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Made In The USA – Season 2 Episode 6: Why, And How, Hardinge Is Reshoring Machine Tool Production

Made in the USA – Season 2 Episode 6: Why, and How, Hardinge is Reshoring Machine Tool Production

Made in the USA - Season 2 Episode 6: Why, and How, Hardinge is Reshoring Machine Tool Production

Listen to the sixth episode of season two here, or visit your favorite podcast platform to subscribe to “Made in the USA.” Catch up on season 1 here . Have You Filled Out Your 2023 Top Shops Benchmarking Survey? Receive a full report to assess how your shop compares to similar businesses across a wide range of operational criteria and financial performance. Learn where you are ahead of the pack, where you are even, and where you need work. Complete the Survey by April 30th! Take Survey The following is a complete transcript for Season 2 Episode 6 of the “Made in the USA” podcast. David Bassett, Senior Director of Quality and Continuous Improvement, Exports and Compliance : It killed me to take jobs and take everything over to China and teach those guys how to do things. Jeremy Michael, Global Director of Product Management : At that time we were building, I want to say 30 different machine models in Taiwan. The day that I got the call, and they said, Hey, we decided we’re moving this back to the US. I almost ran my car off the road, when you look at the supply chain, and be able to say, hey, each region, every country in the world today, we need to make sure that we secure our own interests. David Bassett: I’m a hardcore patriot of this country. And for my boss told me, I want you to build that back to the United States. Man, I can’t think of a better way to retire than to make that happen. Brent Donaldson, Editor-in-Chief of Modern Machine Shop: Welcome to Made in the USA, the podcast for Modern Machine Shop all about major themes shaping American manufacturing today, I’m Brent Donaldson. Pete Zelinski, Editorial Director of Modern Machine Shop: I’m Pete Zelinski. This season, we’ve been hearing from companies all over the United States that have made deliberate choices to shift to manufacturing to the US or to keep manufacturing in this country. We’ve been listening to the leaders of these companies describe their businesses, their challenges and their reasons for domestic manufacturing in their own words. Brent Donaldson: And while those businesses have arranged through various end products, including motorcycles, robots and measuring tools, they have all had one thing in common. All of the items covered this season have involved precision metal components. All of the companies have needed CNC machining. Pete Zelinski: CNC machining, which stands for Computer Numerical Control machining, use the work of a CNC machine tool. We talked about machine tools quite a bit in season one of Made in the USA, a machine tool is a precise and powerful machine for cutting metal into exactly the form you need to exactly the dimensions you need. A machine tool is capable of both hogging through steel or titanium to mill a metal part to the correct shape, while also controlling that shape to within accuracies measured in just a few thousandths of an inch. Because precision machine tools are needed to make other types of machines, machine tools are arguably the starting point or the foundation for most other forms of manufacturing. Brent Donaldson: So for our final episode of season two, we wanted to talk about machine tools by hearing from a machine tool maker that has recently rededicated itself to US manufacturing, the company is Hardinge. Its manufacturing operations and suppliers have been and still are global. But starting in 2021, Hardinge made the decision to shift production of certain major machine tool models from overseas factories to its headquarters in Elmira, New York. Pete Zelinski: Hardinge will tell the story, you’ll hear in their words why the company reassured machine tool production in this way, and why it wasn’t easy. Reshoring is a process that is still ongoing involving changes to the plant new procedures, people and relationships with other US producers. Brent Donaldson: For reasons you’re about to hear, in 2021, the company shifted the production of two of its product lines back from a Taiwan plant to its headquarters in Elmira, New York. By the time we visited the facility to do these interviews, the process was well underway. In fact, during our tour of the Hardinge plant, we witnessed teams of Taiwanese engineers actually teaching the American teams how to build these machines. The two teams from half a world apart spoke to each other through translation apps on their phones, working side by side […]

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Daisie Hobson

Daisie Hobson is a Director at the Reshoring Institute and an engineer with many years of experience in manufacturing and project management.

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