Employment in Manufacturing

The manufacturing sector saw growth in jobs in February and March, but April saw a net loss of 18,000 jobs. Most of the loss came from motor vehicles and parts, though jobs in durable goods in general also fell. Manufacturing of wood products fell, perhaps in part because wood prices have nearly tripled during the… Read more »

Rexroth Third Party Repair Houses

We get calls about once a week from third party repair houses trying to get parts or technical information.  We have to explain to them that Rexroth’s internal components are not available for sale and schematics are proprietary. Since the answer has been the same for the past 25 years, it would appear that the… Read more »

Rexroth Third Party Repair

Rexroth third party repair shops don’t really exist. But third party repair shops that claim they can repair your Rexroth industrial motion control are legion. We know, because we get calls from them all the time. They want parts and manuals, most of the time, but sometimes they just want our expert advice. Today I… Read more »

Hair-brushing Robots

A new task for robots — brushing people’s hair — gives us a good example of automation decision-making. Automation increases productivity, keeps people safe from toxic environments and dangerous tasks, and does some things better than people can. But not all tasks are really suited to automation. So let’s figure it out — down really… Read more »

Can Robots Help with Touch Hunger?

May is mental health awareness month, and new research shows that the pandemic has interfered with our mental health quite a bit. One of the mental health issues that has increased severely is touch hunger, or affection starvation, a type of stress that comes from a lack of physical contact. This type of stress has… Read more »

Robots Wash F-16s

It’s important to wash fighter jets regularly. Grease, oil, hydraulic fluids, and things like insects that the jets meet up with in the sky can all lead to corrosion and eventually to structural weakness if they aren’t removed from the jets. So a crew of Air Force workers uses brushes, hoses, and buckets of soapy… Read more »

Digidogs Out

Americans have a lot of negative feelings about robots, even though they keep us from having to work in dangerous situations, keep the cost of consumer goods low, and provide labor-saving services. Still, we worry that robot overlords are coming to take our jobs, and we get creeped out by robots. Case in point? New… Read more »

Why’d You Choose Third Party Repairs, Again?

Third party repairs, when it comes to Rexroth electric motion control systems, are a major gamble. Third parties can’t buy original parts from the manufacturer and there are no certified Rexroth shops, no matter what you see on some third party repair shops’ websites. But plenty of local repair shops are willing to take a… Read more »

Incremental Encoders need loving care

Incremental encoders in Rexroth or Indramat equipment come in a variety of shapes and sizes but they all share one trait: a piece of glass is where the encoding, or directions for the machine, are written. The benefits of these pieces of glass are that highly accurate encoding can be applied and they won’t wear… Read more »

Walmart lays off more robots

For many industrialists, the pandemic was like falling asleep in 2020 and waking up in 2030 — except it was actually still 2020. The pandemic pushed automation ahead ten years beyond where it had been expected to end up in the second decade of the 21st century, forcing manufacturers, brands, and consumers alike to accept… Read more »

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