Top 3 Benefits of Machine Monitoring

Top 3 Benefits of Machine Monitoring Software

When Shop Floor Automations brings its machine monitoring solutions to trade shows, once in a while, we have people approach us saying they have a need for tool monitoring. When we clarify our software monitors utilization of machines and not tools (even though we do have tool management, which is different), some start to walk away disappointed. We are able to pull them back in by quickly describing to them the Top 3 benefits of machine monitoring, and we wanted to share that information with you today. 

machine monitoring benefitsReason 1 – Reducing downtime is a universal concern in manufacturing. Driving improvement off of real data that is collected in real-time is crucial to this cause. With machine monitoring, we can find ways to eliminate downtimes, which should increase uptime significantly.

Reason 2 – It gives your operators a voice. The people working on the shop floor want to explain what is going on in a way that someone who is not a machinist can understand and see. They might tell their supervisor about the problems they have, but maybe the info does not get through to upper management, so then upper management just thinks the machinists are not doing a good enough job. Machine monitoring and the data collected gives them the ability to tell everyone in the company why machines are not running, which means that hopefully, a new process can be put in place to help with the concerns of downtime.

Check out our video tutorial on how to use the data entry screen on DataXchange machine monitoring!

Reason 3 –  You will have confidence knowing a machine needs to be fixed or replaced. When we take our car to the repair shop, we ask for diagnostic codes of what is wrong with our vehicles so we can do research on what exactly is the problem that needs fixing. This is because we want to determine what kind of investment we can or want to put into an aging machine. With machine monitoring, understanding the true utilization of the machines and being able to identify if machines are underutilized or overburdened can help aid a company into seeing why a machine has issues. This can help with decisions on whether new equipment needs to be purchased by being able to track unplanned downtime.

Want more info? Fill out a request to attend a machine monitoring webinar, or call us at (877) 611-5825.

 

Jeremy Bout Edge Factor Interview

Jeremy Bout Edge FactorShop Floor Automations interviews Jeremy Bout of Edge Factor

Everyone these days has NetFlix, YouTube or Hulu. These platforms provide entertainment, educational programs, “how to” videos, reality programming, and documentaries.

Because of the influence of these platforms, the idea came about to make one for the manufacturing industry. Let’s talk about 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.

Manufacturing jobs prove to be 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. It also funnels skilled workers to the employer, while the educator can get the resources they need to teach in this realm.

Edge Factor Edge Factor founder Jeremy Bout was a typical high school graduate with no decisions about his future. When he first experimented with manufacturing via a five-axis machine, he said the experience changed his life.

The first part Jeremy ever built with a machine set him on a path that would change his life and the lives of others. For Disney, it was all started by a mouse – for Jeremy, it all started with 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,” Jeremy says.

“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! 

Read more

Hunting Bigfoot CMMS

Hunting BigfootHunting Bigfoot CMMS

There are many elusive creatures and mysteries in the world that people dedicate their lives to finding. One goal which may seem equally elusive to many shop floor workers is in getting rid of downtime. If you are hunting for a solution to help with downtime and plant maintenance, then you should be hunting Bigfoot CMMS.

In a nutshell, some of the best features of Bigfoot CMMS for plant maintenance software are:

1) Keeping organized to reduce downtime – Automatic reminders prevent PMs from falling through the cracks, which reduces equipment downtime.

2) Saving time – A request form saves maintenance department one hour per day by not having to field or respond to calls or emails for non-emergency maintenance requests.

3) Reporting – Identifying what work has been done on equipment over time & what’s overdue.

4) Analysis – See how much it costs to maintain a piece of equipment over time, when it’s down, & why.

Want to see measurable results? One company was able to reduce downtime by 76 percent with Bigfoot CMMS. Another company reports being able to decrease downtime by 90 percent in a span of two years!

bigfoot cmms One amazing aspect of Bigfoot CMMS is that it can be paired with the machine monitoring solution of Scytec’s DataXchange. These are both solutions that Shop Floor Automations can customize and integrate onto your shop floor.

Something technologically to note about Bigfoot CMMS is that it has an app you can access from both Apple and Android phones. This flexibility is definitely an attractive feature for Bigfoot users.

Check out our most recent article on Bigfoot CMMS in the February issue of MFG News by clicking here. For more info, contact sales via this form or call (877) 611-5825.

January/February 2017 SFA Newsletter

Shop Floor Automations NewsletterThe following is an archived copy of our January/February 2017  SFA Newsletter.

What is Secure DNC?

If you have taken the steps to invest in DNC Software for your shop floor, you also want to be sure these programs are secure and your manufacturing operation isn’t taken for a ride by hackers and other shady characters. How many new machines do you have that are just plugged into the network?

Ask us about Secure DNC – a Windows application designed to be installed on Windows-based CNC machines, CMMs, test stands, and other equipment.

It supports a wireless or wired Ethernet interface via TCP/IP. It eliminates the requirements of corporate domains, workgroups, or Windows Shares for DNC transfers. Further good news is that it supports older versions of Windows, which reduces the need for costly Windows updates on CNC machines. Read more about Secure DNC!

Consider: Job Scheduling 

“Shops often share their data management woes, so when I came across these five reasons for making the change from spreadsheets to a real-time, graphical job scheduler, I just had to pass them along,” declares Christina from MoldMaking Technology, regarding our article where we boldly declare spreadsheets to be “dead weight.”

Spreadsheets in the manufacturing industry have to be given the boot, for a number of reasons. Having a responsive program that can help you plan up to 365 days into the future for production schedules is a great step forward for your shop floor. We would love to help you transition to this technology. See more about our job scheduling solution JobPack!

Original SFA newsletter link HERE

Legacy SFA Blogs – Edition 5

shop floor automations

Legacy SFA Blogs – Edition 5

At SFA, we not only work every day to help improve your business, but also to preserve our business history. Our industrial automation solutions are explored by various publications.  

In MFG News, we have appeared a few times recently. In this month’s issue (February 2017), we have a press release on Bigfoot CMMS  (page 18 of the West Edition) and in the Southwest Edition, we have an ad about our machine monitoring solutions.

A piece from Robotics Tomorrow back in October 2016 talked about our Wi-Fi USB Connect product. “Floppy drive emulators and CNC machines with a USB port can now have wireless abilities! You will also have different transfer modes to customize your storage solutions.”

The Fabricator also published facts about the Wi-Fi USB Connect back in November of 2016. “Users will see the files at their machines on the USB as soon as they are added to the shared folder. They will not need to walk to the programmer or find them to get needed answers.”

Speaking of the aforementioned MFG News, we were also in their December 2016 issue (all Editions) talking about our character Shop Floor Man and social media in the manufacturing industry, which you can read about here. Modern Machine Shop also gave a nice mention to Shop Floor Man in this blog here.

Want to know ways to increase your shop floor’s OEE and productivity without investing in new machines? Call (877) 611-5825 or use the chat function on our site to see how we can help! You may also fill out this Contact Form.

What is Predator Secure DNC?

secure dnc software

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What is Predator Secure DNC?

If you invested in DNC Software, you want to know your programs are secure, as well as organized. How many of your newer machines are just plugged into the network?

Introducing, Secure DNC. It’s a Windows application designed to be installed on Windows-based CNC machines, CMMs, test stands, and other equipment.

This application from Predator DNC supports a wireless or wired Ethernet interface via TCP/IP. It eliminates the requirements of corporate domains, workgroups, or Windows Shares for DNC transfers.

Secure DNC also supports older versions of Windows, which reduces the need for costly Windows updates on CNC machines. “The best way to explain how it’s helpful is that it allows secure file transfers to CNC machines through firewalls,” said one of our technicians at SFA.

“For example, if a shop has Windows-based machines and strict network security, they can send directly to the hard drive of the machine,” they explain. This does not interfere with the network and does not create additional security risks.

Another one of our techs also added that “you no longer need to share unsecured folders on machines.”

Using Secure DNC, which is a component of Predator DNC Software, is a beneficial combination for your shop floor. Here is what some of our customers had to say about Predator DNC:

We have experienced faster, easier [CNC] file transport. -Daniel, Benét Laboratories for the US ARMY

Needed to be able to communicate our CNCs and improve the ability of our mill.  -Shane, Power Repair Service Inc

Looking for a system that would communicate through a wireless network, so we could get rid of the switchbox and old wires running all over the machine shop. -Rajikumar, Nell Joy Industries

Want more info? Call us at (877) 611-5825. You can also request more Predator DNC info via this Sales contact form.