Page 27 - CNC West web Feb March 2022
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   Right - AR Machine Corp. moved into their current workspace four months ago after doing a huge renovation on it. They did everything from sandblasting to concrete to reduce the rent. Their building was an old generator room during WW2 for the munitions factory next door. It houses two Matsuura mills, a Doosan lathe, a Nakamura-Tome lathe, and a Haas mill.
two prototype style parts,” explains Austin. “Our typical customer is in robotics, aerospace, and automotive, but more and more jobs are coming from a local government lab and companies who make drones and shoot satellites or rockets into space. The pallet pool on the Matsuura MX520 is essential to our workflow. Versatility is key. I can work on multiple jobs simultaneously and still be able to take on a rush order without missing a beat. It makes no difference if it is a one-off part or a run of 50, the pallet pool has plenty of room for anything I need to do. As an example, we might figure out how to run a complex production part during normal business hours and say it takes 4 hours to machine. We then set the Matsuura loose, operating lights out over the course of the next few days. It is like free money coming in the next morning and seeing three finished parts ready to be unloaded. I like the pallet system so much that I just picked up a used Matsuura ES 450h horizontal to increase our lights out productivity. Again, for the price Matsuura offers a lot of features and high accuracy.”
Austin attributes AR Machine Corp’s success to a mixture of right place/right time, taking on jobs others don’t want, and delivering exactly what was promised. “I think companies are having a hard time finding places that do-good work, day in and day out,” explains Austin. “I’m not saying we do good work as a brag, lots of companies
are making great parts, but so are we. Dependable machine shops are busy and growing. We tripled our space moving here four months ago, and I am already seeing how we will outgrow the space before our lease is up. It is a good problem to have, but I need more people to program and run more machines and that’s hard to find. I can’t afford to compete with big tech that pays their people insane amounts of money, so we are training from within. I have three full time people and myself right now and could use more. The good part of in-house training is that I can teach them my bad habits, but at least they are mine, so I know what I’m getting. Our customers like our quality, the service and the pricing we offer. They also like that we embrace prototype projects. It’s hard to find reliable shops that want to run one or two parts. Most manufacturers want the production job because they are easier. I would like to have a little more production running too, but only overnight while we are gone. We love the challenge of figuring out how to make a single part out of expensive materials. It is fun and exhausting all at the same time. The prototype stuff is almost like manual machining. At the end of the week, I feel like I ran a marathon, every day.”
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