Category Archive: Manufacturing

Pro Tips For Staying Productive During Summer Downtime

Summer is the slowest season for business regardless of the industry.  In the manufacturing arena, it is common for many plants, shop floors, and engineers to take an extended leave.  The demand simply isn’t there like it is the rest of the year.  With business orders slowing down it becomes a perfect time to reanalyze different departments of your organization.  Here at some pro tips on staying productive during summer months.

Productivity At WorkAs June approaches it is the perfect time to inspect all safety procedures, as it’s recognized as the Safety Awareness Month. Carefully going through all safety procedures and doing some light research on any new safety enhancing technologies that have hit the market is something to take full advantage of during this first month of summer.

While researching any new advancements in safety, it may be wise to also review safety procedures with all members of your team.

Another great way to stay ahead of the curve is to double check all inventory levels.  Purchasing any orders now is a great way to stay sharp when business picks back up again. Also, because it is a slower month for most businesses you may experience more customer service or receive your order faster than usual.

The last pro tip we like to share, to keep moving forward during downtime, is to do some overall service and performance analysis of your company.  A great way to approach this is by conducting a customer service survey with existing customers.  Surveys can provide your customers with more information or remind them of important changes or innovations in your organization.  It’s a great way to stay gently on top of their mind for future business.  Surveys also benefit you by allowing you to spot any trends. Spotting trends ahead of competition could offer you a significant advantage.

Although summer may slow down in direct sales, it can be the perfect time to do some housekeeping items that will propel you forward once the business picks back up again.  Stay ahead of the competition and check off these pro tips to have peace of mind your workers are safe, your inventory levels are replenished, and your customers have you top of mind.

Double Checking Your Safety In The Workplace

Staying safe at the workplace can be very different to many people depending on their occupation, field, and level of expertise. At Sutton-Garten, we specialize in helping all within the manufacturing fields, especially welders, remain safe during their work days.

By now you have noticed that June is Safety Awareness Month, and you have given thought on safeguarding you and your workers. But what can be done to ensure safety is a number one priority that has not already been in place?

A good idea is to examine the different areas necessary to keep safe and review if safety measures are in place for each of them. Check the following:

  • Body: In most welding applications it is critical to have all exposed skin covered to prevent burns. Aprons or sleeves that are flame resistant and durable are best fits. Duck and leather options are highly recommended.
  • Hands: Hand protection with protective gloves. An important factor when choosing a welding glove is its grade of leather that will provide protection against heat, spark and abrasions but also able to allow nimbleness while welding. Leading manufacturers of welding gloves include Revco, Tillman, comfort, Steiner, and Weldmark
  • Respiratory protection: The most popular amongst our offerings is the Miller Respirator which defends against the most demanding welding environments. If you are looking for a specific style or requirements just give us a call and we’ll be happy to find it for you.
  • Proper eyewear for eye protection: There are a variety of different approaches to protecting your eyesight including visors, helmets, or googles/glasses. Luckily Sutton-Garten carries all variations.
  • Hearing safety: First best practice is to have an on-site noise check conducted. After noise checks are established a nice add-on safety tip is to use ear plugs for extra hearing protection.
  • Fall prevention by reviewing proper use of harnesses, lanyards, and self-retracting lifelines.

    If you need any items or want to check other options that are better suited for your workers please review our catalogue or give us a call and a member of our team can help assist you with the right solution.

    This June, don’t let Safety Month be something you just read about, take action now to prevent any harm to yourself or others.

Company Upgrades to Better Serve Our Customers

For over 90 years, we have provided quality welding and cutting equipment, supplies and gases to the metal-working industry. We offer rental and repair services for welding and cutting equipment, training for welding certifications, and provide bulk gas and dry ice to the food and beverage industries.

To better serve our customers, our team has upgraded all their computer software and handheld devices for the C02 and welding drivers. These upgrades have enabled them to scan the tanks and take print out of the details, such as the tanks associated with the customers. This will also enable them to enter the CO2 orders for bulk deliveries in their devices and process the orders faster and more efficiently. Customers will be able to modify their orders easily and conveniently via the new system.

Our fleet of CO2 delivery trucks and nitrogen trailers enable us to fill the liquid cylinders on site at the customer’s facility. This service eliminates handling cylinders, saves on product cost, and cylinders may be filled from a remote fill box or through a Transfill hose, eliminating the burden of moving cylinders in the facility. We deliver liquid CO2, cylinder CO2, liquid nitrogen, helium cylinders, and beer gas for beverage and bulk service needs. We also offer bulk gas installation for argon, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, helium and mixed gas systems for higher volume applications.

Cryogenic or refrigerated bulk tanks provide safe outside storage of gases that can be piped to stations within the facility. This eliminates the need to handle the cylinders, results in a safer workplace, and reduces the overall cost of the gases. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you!

A Record Breaking Year for Sutton Garten

We have been bringing welding supplies and gases to Indianapolis and the surrounding areas for over 95 years, and hold the title of being the first distributor for General Electric back in 1923. In addition to being a leading supplier of welding equipment and gases, we believe in teaming up with local schools in an effort to further welding education. On site, we train and certify students in tig, mig, and even stick welding.

 2014 proved to be a record year for us, with sales up in every category, from welding abrasives to plasma cutting equipment. In addition to record sales, the showroom expansion was completed, along with lighting improvements and a new roof. The parking lot was fenced in and even the kitchen area was improved. We also expanded our inventory line and the volume of product in the warehouse.

 Both classrooms and the certifications lab continue to grow at a rapid pace. Opportunity in the welding field looks bright. It’s estimated there are 500,000 welders currently working in the industry, but the majority of those welders are in their 50’s, quickly nearing retirement age. Welding students getting into the field can expect numerous job opportunities and a job placement rate near 100%. Many welding jobs are available due to the amount of infrastructure repair needed in the U.S., especially for railways and mass transit. Mentionable emerging technologies also include wind and nuclear power.

 As more skilled workers in the welding industry are in demand, we plan on continuing to be a leader when it comes to training, educating, and supplying welding equipment, components, and gases.

A Recap of FABTECH

Each year, FABTECH brings together companies from around the globe to celebrate the metal manufacturing industry. It’s the largest metal forming, welding, fabricating and finishing event in North America. The event spans four days, and this year took place in Atlanta, Georgia with over 40,000 people in attendance and over 1,500 companies providing exhibits.

 In addition to the many displays, there are hosts of learning opportunities with more than 100 educational presentations led by experts in their respective fields. These presentations cover everything from the latest trends in metal forming to the newest technologies in the welding industry.

 This year, Sutton Garten Co. was in attendance to support a few of their vendors: Miller Electric, Cold Jet, Lincoln Electric, and Victor Technologies. With over 95 years in the welding equipment, welding supplies, and gas business, Sutton Garten Co. takes pride in being a leader in the industry and believes that education and keeping up with current trends and technology is not only important for business, but important for the future of our field.

 Sutton Garten Co. strongly supports local schools dedicated to education in this field, as well as offering classes on site in tig, mig, and stick welding. This aligns with how FABTECH reaches out to students and school groups in an effort to teach them more about manufacturing and how exciting this field can be.

 With the future of manufacturing looking so promising, now is the perfect time to recruit students interested in pursuing employment in this industry. Sutton Garten Co. is looking forward to the next FABTECH planned for November 2015, sure to showcase the latest in technology and advancements in the growing metal working, welding, and gas fields.

Welding Tech Education

Since our company was started over 90 years ago, we have been focused on a variety of services, including bulk gas installations, CO2 and nitrogen gas filling, welding equipment repairs, and training and certifying procedures. As welding continues to be a core part of our business, we are constantly collaborating with schools and institutes that offer welding education. We believe that when our staff is properly trained in traditional and new technologies, they can perform the best work for our customers.

In house, we currently train and certify those interested in mig, tig, and stick welding. Our knowledgeable and experienced team has many years of welding expertise to share and can provide custom instruction. Various companies have come to us to train and certify their staffs for safe and proper welding of pipe and plate products using different welding techniques. We can also provide instruction on welding practices for aluminum, steel, and stainless steel materials.

Our staff can organize AWS and ASME welding certification courses either at our facility or at yours for up to six welders. We also offer an introductory course that is aimed at welding for hobbyists. If you have an old auto that needs repairing or are interesting in building something from scratch, this course will teach you safe welding practices and procedures. A small class size and individual time with the course instructor ensure that students learn and get the chance to work on their own projects using our new equipment.Hobart Welding Institute

In addition to our welding instruction courses, we work collaboratively with the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology to offer technical training courses and specialized in-plant programs for companies. Hobart’s hands-on, technical, and safety training is a great program because it is an industry leading institute that has successfully trained over 100,000 students in the past 80 years.

Miller Electric Manufacturing is a welding company that is associated with the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology. We work with Miller Electric to coordinate training on new machinery and equipment. Miller’s trademark blue equipment has been around since 1929 and is primarily composed of affordable welding products. Their extensive history of producing welding products began when they began to manufacture a welder with a built-in wire feeder, the Millermatic 35. In addition to their innovative and advanced products, Miller also complies with a number of different safety and equipment standards.

Another popular welding company is Lincoln Electric. Since the late 1800s, Lincoln has been a leader in the welding technology space. Their traditionally red equipment is available for a number of different operations, including welding, cutting, and automation.  As a leader in the welding arena, Lincoln serves a long list of industries, such as the automotive, offshore, pipeline, nuclear, and thermal energy industries.

If you’re interested in learning more about our welding services or our welding education instruction programs, please contact us for more information.

The Future of Automation

Many of our clients, especially the larger businesses, have invested heavily in automation. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that companies are investing in the latest technology. What may surprise you is just how widespread the adoption of automation technology is. It’s not just the expected industries that are keeping an eye on evolution in the automation sector.Equipment

We frequently work with clients in the automotive sector, and most people would expect to see adoption of automation technology in the industry that brought us the assembly line. But at this year’s Automation Conference in Chicago, automation professionals from an enormous selection of industries gathered together. What’s clear is that it’s not just companies in the automotive sector that benefit from improved automation technology. Packaging manufacturers, beer and wine makers, even municipal water and wastewater firms want to keep an eye on advancements in automation.

This is because automation is not just used for building durable goods. Automating individual processes can also be beneficial to companies. That is why the oil and gas terminal automation market is expected to be worth over $4.4 billion by 2020. Terminal automation allows companies in the oil and gas industry to improve their processes and their real time data management.

Certainly, this is the future of automation. Automation will not just help us make improvements to how we build things, but companies will also be looking at how they can improve productivity and improve plant floor connectivity with new devices and innovations. Tablets and smartphones that easily interface with each other and new technology could end up being just as integral to a shop’s performance as the latest and greatest assembly robot. The ability of automation to streamline processes and eliminate wasted time will become even more valuable to each and every industry.

A Look at the Changing Welding Industry

As a company that works closely with the welding industry, we certainly find it important to keep on top of the latest news and trends within the welding industry. Due to an increase in global commerce and an increase in exports, more and more consolidation is occurring in the industry. In the past few months, we have seen an example of this consolidation, as ESAB has taken over what was known as Victor Technologies.

According to this press release, “the combination of ESAB and Victor creates a comprehensive product portfolio that brings a broader array of solutions to the welding and cutting industry.” With this merge, that means there is now less and less competition in the welding and cutting equipment market. This leaves three major companies –ITW/Miller, Lincoln, and ESAB—as the major welding and cutting equipment players. These companies now all own cutting torch lines that they can offer to their customers, and they are also putting more of an emphasis on safety within their business. We have also seen that the main line of welding equipment being used by professional welding companies is coming from one of these larger equipment manufacturers.

Despite this consolidation, however, the IWDC (Independent Welding Distributors Cooperative) still remains strong. We continue to support the changing welding industry with our products and services, and we are excited to see what else is in store!

Dry Ice Burst Due to Auto Growth

In recent years, the automotive industry has staged a comeback, with a growth in technology helping to boost the industry. In fact, since the recession, many major auto companies have re-examined their production process and are integrating changes in order to remain stable. According to this article from Tire Business, this includes implementing programs that identify “the suppliers, bringing them in early on in the design and engineering process and identifying new technologies that vehicle manufacturers will need so that there is a greater working relationship.”

Since we often work with automotive companies, this growth is exciting for us to see. A boost in the automotive industry has directly correlated with a boost in our business as well. Specifically, auto companies have paired with us recently in order to use our ice blasting equipment for cleaning applications. We even had to install another dry ice machine in order to handle the increase in work. One company has utilized the ice blasting in order to remove wax from parts. Others who work with metal coatings and cold-forged parts use the ice blasting equipment to properly clean parts. Car part companies, working with parts such as metal stampings, mufflers, and auto exhaust systems, use the ice blasting for cleaning as well.

Since dry ice is suitable for removing oil off of car parts, we have seen more of a demand in the ice blasting equipment. Additionally, there is no mess with it, it doesn’t conduct electricity so it allows for motors to be running simultaneously, and the dry ice is abrasive enough to clean tough surfaces.

Moving forward, we hope to see an even bigger increase in the automotive industry as technology continues to play a part. As we work closely with the auto industry, we see how it has greatly impacted our business as well, and we only hope it gets even better!

Sutton-Garten introduces the new POWERMAX 125

At Sutton-Garten, we are always on the look out for the most innovative welding tools. Therefore, we are thrilled to be the first distributors to get our hands on and offer Hypertherm’s exciting new Powermax125. The Powermax125 is the latest innovative plasma-cutting tool from Hypertherm’s Powermax line, which is extremely popular with Sutton-Garten’s heavy industrial users. The Powermax 125 offers users a wide range of benefits including:

  • Severs 57mm (2-1/4”) thick metals at 125 mm/min (5 ipm)
  • 100% duty cycle
  • Cuts 550% faster on 12mm (1/2”) than Oxyfuel
  • Can handle portable automation, x-y table cutting, and robotic cutting and gouging
  • Works with the Duramax high amp torch line which comes in a range of sizes

One of the best parts about the Powermax125 is the ability to customize a configuration to your exact needs. You can mix and match from:

  • Power supply options (480V CSA, 600V CSA, 380V CCC, 400V CE)
  • Torch Options (hand, machine, robotic, and long torches plus five cable lengths)
  • Cable Options (both work and control cables in three lengths)
  • Plus a long list of genuine Hypertherm accessories!

Hypertherm also came out with a new and improved PowerMax 30, which is called the PowerMax 30XP and released in mid-March. This unit features a carrying case, improved cut speed and capacity, and a new torch with different improved consumables. We already have them on order and are looking forward to demonstrating them to customers.

We see a great deal of equipment come through our doors, so it is a big deal when we get this excited about these new hand-held plasma cutting products. Come check them out soon!