Episode 15: Things to Consider Before Buying a New Machine Tool

January 4, 2021 2:35 pm


What type of machine tool should you invest in? Should you buy it new or used? These and many more questions are covered by Ian Sandusky in this episode of Machine Shop Talk.

Buying a new machine tool is an important yet complicated decision for any machine shop owner. It’s likely to be a significant investment that will (hopefully) last long and increase the capabilities and profitability of the shop so before pulling the trigger, it’s important to factor in any consideration that is likely to affect the final selection.

Inevitably, the first considerations that any shop owner will make when they start thinking about adding a new machine are cost, ROI, and space on the floor. These factors should definitely be at the center of the decision process but should not be the only ones. Many other things can help to pick the right piece of machinery.

One of the first things to consider when thinking to put a new machine on the shop floor is if you need to add new capabilities or new capacities that you can use immediately. If that’s the case, it’s important to select a machine that is not outside of your shop’s wheelhouse, as it might take time extra time, and resources to implement completely new processes.

Another factor to consider is demand. If you are planning to add new capabilities, and therefore new technology to your shop, make sure that there’s a local market for the service you are planning to add.

Maintenance should also play a critical role in the decision process. It’s always better to invest in a machine that is easy to find service and parts for.
This will help you minimize the costs and maximize its efficiency in the long run.

Last but not least, you should consider if it’s better to invest in a new machine or an old machine. Buying used machines will always save you money but it might cost you extra money that you didn’t account for later on.
A new machine, on the other hand, will cost you more upfront but is much less likely to present unexpected “surprises” later.

Do you agree with Ian? What other things do you think shop owners should consider before buying a new machine? Share your experience and thoughts in the comments!

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