June 2015 - In This Issue:
For a complete listing of events, visit our website 
June 9 - Aug 6

Two evenings per week from 6-9pm and Saturdays 1-5pm for a total of 80 hours.


June 24 @ 3:30pm-7:00pm

Get a behind-the-scenes sneak peek into the world of beer as we tour the Upslope Brewery in Boulder, CO. This facility is 27,000 square feet and includes a canning line that can run up to 600 cans a minute. As an added bonus, Upslope's neighbor OZO Coffee has invited us to wander over to their facilities as well.


The evening will conclude with a mixer and awards ceremony where the fastest manufacturing team to compete in this year's Colfax Marathon will be honored. Food and drinks will be provided.


Please note: This event is for manufacturers only and no more than 3 representatives from each company. Exceptions will be made for marathon team members. Thank you!


June 26 @ 8:30am-4:30pm
Research Electro Optics, Boulder
$500 for full-day course and lunch

Manufacturer's Edge is pleased to present a 1-day introductory class on GD&T (Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing). GD&T is a system of symbols, rules, and definitions used to define the geometry of mechanical parts. It is one of the most powerful tools available to improve quality, reduce cost, and shorten delivery time.  


This course will cover:

  1. Datums and their importance in feature geometry definition
  2. Tolerances of Location: True Position, concentricity, symmetry
  3. Tolerances of form: straightness, flatness, circularity, cylindricity
  4. Tolerances of profile: Profile of a line, Profile of a surface
  5. Tolerances of runout: runout, total runout
  6. Tolerances of orientation: Parallelism, perpendicularity, angularity
  7. And most importantly, how to make sure what is designed is manufacturable 
July 27
Tivoli Student Union | Auraria Campus

M2 is the First Event of its Kind...

An investor conference conceived to help manufacturing and supply-chain companies identify new opportunities and evaluate investment options to fund growth.


Companies will hear from business leaders about factors shaping company valuations, challenges associated with family-owned businesses, mergers and acquisitions, exits and succession planning.


Lenders and investors will also provide an update regarding debt and equity markets, and importantly, non-traditional methods manufacturers should evaluate to creatively fund their companies.

MFG DAY 2015
October 2nd
You can participate in MFG DAY 2015 in many different ways!

Visit mfgday.com to host an event, find resources, or use the interactive map to locate events being held nearby
Reminder: MFG DAY 2015 is October 2nd

Kids Connection: Local School Needs Your Help!
STEM School Launches Redesign of the Traditional Classroom for the 2015-16 School Year
People  have said, it takes a village, which I believe is true. We all play a part in helping strengthen and build our youth, who are our future employees and our future leaders.
At STEM Launch K-8 in Thornton, the students play a crucial and active role in their education. For the 5th graders, this starts on the first day of school. The students will be starting the 2015-16 school year in classrooms without the traditional desks and chairs that typically occupy their learning spaces.  

To prepare students for 21st century work environments, we believe that it is crucial to cultivate their development as problem solvers and collaborators. Students at STEM Launch work together frequently - the type of collaboration ranges the spectrum from team discussions to production of prototypes using the 3D printers. Our goal is to encourage our students to utilize the physical aspects of the room in consideration of their learning. What better way to do that than to let me design and develop their own work environment? 

Our challenge is that the furniture that we currently have is bulky, heavy, and noisy. It doesn't allow for the flexible spaces that are important for learners. We have a low budget to amend the situation, and students will be assessing the needs for the classrooms, as well as their own unique needs as learners.

It takes a very responsive teacher to share the decision making process with the students to this degree. Veteran 5th grade teacher, Andrea Overton, stated that "when students take an active role in creating their learning space, their sense of personal responsibility and ownership of their educational experiences increases exponentially."

This is where you come in - STEM Launch needs help. We need support in providing materials and (possible manufacturing expertise) of students' designs for table tops, work spaces, seating, storage systems, and lighting. We want to engage the manufacturing community to show the kids the value and importance of manufacturing and empower them by making their space their own which we believe will enhance their learning experience. There are 100 students and 4 teachers that need your help. The students and teachers will begin the school year in empty rooms in which they will make cushions and portable table tops for their initial work on this project. If you are interested in supporting this effort or know someone who is please contact Sumer Sorensen-Bain at 303-981-2144 or via email at ssorensen@manufacturersedge.com.

Elward Systems Corporation Capitalizes on Training to Remain Successful and Competitive After More Than 60 Years in Business
Manufacturer's Edge Success Story

Established in 1952, Elward Systems specializes in engineering and fabricating lightweight exterior cladding panels that are appealing for both performance as well as aesthetics for a wide variety of structures across the western United States. Their unique architectural influence can be observed on such buildings as the Colorado State University Research Innovation Center in Fort Collins and the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles.


The 55 employees that make up the Elward Systems team, pride themselves on being a tight-knit, loyal group. President Jim Helgoth has been with the company since 1979 and has seen very little personnel turnover in that time. And, while that speaks volumes about the company's environment and morale, it can also make it more of a challenge to objectively assess procedures and efficiency.


In order to remain competitive and avoid becoming "creatures of habit," Elward Systems Corp decided to seek assistance from Manufacturer's Edge. By applying Lean manufacturing techniques and Value Stream Mapping, they have effectively taken apart virtually every aspect of the company one piece at a time and found ways of becoming more efficient across the board. The result of which has increased productivity and helped them successfully weather the recession.



  • Retained Sales: $1,500,000
  • Cost Savings: $62,500
  • New Employee Creation: 2


"Manufacturer's Edge has helped us maintain a very healthy tension that keeps us consciously moving toward the future." 

- Jim Helgoth, President

Upslope Brewing Company
Company Week and Manufacturer's Edge Innovative Manufacturer and the Site of the Next Beers & Gears  
By Eric Peterson
Boulder, Colorado
Founded: 2008
Privately owned
Employees: 42

Co-founder Matt Cutter is steering the upstart regional brewery towards 40 percent growth for 2015. Production has jumped fivefold since 2011.

Working in project management at IBM Printing Systems and homebrewing by night, Cutter dusted off a decade-old business plan in 2007 and decided to launch a craft brewery. He connected with Argentinian brewer Danny Pages at Probrewer.com, who was in love with a Colorado girl and in need of employment to immigrate to the U.S.


It was a match made in beer heaven, says Cutter. Cutter brought manufacturing and business know-how -- and a second mortgage as seed money -- and Pages brought production-scale brewing experience. "It was very complementary." Upslope's head brewer since day one, Pages "was blown away by how evolved Colorado was."


The original facility in north Boulder is now the specialty brewhouse, featuring sour beers, pilot batches, and a barrel-aging program, and the new-for-2013, $1.5 million brewery in east Boulder is the site of most production and packaging.  

Read the full article