as enhanced MTConnect communication. Featured in the photo, the new Target Utilization chart displays a desired utilization number next to the actual utilization for each piece of equipment. Colors are used to identify how close the actual values are within the defined targets. With an improved interface and Data Entry Screen, Scytec DataXchange is truly a state-of-the-art tool that no machine shop should operate without.

For more information:, email:,

Tel: 619-461-4000, fax: 619-461-5918, toll free: 877-611-5825.

Predator Touch HMI Released

La Mesa, CALIF – November 16, 2015 – Shop Floor Automations (SFA), one of the largest independent CNC Automation Suppliers for Predator Software has now released Predator Touch HMI, a new addition to our software line.

This new Windows application is a touch first HMI, Human Machine Interface, designed to replace shop floor bar code readers, QR code readers and hand held terminals. The simplicityTouch HMI of this new software allows machinists and operators to control with ease and little training.

The touch first interface simplifies real-time manual data collection and direct numerical control. Touch HMI also supports data collection for machine downtimes, scrap reasons, and more. Running on almost all Windows editions, Predator Touch HMI is easy to install and begin improving manufacturing processes and operations.

Predator Touch HMI has many features including the ability to create an unlimited number of shop floor applications. This software also includes three different button types with the touch optimized interface. Additionally, there is no install required and it can be integrated with other Predator applications as well as other third party apps.

Touch HMI has the ability for wired or wireless support as well as configuration to communicate with CNCs, CMMs, test stands and other devices. With an affordable site license, Predator Touch HMI is a valuable tool in the automation of machine shops.

For more information:, email:,
Tel: 619-461-4000, fax: 619-461-5918, toll free: 877-611-5825.


Smartware Group Joins Scytec for Smart Machine Monitoring Talk at FABTECH 2015

CHICAGO, IL – October 5, 2015 – FABTECH 2015, to be held in Chicago from November 9-12, will feature a special presentation by Smartware Group President Paul Lachance and Scytec President and CEO Josh Davids. Their joint discussion, entitled, “Machine Monitoring and Data Collection for Maintenance Optimization,” will walk manufacturers through the process of feeding rich streams of data from smart machine monitors into a Computerized Maintenance Management System (CMMS) for monitoring and reporting, all using today’s cloud technologies. FABTECH is North America’s largest metal forming, fabricating, welding and finishing event.

FabTech_Logo_RevScytec is the producer of DataXchange, a cloud-based manufacturing process control, data collection, and machine monitoring system. Colorado-based Scytec reports that clients experience productivity increases of 10% on average.

The data collected by DataXchange can be synced in real-time with modern CMMS, like Smartware Group’s Bigfoot, to assist manufacturers with aggregating and analyzing data for better asset management – and improved performance for machinery, equipment and building systems.

“A well-designed CMMS already gives maintenance professionals a significant advantage in terms of improving their operations to save on corrective maintenance, labor costs, and to increase machine longevity,” Lachance said. “And when ‘meter reading’ or smart assets are directly tied to CMMS, preventive maintenance can rise to a whole new level with predictive maintenance. With this linkage in place, CMMS can provide instant access to live data from equipment, building systems and production lines.”

For example, CMMS can create a PM calendar alert to generate a work order for routine maintenance on an Air Handling Unit (AHU) every four weeks, as recommended by the manufacturer. But suppose that same maintenance protocol could be followed once every 500 operating hours, rather than every four weeks.

Unless the AHU is running 24/7, those 500 hours of usage could stretch well beyond four weeks. When the CMMS receives meter readings directly from the AHU, it tracks the hours run and does not produce a work order until the unit actually nears 500 hours in operation. This marriage between smart machine data and the CMMS results in savings on parts and labor costs because it helps eliminate excess maintenance labor and parts spent on the AHU.

When data flows instantaneously from machine monitoring systems to a CMMS, it also becomes easier for the CMMS to identify when a malfunction is a false alarm. At the same time, the CMMS automatically captures true alarm events and triggers work orders for corrective action.

A CMMS can also set different variables for meter readings or other machine-produced data. In addition to “hours run,” it could check for “pressure,” “temperature,” “widgets produced,” and other indicators that alert the maintenance team to check on machinery operating outside of acceptable tolerance levels. The team can then act on that data, making adjustments as necessary to prevent equipment from breaking down or production lines from stopping.

“Maintenance professionals need to recognize how much power they have at their fingertips when machine monitoring data is directly connected to CMMS,” Davids said. “The synergy between a smart machine and a CMMS creates a win-win situation for everyone who taps into this formidable combination of technologies.”

Lachance and Davids will present their talk as part of the “Modernizing Maintenance and Inspection” track (Session F85) at FABTECH 2015 on Wednesday, November 11, 2015, at 11:10 a.m. at McCormick Place, Chicago, IL. Shop Floor Automations will spotlight its Bigfoot CMMS on the trade show floor in Exhibit Booth Label S5663

For registration and further information about FABTECH 2015, visit

About Scytec Consulting, Inc.
Scytec Consulting, Inc., founded in 2001 and headquartered in Greenwood Village, CO, is a leader in providing shop floor machine monitoring and control systems for the manufacturing industry.

Scytec’s DataXchange is a cloud and on-premise machine monitoring and data collection system that utilizes MTConnect, and Fanuc FOCAS, and hardware methods to collect from both the latest machines and legacy equipment. The system features unlimited real-time dashboards, alerts, and configurable analytics, while offering a zero commitment, month-to-month plan for the cloud version in order to make the many benefits of machine monitoring readily available to the industry.

Visit to set up a demo today.

About Smartware Group, Inc.
Smartware Group, Inc., headquartered in Center Harbor, N.H., produces Bigfoot CMMS for manufacturing, distribution, data centers, hospitality, mining, and energy & utilities industries.

Since 2002, Bigfoot has helped more than 10,000 users worldwide improve facility and equipment maintenance operations with advanced capabilities that include preventive maintenance (PMs) and predictive maintenance, work order scheduling, maintenance requests, asset life cycle management, parts replacement inventory, and built-in reporting. Bigfoot CMMS’ native functionality paired with its intuitive design allows maintenance professionals to implement the solution and get results quickly, often in a matter of weeks.

The Bigfoot solution earned a Bronze Stevie® Award during the 11th Annual International Business Awards in the Best Interface Design category. Experience the Bigfoot difference by accessing a free trial at today.


#1 In Predator Software Sales 15 Years Running

SHOP FLOOR AUTOMATIONS – #1 In Predator Software Sales 15 Years Running

La Mesa, CALIF – June 9, 2015  – Shop Floor Automations (SFA), a leader in software solutions for the manufacturing shop floor,  has continued to rank #1 in Predator software sales for 15 years running. This accomplishment is credited to the SFA team due to dedication and quality customer service.

This honor recognizes Shop Floor Automation’s achievement as Predator Software’s top revenue producing reseller for the past 15 years.

The company is frequently required to go through certification and training at Predator Software Corporate Office in Portland, OR.  This hands on training consist of install, trouble shooting, implementing, and best practices for the complete line of the Predator Software Suite.

SFA has also been involved with new product development and features for enhancements to existing products in beta testing and new hardware solutions.

As a service center and training center for Predator Software, SFA continues to show dedicationb, technical skills, new methods of implementation and connectivity to the manufacturing industry using CNC machines and other type of equipment.  Onsite training is provide at customer locations as well as SFA’s corporate office in La Mesa, about 10 miles near San Diego, California.

For more information:, email:,
Tel: 619-461-4000, fax: 619-461-5918, toll free: 877-611-5825.

Network Any CNC Control

Shop Floor Automations: NETWORK ANY CNC CONTROL

La Mesa, CALIF – March 16, 2015 – Shop Floor Automations (SFA), one of the largest independent CNC Automation Suppliers for the CNC Machine Tool Industry has enhanced the LAN Connect product to add Ethernet to any CNC machine.

LAN-ConnectThe LAN Connect device acts as an interface between commercially available SD flash memory and any CNC control with an available RS-232 port. Machine tool files can be sent from CNC memory to the LAN Connect device, SD memory to CNC memory or drip fed (DNC) from the SD memory.  Flexible CNC communication firmware is built into the unit allowing connection to just about any machine tool control.

The LAN Connect device contains all the necessary hardware to integrate a universal display onto a CNC machine tool pendant. The controller is DIN rail mountable inside the pendant or can be reverse mounted on the display.  A two (2)GB SD card is included and be upgraded by the end user to any size or brand desired to support larger NC programs / storage capacity.

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See our January ads in the Southwest Manufacturing News

Advertisement for Houston - Manufacturing NewsHello Houston TX! Here we come. Shop Floor Automations will be opening a Regional office in Houston in February of 2015 and are helping to get the word out in Manufacturing News.

Please check out our ad and see how we can help shop floors in Texas. Here is our other ad, as well

Everything is bigger in Texas, right? This now includes our stellar services. Here are a quick 5 reasons why you should go with SFA:

  1. We are focused on your success. We don’t just sell you a product and make you figure it out. We have remote and onsite support.
  2. We are continually modernizing and staying in touch with our industry. We post about industry changes and important updates via our blog, the newsletters we send to customers, and via our social media channels.
  3. We constantly attend leading industry events, especially like HOUSTEX, to get face-to-face with customers to show them our solutions, first-hand.
  4. We have created and continue to host informative webinars and training videos to show the game-changing benefits of our products, as well as having an extensive FAQ section.
  5. We are an American-based company that will go coast-to-coast to help customers.

Call us for more information on how to improve OEE and get into lean manufacturing on your shop floor! (877) 611-5825

Predator’s Enhanced Ethernet Based Machine Monitoring called CNC Service

Shop Floor Automations announces a new solution for Machine Monitoring utilizing MTConnect, FOCAS and other solutions called CNC Service (originally an article in CNC West).


LA MESA, Calif. – December 16, 2014 – Shop Floor Automations (SFA), the largest distributor and Service Center for Predator Software Inc., today announced the release of Predator’s popular Manufacturing Data Collection (MDC) software for Ethernet-based machine tools.

For many years, Predator has offered its fully automated, real-time MDC system for any size company to monitor and improve shop floor productivity using PLCs, macros, and paper-based solutions. This solution integrated well into equipment with stack lights and older machines to capture running, alarms, feed hold, and idle time, but left some users objecting to adding more equipment due to the costs of hardware requirements.

Today, most CNC machines include Ethernet ports and can be leveraged for data collection. CNC machines that use a Fanuc controller may have a feature called FOCAS, which allows for the capture of real-time data such as overrides, spindle speed, program number, feed/speed rates, alarms, and indicates control mode.

Another new standard for collecting data through an Ethernet port is called MTConnect. Like FOCAS, MTConnect can collect real-time data from your machine. SFA is a member of the MTConnect Technical Advisory Board. We work closely with their partners and the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT) to continue to create open communication standards that provide the capability to pass data from machine tools to high-level systems for further processing using the XML-based standard. MTConnect can be added to CNC machines at a reasonable cost now from numerous machine tool builders.

SFA has implemented several machine monitoring systems recently using a new product from Predator Software called CNC Service. This product is designed to run as Windows Service and connect to any number of machines via Ethernet using an IP address and port number. The service is configured to “poll” the equipment starting at every five seconds and provides machine status to the user via tablets, desktops, and digital signage on the shop floor.

All the collected data is recorded into one of three database platforms—Microsoft Access, Microsoft SQL or Oracle—so decision-makers will have various reports and charts regarding production history at their fingertips. Analyzing production details provides a real understanding of the quality and efficiency of production resources, as areas of deficiency can be easily viewed, analyzed, and eventually improved. Production and quality details can be analyzed for a particular machine and can be broken down by day, week, month, quarter or year.

Predator CNC Service can be easily integrated to provide feed rate, spindle speed, MDI, mode (MDI, Auto, Handle), emergency stops, machine alarms, single block, tool number length and diameter offsets, and part counters. Other information such as downtime reasons, job, part, operation and users can be captured in the reading variables as well.

With the motto “You can only improve what you measure,” Predator’s CNC Service helps improve the manufacturing process by empowering decision-makers with the information they need to run production more efficiently.

For more information:, email:,
Tel: (619) 461-4000, fax: (619) 461-5918, toll free: (877) 611-5825.