Stecker Machine Blog

Production Management Checklist: 5 Ways to Maximize Machine Shop Inventory

01/22/2020 | Matt Oswald

What fuels the nightmares of machine shop production managers?

Machine downtime.

Efficiency is always the goal, so when machine shop equipment experiences prolonged periods of downtime, it can test the sanity of even the most professional and experienced shop manager.


What Factors Impact CNC Machined Part Costs?

01/08/2020 | Brad Kurtzweil

Different types of CNC machines, and their various processes, handle different custom machining projects. That’s not exactly breaking news. Yet, what may be unclear is what major factors impact the cost of machined parts?

While this article provides some answers, it also explores what your next step may be when a project requires CNC machining. Specifically, we’ll explain some CNC machining cost tradeoffs.


Company Culture: 4 Ways to Build and Maintain a Great One in 2020

12/18/2019 | Lori LaTour

Music throughout the shop.

After-hours social outings.

Holiday potlucks and company parties.

Is this what a great company culture looks like? True company culture actually goes deeper than that. Or at least it should.


5 Rules for Successful Manufacturing Design Changes

11/12/2019 | Jason Schuh

“Design changes.” Those two simple words can cause even the most experienced parts manufacturer to panic.

After all, design changes are notorious for adding time, headaches, and unplanned dollars to a project. They’ve also been known to sabotage solid business relationships. Yet, they’re inevitable in manufacturing; as much as we try, they come with the territory.


3 Tips to Advance Your Manufacturing Career Path

10/30/2019 | Tom Sprang

If you’re reading this, then something about this article’s title grabbed you. You’re likely involved or greatly interested in a manufacturing career. You know today’s manufacturing facilities are safer, cleaner, and more worker-friendly than ever. And you definitely like that manufacturing pays better than many other jobs.

So, how can you advance your manufacturing career path? Here are three solid tips:


6 Questions to Find a Great CNC Machining Partner

10/16/2019 | Scott Waak

You’re not asking for much, are you — just reliable parts and products that ultimately make customers happy. Simple!

What’s not so simple is finding the right CNC machine shop. The perfect partner that understands your needs, has the right capabilities and proper certifications, goes the extra mile when you need it most, and keeps its pencils sharp so prices remain consistently competitive.

Let’s explore what an ideal CNC machine manufacturing company looks (and acts) like. The easiest way is to explore the six most important questions you should be asking when evaluating a potential partner. Ready?


6 Ways a Part Can be Considered Complex

10/03/2019 | Jim Herr

Some machine shops claim to manufacture “complex” parts, which surely sounds impressive. Yet, what really is a complex part and what skills does a shop need to work on them? Here are 6 different conditions that could cause a part to be classified as complex. Examples and photos are from actual Stecker Machine Company projects.


Day in the Life: What Does a CNC Operator Do?

09/24/2019 | Rob Schmitt

The metalworking industry needs more qualified CNC operators. This rewarding career requires a broad skill set —math, mechanical design, interpreting technical drawings and programs, eye for detail — to properly transform a metal casting into a valuable working machined part. It’s a unique fusion of digital and physical, brains and hands-on work. Before taking a look at a typical fast-paced day, let’s explore what a CNC machine actually is.


How Robotics Can Achieve Smarter Manufacturing

08/13/2019 | Matt Oswald

Robots are everywhere! No, this isn’t an ad campaign for a new sci-fi movie. It’s just true. 

According to a 2018 PwC report, more than half (59%) of all U.S. manufacturers use some form of robotics technology. Many are embracing automated robots to stay competitive and because of the numerous ways processes are enhanced when there are robots in manufacturing. 

While many people may think of robots working on large, high-volume assembly lines such as an automobile manufacturer, automated robots can also be cost-effective in small- to medium-sized businesses, depending on the operation.


Stecker Machine Company Expands Facility to Meet Customer Machining and Assembly Needs

07/26/2019 | Brad Kurtzweil

Stecker Machine Company, a TS16949: 2009 ISO-certified, high-precision CNC machining company, recently completed a 77,700-square-foot addition to the company’s second facility to meet growing customer demand for high-quality, accurate machining and assembly. The Butler® pre-engineered steel structure was constructed by Manitowoc’s A.C.E. Building Service, the project’s design and build contractor.