Starting a small machine tool manufacturing business - Page 6
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  1. #101
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
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    I build simple machines for the jewelry industry. I made a huge mistake about 3 years ago. I decided that the world needed an american made rolling mill. I wanted to price it at 1000 dollars. I came up with 3 designs I spent about 5 grand building prototypes. I picked a design and went all in I farmed out the production and built 50 machines. I now have all the parts on the shelves and ready to assemble. The mill works great looks great but it cost 1224 dollars to produce. I have about 60 grand invested in these things. I am selling them at 1500 which makes it the most expensive one on the market, they sell well but I am losing my ass. I own my building out right I own all the machinerey and we have a running company, I can absord this. If you are just starting out and need to rent a building buy machines turn on electricity and tool up the machines you are going to be way under water really really fast. My highest expenses are not manufacturing it is customer service, they want answers and they want them fast. If you cant keep a lid on complaints and keep people happy it will come unglued fast. Tormach doesnt make good machines but they will stand behind them and keep them running. Haas doesnt make the best but they keep them running and have service that goes a long way.

  2. #102
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    Oct 2015
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    In the 90's I had a Cheap CMM that had hard annodized rails that were the air bearing surfaces. Micro-val I think it was.

  3. #103
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    Sep 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpotter View Post
    My highest expenses are not manufacturing it is customer service, they want answers and they want them fast. If you cant keep a lid on complaints and keep people happy it will come unglued fast. Tormach doesnt make good machines but they will stand behind them and keep them running. Haas doesnt make the best but they keep them running and have service that goes a long way.
    And there you have it.

    Model 990 behind the ear hearing aid set new records for "on the head" audio gain.

    Mic & reproducer mounts lasted six month into a one-year warranty. We built two service chassis for each new one sold, then extended the warranty a second year. That meant original paid-for, and four we "ate" the cost of.

    Service department was actually a streamlined version of the OEM production line, other side of the wall, similar headcount. Their parts 100% virgin new, our parts partially "recycled" by cleaning, testing to meet 100% same specs as new, latest mods applied, 100% new outer case.

    Customer's loved how they got no hassle replacements.

    It BOUGHT TIME for a nearly FIFTY year old company to R&D a better one that actually LASTED.
    Also ate our lunch.

    Sear's "we service what we sell" was no joke, back in their heyday. It was the bedrock of their whole business model. The merchandise was otherwise dead-average, and THEY.. didn't MAKE it anyway.

    Harbour Freight or Grizzly? Doing the warranty math. Merchandise lasts "just long enough" you ain't all that angry to buy another, figure yah got yer money's worth. Same as Sears used to do.

    Tormach, Hass? Hardly alone. Most of 'em read the same funny-papers.

    This project?

    I may be old, but I am no longer blind.

    I haven't seen anything even RESEMBLES a "business plan". Just a plan to get a store-bought machining centre to play with off "OPM" (Other People's Money).

    Have a care.

    Some jurisdictions a less-kindly entity might class that "fraud". With "in the inducement", the Old Dominion can apply.. treble damages.

    Some "Virginia Gentlemen" exist because we dare not the unaffordable risks of being anything else.


  4. Likes kpotter, Garwood liked this post

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