Thursday, May 28, 2015

So, what does a barrel of oil have to do with it .....?

I have heard a lot about the effects of the low pricing of a barrel of oil on industry.  Industry professionals have told me about how the reduced cost of oil has caused a cut back in energy production in our country, affecting the manufacture of equipment to explore for, acquire, and transport oil.



On today's NFPA economic forecast webinar, I detected some signs that this is true.  We are seeing an overall macroeconomic slowdown across industry in 2015.  It is not recessionary but the economy is reflecting slowing growth.  We are not exactly sure how much of the slower growth is due to cheaper oil but it must be having an effect.

I don't think we need to worry too much because the economist on the webinar did forecast a good 2016.  Most of the rest of our economy shows signs of strength and I am still hoping for a solid 2016.  

What are you hearing?

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

A simple explanation

I have been involved in fluid power for a long time.  I have been asked from time to time by people unfamiliar with the industry to give some examples of fluid power applications.  On the hydraulic side, one that comes to mind right away are the trucks that pick up your trash once a week.



In other words, garbage trucks.  I often tell people that without the power of hydraulics, the job of collecting your garbage every week would be very difficult.  How else can they smash all that trash to make room for more, without having to go empty the truck more frequently.

Yes, it is kind of a dirty job but one that is essential to a civilized society.  It is a necessary convenience provided by our municipality.  I am grateful for the job that dedicated workers do.

If your company sells into the refuse industry, you should know about WasteExpo that takes place next week in Las Vegas.  There you will see, first hand, the many contributions of hydraulics to the waste collecting and recycling industries.


For more information, visit the WasteExpo website.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Learning from Tutorials

In the April issue of Fluid Power World, we feature  a tutorial on valves titled All about pneumatic valves, in 4 easy steps.  This article does a great job of explaining the components that are necessary in a compressed air system to control force, velocity, and direction of movement.  You can read the article by accessing our digital edition.  You can access the article and the whole issue by clicking on this link.



If you find the article interesting and informative and would like such content on a regular basis, subscribe online at this link.  In June, we will publish our annual Fluid Power Handbook in June that will be full of tutorials about all fluid power components, even more reason to subscribe today.

Many of the engineers who work in fluid power in design or maintenance, have had some formal technical education, some have not.  All can benefit from the content found in Fluid Power World.

Not only do we offer this great content in print, all of the articles also appear on our websites as well. Additionally, we offer monthly e-newsletters, white papers, and webinars  Read all about it which ever way you prefer to read.

Monday, May 18, 2015

The first and best choice

The first and best choice for economic information involving the fluid power industry is the Industry & Economic Outlook Conference (IEOC) presented by the National Fluid Power Association.  We have a post on our Mobile Hydraulic Tips website about the event.

I often quote the information that I learn at the Conference when asked "So what do you hear about the economy?"  No forecasting is perfect but the format at IEOC allows for many great view points about what lies ahead and why.


For more information about the upcoming event, visit the NFPA website.  The Conference will take place at the familiar Westin Chicago North Shore in Wheeling, IL on August 10-12.  Familiar because it has been held there many times in the past.

The event kicks off with the annual IEOC Invitational Golf Tournament at the Chevy Chase Country Club, a public course,  also in Wheeling.  Proceeds from the golf tournament benefit the NFPA Education and Technology Foundation.  You can sign up on the NFPA website for golf also.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Serving Customers With the Right Products

In the April issue of Fluid Power World, we have an interesting article about technology as usual, but also about manufacture and distributor relationships to serve customers with the right products.  The title of the article is Spreaders rely on hydraulic connectors for ease of spreader use and you can read the article by clicking here.  In fact, you can enjoy reading the entire issue by clicking on the photo.



This article has an interesting twist because it discusses how the hydraulic coupling manufacturer partnered with their distributor to best serve the customer.  Additionally, the article discusses the actual couplings and machinery.

We are very proud of our new publication for which this is the fourth issue.  We have come a long way in a short time.  If you are interested in subscribing our print magazine, please click here.  If you are involved in fluid power as a design engineer, repair and replacement expert, or supply chain professional, we would love to have you as a reader.  In fact, anyone interested in fluid power is welcome!

Monday, May 4, 2015

AISTech 2015

There are many interesting things going on in Cleveland, Ohio these days.  We have a continuing revitalization going on in our downtown area as we get ready for the 2016 Republican Convention.  Buildings are being renovated as well as built.  There is a brand new Hilton hotel being constructed right next to our new convention center.

The convention center is the site of this yeas AISTech Show.  It used to be called the Iron & Steel Show as it features products and services that serve the steel industry.


There are many fluid power related exhibits there as fluid power still plays a key role in making metals.  If your company is in the steel or any kind of metal industry, check it out.  You still have time to get the the show and for more information visit their website.