Monday, August 21, 2017

My big takeaway

The annual Industry & Economic Outlook Conference was held last week at the beautiful Westin North Shore in Wheeling, IL.  I say beautiful because it is one of the nicest hotels that I stay at and it feels like a resort in the midst of North Chicago.

My big takeaway from the day-and-a-half event is that the economy for our fluid power industry and the economy in general is in full recovery mode.  Each of the presenters at this year's Conference shared the same general report on the economy that it continues to increase in terms of both GDP and Industrial Production.  It appears that this trend will continue until at least Spring of 2018.  That could be the inflection point where growth in the economy starts to slow down leading into a very mild recession in 2019.  That is the big takeaway.

This news is backed up by reports from many of the industries served by fluid power technology that the same trend is holding course.  Construction equipment, Mining, Agriculture, Metalworking, and Material Handling equipment are all a growth phase that should continue as projected above.

That is really good news and the fact that any recession seen down the road will be very mild is even better news.  Of course the economy does follow patterns of growth and slowdowns and it is inevitable that we will experience a recession at some point.  Not having anything like the Great Recession on the horizon is welcome news.

The Conference is organized and conducted by the National Fluid Power Association.  You should visit their website for more information at

Monday, August 14, 2017

2017 IEOC

The annual Industry and Economic Outlook Conference operated but the National Fluid Power Association takes place this week at the Westin North Shore in Wheeling, IL.  The NFPA Education Foundation golf outing takes place this afternoon to actually kickoff the event.

The outing is followed by a reception today just to get attendees in the mood for two days of networking and presentation.  The Westin North Shore is a perfect location for the event and has been most accommodating for many years.

The presentations begin on Tuesday with opening remarks followed by IEOC favorite, Alan Beaulieu of the Institute for Trends Research.  His presentation is titled U.S. Market Outlook and its Effect on World Economies.

As always, the IEOC promises to be a benchmark event for the entire year.  I find myself quoting what I learn at the IEOC again and again.  For more information visit the NFPA website

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Join Us in September

We have another great issue planned for the September 2017 issue of Fluid Power World.  As usual, we will be covering all of the fluid power bases with pneumatics, industrial fluid power, mobile hydraulics, a product focus, and our regular monthly departments.

Our Mobile Hydraulics feature article will take a look at the selection and function of reservoirs in mobile systems.  All mobile designers and maintainers should be interested in learning more from this content.

For our Pneumatics feature, we will be doing an overview of pneumatic component and system design with an article on Pneumatics 101.  It is always good to make sure that the basics are covered no matter how technically competent the members of our audience seem to be.

Bulk Handling Systems make up an area of industrial hydraulics that is certainly worthy of consideration in a feature article in this issue.  The power of fluid power gets the job done with accuracy.

The Product Focus in September will be on Hose and Fittings.  This is a broad and very important segment of all fluid power systems.  There are many considerations involved in selecting the proper fluid conveyance components.

Join us in our September issue with your ad.  The closing date for space reservations is August 31, 2017.  Please contact me for consultation about your marketing program.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Every Issue Matters

When our team of editors plans our Editorial Calendar for Fluid Power World for the coming year, several factors are considered.  The most important factor is aways our readers' interest.  We always strive to produce content that will be both informative and interesting to our readers.

We start with a basic outline of topics that will include mobile hydraulics, pneumatics, and industrial hydraulics.  We add to that a specific product spotlight every month.  In our September issue, for example, we feature mobile hydraulics in our planned feature, Reservoir Design For Mobile Systems.  Although this article will attempt to explain the function and importance of reservoirs, is should appeal to all mobile equipment designers and users.

Our Industrial feature for September will be Bulk Handling Applications.  Again, while the article will focus on a particular type of industrial application, it should attract the attention of all in-plant hydraulic and pneumatic designers and users.

Our Pneumatic feature will be more basic as it is titled Pneumatic Design 101.  This leaves our writers and editors open to capture and deliver content that is tutorial in nature and interesting to all pneumatic designers and users.

Our Product Focus for September will be Hydraulic Hose, Fittings and this is a very major product category for fluid power designers, maintainers, and users.  We will only focus on part to the technology but the subject is very broad and will attract the attention of all system designers and maintainers.  

All of this content will get posted to our websites, particularly Fluid Power World where all of our content gets syndicated.

If you are a subscriber to our magazine already, thanks for reading.  If you would like to subscribe, please visit our website for details.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Webinars, live and on demand

When Fluid Power World conducts a webinar on any topic, our audience gets to view it live and then also on demand from our website.

A little earlier this year, we presented a webinar on New Cylinder Optimization presented by the company System Seals.  In this webinar, the presenter, Kurt Sassmannshausen of System Seals, gave a presentation on new analytic tools that substantially extend reliability and increase equipment productivity.

One of our foundations at Fluid Power World is to offer our technical audience the opportunity to receive information in the way that they are most comfortable and our webinars are an example of that promise.  Visit Fluid Power World for more information about upcoming webinars.

If your company would like to present a webinar, please contact me at

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Increase Brand Awareness This Year

No matter how popular digital media and targeted digital programs become, brand awareness is still an integral part of growing a business.  We at Fluid Power World offer opportunities for companies of all sizes to grow brand awareness.

For those companies not currently involved in advertising with us, we still have plenty of time in 2017 to help your company to grow brand awareness.  We can do that with our three remaining print issues of Fluid Power World in September, November, and December.  We can also do that with our banner advertising program where we guarantee the number of impressions your banners will receive from our audience.

We have six websites that are growing in popularity that can all help to grow your company's brand awareness

Hey all fluid power marketers, don't let 2017 slip away with our growing your company's share of mind to fluid power buyers and specifiers all around the country.  Contact me for a special ad program designed to help your business to grow this year and get a competitive advantage for the future.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

How to ... and What is ...

At Fluid Power World, we offer our audience lots of great content.  It takes the form of the printed word delivered to their mailbox.  It can be content that is packaged in an e-mail and delivered to their inbox.

But it can be a video that they actually watch on YouTube after being directed there by us

Or the content might be found in an interesting "How to" found on one of our websites such as Sealing & Contamination Control Tips, our newest website.

There, you can find very informative "how tos" such as How to Install a Fluid Power Seal.  It seems like a simple subject but one that many in our audience can learn from.  One of the reasons we launched this website was to inform our audience about best practices in sealing and filtration and this article does that.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Web Banner Advertising Works

Check out these two slides that explain how web banner advertising works at Fluid Power World.

So you can customize your banner ad program with us and the cost remains the same.  You can even change the number of views that you would like to buy at $65 per thousand.

If increasing brand awareness is one of the marketing objectives of your company, banner advertising on the Fluid Power World digital marketing network is the way to go.

Please contact me for details at 408-769-1188

Thursday, July 6, 2017

The Discussion Has Begun

The date has been set and the discussion has begun about the 2018 Fluid Power Technology Conference.  FPTC

Our third annual Fluid Power Technology Conference will be held on May 15-16, 2017 at the Kern Center at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.  We made great progress with our fluid power seminar-based event this year and we will be building on that for next year.

The discussion has begun on how we can continue to improve the experience for our attendees and our exhibitors and sponsors.  We have formed an advisory committee to gather best practices and best ideas on how we can present the most informative conference possible to a great audience of qualified attendees.

If you are a buyer or marketer of fluid power components and would like to join the discussion, please let me know.  We would love to have your input.

Our intention is to develop and present technical fluid power information from the FPTC stage that will continue to improve the skills and knowledge of all in attendance.  Whether your expertise is components or systems, sealing or filtration, pneumatic or hydraulic, we and our audience can benefit from your input.

Please let me know if you would like to join the community.  Here is a link to my Facebook page where you can message me Michael Ference Fluid Power Marketing.

Monday, July 3, 2017

2017 Fluid Power Handbook

Click here Fluid Power Handbook to access our 2017 Fluid Power Handbook.

If you find the information found in this edition helpful, consider subscribing to the print magazine.  You can do so at this SUBSCRIBE HERE!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Here is an example of Hose Assembly Tips

Take a look at this post

This is the kind of information that you will find on our Hose Assembly Tips website.  If you think that this is helpful information, then please visit and come back again.  Also, please consider signing up for our Hose Assembly Tips e-newsletter.

You can do so at this link.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Making the Right Connections

This phrase has been used a lot, especially by me.  But it does a good job of describing our Hose Assembly Tips website and e-newsletter, and how these communication vehicles work to deliver useful and interesting content about hose assemblies to our qualified audience.

For all manufacturers of hydraulic hose, pneumatic tubing, fittings, quick-acting couplings, hose wraps, crimpers, hose cutters, and all related products, please send us your press releases and success stories to post on our website.  Since this website was launched in 2014, it has grown in visitors and page views because of the content found there.

For all users of the above products, feel free also to send us case studies of how your company applied these components in unique and interesting ways.  All of this content will then get picked up in our monthly Hose Assembly Tips e-newsletter.

I invite everyone with an interest in hose assemblies to sign up for our e-newsletter at this location

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Clean and leak free

Isn't that what every hydraulic system designer and machined operator wants for their hydraulic system?

While a perfectly leak-free system may be difficult to achieve and completely clean fluid is difficult to maintain, there are many stories about how to be successful at both missions.  That is why we created this website Sealing & Contamination Control Tips  The idea is for our advertisers and our audience to share success stories.

These stories are posted to this new website and then pushed out through our Sealing & Contamination Control Tips e-newsletter to interested users.  So, feel free to share your sealing and filtration success stories with us so that we can make them known throughout the industry.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Join Us in August

We have another great issue planned for the August 2017 issue of Fluid Power World.  As usual, we will be covering all of the fluid power bases with pneumatics, industrial fluid power, mobile hydraulics, a product focus, and our regular monthly departments.

Fluid Power in Utility Equipment represents an important segment of mobile hydraulics that is very similar to construction equipment.  Consider all of the mobile vehicles used to maintain utilities across America and you will get a feel for the size of this market.  Our August issue will feature an application story on this mobile market.  We will also preview the ICUEE Show that serves the utility equipment market.

Packaging is, of course, a very major segment of the overall pneumatics user market and our editors will take a look at pneumatic applications used to package goods for many end-use markets.  The PackExpo Show will take place in September and our August issue will preview that show.

Efficient designs are most beneficial for in-plant fluid power systems.  This issue will examine how to best utilize space available to accommodate the power of fluid power systems in a very efficient way.

The Product Focus in August will be on Accumulators and Air Intensifiers.  When an application, either hydraulic or pneumatic, calls for increased pressures, these two components are called into action.

Join us in our August issue with your ad.  The closing date for space reservations is July 31, 2017.  Please contact me for consultation about your marketing program.

Monday, June 12, 2017

A New Opportunity With Video

At Fluid Power World, we have developed a new opportunity involving video sponsorship.  We have a complete list of videos that we will be rolling out on YouTube, the second largest search engine for all content.

Here is a sample of one of those videos

Each one of these videos will have one exclusive sponsor   Your company can sponsor a video on your area of expertise for one full year and you can contact me at for pricing.  Through our e-blasts, we will guarantee 2,500 views on your video.

We have the capability to do videos for every fluid power component category from gear pumps to hose to cylinders to FRLs.  We will put together a tutorial video on the topic and host it on our website and YouTube with your company logo listed on the video for your sponsorship.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

What do the next few years look like for fluid power?

As a member of the NFPA, I regularly take in their quarterly economic webcasts presented by the Institute for Trends Research also known as ITR.  You may be familiar with their most familiar faces, Alan and Brian Beaulieu, who regularly educate and entertain the audience at the NFPA's Industry and Economic Outlook Conference.

By the way, if you have attended in the past or are interested in attending this year, the registration is now open at NFPA.  I highly recommend this event to anyone with a business interest in the fluid power industry and the many markets served by fluid power technology.

At the end of May, the update was done by Chris Steel, an economist at ITR and I would like to share a little of what he presented.  Overall, it looks like the remainder of 2017 and all of 2018 will be good years for our industry.  We may be looking at a minor recession in 2019, however.

The forecast for the fluid power industry is positive for this year and next year with a dip in 2019 and this holds true for fluid power in general as well as hydraulic and pneumatic shipments.  The downturn should be brief and mild.

It appears that several of our end use markets will follow the general macroeconomic trend of an upturn then a downturn.  This includes construction machinery, agricultural machinery, and material handling.  With that being said, Chris offered some suggestions on how to deal with the coming years.

Included were understanding your markets and where they are in their cycles, beware of the tightening labor market, retain your "A" players, and follow the leading indicators.  Before any recession might set in, some other suggestions were to consider acquisitions, conserve cash, and budget for rising wages.

Considering the depth of the past rescissions, this can be taken as good news viewing the big picture. If any of the major markets for fluid power components stay strong, we may see even more positive news.  For example, an infrastructure spending bill should help road construction machinery in the coming years.

Now is still a good time to continue promoting your company and your products.  We at Fluid Power World can certainly help you with that.  Just contact me anytime for consultation.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


When I was younger, I swore that I would never play Bingo like senior citizens did.  It just seemed like a very passive activity with little or no value to it.

I must admit, my mind has changed and I actually like playing Bingo now.  It must be a sign of age...

We played in interesting type of Bingo at the 2017 Fluid Power Technology Conference held last week at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.  We issued a sheet of paper to every attendee with a matrix of logos of all of our sponsors for the event.  They were asked to visit every booth and ask for a sticker with a corresponding logo from the sponsor.

Every booth exhibitor was given stickers to hand out to anyone who visited their booth.  When the attendee's sheet was completely covered with stickers that matched every logo, that sheet was entered into a drawing for an iPad.  

At the very end of the event, I had the honor of announcing our winner.  The winner didn't even have to shout BINGO!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

A Big Success!

The 2017 Fluid Power Technology Conference held at the Milwaukee School of Engineering and produced by Fluid Power World magazine was a big success.  Thank you to all of our sponsors for your support.

A big thank you to MSOE and their staff for hosting the event and participating in a very big way with presentations from the FPTC stage!

We look forward to our 2018 event at MSOE on May 15-16, 2018!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Visit Our Conference Website

I invite you to visit our Fluid Power Technology Conference website.  There you will find the logos of all of our sponsors for this year's event.  We currently have 22 sponsors who will be participating at the 2017 Fluid Power Technology Conference being held at the Milwaukee School of Engineering on May 16-17, 2017.

We also have listed our complete lineup of technical sessions taking place at the two-day event with speaker bios and explanations of what their sessions will cover.  You can plan your two days with our website.

And, of course, you can register for the FPTC right on our website and we will have your badge ready for you onsite.  Here is the link

If you have any questions about our Conference, please contact me at any time.  I hope to see you there as our team has put together a fantastic program complete with breakfast and lunch included both days.   We are also planning a reception on Tuesday right after the last session at around 5:00 pm.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Have you seen our latest issue?

Fluid Power World magazine continues to be an amazing resource of fluid power technical information sent out to engineers and mechanical people who design and operate machinery powered by hydraulic and pneumatic technology.  Here is our lasted issue:

Click here to read the issue and when you do you will learn about a hydraulic hybrid material handler that our editors recently reviewed.  We feature an article on safe pneumatic system design and we preview the OTC Show held in Houston recently.

If fluid power is your area of specialty, I recommend that you subscribe to Fluid Power World.  If you prefer the digital issue or the print issue, we have both.  Here is a link to our subscription page.

The content is mostly evergreen meaning that even though this is our April issue, the information found inside is good for a long time.  Even though the technology changes and there are many innovations to improve fluid power, the basics stay the same.

If your company has an interesting fluid power story to tell, please let me know and I will pass it on to our editors.  We strive to produce the very best resource of fluid power information possible.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Getting a lot of help from MSOE

At our Fluid Power Technology Conference next week, we will be depending heavily on the expertise provided by the fluid power experts at MSOE who will be doing presentations from the FPTC Stage.

Thomas Wanke is the Director of the Milwaukee School of Engineering’s Fluid Power Industrial Consortium and Industry Relations. He’s one of the industry’s most popular trainers, with more than three decades of fluid power courses to his credit.

Tom is a good friend of Fluid Power World and he was very instrumental in brining the Fluid Power Technology Conference to MSOE.  I am sure that our audience is looking forward to hearing Tom present at our event.
Tim is the Director of the Fluid Power Institute at the MSOE University. He has more than 25 years’ experience in industrial and mobile hydraulic systems. Tim has a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology and a Master’s degree in Engineering from MSOE, and is currently a PhD candidate in Mechanical Engineering at Marquette University. He is also a Lecturer in MSOE’s Mechanical Engineering Department.
While Tim was an undergraduate student at MSOE, he worked at FPI for Tom Wanke. After graduating from MSOE with his BS MET in 1990, Tim worked as a Product Engineer in the Valve Division for Parker Hannifin. He then spent several years in the mining equipment industry as a Hydraulic Systems Engineer at P&H Mining Equipment and also at Bucyrus International. Tim rejoined FPI in 2006 and manages the department operations. FPI provides fluid power engineering support for mobile and industrial fluid power systems on military and commercial applications. Tim’s work focuses on improving the reliability and efficiency of these systems. Additionally, Tim has been an active member of the US Air Force Reserves since 1986.

Medhat Khalil, Ph.D. is Director of Professional Education & Research Development at the Applied Technology Center, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Milwaukee, WI, USA. Medhat has consistently been working on his academic development through the years, starting from Bachelor’s and Master’s
Degrees in Mechanical Engineering in Cairo Egypt and proceeding with his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering and Post-Doctoral Industrial Research Fellowship at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He has been certified and is a member of many institutions such as: Certified Fluid Power Hydraulic Specialist (CFPHS) by the International Fluid Power Society (IFPS); Certified Fluid Power Accredited Instructor (CFPAI) by the International Fluid Power Society (IFPS); Member of Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP); Listed Fluid Power Consultant by the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA); and Listed Professional Instructor by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Medhat has balanced academic and industrial experience. Medhat has a vast working experience in the field of Mechanical Engineering and more specifically hydraulics, having developed and taught fluid power system training courses for industry professionals, being quite aware of the technological developments in the field of fluid power and motion control and the production program of leading fluid power companies. In addition, Medhat has worked for several world-wide recognized industrial organizations such as Rexroth in Egypt and CAE in Canada. Medhat had designed several hydraulic systems and developed several analytical and educational software. Medhat also has considerable experience in modeling and simulation of dynamic systems using Matlab Simulink.

Join us at the FPTC at MSOE next week REGISTER HERE

Monday, May 8, 2017

Three more sponsors

As you know, our 2017 Fluid Power Technology Conference will be held in just one week, May 16-17, 2017 at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.  Here is a link to our website for more information.

We welcome three more sponsors for the event including OEM Controls, Servo Kinetics, and Ultra Clean Technologies.

OEM was a sponsor last year and we are very happy to have them sponsor the lanyards in 2017 and return as a member of our FPTC list of sponsors.  
Here is some information about OEM Controls as seen on their website.

OEM Controls has been a leader in the design and development of electrohydraulic controllers and control systems for 50 years. We configure each product to individual customer specifications using field-proven components, a long list of available options, and state-of-the-art engineering expertise. Our core products include one, two, and three-axis joystick controllers, ergonomically designed multi-grip handles, electronic valve driver boards, microprocessor-based logic controllers and integrated panel systems.

Take a moment and see what they have to offer

Another new sponsor and exhibitor at the 2017 FPTC is Servo Kinetics.

Here is some of their story

About Servo Kinetics Inc

We’ve done business for over 35 years in industries that have very exacting standards, and include some of the most tech savvy companies in the world.
Every team member of our veteran owned and operated company is committed to putting your needs first by delivering …
  • The Highest Quality
    Industrial Hydraulic Repairs
  • At The Lowest Possible Cost
  • In The Shortest Possible Time
Join our satisfied customers and see why they trust our process with their critical hydraulic repair needs.

We are thrilled to have them participate in our Fluid Power Technology Conference this year.  Visit their website for more information.

Also very welcomed to our event is Ultra Clean Technologies.
Here is some information about them  

Ultra Clean Tech specializes in contamination control technologies for industries that require contamination-free hoses and tubes in order to prevent costly equipment downtime or failure. We lead the way with practical education and innovations that set the global standard for cost beneficial contamination control. When you choose Ultra Clean Tech to control your fluid power contamination, you can be sure that your company is not only choosing the world's most technologically advanced and comprehensive contamination control solutions but also dealing with some of the most highly knowledgeable sales and customer service representatives in the industry.

They will also be exhibiting at our event next week.  Here is their website for some advance information

So you can see that we have an excellent lineup of sponsors and exhibitors.  Take advantage of this opportunity to attend seminar sessions on many aspects of fluid power technology and network with industry experts.  We will serve you lunch both days!

IFPE 2017 Recap

Our video and editorial team here at Fluid Power World did a great job of covering the recent IFPE Show held in Las Vegas in early March.  In addition to visiting and reporting on as many fluid power companies as possible, we did lots of video to capture the event.

Here is a recap video of the event that will give you a minute-and-a-half review of what IFPE 2017 looked like.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Webtec and Thomas Magnete at FPTC 2017

One of our returning sponsors at the 2017 Fluid Power Technology Conference is Webtec.

Here is their "About Us" taken from the Webtec website:

We are specialist manufacturers of hydraulic measurement and control products helping to improve the productivity of heavy machinery.
For 50 years we have been helping customers worldwide in the Industrial, Mobile, and Agricultural sectors to diagnose hydraulic faults, verify hydraulic conditions and achieve repeatable hydraulic control.
Visit the 2017 FPTC in Milwaukee on May 16-17, 2017 and meet with Webtec for solutions to your fluid power designs and maintenance questions.  Click here to register.

One of our new sponsors this year will be Thomas Magnete.

From their homepage:


Employing nearly 650 people, our family-owned company develops and manufactures electromagnetic and fluid actuator systems for the automotive and mobile hydraulics industries as well as medical technology equipment ...

Come and meet the industry experts at these two companies at our Fluid Power Technology Conference on May 16-17, 2017 at MSOE in Milwaukee.  Register here