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Norbar Blog

One of the things about getting old is that you remember stuff from long ago. As we started packing our boxes at Beaumont Road we found an original blueprint of the 1965 alterations to our first building in North Bar Place. It brought back memories of that first premises. I can shut my eyes and see the stairs up to the offices, with Grandfathers office at the top on the left and the general office a few steps down to the right where my father Ian worked. That memory made me wonder what Grandfath...
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Norbar has been going independently to the Cologne Fair for about 27 years now and probably for 20 years before that sharing a stand with our distributor so we have seen a lot of changes. The significant change this year was the drop from four days to three for the event. Strangely, we still started on Sunday; it was the Wednesday that was dropped! Whether the three day show was a good decision was certainly something that exhibitors and visitors were talking about. From a visitors point of view...
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As new staff members join Norbar, they each have an induction session with the three Directors and my induction session is centred around the Norbar brand and marketing. Following one of these inductions, a lady joining our electronic production team asked if she could see me because she had a marketing idea. Much as I love ideas I approach them with some trepidation because it is often the case that the idea will be unworkable for a variety of reasons such as cost and limited likely impact bein...
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“It’s not Rocket Science”

13 Jan, 2016 |
Over the years I have been involved in the recruitment of many CNC Setters. During the interview process I will usually walk candidates around the CNC machine shop explaining what equipment we have available and the type of work we do, the examples I show them are usually accompanied by the comment “it’s not rocket science”. I am still not entirely sure for whose benefit I say it. Is it for my own in the hope that my dismissal of the difficulty will impress the prospective cand...
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Having recently embarked on a project to gain ISO50001 (Energy Management System) accreditation, a question I’ve been posed a few times has been, Yeah, but I turn the light off when I leave isn’t that enough?Well, what is ISO50001 and what is an Energy Management System? ISO50001 is the international standard for Energy Management Systems and within this standard it defines Energy Management Systems as such: To enable an organisation to follow a systematic approach in achieving ...
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Torque wrenches are common place across a variety of industrial processes, commercial garages and even homes wherever there is a precision assembly process utilising threaded fasteners. Considering their widespread use however, there remains a number of things that people get wrong or simply don’t know.
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Shortage of Engineers

01 Sep, 2015 |
As I am sure you are aware, there has been huge media attention on the lack of Engineering resource in the EU. Norbar is no different and we have been experiencing staff shortages in this area for some time. We changed our recruitment strategy and have recently used Linked In which has actually helped (despite being inundated with CVs). We also took the decision that we may need to consider resource outside the EU. Employing people from outside the EU requires an employer to be awarded...
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The complications of ISO standards

21 Aug, 2015 |
I explained that the working group for torque wrenches had been meeting since 2008 to revise and develop the existing standard for torque wrenches ISO 6789:2003. The project has taken far too long and sometimes people ask me why we have not finished before. In the following paragraphs I will try to explain some of the reasons, from my perspective. My aim is to give you an insight into standards preparation. Every ISO standard has an owner, in the form of a Technical Committee. ISO/TC 2...
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Let’s talk cycle torque!

13 Aug, 2015 |
We spend a lot of time on this blog talking about torque in applications as diverse as aerospace, construction and automotive. But we don’t spend nearly enough time talking about torque in relation to cycling. This is a shame and it ends today, because cycling is a growth sector in the UK. Whether it’s because of Bradley Wiggins, Chris Froome, Chris Hoy or Team Sky at the Tour de France, cycling traffic has increased every year since 2008, roughly about the time that the British...
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As the UK lead delegate for the ISO TC29 SC10 technical committee, I have the honour to represent the UK in drafting standards for tightening tools. The meetings are hosted by different national delegates each time and last week the meeting was in New York, with delegates from seven countries. One of our key standards is ISO 6789. This torque wrench standard is now 12 years old and the new standard being developed will continue to specify requirements for design, manufacture and calibration...
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