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Manufactured Lean in the USA
The Big Round Thing: Hamilton Takes on NASCAR 1 NASCAR tires vs. casters

Although our wheels don't zip around Talladega Superspeedway, they easily outlast NASCAR tires. We dug into the world of stock car racing and made a fun comparison. Here's what we came up with:

Do Our Wheels Outlive NASCAR Tires?
Pit crews swap out race tires about every 35 laps. Depending on the track, this translates to 18 to 95 miles. Our wheels (if properly maintained) last for years, and we guarantee our forged steel casters for three years. Granted, they're not moving as fast…

NASCAR Tires Have a Little Speed on Our Wheels
Zooming around the racetrack at speeds of about 200 mph, NASCAR tires take a beating from the pavement and a little thing called friction. The top rated speed for our wheels is a whopping three miles per hour. But occasionally we'll rate wheels higher at faster speeds, e.g. 10 mph for towing applications.

Our Wheels Take the Heat
There's a reason why pit crews wear heat aprons. After 35 laps at 200 mph, the tires are hot – around 200 degrees. Our hi-heat Plastex wheels withstand temperatures up to 475 degrees, and metal wheels will go much higher, to 600 degrees.

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Nuclear Physics Lab Runs on Swivel Casters 2 Swivel casters mounted on lift table

When the Department of Energy needs to carefully move massive, high-speed lasers and magnets around its National Laboratory for Nuclear Physics Research, it rolls with Hamilton Caster. A southeastern distributor recently ordered casters for a lift table to handle these heavy, precious loads in the laboratory without wrecking the floors. Our solution? Extra heavy-duty (EHD) swivel casters.

We used EHD swivel casters with 6” x 3” Nylast® wheels that glide across the smooth laboratory surface while handling loads up to 5,000 pounds each. The wheels are also well suited for sterile environments because they're resistant to chemicals. We also equipped these casters with four-position swivel locks on the side for easy access, and a rap-a-round foot brake.

And even though these caster wheels are used in a laboratory environment, they're prepped for demanding applications, too. Since they're equipped with HPI® swivel technology, they'll handle the heavy loads while swiveling more easily than their traditional ball-raceway cousins.

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Ditch Waste to Boost Efficiency at Home and at the Office 3 Lean tips for home and office

Lean manufacturing isn't just for our factory. The same principles, like trimming paper use by 50%, or cutting excessive inventory, apply at home and at the office. Follow these lean tips and you'll be on your way to a more efficient lifestyle, minus the junk:

At the Office: De-clutter and Organize

  • Cut out desk clutter. Toss and recycle useless materials that only get in the way. Reduce your materials to only what's necessary, such as a pen, a notebook and a folder.
  • Organize your desk. Clearly mark and file folders, and recycle unneeded pages. No more fumbling for that report for your boss.
  • Shutter the distractions. Try not slaving over your email and Facebook. Using two monitors? They may be slowing you down.
  • Don't rely on ancient hardware. Upgrade old computers and software that routinely crash and bog you down.

At Home: Streamline Your Routine

  • Analyze your morning routine. Waiting for coffee to brew? Use a coffee machine with a timer, so after you shower, it's ready.
  • Downsize. Donate, sell, or throw away furniture, kitchenware, or other household items you never use. If it's collected dust for a year, chances are it's going to stay that way.
  • Prep your clothes the night before. Don't waste time in the morning picking out your clothes. Have them ready and waiting.

Remember: Lean takes time. Take it slowly so you don't burn out and revert to old ways. Try implementing a new step each week, and when you've mastered it, move onto another. Good luck on your journey to lean!

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Win a Garmin GPS at the MHEDA 2011 Convention 4 MHEA 2011 Convention in Phoenix

We're inviting new and long-time distributors to say “hi” at the 2011 Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association (MHEDA) Convention. Chat with Hamilton's Vice President, Steve Lippert, at Booth No. 411 and enter for a chance to win a Garmin Nuvi 255W GPS. Oh, and he's bringing a few casters too, specifically designed for the industry that keeps things moving. We look forward to seeing you there.

The 2011 MHEDA Convention is April 30 till May 4 in Phoenix, Arizona.

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The Big Number: 7500 5 3-D rendering of custom caster for oil processing plant

7500 pounds: When an oil company swaps out large valves at its gas processing plant, they're hauled on this custom-built trailer equipped with casters that support nearly four tons. Two different sizes were required to handle the unique geometry of the valves. This model shown is 36" x 132" with four adjustable support braces and two ratcheting straps.

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Lure Your Disappearing Sales Prospects Back 6 Tips for reaching your disappearing prospects

You thought you had a new sales prospect. Then they stopped talking to you. But just because they fell off the map doesn't mean they're gone forever. Try these tips to get them back in business:

  • Use different channels. If they don't email you or call back, tweet them or send a letter via snail mail. You might be dealing with a prospect that's notoriously slow to listen to voicemail, but slaves over Twitter.
  • Call someone else. If the person you've been working with vanishes, contact an assistant or someone else on the team. Get an update and move forward. Just don't call their boss – unless you want to ditch the prospect forever.
  • Chat unrelated to the deal. Whether it's next weekend's NASCAR race or a tidbit about the best steak you ever ate, you'll get their guard down and prep them for business.
  • Pitch from a different angle. If you've exhausted all your resources on a few particular benefits, try some different ones to pique their interests. This way, you can focus on what's most important to them.

If all else fails, move on. Read more tips on the Matt on Marketing blog.

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