Four Ways Magnets Make Manufacturing More Efficient

Using magnets make manufacturing more efficientMagnets make manufacturing more efficient for companies across multiple industries. From the factory floor to the shipping dock, a variety of magnetic tools help manufactures create cost-effective and safe work environments.

Here’s a look at how magnets help get the job done… moving, storing, holding and cleaning.

 

Material Handling

Lifting magnets are one tool to make manufacturing efficientMagnetic material handling devices are an efficient and reliable method of lifting, moving and handling heavy metal loads.  Used both for lifting items vertically or moving them horizontally, magnets turn the job of material handling into an efficient, easily harnessed task.

Some permanent magnets used for material handling include lifting magnets, grippers and bulk lifters.  Examples of material handling include:

  • Quickly transfer small items like bolts, screws and other fasteners from bulk bins to work areas with bulk lifting magnets;
  • Safely pull and slide sheet and plate metal into position using magnetic grippers;
  • Lift heavy loads, up to 4,400 pounds, with one permanent magnet.

Regardless of the size of metal material to be moved, magnets make an efficient work solution.

 

Tool Storage/Work Stations

Magnetic tool holders make ideal organizers

Magnetic tool holders provide quick access to tools and create tidy work environments.  Ideal for stationary and mobile work stations, magnetic tool holders organize tools of all sizes, shapes and weights.

Magnetic tool storage includes:

  • Tool holders, both screw mount and magnetic mount, hold over 25 pounds per square inch;
  • Round base magnets with clip attachments grasp a variety of tool handles from drills to slimmer broom handles with holding strength of 35 pounds;
  • With over 105 pound of holding power, the Impact Wrench Holder stores multiple types of large tools with a repositionable, non-scratch, rubber-coated base and heat resistant ring.

When it comes to magnetic tool holders and storage, these magnetic assemblies are very versatile tools for creating efficient work stations.

 

Work Holding

Welding magnet from Master Magnetics

Another way magnets increase manufacturing efficiency is when they are utilized as work holding tools – providing manufactures with useful and reliable tools during fabrication.

Welding magnets make one of the most useful work holding tools for manufactures and fabricators. Designed to keep both hands free to safely work on the project at hand, welding magnets provide an ideal fast and accurate set up.  Strong magnets securely hold metal objects in place for perfectly aligned edges.

Other work holding magnets include shielded alnico and neodymium assemblies.  Both are perfect for securing projects during different stages of fabrication.  Alnico, in particular, is well suited to applications where high temperatures may affect the application- including racking in industrial ovens.  Many styles come tapped and ready for additional mounting.

 

Sign holding magnets for use manufacturing applications

MRO/Safety

Avoiding personal injury, property damage and losses due to downtime are just a few reasons to use magnets in manufacturing facilities and warehouses.

Magnetic Sign Holding

While it’s not news that OSHA requires safety signage in manufacturing facilities, it is a good reminder.  Everything from PPE to wayfinding needs marking.  Magnetic sign holders provide simple methods of easily and accurately hanging safety signage.  A few areas where magnetic signage is particularly useful include:

  • posting checklists, maintenance records and procedural documentation with magnetic document holders and sleeves;
  • holding wayfinding and traffic flow signs using heavy duty channel magnets.

Magnetic Sweepers

Additionally, magnetic sweepers are just one more simple way to protect the investment in your capital equipment. Available in a range of sizes, magnetic sweepers make quick work of spills and reclaim dropped fasteners from work areas. Plus, keeping aisles free from metal debris prevents costly damage to forklift tires and avoids scratching and damaging sealed or coated floors.  Use hanging sweepers attached to forklifts and trucks to sweep wide areas for regular maintenance.

 

Contact our sales team about for more information about our wide selection of magnets aimed at making manufacturing more efficient.  Our seasoned professionals can help select the perfect magnet for the job.

Three Types of P.O.P. Magnets Hiding in Plain Sight

Sometimes the best use for a magnet is one you don’t see.  Because the magnet can be hidden, the emphasis remains on the product or enhances the visual environment; not the functionality of the magnet.

These three examples of displays using hidden magnets perfectly illustrate the unique uses of P.O.P. magnets in multiple environments.

 

Sign Holding Magnets

P.O.P. magnets used to hold signs

Strong sign holding magnets secure P.O.P. signs to counters at coffee stores while keeping the magnets hidden.

If magnetic sign holders conjure up images of hooks or clunky posts, maybe it’s time to try something different.  Flip the base around and come up with sneaky way to use these magnets.

Traditionally, magnetic bases for sign holding are sturdy assemblies that hold signs with a variety of attachments – including hooks for hanging and posts for signage.  They are also incredibly strong, making them an ideal choice for high traffic areas.

However, we recently noticed this creative use of a magnetic base as vertical sign holder.  Just by adhering the magnetic bases to the back the signage, this well-known coffee bar created durable P.O.P. messaging able to endure heavy customer traffic.  The powerful magnets ensure the signs stay in place.

 

Printed Magnets

Printed magnets are ideals hidden P.O.P. magnets

Simply exchanging printed magnetic labels lets customers know what to expect as the the delicious flavor-of-day.

Printing direct to magnet is another excellent example of P.O.P. magnets hiding in plain sight.  By printing direct to magnet, graphics become the focus of the viewer rather than the magnet. Magnetic sheeting brings out the brilliant color of your designs and visual images.  The integrated magnetic backing allows for endless creative applications.

Popular uses include:

  • P.O.P. displays
  • temporary signage
  • vehicle graphics
  • message boards
  • teaching aids
  • portraits
  • decorative magnets
  • photos

In many current uses, printed magnets are often used as interchangeable signs on menu boards.  For example, changing out the flavor of this week’s frozen yogurt is as simple as pulling off one sign and posting the next.  Utilizing a magnetic graphic system incorporates magnetic sheeting and magnetic receptive material, perfect non-ferrous backgrounds.

When printed these magnets blend in with their environment seamlessly.  It’s likely you’ve spotted one of these hidden magnets without realizing it.

 

Strip Magnets

Magnetic strip

Often, magnetic strip is used in trade show and exhibit displays

One of the first types of flexible magnets created, flexible magnetic strip has endless uses.  Extruded into long, thin strips of flexible magnetic material, strip magnet works well for attaching signage to metal surfaces.  Or use two attracting pieces of strip magnets to attach materials to non-ferrous surfaces.  Applied to the back of the project, the magnet remains hidden providing an aesthetically attractive appeal.

Common uses of strip magnets include:

  • trade show displays
  • sign holding
  • screen door and show door closures
  • P.O.P. displays
  • packaging applications

Whether used magnet to steel or magnet to magnet, flexible magnetic strip is an ideal example P.O.P. magnets hiding in plain sight.  Recently, we discovered strip magnets used to attach a finished piece of trim work over a display in a chain retailer.  This unique application allows reconfiguration of fixtures, while creating a modern, sleek visual environment for the retailer.

 

If your next P.O.P. application involves keeping a magnet hidden, contact our sales team about for more information.  Our seasoned professionals can help select the perfect magnet for the job.

 

Understanding Magnet Myths & Facts

Magnet myths and facts

When it comes to magnets, there’s a lot of information and misinformation out there.  And it can be hard to separate fact from fiction.  Here’s the top five magnet myths we find ourselves explaining regularly.

 

 

1. Magnets erase your hard drive.

It's a magnet myth that a magnet will erase your computer hard drive.

To explain this, it’s important to note there are two types of drives – solid state drives and hard disk drives.  Traditionally, hard disk drives (HDD) create binary code by changing the polarity of the magnetic bits.  So, in theory, a magnet would flip the bits and effectively erase any data stored on the HDD.  Unfortunately, the strength of magnet needed to accomplish this feat is equal or greater to that of most MRI magnets, or 1.1 Tesla¹.   Solid state drives (SSD), for example USB thumb drives, smartphone memory, and some laptops keep binary code in a stored charge. No magnetic field needed.  In this case, a magnet poses no ability to affect the stored data on SSDs.

It’s a magnet myth.

 

2. You can order a monopole magnet.

If we remember our science classes, we recall all magnets have a north and south pole.  If you cut a magnet in half, you simply have a smaller magnet with two poles.  These are called dipole magnets and is how magnetic material is found naturally.  While we manufacture magnets with more than two poles (this commonly how flexible magnetic sheeting is magnetized), it isn’t currently possible to provide a magnet with just one pole.

Confusion over single pole, or monopole, magnets stem from multiple sources.  First, some magnets are sold labeled as north or south – which isn’t to say they are monopoles.  These magnets simply have a particular pole facing out, with the opposite pole covered with adhesive or surrounded by a metal or plastic cup.  Some applications require a north/south magnetic selection, where it is important to match the poles correctly.  Another reason for confusion stems from marketing terminology.  A Google search for ‘monopole magnet for sale’ yields 61,000 results.  None of these magnets are actually monopole magnets.  Rather, they are the same magnets and magnetic assemblies sold as basic dipole magnets.

However, recent groundbreaking research led physicists to create a synthetic magnetic monopole under extreme conditions in a laboratory².  This paves the way for future potential breakthroughs, despite the fact that no observation of a naturally occurring magnetic monopole has been identified.

It’s magnet myth – for now.

 

3. Magnets are positive/negative.

If you think of a traditional image of bar magnet, half red and half blue, then it might be easy to understand why some people interpret north and south poles as positive and negative.  But, in reality, permanent magnets don’t have a positive or negative charge.  They have two consistent magnetic fields, or dipoles.  Currently, there are no monopole magnets.  By nature, an electrical charge is either positive or negative and can exist without its opposite.  Because an electrical charge is referred to as a monopole and magnet cannot be monopoles, positive and negative magnets don’t exist either.

It’s a magnet myth. 

 

4. Magnets will damage my cell phone.

In this case, it’s mostly a myth.  We can refer back to our first myth for the science (magnets won’t damage the phone’s memory).  However, magnets have the potential to impair the phone’s internal compass.  Fortunately, most magnets simply aren’t strong enough to cause a problem – even neodymium magnets.  It takes a larger rare earth, or neodymium magnet to interfere with the internal magnetic sensors or to lightly magnetize internal steel components. Just think about how many cell phone cases, holders and accessories feature magnets to understand how confidently magnets are used in close proximity to cell phones. However, since we love our maps and apps, we don’t recommend rubbing industrial strength magnets all over your phone!

It’s mostly a magnet myth.

 

It's a fact that a magnet can demagnetize the magnetic stripe on the back of credit cards.

5. Keep magnets away from credit cards, gift cards and hotel keys. 

This is one magnetic fact that is rapidly changing with times. The black stripe on the back of most cards is referred to as a magnetic stripe. So it’s logical that the stripe can be erased, or even partially scrambled, by coming in contact with a magnet.  An article by Cynthia Drake at creditcards.com details exactly how simple it is erase that black stripe with nothing stronger than a refrigerator magnet.  However, not all magnetic stripes are created equal.  The coercivity of a typical credit card is high, meaning it is takes a little more work to demagnetize the strip.  Hotel keys possess a lower coercivity meaning making them much more susceptible to demagnetization.  BUT, with the advent of the RFID chips, magnetic strips soon may be irrelevant. Permanent magnets have no effect on RFID chips.  They won’t erase, block or scramble the card’s data.

It’s a magnet fact – for now.

 

While many of our old magnetic beliefs stem from the days of old technology, like CRT and floppy disks, others failed to keep up with cutting edge research.   Turn to our expert sales team to for help deciphering any magnet myths you run across.

 

 

¹  http://www.pcworld.com/article/116572/article.html

² https://phys.org/news/2014-01-physicists-synthetic-magnetic-monopole-years.html

 

Viewing Magnetic Fields and Identifying Magnetic Poles

Typically, magnetic fields are invisible.  It’s one of the things that adds to the mystique and curiosity of magnets.  Bust visualizing magnetic fields and identifying magnetic poles can be done with just a few simple tools.

 

Magnetic Fields

Viewing magnetic fields with with viewer film

Magnetic Viewer Film shows the multiple poles present in flexible magnetic sheeting.

There are a few ways to detect magnetic fields, one of the most reliable is with magnetic viewer film.  This unique film suspends tiny nickel particles over a thin layer of viscous material allowing the particles to align with magnetic fields.  It shows the location, as well as how many poles, a magnet has.  Simply place the sheet over the magnet and the poles appear as dark areas. The light green areas are the magnetic fields.

Magnetic viewer cards and sheets allow users to:

  • Pinpoint location of magnetic poles
  • Determine number of poles a magnet has
  • Easily find ‘hidden’ magnetic fields

 

 

Make it Yourself

While viewer cards quickly illuminate poles, a simple DIY project illustrates magnet flux in motion.   To make one, just a few simple items are needed.   Start by gathering the materials:

  • a clear bottle
  • mineral oil (or other viscous fluid like glycerin)
  • iron filings
  • assorted shapes of magnets

See magnetic fields when you make your own magnetic viewer bottleCarefully pour the oil into the bottle or container of your choice.  Add coloring, if desired, and shake gently.  Next add in iron filings.  The amount added depends on the bottle size, but in order to see the iron particles moving, don’t add too much metal.  At this point, all that is left is to cap the bottle and shake the contents.  Rubbing a magnet along the outside of the bottle draws the metal filings along the magnetic field lines. Using different shapes of magnets fully illustrates magnetic flux.

A few tips: Use a viscous fluid like mineral oil or glycerin to suspend the iron filings.  Water is not well suited for this use.  Iron filings, iron oxide or cut up pieces of steel wool all work to demonstrate the pull of the magnet.  Easily purchase any of these supplies at local discount stores.

This project is excellent for demonstrating the magnetic field in motion and is ideal for educational purposes.  And, it’s just plain fun!

 

Identifying Magnetic Poles

While magnetic viewer cards show the location of magnetic poles, they don’t classify the pole.  If determining a magnet’s north or south pole is important, then the tool to use is a pole finder.

Identify magnetic poles with pole finder

This basic magnetic pole finder identifies the north or south pole of a magnet. An electronic version, beeps when then the pole is found and lights up red or green for pole indication.

Pole finders are very simple to use.  Just touch the tip of the pole finder to the surface of the magnet and S or N appears in the window.

Pole finders are useful for:

  • Verification of product assemblies
  • Quality control
  • Manufacturing applications
  • Education

 

With science fair season in full swing, both magnetic viewing film and pole finders make useful tools for a variety of experiments.  Master Magnetics offers several different types of magnetic viewing film and pole finders.  For more information about identifying magnetic fields, contact our sales team.

Permanent Magnets and Electromagnets – Different Magnet Types Feature Different Properties

Neodymium magnets are rare earth magnetsMagnets work in hundreds of applications around you daily.  But depending on the use, the magnet could be a permanent magnet or an electromagnet.  Permanent magnets and electromagnets both possess different characteristics and benefits.

 

Permanent Magnets

As the name suggests, a permanent magnet is any magnetic material whose atoms have been permanently aligned to create a persistent magnetic field.   The magnetizing process occurs during manufacturing.

Permanent magnets can be made of several different materials, including ceramic, alnico, samarium-cobalt, and neodymium.  Neodymium and samarium-cobalt magnets are also classified as rare earth magnets.  These magnets have superior holding strength in comparison to the size of material.

 

Electromagnets

Permanent magnets and electromagnets have different propertiesAlso aptly named, an electromagnet operates based on electricity.  The magnetic force is generated when the electricity is turned on and stops when the electrical current is disconnected.   A simple electromagnet is created by wrapping conductive wire in tight coils around a ferrous core.  Once the wire is hooked to electricity, a magnetic field is created.  The magnetic field stops when the electrical current ceases.

 

Differences Between Permanent Magnets and Electromagnets

On a general level, the difference between permanent magnets and electromagnets comes down to two main points:

  • Loss of properties
  • Magnetic strength

Obviously by definition, permanent magnets expect to retain their magnetic strength perpetually.  With very few exceptions, including exceeding maximum operating temperature, permanent magnets remain magnetized constantly.  However, electromagnets gain or lose their magnetic properties based on the supply of electrical current.

The magnetic strength of permanent magnets largely depends on the material make-up of the magnet.  Their inherent physical structures dictates the maximum amount of strength based on material, size and shape.  It is a fixed number that doesn’t change after magnetization.  Electromagnets, on the other hand, see their strength fluctuate depending on the amount of current supplied.  The same electromagnet can provide multiple magnetic strengths.

What Type of Magnet is It?

Find Permanent Magnets Here:

  • Tools
  • Jewelry Clasps
  • Hybrid Car Motors

Find Electromagnets Here:

  • MRI Machines
  • Electronic Locks
  • AC Motors

Choosing Permanent Magnets

Permanent magnets have the main benefit of operating without a power supply, making them energy efficient. They are easily portable to a variety of locations.  Furthermore, their availability in very small dimensions make them ideal for size-limited applications.

Permanent magnets face limitations in operating temperatures.  This loss of strength in very hot environments make them unsuitable for some applications – or require special cooling.  Their fixed magnetic pull strength can also make them unattractive to users looking for a great deal of flexibility.

 

Choosing Electromagnets

Electromagnets have the main benefit of manipulating their magnetic pull strength – both by turning the magnet on or off and by adjusting the current.   They also feature greater pull strength than permanent magnets.  Some estimates place the largest electromagnet at 20 times stronger than the strongest permanent magnet.

Because significant amounts of coiling is needed to create very strong magnetic fields, their size can be prohibitive to some applications.  Additionally, supplying too much current to the electromagnet can create shorts, rendering the magnet useless until it is recoiled.

This overview of permanent magnets and electromagnets just touches the surface of the complexities these magnetic materials.  Master Magnetics exclusively manufactures and distributes permanent magnets.

 

Our sales team can answer any questions you have about permanent magnets and their unique properties.  Contact us for more information.

 

Flexible Magnetic Sheeting Compatibility Influenced by Two Things

Flexible magnetic sheeting compatibility largely depends on two things: the type of printer and how the sheeting is being used.  Get these things right and achieving quality results when printing direct to magnet increases greatly.

Magnetic sheeting compatibility depends on the type of printer ink

Selecting the right type of magnetic sheeting for your printer is key in achieving quality results. For example, using a magnetic sheeting with a paper top-coat for aqueous ink yields quality prints (above). A vinyl top-coat with the same type of ink creates a blurry, messy image (below).

 

Printer Compatibility

First, when determining magnetic sheeting compatibility, look to see what type of material to use with your printer.  Printer compatibility largely depends on the type of ink used.   PrintMagnetVinyl is a flexible magnetic sheeting with a vinyl coating used with wide-format solvent, eco-solvent, UV, and latex printers.  Magnetic receptive material, FlexIRON, is also compatible with these same printer types.

 

For printers using aqueous inks, select PrintMagnet with a paper topcoat as the compatible option for flexible magnetic sheeting and FlexIRON (PP) for a magnetic receptive choice.

 

Refer to the table for a quick reference of the ink and magnetic sheeting compatibility.

Type of Ink Compatible Material by Brand Name
UV Ink PrintMagnetVinyl, FlexIRON (PET) and FlexIRON (PVC)
Eco-solvent Ink PrintMagnetVinyl, FlexIRON (PET) and FlexIRON (PVC)
Solvent Inks PrintMagnetVinyl, FlexIRON (PET) and FlexIRON (PVC)
Latex Inks PrintMagnetVinyl, FlexIRON (PET) and FlexIRON (PVC)
Screen Printing Inks PrintMagnetVinyl
Aqueous Inks PrintMagnet, FlexIRON (PP)

 

Beyond the ink compatibility, we’ve worked with most major printers to test for quality and compatibility with PrintMagnetVinyl™ and FlexIRON™.  Find a list of printers and more information here.

 

Use Influences Choice

After understanding the type of magnetic sheeting compatible with your printer, the next factor in selecting material is determining where and how it will be used.

 

Major influencing factors include:

  • Material thickness
  • Indoor or outdoor use
  • Size of project

 

The thicker the magnetic sheeting means the stronger the sheeting.  However, that isn’t always the best way to select the thickness needed for your project.   Traditionally vehicle magnets need the strength of 30-mil to adhere securely during high speeds. But promotional items like magnetic calendars only need 15-mil.

 

Projects designed to withstand the outdoor elements of sun, wind and rain clearly require vinyl sheeting for outdoor use.  Alternatively, if printing with aqueous ink on a paper topcoat, laminating the project provides protection from the element.  However, items designed to be used exclusively indoors, like magnetic business cards or P.O.P. signage, simply need material for indoor use.

 

Also, considering the size and scope of your project prior to deciding on the width of material can potentially save you time and money.  Will you gang up your graphics so that a 48-inch roll is just perfect?  Does a 24-inch roll mean less cutting?  Can we provide a custom size to expedite a large project?  Discuss your project with our sales team and see how we can save you time and money.

 

Read more tips about printing direct to magnet here.

 

Our knowledgeable sales team can assist you with determining magnetic sheeting compatibility for your printer and project.  Contact us with questions and samples.

 

 

Exciting New Advances with Magnets Hint at Major Innovations

Magnets have come a long way since ceramic magnets first made their debut in 1952.  In demand for everything from clean energy to technology to manufacturing, magnets today are driving some of the most innovative products for tomorrow.

In the past year we’ve noticed exciting new advances with magnets – and they seem to be everywhere.  Here are a few of the highlights.

 

3D Printing Magnets

3D printed magnets is one of several new advances with magnets

Image Credit: Department of Energy (DOE)

Most recently, researchers from the Vienna University of Technology and scientists at the  Department of Energy’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility successfully 3D printed magnets.

On the rise as a viable manufacturing technology, 3D printing is popular for everything from prototypes to custom production runs.  But in the magnet world, 3D printing points to important possibilities for a few different reasons.

First, 3D printing provides greater control over the arrangement of the magnetic fields. Often sensors require magnetic field lines oriented in strength in very specific arrangements – and 3D printing opens the door for small magnets with very precise orientations.

Second, 3D printing generates much less waste in the ‘manufacturing’ process.  As much as 50 percent material waste can be saved in this process when compared to the traditional method of sintering.  This has particularly valuable implications for the rare earth elements used in neodymium magnets.

Potentially 3D printing opens the door to complex shapes, small custom manufacturing runs and little, or no, tooling costs.

 

Nanomagnets

The use nanomagnets make for exciting advances in many fields

Nanomagnets: This image shows a selective actuation of the side arms of a soft robot in a horizontal uniform magnetic field.  Image credit: Sumeet Mishra, North Carolina State University

If understanding magnets leaves you scratching your head, then nanomagnets are simply mind-blowing.  By definition, a nanomanget is a “submicrometric system that presents spontaneous magnetic order (magnetization) at zero applied magnetic field (remanence).”

Primarily used as ways to transport, attach or manipulate something in conjunction with another magnetic field, nanomagnets have featured heavily in research in biomedical and electronic fields in the past year.

Here are some amazing uses of nanomagnets:

  • Treating cancer cells with targeted hyperthermia (read more)
  • Delivering drugs to cancer cells (read more)
  • Powering computers and electronics with speed (read more)
  • Controlling soft robots (read more)
  • Sensing and testing for certain elements, such as marijuana (read more)

 

NASA-based Magnet Research

ESA's SWARM mission studies the Earth's magnetic field

Magnetosphere:  Additionally, results of ESA’s Swarm mission discovered a molten jet stream related to the Earth’s magnetic field.  Illustration credit: ESA

Both NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) reported results of missions and studies involving the Earth’s magnetic field, or magnetosphere, and how it affects us.

In September, NASA shared findings from the THEMIS mission showing substorms where solar particles disturb the Earth’s magnetic field and create auroras.  NASA shares an amazing animation of this here.

ESA also published results of their missions, including detailed maps of the changes in the Earth’s magnetic field.  SWARM, a mission dedicated to studying our magnetosphere, was launched in 2013. It’s now producing enough data to show changes in the Earth’s magnetic field and the magnetic north pole.

In December, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency launched a magnetic tool aimed at cleaning up space.  With the help of this magnetic tether, astronauts at the International Space Station will be cleaning up the massive amounts of junk in space.

And beyond studying the magnetosphere, NASA recently opened the Magnetic Materials Fabrication and Characterization Lab.  This lab is geared to both the research and production of custom alloy magnetic ribbons.  According to NASA, “Researchers are testing these materials to convert the power generated by solar cells into a form that can be smoothly integrated into the national power grid system and easily managed with little to no electrical variation or disruptions.”

 

Still thinking there’s not much new about magnets?  Hungry for more cutting edge magnetic information?  Then watch for news from the Magnetics 2017 conference in Orlando this week.  Billed as the leading global event focused on the latest technical advancements in the magnetic markets, it won’t disappoint.

Attractive Prevention- Why Choose Cow Magnets

Prevent hardware disease with cow magnetsIf an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, then one cow magnet is certainly worth its weight in, er, steak.  Popular with farmers, ranchers and veterinarians, cow magnets are a well-known method of preventing hardware disease in cattle.

 

About Hardware Disease

The University of Missouri extension office estimates between 55 and 75 percent of cattle in the eastern United States have some type of hardware in their stomachs.

Because cows don’t discriminate when it comes to their food, they easily eat pieces of metal with their feed or when grazing.  The metal makes its way to the cow’s reticulum (or second stomach). Here it can puncture the stomach wall, developing into an infection or damaging other organs.  This is referred to as hardware disease, hardware stomach or, more rarely, tire wire disease.

Also medically known as traumatic reticulo-peritonitis or reticulo-pericarditis (depending on the location), hardware disease causes loss of appetite and decreased milk output in dairy cattle and ability to gain weight in feeder stock.  In some cases, administering a cow magnet might attract the offensive metal and pull it back into the stomach.   But treatment often involves exploratory surgery and antibiotics.  Prevention is key to avoiding hardware disease.

 

Locating the Risk

Decades ago, the primary culprit of hardware disease came from bailing wire.  As bailing wire has fallen out of use for this exact reason, metal still finds its way into feed in the form of roofing nails.  Additionally, bits of fencing wire and other metal ‘junk’ gets chopped up in balers and feed choppers.

Other sources of contamination comes from blades and other parts of machinery wearing out and falling into choppers.  Also accidentally allowing grazing in areas typically prone to litter or junk can lead to digestion of metal.

 

Prevention with Cow Magnets

Choose cow magnets because they work

Simple Attraction: Cow magnets do their job by catching metal items and preventing them from doing damage.

Magnets play two roles in preventing hardware disease.  First, use of heavy duty magnets on feed trucks or conveyors acts as a first line of defense to catch any rogue metal as it passes through the equipment.

Second, many veterinarians recommend cow magnets.  Often given after calves are a year old, cow magnets need only be administered once in the bovine’s lifetime to effectively hold ferromagnetic object in the reticulum.

Since cow magnets act as a preventive measure to hardware disease, they save farmers and ranchers the added expenses of:

  • veterinarian bills,
  • loss of milk output,
  • decreased breeding opportunities and,
  • potential death of the livestock.

 

Master Magnetics provides cow magnets different types, including the patented Ru-Master 5™.  For more information about choosing cow magnets, contact our sales team or click here to purchase online.

 

 

Magnets Make Great Stocking Stuffers

It’s that time of year to make your list and check it twice.  Magnets make great stocking stuffers for that big kid on your list.   Since we know a thing or two about magnets, we’ve put together this list of stocking stuffers sure to please.  And since most of these magnets on our list retail for under $10, they won’t empty the wallet either.

 

Magnetic Base with Attachments

These magnets make great stocking stuffers

Consider this kit the multipurpose tool of magnets. This handy three-in-one kit lets the user choose which attachment to use with the powerful 35 pound pull magnet. The magnetic base with attachment set includes the magnetic round base, a hook, eyebolt, bolt, and three nuts.

MSRP $4.99 ~ Part No. 07596

 

 

Super Magnets

These magnets make great stocking stuffersAptly named, super magnets are the most power magnets available.  Amazingly strong for their size, they possess a variety of uses (plus they look pretty good doing it).  They are perfect for posting notes and pictures on white boards or fridges, are ideal for craft projects and just plain fun to have around.  Pick up a few packages and create your own desk toys – they’ll be hard to put down! {NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN}

MSRP $5.50 ~ Part No. 07045

 

Printable Magnets

These printable photo magnets make great stocking stuffersLet your gift recipient show off their favorite memories by printing their own photo magnets. This 10 pack of glossy printable magnetic sheeting prints photo quality images on inkjet printers.

MSRP $13.00 ~ Part No. 08034

 

 

 

Telescoping Pick- up Magnet

These magnets make great stocking stuffersA telescoping magnet is perfect stocking stuffer for those tinkerers on your list. This pocket-sized tool lengthens to lets the user retrieve small metal items from hard to reach areas.  They’ll be amazed at how much strength it has and all the places they find to use it.

MSRP $6.00 ~ Part No. 07568

 

 

Screwdriver Magnetizer/Demagnetizer –

A great addition to anyone’s tool kit is a screwdriver magnetizer/demagnetizer. Easily magnetize small tools to attract screws and nuts or demagnetize when working near sensitive mechanical or electrical or equipment.

MSRP $3.45 ~ Part No. 07524

 

 

 

Super-Size Stuffers

If you have a big stocking to fill, we suggest these two incredibly useful magnetic gifts.  A clever magnetic bottle opener, the Pop ‘n Catch is fun gift that lets users pop the top on their favorite bottle beverage and catch the cap in one single-handed action. It magnetically mounts for easy portability on any steel surface like grills, metal coolers, tailgates, and refrigerators.

MSRP $24.99 ~ Part No. 07581

 

Or our selection of magnetic and screw mount tool holders lets anyone on your list organize tools, knives and other metal items.  With 30 pounds pull, objects remain securely attached until you remove them.  Plus, they look pretty great too.

MSRP $20.90 ~ Part No. 07576

 

 

If you want to stuff your stocking with these magnets, we recommend gifting them to adults and not children.  We know magnets are fun, but they certainly pose dangers for kids.  These magnets can be found at many local hardware and retail stores throughout North America.  Buy these gifts at our retail partners’ stores or online (find our list of retailers here), or buy the Pop ‘n Catch online here.

 

 

Eight Great Ways to Use Magnets for Marketing Your Company

Calendars are one way to use magnets for marketing

Magnets make a great choice for marketers looking to keep their company name in front of prospects and clients all year round.  Here’s our top eight ways to use magnets for marketing your company.

 

By printing direct to magnet, it’s simple to create customized items that provides value to your customers and is branded with your company information.  Tap into your creative side with magnetic sheeting.  Create vivid graphics that are easily cut by hand or machine.  All of these magnetic items make great giveaways, mailers or handouts.

 

1. Calendars

Everyone needs a calendar, even in our digital world. Magnetic calendars last a full year, keeping your name front and center for twelve months.  Some companies make this a tradition, knowing clients and customers come to expect their annual calendar.

 

2. Sports Schedules

Print sports schedules for a perfect magnet used for marketing

Here in Colorado, we’ve got our Denver Bronco magnet game schedule stuck to the fridge by July – and if we don’t we’re looking around to find one.  But sports schedules can feature college and high school teams too, as well as regional professional teams.  Fans love knowing the game schedule for the season and keep these well after the season ends just to show their team loyalty.  One note, be sure to use approved logos.

3. Emergency Number Locator

Everyone knows to dial 911 – but how many other emergency numbers do you have on hand?  Magnetic Emergency Number Locator cards make excellent giveaways.  Provide some numbers preprinted, such as those to non-emergency fire and police, poison control, local utilities, and local government.  Then leave areas for people to write in other numbers such as doctors, dentist, veterinarian and emergency contacts.

 

4. Conversion Charts and Reference Charts

emergency-card

Providing your customers with a handy conversion chart or reference chart relevant to their daily needs will have real staying power. Depending on your business, magnetic charts can include kitchen conversion charts, metric conversion charts, wine paring guides, planting guidelines, dosage listings, tap and die charts, machinery maintenance how-tos, and much more.  The key comes in creating a useful information for your audience.  Customers keep and use these types of magnets for years.  That’s a lot of mileage for your marketing dollar.

 

5. Support for Causes

printable-magnets-with-a-cause

Have a cause your company is passionate about?  Share and show your support at community and professional events with ribbons.  For example, if breast cancer is a cause your company feels strongly about, donating magnetic pink ribbons at a run or other community event is an authentic method of marketing while supporting a cause.

 

6. Photo frames

Everyone loves to hang photos of their kids, pets, and vacations.  Fridges and files cabinets need magnets to hang photos, so why not give them one to use.  Create a beautiful magnetic frame, even with a small branding, and people will use it.  Or, brand the middle, which will be out to create the frame and leave them with another usable magnet.

 

7. Business Cards

printable-business-cards

Make it easy for customers locate your phone number and website with magnetic business cards.  Clever shapes and unique graphics really make these effective marketing tools stand out.  Doctors’ offices, restaurants, realtors, and other service providers all benefit from this option.

 

8. Car Signs

Magnetic vehicle signs have been around a while for a reason:  they work.  Quickly and easily brand your vehicle when needed and remove when you don’t.  No special tools or installation techniques required.  Less expensive than painting or wrapping a vehicle, four-color vehicle signs look great.  You quite literally get miles of marketing leverage for your dollar with magnetic vehicle signs.

 

Use magnets to market your company with longevity and endless ways to customize your corporate message.  Whether you are saying ‘Thank-You’ or ‘Happy Holidays’, printing direct to magnet provides a great way to package that message.