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Four Tips for Choosing the Right Machine Shop

Four Tips for Choosing the Right Machine Shop

Whether you're a local mom and pops automotive mechanic, an engineering firm, or etc. when it’s time to repair your tools or upgrading company equipment you need a good machine shop. Preferably one that gets its equipment from suppliers such as transientspecialists.com but of course, that’s a topic for a different day.

The bottom line is you don’t want to just choose the first machine shop you find in the search engine results; you need one that you can turn to regardless or project size or turnaround time.

However, if you don't already have a relationship with a quality machine shop how do you go about finding the right shop? That's exactly what we're going to cover in this article. From aerospace to the defense department, organizations and businesses around the world require precision manufacturing to complete tasks.

After all, without precise machining and manufacturing machine-intensive processes could easily come to a screeching head. So, here's a couple of pointers to ensure you don't waste time with the wrong machine shop.

Look for shops with the right equipment. So much of what a machine shop does boils down to equipment, we had to put this one first.  However, keep in mind you want a shop that while all shops have the equipment, not all of them are equipped to handle your own specific projects.

Hence, you must know which equipment is required before hiring a machinist. For example, if precise cutting is required, the shop will need wire EDM machines, on the other hand, if you need the speed and quality that only a computer could offer - look for a shop that has CNC machines. Then, of course, there are manual machines that require the machinist's attention to detail.

You want a shop that's great at communicating. At first glance, communication may not be what comes to your mind when you think of local machine shops. However, when you face production bottlenecks at your shop due to broken equipment, then you'll appreciate dealing with a machine shop that communicates with you every step of the way during the repair process.

So, when talking to potential machinists don't be afraid to ask about your point of contact, how will you communicate, when you can discuss your work order, and how often you should expect to hear from them.

Find a shop who's able to work on a tight production schedule. There's nothing better than handing a project off to your machinist and getting it back quicker than you expected. Doing so is a matter of choosing a shop that offers quick turnarounds.

Precision machining speed is a matter of the shop having the right mix of equipment, software, experience, and staffing. If the shop is missing one or more of these ingredients, demanding a quick ETA is likely to compromise quality.

Seek out machinists who've worked on your types of projects. And rounding out the list is 'experience'. You want to find shops whose machinists have dealt with the type of projects you're bringing them. But don't take their word for it, ask to see examples of jobs that are similar work.

Likewise, don’t forget to check their online reviews to see if they have reviews from clients who resemble your business. If they do see if you can spot a general trend in what they’re saying about the shop. If there’s anything you don’t like, move on to the next company.

So, there you have it, four characteristics to look for in your next machine shop vendor. Keep these tips in mind as you consider machinists and it'll be hard to go wrong.

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