Hardware and accessory suppliers keep essential components moving through the supply chain during COVID-19

September 1st, 2020

by Jeff Moravec Shipping department staff members at Batz Corporation, Prattsville, Ark., have continued working with the addition of face masks since the beginning of the pandemic. The metal hardware manufacturer and supplier has experienced unusual shifts in the market, including an increase in demand for buckles for pet products. Photo: Batz Corporation. The COVID-19 […]

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Staying agile in the time of COVID-19

August 1st, 2020

Agility has emerged as the essential defining attribute of organizations able to respond to this crisis and chart a new, resilient course for the future. by Jeff Moravec Agility has always been something of a prerequisite for owning a company, and that skill set is clearly more valuable now than it ever has been. We […]

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Protecting structures with fabric

June 1st, 2020

When it comes to protecting structures  from the elements, fabric has it covered. by Jeff Moravec Think Hawaii doesn’t get bad weather? Think again. Wind can be a problem, but protection can be found in the form of a rope and pulley system, like this one from Tropical J’s in Honolulu. Photo: Tropical J’s. Fabric […]

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Nonwoven fabrics on the frontline of infection containment

May 1st, 2020

By Jeff Moravec Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19, formerly known as 2019-nCoV. The spherical viral particles, colorized blue, contain cross-section through the viral genome, seen as black dots. Image: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s easy to misunderstand viral respiratory diseases, whether the current pandemic […]

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Attract younger workers to the trades

April 1st, 2020

Tech and training are sparking interest. by Jeff Moravec There’s a simple, well-known and significant problem in the fabrication business: too much work, not enough workers. “Fabricators have more business than they can handle,” says Russ Griffin, co-owner of Northcoast Marine Specialties LLC in Port Clinton, Ohio. “The downside is that customers aren’t getting service […]

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Custom inflatables are blowing up

March 1st, 2020

Inflatables are in demand, thanks to advanced technologies that create higher quality products and new applications. by Jeff Moravec There was a time when consumers viewed inflatable products as bargain-basement cousins to rigid objects. Think of the air mattress rolled out on the bedroom floor for a middle-school sleepover or the discount-store blow-up swimming pool […]

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The wide (format) world of sports

March 1st, 2020

When it comes to printing fabrics, the wide world of sports is beginning to live up to its name. By Jeff Moravec In sports, it’s always about competition—and revenue. As sports teams have established new revenue streams (such as sponsorships that require stadium advertising) and worked to enhance the game-day experience for fans with splashy […]

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Succession Planning 101

February 1st, 2020

A seamless transfer of leadership in a family business requires hard conversations and a detailed road map to avoid the worst potholes and ensure a successful journey.  by Jeff Moravec A family business can offer great rewards—personally and professionally—for its founders and their descendants. But a family business also presents unique challenges and requires careful […]

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Permanent Side Hustles: Turn one-time gigs into long-term revenue streams

December 1st, 2019

by Jeff Moravec For many people, the so-called gig economy has created an entirely new way to make a living. The idea of side hustles may strike many fabricators as familiar—just with a new name. It’s not difficult to find fabricators who started a business with a narrow, well-defined specialty, only to find opportunities (sometimes […]

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The state of sustainability: textile companies work to give themselves an eco-friendly edge

October 1st, 2019

As climate change and pollution concerns remain at the forefront of public attention, textile companies work to give themselves an eco-friendly edge.  by Jeff Moravec A decade ago in this magazine, the growing attention to sustainability in the textile supply chain was a hot topic. Guess what? It still is. This doesn’t mean the industry hasn’t […]

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