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Ripples not waves - the end of the internal combustion engine 27/12/2017

September’s EMO exhibition in Germany didn’t give the impression of there being any concerted move as a result of the forthcoming retirement of the internal combustion engine (ICE). For while there are several years left in that technology yet, the electric car’s industrial effect is inevitable and will be large.   Read More

Incentives 4.0 13/11/2017

The adoption of leading-edge technology sometimes needs a helping hand. In the early 1980s, CNC machine tool and robot investment in the UK was given a boost by government grants, for example, but such direct intervention is, well, very ‘80s. Capital allowances that allow the writing off of investment against tax on profits are another way, and they operate to a limited degree here.   Read More

Peak combustion 29/09/2017

Our supplement on the energy sector kicks off on p53 (see online magazine section, September). No prizes for spotting that this area has been hit hard, with activity in engineering companies that serve this sector having slowed in response (full analysis, p54 -see online magazine section, September).  Read More

Just because you can.... 18/08/2017

You knew that CADCAM had taken off in the ‘80s within automotive companies because cars that had once been angular gradually gave way to a new generation of more and more curvy models. They remain so today, although the curves these days are often now refined more scientifically with the help of computational fluid dynamics (CFD).  Read More

In awe of bright light - laser developments continue 31/07/2017

For those who can remember the ‘60s – yes, I know, if you can, you weren’t there – then the abiding memory of the laser beam from that time will be that of Sean Connery as James Bond about to be cut in two by Auric Goldfinger in the film of the same name. A dreadfully slow and weak beam it must have been, judged by the speed at which it moved. Not to mention how outsized the device was. Positivelly, well, ‘60s.  Read More

Electric shock 20/06/2017

Electric car, good; internal combustion engine, bad. Simple, right? Not if your country is a major producer of cars and internal combustion engines, the machine tools that make related components, as well as the tools that those machines employ.   Read More

A rising tide lifts all 19/05/2017

Last month (April), London-headquartered technology supplier representative organisation the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA) divined more positive meaning from manufacturing-related indices than did the mainstream UK media.   Read More

Equally valued, technically 17/04/2017

Over many years, Machinery has watched how technical training has fallen away (as measured by engineering apprenticeship numbers) and as initiative after initiative to boost parity of esteem between academic and vocational education has come and gone.   Read More

Local: the new global? 13/03/2017

Donald Trump and Brexit are a reflection of the fact that a large constituency in each country feels left behind by globalisation; through the loss of high paying manufacturing jobs, for example. But ‘peak globalisation’ has already been reached; the tide is turning, so last month’s leader, ‘Reshoring by tweet’, is a reflection of something bigger. Trump is pushing at an open door.  Read More

Reshoring by tweet 01/02/2017

The 45th president of the United States is in place – Donald J Trump. He took the role on 20 January this year, just prior to Machinery going to press. An unusual presidential campaign that saw hopeful candidate Trump making ample use of Twitter’s 140 characters then saw President-Elect Trump continue in similar vein, attacking both Ford and GM over Mexican investment plans.   Read More

Industry 4.0 - understanding the data 09/01/2017

Happy New Year. ‘Brexit’ may have found its way into the Oxford English Dictionary, but ‘Industry 4.0’ has yet to make it. We’ll hear much more about both this year, for sure, as the situation continues to evolve. Indeed, this year we are including regular ‘Industry 4.0 watch’ articles (p34) to keep you abreast of what’s happening in this ‘fourth industrial revolution’.  Read More

Old news; new possibility? 04/01/2017

The UK’s industrial policy has been of topical interest lately. The UK has been engaged in an analysis of its relative economic decline, with a focus on manufacturing, since the late 19th century.   Read More

Walking the walk: suppliers are implementing Industry 4.0 technologies in their own operations 27/12/2016

The connection of manufacturing technology to people via mobile apps or the cloud is an increasing theme from technology suppliers.   Read More

Industry 4.0, starting from zero 23/12/2016

At the MACH 2016 exhibition in April, Machinery bumped into exhibition organiser the Manufacturing Technologies Association’s recently-appointed Industry 4.0 champion, and we revealed what he had to say in July (see link below).  Read More

Skill required: what Britain needs, post-Brexit 21/12/2016

With the Brexit vote out of the way, we can now get on with…discussing the details of Brexit, ad infinitum. The two fundamentally opposed issues remain – controlling EU migration to the UK (we can already control non-EU migration) and maintaining tariff-free trade with Europe.  Read More

This month 25 years ago: December 1991 01/12/2016

UK manufacturing – not so bad; industrial policy – in Sweden; German lathe supports batch-of-one production; CO2 versus YAG lasers; computer modelling; EDM and fuzzy logic; UK automotive industry – spending, growing  Read More

Tuning up training: our view of the new apprenticeships levy 21/09/2016

Training is a massive issue for the engineering and manufacturing sectors, whose demographic is decidedly mature.   Read More Image 1 comment

So, it's farewell, then: Machinery responds to the EU referendum decision 16/08/2016

Drawing on the opinion of the vast majority of business representative organisations, unions, political parties and global institutions who were for ‘Remain’ in the recent referendum, Machinery was in that corner.  Read More

Official versus individual: Machinery weighs in on the EU referendum 21/06/2016

It’s that month. On 23 June, the country will vote to either remain in or leave the EU.  Read More

Industry three-and-a-bit 08/06/2016

There are multiple references to Industry 4.0 these days in the business media. Industry 4.0 is shorthand for the industrial Internet of Things, a world of connected devices and information in the industrial/business sphere.  Read More

Change maker 08/02/2016

The Autodesk University (AU) event of last November/December, held in one of Las Vegas’ over-the-top hotels, The Venetian, was high on practical advice for users through hundreds of small sessions and high on energy for all via visionary mass session presentations – 10,000 individuals attended AU.  Read More

This month 25 years ago: November 1990 13/11/2015

In-house toolrooms; machine tool industry research and demand; tooling guides; automated machining centres; The Colchester Lathe Co; manufacturing cells; Italy’s Mecof; management strategies, coolant and more  Read More

It's going to cost 02/11/2015

As an ex-Engineering Industry Training Board (EITB) apprentice of the ‘70s, I will observe the progress of the government’s proposed apprenticeship levy with interest. Such support for the 1964 Industrial Training Act-inspired EITB ended during the 1980s.  Read More

This month 25 years ago: September 1990 29/10/2015

Automation is not a job killer; auto industry invests to grow; hard turning needs a harder push; MAP to go open standards route; rotary forging club starts up; FMS user changes course; laser profiling focus for subcontracting and more  Read More

Puzzled for too long 11/09/2015

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has published its thoughts on the UK’s productivity puzzle ( It is 16% below where trend growth from 2007 should put it.  Read More

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