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Calibrating the Made in America Class
The weighing industry depends on calibration weights in every facet of scale manufacturing, service and maintenance. Using a reliable and certified calibration weight to calibrate a scale or balance is an important part of maintaining accuracy, and a necessity if using the scale or balance in Legal for Trade applications. Because calibration weights directly impact the performance of all weighing operations, a calibration weight’s quality must be at the highest caliber. Raising the bar of excellence in the metrology field, Rice Lake added Made in America to its line of calibration services.
The Made in America Brand
Made in America is a brand protected by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). To qualify for Made in America branding, the product must be made within the United States from virtually all American parts. When a manufacturer wants to pursue Made in America branding for their product, they must adhere to more than 40 pages of FTC rules and regulations. The FTC also monitors false or misleading Made in America claims and issues fines and penalties to protect the prestigious value of the brand.
When Rice Lake declared Made in America branding for all Rice Lake Weighing Systems calibration weights, there were many steps to the overall process. The Made in America process includes identifying the origin of the materials used to produce the final product, the manufacturing and fabrication of these materials, an inspection of the final product, and in some cases the manufacturing technology and craftsmanship of employees.
Being branded Made in America is a reflection of Rice Lake’s dedication to producing a superior calibration weight than others in the market. Rice Lake’s metrology staff have more than 200 years of combined experience in the metrology field. This expertise and dedication to quality American craftmanship make Rice Lake calibration weights the premier brand in the industry. Rice Lake’s metrology lab was a pioneer from its inception in all facets from staffing, source material and manufacturing equipment, to being the first third-party accredited lab in the industry.
The Industry’s Metrology Lab Pioneer
In the late 1970s, Rice Lake’s metrology lab was added to the main manufacturing plant in Rice Lake, Wisconsin and calibration weight sales and services were added to the already growing list of products and services the company offered. The Rice Lake metrology lab was the first weight and calibration laboratory accredited by the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP), an accreditation program developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to provide unbiased third-party laboratory evaluation.
Today, Rice Lake’s metrology department manufactures calibration weights in any size and value from 3,000 pound NIST Class F heavy capacity cast iron weights to 1 milligram ASTM Class 00 leaf weights. For every Rice Lake calibration weight, the entire manufacturing process of transforming raw metal into a finished calibration weight is done in the United States with only American sourced materials and craftsmanship.
Cast iron weights are poured in an American foundry and finished at Rice Lake’s main manufacturing plant where they are ground, painted metric gold or avoirdupois silver and sealed to tolerance.
Stainless steel calibration weights have a longer processing cycle, beginning as bars of steel-cut down to approximate length for the type, size and capacity the weight will eventually become. The cut pieces of steel bar, or “blanks” as they are referred to in the industry, are then precision machined in a CNC. After the machining process, the weights begin to look like a calibration weight you would purchase, but the manufacturing process is only halfway complete. The unfinished weights are then treated, polished, cleaned, adjusted and certified by calibration staff in the metrology lab.
The Weight of Workmanship
The quality behind every Rice Lake calibration weight is 100 percent attributed to the quality workmanship of Rice Lake employees. Without the expertise of the staff who manufacture, clean, polish and certify Rice Lake calibration weights, achieving the Made in America brand wouldn’t be possible. Rice Lake is proud to manufacture calibration weights that truly portray the hard work, dedication, perseverance and growth
embodied by Made in America.
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