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Manufacturing

Dealing with the Threat Posed by Chinese Counterfeiting

saving american manufacturingI wrote an article that appeared in the Summer 2009 issue of Valve Magazine entitled Suspicious and Counterfeit Valves: An Avoidable Danger. That article dealt just with fake valves — whether produced or imported under false labels, or repaired or salvaged units sold as new — but valves are just a small part of the counterfeiting problem. A few weeks ago Mike Collins, author of Saving American Manufacturing, published a blog on chem.info entitled Economic Terrorism in which he quoted Ohio State University law professor Dan Chow on the extent of the problem: Chow: “We know that 15 to 20% of all goods in China are counterfeit.” In fact, Collins went on, “In 2006 an estimated 8% of China’s Domestic Gross Product (GDP) was generated by counterfeiting.” The main point is that counterfeiting and intellectual property theft are not just a minor occurrence in China, they are a major industry.

 


Past the Obstacles to Lean Manufacturing

Toyota  Production SystemIs Lean the answer for manufacturing? Or is it just the latest flavor of the month peddled by management gurus? We interviewed experts in the field to find out:

Lean manufacturing, which had its origin in the Toyota Production System (TPS), is built around getting rid of waste — defined as any activity that does not add value (whatever a customer will pay for) to the product. Taiichi Ohno, father of TPS, identified the Seven Wastes (muda, in Japanese) — defects, overproduction, motion, transportation, waiting, inventory and processing — that TPS works to eliminate. But there is much more to Lean than that, says Mike Kuta, Managing Partner at Productivity, LLC.

 

Protect Yourself from Suspicious and Counterfeit Valves

elijah_mccoyCounterfeit industrial products have been around a long time: the term “the real McCoy,” for example, comes from the self-regulating steam engine lubricator patented in 1872 by Elijah McCoy (right). The reason it was called “real” was that the device worked so well, customers demanded it by name over imitators.

Industry, Government Strike Back at Metal Thieves

scrap_metal.jpgThe theft of valves for their scrap metal value that began several years ago continues, although law enforcement, legislatures and industry associations are increasingly recognizing the seriousness of the problem. Since the price of metals began to rise dramatically several years ago, thieves have ripped off metals wherever they could and sold them into the recycling industry.

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