Thoughts on CNC programming side business
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    Default Thoughts on CNC programming side business

    Considering starting a side business of strictly programming for local shops. As the entry point for CAM software is getting lower and lower, I thought it might be a good side income with low overhead. Is anyone doing this with success? What are some of the pitfalls to avoid?

    Justin

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    I think there are too many variables to take into account.
    Might have to have some kind of contract agreement for part revisions that you're responsible for, and then you have liability issues I would imagine.
    Getting a working program and post for their specific machine and have it spit out exactly like they want it to look could be a huge pain.
    If it were me, I would avoid it unless you can have strict rules in place with the customer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jvizzi View Post
    Considering starting a side business of strictly programming for local shops. As the entry point for CAM software is getting lower and lower, I thought it might be a good side income with low overhead. Is anyone doing this with success? What are some of the pitfalls to avoid?

    Justin
    I programmed snippets of code for two local shops who had the exact machine I did. They did not have CAD so contoured toolpaths were difficult.

    Also, wrote a CAM plugin for a popular 2D CAD system.

    Two things to keep in mind doing this sort of stuff:

    1) Never underestimate the stupidity of your customers.

    2) If anything goes wrong they will blame you, even if it's clearly their mistake.

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    If you already have potential customers in mind, test drive the idea with them. Also, be realistic about what you need to pay yourself to make programming work as a business and not as a series of favors.

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    there can be tax benefits to having some 1099s in a year. lots of things to write off.
    don't let the pitfalls impede you. It's funny the mindset of people focusing on the risks. To me it is a greater risk relying on joe shmo machine shop where you put your 40hrs in.

    however, there are lots of things to overcome and they are mostly political inside the company. Full timers there already have no vested interest in making you look good. There really needs to be a strong advocate on the inside for hiring any consultant.. or you specifically.
    personally i could just make the product myself easier than navigating the said political minefield.


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