Oct 17 2016

Why Seeing a Sheet Metal Specialist Matters


Getting a good solution to patellofemoral syndrome is as hard for custom sheet metal fabrication!

Getting a good solution to patellofemoral syndrome is as hard for custom sheet metal fabrication!

My youngest daughter has the fortune of having inherited many of her mother’s lovely traits, but the misfortune of having been diagnosed with patellofemoral syndrome (PFS), which results is some sharp knee pain when she is running or climbing steps. This can be very tough for a future varsity cheerleader. The first doctor told her to take it easy—that it would get better. The second doctor prescribed a 12-week regimen of physical therapy—that didn’t work. Finally, we got a referral to Dr. Vorderer, a specialist with Children’s Hospital at Waltham. The answer: orthopedic inserts, but unfortunately, it took six months to get that answer. And we know we aren’t alone! I see this scenario play out repeatedly in our sheet metal fabrication business as well. It’s a different kind of pain, but can hurt your business just the same.

Stuck in a Painful Rut?

Some simple questions can help diagnose if you have a problem with your sheet metal fabricator.

  • Have you had repeated problems with a sheet metal part from the same supplier?
  • Have you stayed with your sheet metal fabricator through repeated problems and incidents?
  • Have you kept count and documented how many times you had a problem?
  • Has that sheet metal part been giving you pain for six months or more?
  • Have you considered seeking a sheet metal specialist?
  • Are you confused when trying to establish what kind of sheet metal specialist you need?

Seeking a Specialist

If you’ve struggled with the answers to any of the questions above—you might consider a second opinion … from a custom sheet metal fabricator. Biased, yes, but with good reason! Custom sheet metal fabrication is what we do and we are often the go-to solution for people who have the pain points described above.

At ETM Manufacturing, we inherit our fair share of “problems” with customers bringing us their problem parts from other suppliers. When this happens, here is how we help our customers:

  1. We tell you up front if this is a problem part and whether we think we can make it.
  2. If we can’t make it, we’ll let you know if it can be made and who specializes in how to make it.
  3. If you are open, we’ll also suggest design changes to improve its manufacturability.

Investing in Future Wellbeing

We’ll also dig deeper to see what resources our customers may (or may not) have at their fingertips to help assess relevant capabilities and options based on their needs. There are several times when we’ve visited a customer’s engineering department to educate their team on roll forming or tube bending (we do neither) so they can save money and ramp to production. Why? Of course, we want our customers to be successful, and if our customers are successful, we believe more business will come to us as well. Think about my daughter: if her original doctor had set her up in orthopedic inserts, it would have saved her five months of pain and she would have stayed with this doctor for the rest of her life. Unlike her original doctor, we want our customers for life.

ETM Manufacturing is dedicated to helping our customers remain competitive by providing products, services, and support for companies who want more from their supply chain management consultants. Whether or not you have a problem, we’d be happy to discuss your sheet metal fabrication needs with you. Contact us and we can help keep your pain prognosis at bay.

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