Since machining is often a finishing operation, you have already made a substantial investment in production. Out of tolerance, inaccurate work means scrapping parts that were perfect before the bad machining took place. This is why choosing the right shop to perform machining operations on your parts is one job you need to get right.
What To Look For In A Machine Shop
Selecting the proper shop that will deliver what you need the first time, every time is not something you should leave to trial and error. Ideally, you will have recommendations from colleagues about a reputable, quality shop. In the absence of referrals, you can find possible candidates in the Yellow Pages and in online and off-line directories. As you contact possible providers, here are a few things to consider.
- How large is the shop? A bigger is better philosophy does not always apply to machine shops. Modern equipment takes room and personnel, but some large shops have capabilities far beyond what you need and may be more costly than a smaller firm with a more narrow scope.
- What area does the shop specialize in? You want a supplier that works with the type of parts you make and has personnel with industry experience. A shop that usually does close tolerance aircraft or article parts may offer quality and precision beyond what you need.
- What order size does the company prefer? If you need short runs rather than production runs, you want a supplier with capacity geared to your expectations. If you are expecting your needs to grow, look for a shop that can handle any order.
- How long has the shop been in business? Even though the technology may have changed, a shop that has been around for a number of years has a breadth of experience that can help you find custom solutions.
- As a corollary to the longevity of the shop, how long has the average employee been with the company? Machinists with five, 10, 20 years experience can benefit you, as they may have worked on your parts or something similar in the past. Low turnover rates indicate stability and the likelihood that other customers have been satisfied.
- What are the capabilities of the shop? Some shops specialize in CNC lathe work while others focus on drilling, threading, or other subspecialties. You should choose a shop that has the equipment and trained personnel to do the operations you need.
- What other services does the shop offer? Having access to engineering assistance, design support, some assembly, and inventory management can assure that the machining will be customized to meet your specifications or offer other services you may need.
- Does the shop seem willing to collaborate with you? Your ideal shop will work with you to not only make sure your job is right but to suggest what might make future machining more efficient.
- Should you choose a local shop? Using a local machine shop is convenient and saves on shipping. If you need more capability or specialized services that no local shop provides, you may consider an experienced shop that is a greater distance from you.
When you're looking for capacity, engineering excellence, experience, and quality, Logik Precision of Houston, Texas is worth your consideration. As a full-service machine shop well known in the area, we invite you to contact our engineering staff to discuss your needs and schedule a visit.