DIY CNC Machines and Their Impact on the Smaller Shop

DIY CNC Machines and Their Impact on the Smaller Shop

https://www.ecnmag.com/article/2018/10/evolution-diy-cnc-machines-and-their-impact-small-shopOver the past few years, inventors and makers from around the world are increasingly moving their operations towards DIY CNC Machines, either to reduce costs or to have better control over the production. However, the fact that no Do-It-Yourself setup can ever match the quality and efficiency of a professional machining shop remains unchanged even in this modern world of innovations. In this article, we discuss how the evolution of DIY CNC Machines affects the small CNC shops and the pros and cons of DIY as well as professional CNC machining. We also see why the old-fashioned CNC machine shops are recommended and profitable in the long run.

Not every DIY CNC machining has the tools and equipment to work different types of alloys. If you have a few customers, it is important to deliver them high-quality products. A DIY machining might not possess the right expertise and machinery to give the customers what they want. When you choose a professional CNC machine shop, you get the expertise of an experienced CNC machine operator. Trying to get such an expertise with a DIY machining can take years which is simply not practical when you have a customer waiting for his contract to be completed right away. Contract CNC machining will make sure that the work is done on time and in high-quality to meet your customer requirements.

One reason why CNC DIY machining is gaining popularity is the benefit of reduced inventory. As castings can be done on the fly, the need for warehouse space also reduces. However, contracting the CNC machining jobs can save you from buying equipment and finding space to store them. You can save startup costs of CNC machine shops by buying used CNC machines. And if you think the price of purchasing precision CNC machines and maintaining them is not so cost-effective for you, outsourcing the machining job to a professional CNC machine shop is a great alternative. You get everything for a single price inclusive of the equipment needed to do the job.

DIY machining allows casting on-demand products rather than in bulk as per the current project requirements. This may avoid over-production and over ordering and save you from the hassle of accurate forecasting. However, it is more economical to handle one large production run than multiple smaller ones. When you have large orders, it may become difficult to meet the production on time with DIY manufacturing. Professional CNC machine shops have the necessary equipment and manpower to meet such orders and can save you from losing contracts due to production delays.

When you cast your own products using DIY methods, it reduces errors caused due to miscommunication leading to a higher accountability for your requirements. However, you need to hire skilled labor and invest in machinery to stay up in the competitive market. This is not at all necessary when you rely on CNC machine shops which already possess high-quality equipment and labor. This helps you cut down costs and increase your production efficiency making you a competitive business.

Miscalculations, machining errors and miscommunications are common. When you machine the casts DIY, it is possible to pivot quickly using additional castings. You also benefit from quick turnaround time with the ability to create custom parts yourself and get the job done on time. However, when the job requires additional work like welding, assembly, bending or fabrication, you might not be able to handle them with your limited resources. A professional CNC machine shop has the required equipment and expertise to take care of additional projects as well. With careful planning, it is possible to complete the machining tasks on time using the resources available with a CNC machine shop.

A DIY machining may seem to be a cost-effective way to machine CNC parts yourself. But the price of owning, operating and housing the equipment can prove to be an expensive affair. You bear the costs of purchasing and maintaining a CNC machine and hiring a trained CNC machinist to operate it. You might not utilize the machine enough to justify these costs. Such cost overheads can reduce your profits to a considerable extent. However, outsourcing your machine jobs to a professional CNC machine shop can eliminate the additional cost of owning and maintaining machines and paying the operator. This means that you get increased profits from your parts manufacturing contracts.

When you make the CNC parts yourself, it is really important that you pay utmost attention to the manufacturing process and spend most of your time on production to meet the deadlines and quality requirements. It can take a lot of time and resources to start making product runs for your customers and work with materials you are not familiar with. On the other hand, when you outsource your machining jobs to a CNC machine shop that specializes in precision CNC machining, you are free to focus on other important aspects related to the growth of your business.

Imagine you manufacture the parts for your customers with DIY machining and they contact you with a problem with those parts. They expect you to offer a solution and you should be ready to handle some customer issues if you use DIY setup for manufacturing CNC parts. On the other hand, if you outsource the machining to a professional CNC machine shop, you get a support system to help you in case of any problem in the future. You can rely on the provider to resolve any issues if they arise.

With a number of benefits including reduced operating costs, manufacturing expertise and product support, it is clear that using professional CNC machine shops can help produce a better quality product at lower costs helping makers secure buyers and investors quicker than DIY machining. Do share your thoughts about this in the comments section below. Via ecnmag.com

 

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