Well here we go “the salesman” trying to pitch me his machine above the others, right? Well no, we want you to buy the machine that has the most impact for you and your business. You may not believe it but I have advised plenty of people that one of our machines is not the solution to their problem. Selection of the machine that is going to have the most impact on our business and our bottom line is always a challenge. Whether that is a new laser, punch press, brake or a finishing machine.
Choosing a deburring machine or any machine for that matter is tough, especially if we are spending someone else’s money. There has to be a balance between the cost of the machine vs the benefit that it provides. Of course, we would always like it to lean heavy on the benefit side.
First and foremost, we have to ask ourselves what our desires for the machine are. Machines are not “one size fits all” and sometimes the tough decision has to be made to select one benefit over another. It is just like buying a car or a house or any other large capitol investment. We would all like to have exactly what we want but have to weigh out which are most important to us and which will give us the most bang for our buck. Yes, it would be nice to have an extra room for guests or the fancy new built in GPS system but let’s face it, what do we get out of it? That extra bedroom might add 10% to the price of the home and get used 10 nights out of the year and google maps usually gets you there without too many issues rather than having to buy an $8,000.00 tech package. All that to say set your priorities.
OK, so what do we want the finishing machine to do? Possible answers: deburr, create a safety edge, surface prep for coating, produce a grained finish, remove mill scale, remove oxidation, mirror polish, produce a random finish, remove oxide, process formed parts, grind plasma slag, remove burrs on interior features, leave PVC or Galvanized coating intact and make a perfect cup of coffee. The reality is there is not one machine that is going to do all of these things and if it did do them all it would be one of one of two things, VERY expensive or NOT do any of them very well.
Take for instance you are a shop making sheet metal boxes for electronics. 60% are cut formed and the you powder coat them, 30% have to be delivered to your customer prepped but uncoated, 7% have no bur removal requirement and 3% have to be grained 304 SS for sanitary washdown. So which of the above are even of concern to you?
safety edge (93%),
surface prep (90%,
grained finish (3%)
mill scale removal (0%)
oxide removal (0%)
processing formed parts (15% assuming louvers for cooling)
Grinding plasma (0%)
removal of burrs on interior features (93%)
processing parts with PVC or Galvanneal (3% if using prefinished SS)
And a new Bunn coffee maker in the break room
Laying things out this way, we can see pretty quickly what is going to do our company the most good. In this case, complete deburring of the part, creating a rounded safety edge and prepping for coatings would be most important. This will at least narrow down the search.
If you have questions about finishing please feel free to reach out and we will do our best to help.