New Tech Metals Golf Outing!

 

 

Yes, it is that time of year again for the annual New Tech Metals golf outing.  This is a great time to celebrate with our employees and really show them our appreciation for all of there efforts and hard work.  This years event will be taking place on August 24th at Northbrook Country Club.  There will be lots of great food and great prizes.  We look forward to another great outing and another great year at New Tech Metals.

 

Seismic Design for Kiosk for Westfield Centre in San Francisco!

One would think by just looking at the pictures that this is just your average Kiosk that you see everyday in you local malls, however this one is a little different.  This particular Kiosk had to be designed with seismic design for the Westfield Shopping Centre in the heart of San Francisco.  When taking on this project I have to say there was some skepticism, however with determination and pride, we were able to complete the project on schedule.

The essence of successful seismic design is three-fold:

  • First, the design team must take a multi-hazard approach towards design that accounts for the potential impacts of seismic forces as well as all the major hazards to which an area is vulnerable.
  • Second, performance-based requirements, which may exceed the minimum life safety requirements of current seismic codes, must be established to respond appropriately to the threats and risks posed by natural hazards.
  • Third, and as important as the others, because earthquake forces are dynamic and responds according to its own design complexity, it is essential that the design team work collaboratively and have a common understanding of the terms and methods used in the seismic design process.

Westfield San Francisco Centre Showcases
The City’s Architectural Heritage

Visitors from around the world who step into Westfield San Francisco Centre marvel at its inspired design, effortless sophistication and world-class shopping,entertainment and dining. Located just two blocks from famed Union Square on San Francisco’s Market Street, this iconic destination is located on the site of the historic former Emporium Department Store, a structure built in 1896 and once hailed as the “Grandest Mercantile Building in the World” with its signature Beaux-Art grand façade and elegant glass dome.

This is what the customer had to say:

“I wanted to let everyone at New Tech Metals know that without your hard work, this would have just been another “cool sketch” that didn’t quite make it to the production line.  We truly could not have done it without you.  In fact, New Tech was the only company (out of about 15) to even consider the challenge.  On behalf of everyone at RCS (who are completely blown away by this one of a kind fixture) thank you.”

 

 

New Tech Metals: Proud Members of the Wisconsin Family Business Forum!

In 2003 we as a family thought that bringing together our varied experiences; Engineering, Manufacturing, and Sales could be a unique opportunity to work together and continue to build upon something that would be available for generations.   Often times there is a need to reach out to others involved in family businesses to share past or present experiences.  Five years ago we found the  Wisconsin Family Business Forum, which has been a great resource and network with other family businesses in Wisconsin.

  • The mission of the Wisconsin Family Business Forum is fostering healthy family businesses through learning, sharing and creating effective solutions regarding the critical issues and problems confronting family businesses.
  • The Wisconsin Family Business Forum is a partnership. We are a community that shares values, experiences and commitment to family business. We come together, as partners: business owners, family members, non-family employees, business professionals and academics – to explore the challenges and rewards of family enterprise and to grow in our knowledge, skills and experience.

New Tech Metals Finding Value in Value Stream Mapping!

Value Stream

If you are on the journey of lean manufacturing and you have planted those seeds that will, one day, grow into that mighty tree, don’t give up on your quest.  A couple years ago we struggled with the fact that it was actually possible to implement Value Stream Mapping methods in an ever changing fabrication job shop environment.  At the time, we were having trouble with on-time deliveries and uncontrollable bottlenecks in various departments.  When taking an in-depth look at our product mix and push-type scheduling methods , we soon realized there was definite room for improvement.  We also determined that there would have to be a culture change, and that this was going to have to be a team effort and not something that was forced from the top down.   So the first initiative was to send all of our employees to Principles of Lean Manufacturing Overview and Simulation hosted by WMEP.  This proved to be instrumental in giving our employees the basic understanding of lean and allowed them a voice in the overall goal of what the company was trying to accomplish.  These are some of the key success factors in the implementation process:

  • Prepare and motivate people
  • Involve employees at all levels and functions
  • Share information and manage expectations
  • Identify and empower champions
  • Create an atmosphere of experimentation
  • Question everything
  • Install realistic performance measures, evaluation systems, and reward systems
  • Start with pilot projects – and never stop

Being that this was our first time with Value Stream Mapping, we decided to just go with the systematic approach to identifying waste.

  •  Identify the target product.
  • Draw while on the shop floor a current state value stream map, which shows the current steps, delays, and information flows required to deliver the target product or service.
  • Assess the current state value stream map in terms of creating flow by eliminating waste.
  • Draw a future state value stream map.
  • Work toward the future state condition.

After many weeks and much work from a lot dedicated people, we finally had completed the entire process on one part.  As minimal as that may seem, it was an overwhelming accomplishment for New Tech Metals.  Since then, we have incorporated over a half  dozen new parts and our current measured on-time delivery is at 98%.  We also experience productivity increases, we have reduced our work-in-process, our measured quality is at 99%, and have bettered our space utilization.  The overall work environment has changed and the morale is positive.  As a company, we will continue to incorporate the many factors of lean manufacturing with the expectations of one day world class.  So I will leave you with the old saying, ” If you always do what you always did, then you will always get what you always got.”

Hot Under the Hood!

With the record breaking heat in the past couple weeks, and for those of you that have to endure such temperatures possibly underneath that welding helmet, or running that laser, or running that press, or maybe grinding and polishing.  It is these types of temperatures that with even a constant supply of Gatorade, Popsicle’s, or Ice Cream doesn’t seem to help.  The day seems to drag on, which leaves you wondering if the day will actually ever end.  Even having your own personal fan bares very little relief, only pushing the warm air around, with little to no cooling benefit.  It is these type of extreme conditions and pride in getting the job done that never goes unnoticed, and we say thanks to all the hard-working, dedicated employees of New Tech Metals.