Pat Toensmeier
Pat Toensmeier

Pat knows that compelling content is the gold standard of successful news reporting. With strong credentials from working for decades in trade and specialty publications, he has honed journalistic skills so ThomasNet News readers receive high-quality information on manufacturing and industrial news and trends.

Pat writes for ThomasNet News’ Machining Journal, Procurement Journal, and Industry Market Trends (IMT), applying his deep industry experience and technical knowledge to deliver fair and comprehensive articles on manufacturers, products, and business trends.

Pat has been writing about manufacturing, materials, technology, and design in various fields for more than 25 years, most notably in plastics, and he is the author of The Resin Pocket Guide (McGraw-Hill).

Prior to writing for ThomasNet News, Pat was editor-in-chief for Modern Plastics. He also has considerable experience as a contributing writer for Aviation Week, Moldmaking Technology, and Defense Technology International, and he is a member of the Society of Plastic Engineers. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri, with a B.A. in English.

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skills gap puzzle conceptual

Ontario Shop Takes Up Efforts to Produce Skilled Workers

In this installment of our look at the skills gap issue, we examine what Unique Tool & Gauge, in Ont., Canada, is doing to find and train capable employees. Much of its approach is similar to those of other companies and therefore a good indication of what shops should be doing.


Safety Rules Help Lift Demand for Remote Valve Actuator

The FlexiDrive remote valve actuator from U.K.’s Smith Flow Control has been in the market for more than a decade. However, new European safety regulations are leading to a surge of installations for the cable-driven actuator.


Machining System and Laser Encoders Team Up for Accurate Large Composite Parts

Flow International’s Composites Machining Center, or CMC, is fitted with two Renishaw laser encoders to produce composite parts with ultra-tight tolerances. The machine has found use among Airbus’ Tier 1 partners.

The Hya-Solo EV pressure-boosting system from KSB maintains constant pump pressure.

KSB Readies Water/Wastewater Product Lineup for 2014

German multinational pump maker KSB hopes to improve upon a slightly down 2013 in sales. It is ready to showcase its latest variable-speed pump for water/wastewater uses on the trade show circuit.

fives cincinnati

A Machine Maker Invests to Close the Skills Gap

Fives Cincinnati, a maker of composite and metal machining systems, says the skills gap is very real in northern Kentucky and southern Ohio. It is taking the labor shortage head-on with apprenticeship training, local school curriculum development, and community outreach.


Innovative Contouring-Head Machine Gains Traction

Fives Giddings & Lewis thus far has built for customers two specialty horizontal machines with an integrated contouring head using standard tools to produce complex parts. It says they bring advantages over conventional machines with two auxiliary heads and manual tool changes.

A technician at biofuel producer Virent inspects feedstock holding tanks.

Surge in Biofuels Demand Could Affect Process Equipment Deliveries

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Renewable Fuel Standard 2′s doubling of biofuel capacity to 36 billion gal/yr is expected to put a tight supply on pumping and process equipment.

Fluid forming applications include this Bunson burner housing. Credit: FluidForming America

High-Pressure Water Shapes Finely Detailed Metal Parts

A process called fluid-forming is gaining steam in North America, attracting users including Airbus, BMW, and Nokia. It reportedly can produce high-detail, close-tolerance parts with low scrap rates using high-pressure water.


New FDA Food Rules Create Demand for Sanitary Pumps and Valves

The passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act provided the Food & Drug Administration with powerful rules to safeguard the nation’s food supply. Small and midsize food manufacturers will have to take stock of sanitary pumping requirements.

aluminum machining shot

Lightweight Metals Innovation Hub Could Be Boon to Machining

The American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute has won the bid into President Obama’s national network of manufacturing research hubs. It will study aluminum, titanium, and magnesium alloys, along with other advanced high-strength steels that include nanostructure grades.

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