Category: Uncategorized

OMS Houston Celebrates Safety Milestone

OMS – Houston is excited to announce a significant safety milestone, 5 years, or 800,000 hours without a lost time accident!  

“This is an exciting accomplishment for the Houston team,” remarked Ed Arceneaux, Houston General Manager.  OMS safety programs include startup and steel board meetings, near-miss and continuous improvement programs, as well as a defined safety road map for the plant. “Our team has lived by these programs every day which has paved the way for us to reach this milestone,” said Mr. Arceneaux.

As a leader in the metal fabrication industry, people are our greatest asset.  Our highly skilled teams operate within a culture of safety, quality, and integrity. Congratulations to our Houston team for their ongoing pursuit of safety excellence! Find more information on our Houston OMS facility here.

OMS Opens Northern Kentucky Plant

O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) has acquired an 84,000-square-foot custom steel fabrication center in Burlington, Kentucky. Formerly known as Skilcraft, LLC, the OMS-Northern Kentucky facility produces light gauge metal weldments for customers engaged in security and government, transportation, banking, medical, refrigeration, and HVAC.

The Burlington plant features a Salvagnini flexible shearing, punching, and forming cell, seven manual and two robotic welding stations, a state-of-the-art powder coat line, a pemming station, and kitting and assembly capabilities for original equipment manufacturers requiring light gauge, precision metal fabrication solutions.

“The addition of OMS-Northern Kentucky and its skilled team members will not only increase our company’s footprint in the region, but it will give OMS access to new types of fabricated steel businesses,” OMS President and CEO Kent Brown said. “We have already invested in new processing equipment for this facility, and look forward to using the size, experience, and reach of our organization to help OMS-Northern Kentucky grow.”

The addition of the Northern Kentucky fabrication facility brings the company’s total North American locations to ten, including their corporate headquarters in Birmingham, AL. Find more information on our Northern Kentucky OMS facility here.

Metal Welding Fabrication

O’Neal Manufacturing Services has been fabricating welded assemblies for more than 100 years. Our certified welders and welding inspectors ensure your steel fabricated parts are high-quality, tested, and structurally sound.  Our experienced teams can accommodate lightweight subassemblies to weldments weighing more than 40,000 lbs.

Across our 9 North American fabrication plants, OMS offers a variety of welding capabilities including MIG and TIG arc welding, robotic welding, laser welding, projection welding, resistance spot welding, and stud and stick welding. The following weld certifications are in place at multiple OMS facilities:

  • ISO 9001:2015 
  • American Welding Society D1.1 
  • Association of American Railroads 
  • Canadian Welding Bureau 
  • Caterpillar 7 Steps of Weld Excellence

MIG Welding

Metal inert gas or MIG welding is one of the most versatile processes used to join metals.  MIG welding incorporates a shielding gas with a solid electrode wire that is continuously fed into a hand-held MIG torch. The heat produced from an electric arc melts the wire onto the base material creating a weld pool that fuses them together. Both skilled welders and robotic welding machines perform a variety of MIG welds on steel or stainless steel.  This welding method is preferable for thicker material and for fill passes in thick-wall pipe welds.

TIG Welding

TIG or tungsten inert gas welding is ideal for specific penetration on thinner materials requiring precision welds. This welding method incorporates a tungsten electrode arc from the welding torch with a separate metal filler rod. A small, intense arc heats the base metal until it melts, then the filler rod is dipped into the melted pool, and the two pieces begin to join. TIG welding arcs produce less spatter than MIG arcs, offering a good amount of control for the user and a cleaner finish.

Stick Welding

The stick welding method is one of the simplest and most cost-efficient processes of joining materials.  A flux-coated rod and the metal workpieces are melted together at one point to form a weld pool.  As the pool cools, the joint between the two metals forms a sturdy bond. No shielding gas is needed in this process which is widely used on steel, aluminum, nickel, and copper alloys.  Stick welding tends to create molten splatter, and finished products require more cleaning and sanding than other arc welding methods.

Stud Welding

Stud welding joins a fastener to a metal object or surface by way of an electric arc.  As the fastener heats up and the surface area melts, the fastener is manipulated into position and the weld is formed.  There are two types of stud welding; drawn arc and capacitor discharge. Drawn arc welding required both the fastener and the base material to be heated.  Capacitor discharge creates some of the fastest stud welds, using a stud gun to trigger the weld charge and melt the fastener head to the base material simultaneously.

Robotic Welding

O’Neal Manufacturing Services offers robotic welding to automate both the welding process and the handling of the base metal part.  Skilled welders maintain programming control while the robotic technology scans, positions, and welds parts in a repetitive, uninterrupted workflow. Often used in mass production, robotic welding is well suited for short welds with curved surfaces.

Laser Welding

The term laser welding means light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation.  Laser welding generates a highly concentrated beam of light to produce a metal-to-metal weld with no filler material needed. The beam of light is amplified and directed on the material seams until they reach a melting point which fuses the two surfaces together.  Gas, solid-state, and fiber are the most common types of laser welding technologies.  Each produces a cleaner edge with improved perpendicularity than other forms of flame cutting.  The laser welding process is excellent for cutting carbon steel, low alloy steel, aluminum, and stainless-steel material from light gauge to heavier gauge thickness and plate.

Projection Welding

Unlike arc welding, projection is a form of resistance welding.  This method uses pressure and an electrical current to join metal parts.  Projections or dimples are manufactured on the base material.  As parts are brought together, an electrical current is focused on the projection points, which generates heat through an electric pulse in these specific locations. Force is applied from upper and lower plateaus connecting the parts together as the current is applied.  Projection welding is commonly used to weld connectors such as bolts, nuts, and screws to base metal parts.

Resistance Spot-welding 

Spot welding is another form of resistance welding.  This method utilizes a pair of water-cooled copper electrodes to clamp two workpieces together and pass an electric current between them.  The electrical resistance of the part material generates enough heat to form a weld nugget that bonds the pieces together.  This type of welding is used to manufacture pipe, tubing, and smaller structural sections, and is popular in the automotive industry as well as others manufacturing products made of thinner gauge materials.

Experience significant savings to your supply chain by transitioning your high labor, multi-stage subassemblies and weldments to the capable team at O’Neal Manufacturing Services. We are committed to providing hands-on reliable customer service and quality metal components for a broad range of industries including Agricultural Equipment, Material Handling, Construction Equipment, Renewable Energy & more.

New OMS Steel Manufacturing Center in Fayette, AL

O’Neal Manufacturing Services Plans Steel Fab Center in Fayette with 70 Jobs

Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield announced today that O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) plans to invest $5.5 million to open a 130,000-square-foot steel fabrication facility in Fayette as part of a project that will create 70 full-time jobs within three years after operations commence.

OMS provides quality carbon steel and aluminum parts for customers that manufacture equipment for construction, agriculture, materials handling, transportation, and other industries.

The company’s custom steel fabrication center in Fayette will feature robotic and manual welding stations, a beam-cutting line, wet paint booth, press brakes, plasma cutting, and saw cutting capabilities to support medium- to heavy-gauge steel fabrication.

“O’Neal Manufacturing Services’ investment will bring advanced capabilities to its new fabrication facility in Fayette,” Secretary Canfield said. “This is a positive development for the community not only in terms of job creation but also for growth potential in the future.”

OMS is a subsidiary of Birmingham-based O’Neal Industries, the nation’s largest family-owned network of metal service centers and component and tube manufacturing businesses. The new Fayette facility, located in an existing building, brings the company’s total North American locations to 10.

“We are thrilled to have acquired the facility, and we are even more excited to have the skilled workers that were available in Fayette. People have always been our most valuable asset,” OMS President and CEO Kent Brown said. “In this time of unprecedented low unemployment and worker shortages across the country, good people have become even more valuable.

“We are grateful to the City of Fayette, Fayette County, our state, and the Economic Development Alliance for working diligently alongside us to make this new location a reality,” he added.

Fayette Mayor Northam welcomed OMS’ growth plans in the small town in rural Northwest Alabama.

“With over a hundred-year presence in Alabama, we are happy to welcome them to Fayette and build upon this proud legacy. We look forward to supporting their growth and appreciate their investment in our city and in our citizens.”

Fayette has been on a roll lately, attracting several industrial projects and new investment in its downtown. Over 30% of workers in the Northwest Alabama region are employed at manufacturing facilities, according to the Northwest Alabama Economic Development Alliance.     

“We are excited and grateful that O’Neal Manufacturing Services has chosen Fayette for this investment. OMS is an outstanding company and employer, with a strong track record of partnering with local communities,” said Tom Wisemiller, President & CEO of Northwest Alabama EDA.

Brenda Tuck, Rural Development Manager for the Alabama Department of Commerce, said O’Neal Manufacturing Services’ new venture will benefit from a motivated workforce in Fayette.

“Alabama’s rural communities can offer companies like OMS many strategic advantages as well as an environment that allows companies to pursue ambitious goals,” Tuck said. “The business world is discovering that rural Alabama has it all.”

Find more information on our Fayette, Alabama OMS facility here.

Steel Profiles for Industry-Specific Applications

O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) offers special steel profiles for a wide range of markets. These custom-shaped bars are rolled or extruded in a variety of material grades and equip OEMs with quality components while reducing their overall production costs.

Manufacturers purchase these special profiles in specific shapes in place of forming and fabricating the geometric-shaped steel sections themselves. By doing so, the manufacturer eliminates several machining steps which result in time and labor cost savings, reduced machine and tool expenditures, and reduced material investment.

Steel profiles are made from a variety of material grades and can be developed to include specific properties and surface finish. Steel I-beams, guide rails, C-channels, and carriage bars are examples of standard steel profiles which are often used in the material handling and linear motion industries. In addition to these, there are many special steel profiles that are custom designed for proprietary use in specific applications and industries.

  • Special profiles for the material handling industry include forklift mast and telescopic guide rails for high racking and shelving systems.
  • Pipe couplings, corner profiles, and locking profiles for sheet piling are critical components of the construction industry.
  • The railroad industry requires steel profiles for rail fastening and track construction.
  • Special profiles for blade holders and corn pickers are used in the agricultural industry.
  • The automotive industry uses hinge profiles for car and truck doors.
  • Steel profiles are used in linear guide rail systems for motion/bearing controls in the Industrial market.

Original equipment manufacturers have turned to O’Neal Manufacturing Services for reliable steel parts to meet their production deadlines. Our partnership with multiple mill sources enables us to offer both standard steel profiles and custom-designed special profiles for a variety of industry applications. We provide net or near-net shapes for custom profiles as well as kitting and packaging services, and just-in-time delivery. Experience reduced labor costs, lower material costs, and production time savings by purchasing steel profiles from O’Neal Manufacturing Services.

OMS Ranks High on FAB 40 List 

Ranking among the 40 most successful metal fabricating operations in the country is no small task. For companies that have made the list, landing within the top ten places them in a superior category all their own.  O’Neal Manufacturing services has not only made the upper echelon of the FAB 40 list for 2022 but has successfully secured the #3 position in the nation.  

“Ranking #3 on the FAB 40 list is a true testament to the dedication of our employees to meet customer demand and secure new opportunities,” remarked Russ Bagby, Chief Financial Officer for O’Neal Manufacturing Services. “Moving up three spots from the previous Fab 40 list illustrates our commitment to strategic long-term growth and steadfast manufacturing support for our customers.”

Each year, the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association, International®, (FMA) reviews revenue numbers and company information supplied by metal fabricators and formulates their list of the forty most successful steel fabricators in the country. O’Neal Manufacturing Services is proud to place among the best of the best. The Fabricator’s 2022 FAB 40

James Roch Appointed to FMA Safety Council

We are proud to announce James Roch, HSE/Continuous Improvement Manager for O’Neal Manufacturing Services in Houston, TX, has been appointed to the The Fabricators and Manufacturers Association, International®, (FMA) Safety Council.

In his role as the HSE/Continuous Improvement Manager at O’Neal Manufacturing Services, James leads corporate health, safety, and environmental initiatives and supports the management of HSE policies and guidelines. He develops improvements to quality management systems, global operations emergency response plans, safety programs, and training in line with all federal and state regulations.

FMA promotes safety in the industry by facilitating training, sharing technical information, and exchanging knowledge of current issues about safety and risk control. With a mission to advocate for the growth and sustainability of the North American metal processing, forming, and fabricating industries, FMA provides numerous resources to help metal fabrication professionals thrive.

O’Neal Manufacturing Services is honored that James will be able to share his expertise on safety topics that affect metal processors and fabricators worldwide. Congratulations, James!

OMS Indianapolis To Hold Job Fair June 18th

O’Neal Manufacturing Services (OMS) will hold a job fair at their Lawrence, Indiana facility on Saturday, June 18th from 10 am – 2 pm.

The job fair will take place on-site at O’Neal Manufacturing Services’ Indianapolis facility located at 9990 East 56th Street in Lawrence, IN.  Lunch will be provided for all applicants from the Pronto Taco food truck.

OMS will be holding open interviews for the position of machine operator, MIG welder, quality inspector, manufacturing engineer, maintenance technician, human resources business partner, grounds and building technician, manual assembly, and parts cleaner. 

“The job fair will be a fantastic opportunity to connect with good people in our community,” said Federico Fraga, General Manager. “As a certified Good Wages Initiative Employer, our company has worked consistently to offer competitive pay and benefits to our employees. We have multiple positions open in many of our fabrication departments across all shifts and hope to welcome many new employees to the OMS team.”

View open positions

Ruffner Page Tapped as President and COO of O’Neal Industries

O’Neal Industries (ONI) has appointed Ruffner Page as President and Chief Operating Officer effective June 1, 2022. He has served on ONI’s Board since 2016. Page retired in January from McWane, Inc. a global manufacturing business where he had served as President since 1999. He also previously served as Executive Vice President of National Bank of Commerce, a subsidiary of Alabama National Bancorporation, from 1989 until 1994. Page graduated from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee with a B.A. in Philosophy and Psychology with a minor in Economics. He is also a graduate of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business in Charlottesville, Virginia.

“Ruffner’s knowledge, experience, and passion for our company will be a tremendous asset to an already strong leadership team, propelling us in becoming an even more successful organization as we move into our second century of industry leadership,” says Craft O’Neal, Chairman and CEO of O’Neal Industries.

Page is very active in the Birmingham community and serves on several boards including as Vice Chairman of the Board for Southern Research, a nonprofit organization working in drug discovery development and engineering, and performing work on behalf of various entities including the National Cancer Institute and the Department of Defense. Among others, he also serves on the board of South State Bank and as a Trustee for the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business Foundation. He previously served for 12 years on the board of the Birmingham Airport Authority and as Chairman of the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham Board.

Heavy Metal Parts Have Cleaned Up Their Act

Machine operators, engineers, technicians, and welders are essential positions in the manufacturing job shop.  The education, experience, and skill required to do their work have been recognized among their peers on the plant floor.  Apart from the more distinguished jobs associated with steel plate fabrication, some positions have yet to rank above the menial task level.  Manual parts cleaners have fallen into this category.  

In heavy industry contract manufacturing facilities like ours, this task translated to dozens of employees physically grinding slag from oxy cut or plasma cut parts. Their work required hand grinding, filing, and deburring heavy industrial parts, as well as moving, counting, and stacking them on pallets or shipping containers several times a day; every day.

While productivity in the parts cleaning department could be challenging, O’Neal Manufacturing Services’ Greensboro, NC fabrication center looked for ways to improve employee engagement, efficiency, and safety in this vital production area.  With the purchase of LISSMAC automated deslagging and edge preparation equipment, the Greensboro plant managed to accomplish all three; and has served as an example for other OMS facilities to follow. 

The Old Way

Manual parts cleaning was not just a dirty job, it was also a physical one.  Heavy steel plates were manually unloaded from the cutting tables at a steady pace and positioned on the ground for staging.  Next, they were hoisted up to a grinding table where the slag was manually removed. Each part was flipped over to repeat the process on both sides, then shifted to a holding area.  Parts were picked back up again for edge conditioning before finally being staged, packaged, and loaded up for the customer.  Aside from the repetitive fatigue, large industrial parts sometimes weighed up to 400 pounds apiece which added a substantial physical burden to the process. 

The New Way

With the addition of automated finishing equipment, parts can now be loaded directly from the plasma cutting table to the newly installed LISSMAC SBM-M D2 where they are simultaneously machined on both sides. No more part flipping is required. Dross and slag are removed in one pass resulting in a smooth and safe edge. This efficient process eliminated the exterior oxide layer, improved the surface quality of the parts, and greatly reduced the need for manual parts handling.

A second machine was installed to perform automated grinding and edge-rounding.  The LISSMAC SBM-XL G252 rounded the inside and outside contours of cut parts in a single pass, eliminated manual adjustment, and produced consistent and repeatable results.  

To further minimize overall parts handling and improve employee safety, 125 ft. of conveyor equipment was installed between the cutting lines, the deslagging machine, and the grinding device and delivered finished parts all the way to their final holding location.

“Things are totally different in our parts cleaning area now,” said Matt Moon, General Manager of OMS Greensboro.  “The group we have in there now are not trying to get out of parts cleaning. They like running the LISSMAC.  It’s been a dramatic improvement there.”

This capital investment performed wonders to alleviate the opinion that parts cleaning was one of the less desirable jobs in the plant.  Read more about O’Neal Manufacturing Services’ automated finishing equipment and its impact on production and safety in this article from The FABRICATOR