Smudge Marks Touchscreen Security Risk?

Could smudge marks on your touch screen monitors leave you vulnerable to a security breach?  According to a University of Pennsylvania study it's true!  Researchers took photos of the smudge trails left on various touchscreens, digitally increased the contrast and found they could unlock secure touchscreens 92% of the time! 

I just checked out my new, totally cool android phone and sure enough, there are my paw prints leaving a “smudge trail” where I unlock the unit.  My phone is no big security breach, but this could affect touchscreen interfaces such as bank machines, voting machines, or any other public or industrial touchscreen requiring a graphical pattern password. 

While I wouldn't lie awake worrying about this, don't write it off either.  The underbelly of society seems to have no shame and no lack of perseverance in acquiring stuff that does not belong to them.  If you're using secure touchscreens in your business, consider switching to an alphanumeric password on a keyboard if possible.  Or, you can also have users wipe their hands across the screen a few times or use a touchscreen-appropriate cleaning cloth.

Researchers are now investigating other devices that may be susceptible and various other types of smudge attacks such as heat trails caused by the heat transfer of a finger touching a screen.  Something new to worry about…

If you are worried that your industrial touch screen monitor needs repair, send it in to our expert tech team for a free evaluation and quote.  We repair most touchscreen, LCD and CRT monitors including Allen Bradley touch screens, ELO, Fanuc, LG, NEC, Microtouch, Okuma and many other touchscreen manufacturers.  Check out our website, www.acsindustrial.com  or call our helpful customer service staff at 800-605-6419.

Oh, The Pain..The Misery…Your Drive Just Alarmed Out! Can It Be Saved?

Oh, the pain..the misery…the teeth gnashing and, oh yeah, the cursing!  Your drive just alarmed out, your equipment has stopped, production has ceased, and you are wasting time and money.  Can the drive be saved?  The good news is…probably

Before it comes to that scenario, consider this:  We all know HEAT is the root of all evil when it comes to electronic equipment.   Add some MOISTURE and DIRT and you have the electronic axis of evil and disaster!

So, practice prevention first by:

–  keeping your electrical cabinets CLOSED

–  keeping your FANS  in good REPAIR

–  making sure those cabinent FILTERS are always CLEAN

Eventually, most drives will experience overcurrent alarms or deviation/function alarms.  Avoid swapping top boards to troubleshoot – yes, we know, many of you do this and it usually works out ok.  However, it’s a risky move.  Bad boards can blow the power modules which then blow the top boards and you end up with more than one machine down!  And you thought you were frustrated BEFORE! 

If you want, you can check for the correct base drive voltages on the top board without DC bus voltage.  This can help identify the location of the problem.  Call your OEM and find out how to check the power modules with an ohmmeter. 

If you are past the warranty date (you kept that information handy, right?) and need third-party service on your drive, send us your drive for fast and reliable drive repair.  We offer free evaluations, a warranty on both parts AND labor, rush services for emergencies, and excellent customer service.

Rules For CNC Machine Purchase And Repair

If you are like me, you are always looking for an incredible steal …the sale of the century…AND, you never pay full price for anything!  A major exception to this rule is the purchase of a CNC machine or any component you add to it.  You truly get what you pay for in CNC equipment – new or used.

If you don’t pay up front, you will pay down the road.  Again and again.  And you will be kicking yourself in the rear every time you call the repair guy.

Inexpensive CNC machines have less horsepower and therefore the spindle stalls more often.  They have narrower linear guides, less ballscrew bearings, no oil chillers on the spindle, less and smaller bearings in the spindle, less safety interlocks, and, on top of all that, they are much less rigid which is the number one cause for CNC machine crashing and subsequent downtime. 

Eventually, even the best CNC machines experience problems.  Most machinists and operators are not trained or equipped to repair CNC equipment.  For the electronic repairs, you will need an industrial electronic repair shop experienced, at a minimum, in troubleshooting, alarm codes, servo and drive problems, electrical faults, PLC ladder troubleshooting,  DC motor problems, axis load or binding, solenoid/relay/contact testing,  power supply problems, axis brake problems, chuck problems, relay board problems, fixture setup, control & parameter issues, hydraulics and pneumatics, and door and safety interlocks.

Whether you are a major manufacturer or a hobby CNC user, make it a priority to purchase the best CNC equipment you can possibly afford.  Ask a lot of questions before you buy, ask to see the equipment operating in someone else’s shop, and call an expert industrial electronic repair shop if and when your CNC machine develops problems. 

The ACS Industrial tech team includes expert electronics technicians and machinists to service all types of CNC equipment including Yaskawa, Matsura, Cincinnati, Allen-Bradley, Siemens, Brother, Fanuc, Haas, Hardinge, Hurco, Ingersoll, Mitsubishi, Mazak, Mori Seiki, Yasnac, Okuma, and many more.  We offer a warranty on parts and labor and rush service is available upon request.  We are here to get you up and running!

World Competitiveness Economic Stats Published – Find Out What True Grit Means

The bad news is the U.S. lost it’s number one spot on the annual competitiveness survey bySwiss based IMD Business School for the first time since 1993 to Singapore and Hong Kong, ranked 1 and 2 respectively.  The good news is the U.S. has survived the risk of financial and economic crises, in part, thanks to the sheer size of its  economy, leadership in business, and unrivaled supremacy in technology, reports Manufacturing.net.

That’s no surprise to me.  The U.S. is an amazing melting pot of resourcefulness and determination.  True grit! 

The study lists 58 economies according to 328 criteria that measure how the nations create and maintain favorable business conditions.  Singapore, Hong Kong and the U.S.  are followed by Switzerland and Australia as the top five.  Sweden, Canada, Taiwan, Norway, and Malaysia round out the top 10.

China rose to 18th showing that it is no longer dependent on foreign markets buying its inexpensive exports.  Other emerging economies were India, 31st; Brazil, 38th; and Russia, 51st.  The surprise is Greece.  Despite being in economic agony, they actually improved in the 2010 ranking from 56th to 46th.  Who was at the bottom you ask?  Venezuela was last, preceded by Ukraine, Romania, Argentina, and Croatia. 

Let’s go back to that part about resourcefulness and true grit.  You rely heavily on your industrial electronic equipment.  If it’s not working, your workload  and output are impacted.  We can help you get your industrial electronics repaired and back online fast.  Remember – repair if you can, replace if you must.  Now that’s being resourceful!

Reliability In Industrial Electronic Repairs Is King – Find Out What Else Ranks High

Not surprisingly, reliability ranked the most important criteria in purchasing industrial electronics and industrial electronic repairs according to a recent survey by Plant Engineering & Maintenance. 

Reliability was followed, in descending order, by quality, safety, maintenance, service, price, throughput, technology, noise, speed, and “green”.

Maintenance ranked 4th out of 11 so we know it’s pretty high on your list.  Nobody wants equipment that is difficult or excessively expensive to maintain.  Downtime is lost time and lost time is lost money.

Save money in the long run by purchasing quality industrial electronic equipment with a good warranty and practice consistent maintenance, especially on your critical equipment.  And when that warranty runs out, and the OEM does not provide responsive service (or ANY service for that matter), send your repairs to a reliable industrial electronic repairs expert.

Make sure your repair team also scores well for reliability, customer service, pricing, and warranty coverage.

The ACS tech team is trained and experienced in the repair of virtually all types of industrial electronics including drive repairs, PLCs, power supplies, controls, encoders, servo motors, CNC equipment, printed circuit board repairs, touch screens,  CRT monitors, test equipment and more.  We service most brands including Yaskawa, Okuma and Mitsubishi.  Rush service is available upon request.

Save Money, Be Green & Increase Efficiency All in One Fell Swoop

It was just a few months ago that I wrote a blog on how to make a decision whether to repair or replace your industrial electronic equipment.  It’s a question many of you probably face every day. 

With the economy just beginning to climb out of the basement, saving money is a  high priority for all of us.  The pain of this recession will stick with us for a long while (I promise I will not get political here! That would be a whole ‘nother conversation.  LOL).  

So, let me reiterate the absolute necessity of repairing your existing electronic equipment whenever possible.  For a lot less money – sometimes as much as 75% less than the cost of new – you can repair.

OK, I know you’re busy.  Maybe you’ve got lots of equipment and weren’t sure whether the item was still under warranty (we can help track warranty information) or maybe you had 20 line operators hounding you for repair or replace decisions and it seemed way easier to just buy new that week (we can help solve this dilemma with our rush service).  

And have you taken a look at your shelves full of  “does not work” equipment with dust on them in your storage area?  We can repair most of that equipment. 

And if not, we can dispose of it properly so that you can rest assured that even if it was not repairable, you are still being environmentally responsible.  Environmental requirements being what they are today, this is not to be lightly dismissed.

As you have probably discovered, some OEM’s can be pretty twitchy about the warranty coverage.  (We’re not twitchy at all -you get a 12 month warranty on the whole unit, not just the repair!)

Repairing your equipment will reduce your overall expenses, keep you environmentally responsible by reusing, and will reduce your equipment inventory.  It’s all good and you can’t go wrong by going the electronic repair route. 

Check out our website at www.acsindustrial.com or call our customer service team directly at 800-605-6419 for more information.

Baldor’s BE$T Program Now Comes In Cool iTunes App

There are a million and one iPhone apps out there but this one by Baldor Electric Company, www.baldor.com  is way cool.  Those smart cookies at Baldor have converted their BE$T desktop program for calculating and comparing motor efficiencies to an Apple iphone app. 

By calculating a motor’s annual electricity usage based on its nominal efficiency and comparing it to the annual electricity usage of Baldor’s Standard-E and Super-E premium efficiency motors, it can then recommend, by catalog number, the appropriate Baldor motor for the application as well as information on the payback period for replacing the existing motor. 

Even better, it will also calculate useful information such as  the yearly electrical savings when a variable speed drive is used vs. a constant speed motor. 

But now you can have that service anywhere by downloading the Baldor BE$T app from itunes.  This version is also a smaller and easier to use package.  Sounds pretty cool to me.   And no, I do not work for itunes OR Baldor … just thought I’d bring this cool app to your attention.

Speaking of Baldor, ACS Industrial Services provides fast and expert repair services for all types of Baldor equipment

If  your Baldor motor  needs repair  or your Baldor Drive, head directly to our website where you will find a Repair/Free Evaluation Form and plenty of information www.acsindustrial.com .  Rush Service is available upon request.  You can also give our customer service team a call at 800-605-6419 for more information.

PLC, PC or PAC?

In a word, it’s all about … automation.  Now that the economy is beginning to recover, most manufacturing companies report that they are planning to invest in more automation. 

For more than 30 years we have been using our trusty PLC’s because they are simple and reliable, if a bit quirky.  PLC’s have practically merged with PC’s in recent times. 

Then, more recently, the PLC sprouted wings and emerged as a PAC.  If you’re not already familiar with a PAC – that’s a Programmable Automation Controller.  These units combine the sturdy reliability of the PLC with the programming language of a PC.

The PAC uses commercial computer chips and the Microsoft Windows operating system which allows you more control without giving up your existing systems.  And that is the wave of the future – faster network speeds and more utilization of wireless technologies to leap larger distances to remote sites or even to distant buildings where cabling is impossible or costly.

These systems give you lots of options for your application needs. It just depends on what you need and what you can afford.  Whether you are using PLC’s, PAC’s or a combination, most of these units will eventually need repair.

The ACS tech team will provide the services you need when it ‘s time to repair your PLC or PACAllen-Bradley, Honeywell, National Instrument, ABB, Unitronics, Baumuller, Mitsubishi, Modicon, Omron, Siemens, Square D, Yaskawa and many more brands are serviced by our expert team.

Website Upgrades Make ACS Industrial Even More Customer-Friendly

Customer-driven changes have been made to the ACS Industrial Services website because we want to make it even easier to work with us. 

Useful “bread-crumb trails” near the top of the pages will help you  keep track of where you’ve beenon the site  and pages you may want to revisit.  Check out our upgraded website at www.acsindustrial.com

We provide services for almost all types of industrial electronics including CNC equipment repair, servo drive & spindle drive repair, and test equipment repair.

Visit the website and find out more about ACS Industrial Services and all we have to offer your company to save you time and money.  We are industry’s trusted repair resource!

ACS Industrial’s Website Now Even Easier to Use

We want to make it even easier to work with us so ACS Industrial has made some customer-friendly changes to our website.

 “Bread-crumb trails” near the top of the pages will now help you  keep track of the pages you’ve been to and may want to revisit.  Check out our upgraded website at http://www.acsindustrial.com

We provide services for almost all types of industrial electronics including touch screen monitors repair, medical monitor repair, and telecommunications electronics repairs.

Visit the website and find out more about ACS Industrial Services and all we have to offer your company to save you time and money.  We are industry’s trusted repair resource!