Thursday, May 17, 2007

Our Silicon-based Partners and Buddies

Once upon a time, everything in machining was done by hand, or with precision manual tools operated by hand. Drawings for parts were drafted by hand in two or three dimensions as a basis for the ways machines were set up in the shop. Machines had to be repositioned for each hole or feature in a part. Things took time.

Businesses were also run "by hand" - all transactions were logged and filed, books and ledgers with columns of figures were laboriously filled out and kept in balance with repetitious arithmetical calculations. Letters were typed (before that, hand-scribed), carbon copies kept in filing cabinets, real-time communications became possible only with the miraculous invention of something called "the telephone." Stuff took time to happen.

If you wanted information on something, you had to research it yourself - either at the library (if you can find one anymore...) or by finding someone with the knowledge or resources to ask. It might take weeks to find a source if you had to go through a list of referrals or queries by mail. Now, you just open a browser (say, Mozilla) and click on your favorite search engine (say, the 800 lb. Gorilla), and, Presto!, one point two seven million hits for web pages created by people all over the globe sharing what they know with you RIGHT NOW. We were talking here just yesterday about how we can't really imagine doing things the way we did even a few years ago.

Here at Phoenix Precision Plastics, we use state-of-the-art cyber-tools to create the programs that run our CNC machinery (4 mills, a lathe with "live tooling," and a 5 by 12 foot high-precision router). We can accept drawings from our clients for quoting or for production in pretty much any electronic format (.IGS, .DWG, STEP, .DXF, .DSN, .CDL, .CSF, .FST, .NCA, .CDR, etc.). In many cases, we can save our customers significant expense by being able to translate their electronic files easily into the programs that run our machines. A single program and machine setup can run a practically unlimited number of features on a part, cutting the production time for a complex part from perhaps hours to minutes. These capabilities, along with our commitment to quality and attention to detail, translate into more, better, faster. And as the technology advances, we'll follow its development to provide our clients the highest, most cost effective service possible.

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