Manufacturing Today - Winter 2012 - (Page 106)

Industrial Magnetics Inc. / Headquarters: Boyne City, Mich. / Employees: 70 / Specialty: Magnetic assemblies and separation devices / Dennis O’Leary, general manager: “Many designs in the market are fail-safe – when they are in a locked position, you can’t accidentally turn the magnet off or drop the part.” Magnetic Power industrial magnetics inc. provides custom-engineered solutions for a variety of markets with cutting-edge magnetic technology. by marta jiménez-lutter the new magnets are a safe and efficient alternative to move heavy equipment in manufacturing applications. Manufacturing and construction work is easier when you use the right tool for the job. A wrench easily can drive a nail into a wall, but a hammer will do it faster, safer and more efficiently. Industrial Magnetics Inc. (IMI) applies that principle when providing solutions for clients, and magnets are the most reliable, most exciting technology available for fabrication shops. Industrial Magnetics has provided permanent magnets and electromagnets for manufacturing applications such as work holding, lifting, fixturing, conveying and magnetic separation since 1961. 106 WINTER 2012 General Manager Dennis O’Leary explains that magnetic tools have gone through a technological transformation over the last 20 years. “Years ago, magnets [in manufacturing applications] were very heavy and cumbersome,” he says. “For example, electromagnets were the norm for lifting, and had to be hooked up to a battery backup because if you lost electricity, you would lose the part that was being lifted. It was heavy, awkward equipment that was challenging to operate and expensive. “We are now able to make much safer product that comes in smaller packages,” O’Leary explains. “Many designs in the market are fail-safe – when they are in a locked position, you can’t accidentally turn the magnet off or drop the part. We have eliminated the margin of error and are able to build a much stronger, safer magnet.” Changing Perceptions Changing the way some of the industry perceives magnets has been one of the challenges IMI has faced. “The challenge is re-educating the marketplace in North America on the fact that magnets really are a better alternative to slings, chains, gripper, vacuum and like lifting aids,” O’Leary explains. “We

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - Winter 2012

Manufacturing Today - Winter 2012
Wauseon Machine
Applied Energy Solutions
Carter Control Systems
Global Technology Systems
Positech Corp.
Tampa Tank Inc./Florida Structural Steel
Carbide Products
Datacard Group
Fullerton Tool Co. Inc.
Honda of South Carolina
Fintube LLC
Sapa Extrusions North America
ACE Controls Inc.
Vendors Exchange International Inc.
EXEL North America
DJO Global
Capewell Components Co.
U.S. Sugar Corp.
Industrial Magnetics Inc.
Lakeside Plastics Ltd.
Norpak Handling Ltd.
Mid-State Machine Products
TenCate Protective Fabrics
The Dupps Co.
Western Manufacturing Ltd.
Wisconsin Plastics Inc.
Metrolina Greenhouses
LaSalle Bristol LP
Clarion Bathware
DAP Products Inc.
Honsa Ergonomic Technologies Inc.
Engineered Material Solutions LLC
Master Spas Inc.
Nypro Inc.
Kelly-Moore Paints
Palomar Technologies
U.S. Chemical & Plastics Inc.
Varflex Corporation
Votaw Precision Technologies
Watry Industries
Wigwam Mills
Banker Steel Co.
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Manufacturing Today - Winter 2012