This Week in Welding
Oct. 23, 2012

Airbus to double US spending to $24 billion in coming years
European aircraft maker Airbus said it plans to double its annual spending with U.S. companies to some $24 billion in the coming years and would seek new supplier partnerships in Southern California. The announcement marked a new step in the U.S. market, after Airbus announced in July plans to build its first aircraft assembly plant in the country in Mobile, Ala., in home-turf competition with U.S. rival Boeing. Airbus said it currently spends more than $1 billion in the Southern California region, and that last year's spending went to more than 400 manufacturers and service suppliers in more than 40 U.S. states.More

GE, Boeing to help veterans find advanced manufacturing jobs
The Washington Post
Returning veterans seeking employment may soon find new opportunities in the manufacturing sector. Industry giants like General Electric, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Alcoa, and the Manufacturing Institute announced a collaboration to provide training and support to veterans to help them pursue careers in manufacturing. The initiative, called "Get Skills to Work," aims to match 100,000 veterans to manufacturing jobs by 2015. The coalition hopes to raise awareness about manufacturing opportunities for veterans who don't know exactly what they want to do upon returning from service, said Kris Urbauer, program manager for GE veteran initiatives.More

AWS Careers in Welding Trailer wins silver award for best mobile marketing vehicle
Event Design Magazine
The results are in for the 2012 Event Design Awards, and AWS's Careers in Welding Trailer has won the silver award for best mobile marketing vehicle. The awards recognize the best of the best among this industry's change agents, and the award-winning projects reflect how the world's best creative studios are reinventing experience design across all categories. Full write-ups on each award-winning project will appear in the ED Awards super issue, also featuring this year's Event Design Superbook buyer's guide coming out in late November. Narrowing down the entries was no easy task for the panel of judges this year, but after much deliberation the 2102 Event Design Award winners were chosen.More

Shortage of welders sparks interest in training
The Coloradoan via USA Today
In 2008, there was a nationwide shortage of about 250,000 welders, and that figure has remained relatively constant to this day, says Jason Walsh, who heads the welding technology program at Front Range Community College in Colorado. There were 337,300 jobs for welders, cutters, solderers and brass workers in 2010, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. By 2020 that number is expected to have grown 15 percent. As a result, enrollment in welding courses at Front Range has increased — from about 60 each semester nine years ago, when Walsh started teaching there, to 350 this year.More

Tell us what you like about AWS and win a copy of 'The Underwater Welder'
The American Welding Society is holding a contest for followers to tell the organization what they like about AWS. The contest will end at 11 a.m. Oct. 29. Participants can enter the contest by 'Liking' the American Welding Society Facebook page at and writing a comment on the contest post. A compelling and original comment written on the Facebook post will be considered an official entry, but contestants also can use Twitter and tweet using the hashtag #ILikeAWS and state the reasons, or send an email to with the subject line "I like AWS." The winner will receive a copy of "The Underwater Welder" graphic novel by Jeff Lemire.More

Manufacturers turn to new technology, equipment
Crain's Cleveland Business
Automation, long a way for manufacturers to cut costs and improve efficiency, now is becoming a solution to the problem created by an ever-growing shortage of skilled workers. Bud Industries Inc., a Willoughby, Ohio-based maker of electronics enclosures, is doing more work faster and with fewer people thanks to new automated equipment it's purchased. More

Air Products opens welding technology center in Poland
The Engineer
Air Products has opened a research and development center for welding technologies in Wroclaw, Poland. This facility is the company's third center of its kind. The other R&D welding technology centers are situated in Basingstoke, United Kingdom, and in China. The Wroclaw center will explore ways to upgrade and perfect many metal fabrication processes, including hard soldering, flame plating, hand welding and automated MIG, MAG and TIG welding.More

Women of Gases and Welding Reception taking place at FABTECH Las Vegas
Please join the American Welding Society at the Women of Gases & Welding Reception at FABTECH, from 5-6 p.m. Nov. 13 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. An evening of networking and a short program will include presentations by Emily DeRocco, former president of the Manufacturing Institute; Nancy Cole, AWS president-elect; and Monica Pfarr, AWS corporate director, workforce development. Registration is required to attend the reception, which is free.More

Report: Wichita, Kan., manufacturing skills gap among largest in US
The Wichita Eagle
A new report identifies Wichita, Kan., as having one of the largest manufacturing skills gaps in the nation. The business consulting firm Boston Consulting Group, which recently released its report, examined the question of whether the country suffers from a shortage of high-skills workers. Many manufacturers complain that they want to hire, but they can't find enough workers with the right skills for the jobs they have open — that's the story line supported anecdotally. The authors conclude that, for the most part today, the skills gap is a myth, more a function of companies not willing to adequately pay qualified workers or train unqualified ones than not being able to find workers — a conclusion many manufacturers and government officials might dispute.More

Tours reveal High Bridge manufacturing firm that has role in deepest Gulf of Mexico oil project
Hunterdon County Democrat
If all goes as planned, next summer products made by a High Bridge firm, Custom Alloy, will be part of the equipment for an oil well a record 7,000 feet down in the Gulf of Mexico. And it will further south than ever before in the gulf. Custom Alloy has the contract to provide the components for Chevron, one of many customers all over the world which buy from the company, which next year will be marking 45 years in business.More

Bessler Welding donates time, equipment for Festival of Lights
East Peoria Times-Courier
Albert, Carl and John Durst grew up in East Peoria, Ill. They came from a large family of 13 children. They attended East Peoria Community High School and have pride for their hometown. John and Carl still call East Peoria home. Now Albert and Carl, along with Jay Sparks, own a successful business in East Peoria — Bessler Welding Inc. — and they like to give back to the community. One way they do this is by helping with the Festival of Lights, something they do often.More

Manufacturing in Philadelphia area grows more than forecast
Manufacturing in the Philadelphia region expanded in October for the first time in six months, a sign the industry may be starting to stabilize. The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia's general economic index rose to 5.7 from minus 1.9 in September, a report showed. A reading of zero is the dividing line between expansion and contraction. The median forecast of 61 economists surveyed by Bloomberg was for an increase to 1. The report, contrasting with data showing New York-area factories shrank for the third straight month, indicates that a pillar of the recovery is starting to regain its footing. More

Illinois welder banks on rebound
Journal & Topics
The owners of Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based Rode Welding are investing $710,000 back into their business to be ready for expansion in the next few years. Rode owner Tom Feichter said he is closing on the purchase of a new 10,800-square-foot building next month and pouring a 2,900-square-foot concrete pad for storage at their existing 40,000-square-foot location on Louis Avenue.More

Manufacturing month: Sparking an interest in skilled trades
October is Manufacturing Month for the Oh-Penn Interstate Region, and manufacturing careers are resurging in the Mahoning Valley of Northeastern Ohio and Northwestern Pennsylvania. Skilled trades, like welding are in demand because of the oil and gas industry. Columbiana County Career and Technical Center in Lisbon, Ohio, said it's seeing an increase in people interested in manufacturing programs. "I think a lot of people realize, that sitting behind a computer might not be where the money is," said Huck Hughes, welding and fabrication instructor. The financial benefit of a manufacturing job has high school students interested.More