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Thread: finding assembly work?
02-20-2012, 09:43 AM #1
finding assembly work?
Is there a REAL place one can go to bid on or find some assembly or even small parts packing work? Its feast of fammon over here and I would like to find some small packing or assembly work to fill the gaps. All I can find online is that work from home scam crap.
I'm pretty sure I can count and put X number of screws in a bag, or build some assembly. I don't have a super large shop or over head cranes. I just looking for something that can give me a few hours. Something that if I HAD to I could do on a weekend if I ended up super busy throughout the week.
Same time I dont care to get in a pissing / bidding contest and do the work for free.
02-21-2012, 10:44 PM #2
This is not going to answer your question but still maybe of interest.
Below is a small production job I thought I was going to get.
Machine piece to length, machine the radius and chamfor the end. It took some thinking but came up with a setup where I could do all three operations for 60 cents each. Saw the customer today and they found someone that will do them for 20 cents each. The other guy must of had some kind of lathe setup where I did not.
Here is how I was going to do it.
This is why I avoid production work!!!
02-21-2012, 11:19 PM #3
Is that price including materials?
I can see where 20 cents each would be worthwhile if it was true production work, like 10,000 or something.
02-22-2012, 08:03 AM #4
curve), but you have to run with what machinery you own.
Nearby shop runs several swiss, and yes pretty much from bar, automated
bar loaders as well, so minimal supervision (one guy tends several machines)
So I can see how the quote would come in much lower.
I'll bet the cycle time is under 10 seconds also.
But I would not give up on all production work, you just need to
find work you are competitive in.
02-22-2012, 09:03 AM #5
Your own customers are going to be a good potential source for that type of work. Perhaps you can do things like press the locating pins in plates, or mate a few parts you machine for a given customer before shipping.
The 'value add' is that you are a machine shop, with (assuming) some metrology capability, perhaps some tooling that they don't have, so you can help your customer avoid tolerance stack issues, or do certain assembly options cheaper than they can.
I know a machinist who used his mill (turned off) for nothing more than inserting a magnet into another magnetic piece. The customer kept losing control of these $$$ rare-earth magnets and shattering them or smashing fingers when attempting assembly, so the knee mill was used as the jig to mate the magnetic parts in a controlled fashion.
It's an interesting idea you have, and moving up and down the value chain is never a bad idea for a business.
02-22-2012, 11:22 AM #6
But, when I read your writeup of this in the general forum, where it becomes clear this is a part that has to be individually hand loaded with an operator chained to the machine, I'd say somebody is going to get an education at 20 cents. Its easy to imagine you could hand load and run one of these every 15 seconds since the actual cutting time should be under 5 seconds with a cnc lathe. And you can maintain that rate FOR A WHILE. Problem is, all those little time killers like operator fatigue, starting and stopping for breaks, and so forth, do add up on a job like this one. They'll be lucky if they can generate $25/hr across an 8 hr day. That's a loser even if you can find a $10/hr operator that doesn't crash the machine a couple times a day.
I ran about 10,000 pcs of a die casting a few years ago. Got the cycle time, as measured from pushing the start button on one to pushing it again on the next part, down to 45 seconds. Running one end of the part on a twin turret cnc and the other end on another twin turret machine. Got a buck apiece, so the theoretical rate was $80/hr. But, at the end of a 8 or 9 hour day, the best I ever managed was $55/hr for the day, and most days were closer to $50/hr. And, at the end of the day I was ready for somebody to pile me in a wheelbarrow and roll me out of the shop. That's the real world difference between an imaginary rate based on what someone can do running wide open for an hour or so and what really gets done in the course of a working day. Some people seem to always quote based on that perfect imaginary time, and they'll beat you every time if you're quoting at a rate that allows you to stay in business and make a living.
02-22-2012, 11:59 AM #7
I pretty well have resigned myself to allowing a half day to full day's rate for doing anything. There are too many incidentals to account for. And clearing one's schedule for a long un-interrupted run is premium shop time IMO, and is worth double one's hourly rate. Going cnc can help one to make this rate. This might not apply to a multi-person shop so much.
02-23-2012, 06:00 AM #8
That little prodution job could be done on a second op setup on an old brownie. Take one spring ejector collet, a feeder magazine, and a form tool.
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02-24-2012, 08:29 PM #9