4 Cost-Cutting Tactics for Metal Machined Parts

Balancing costs and quality is an ongoing production struggle. It can be difficult to know where to cut costs that won’t sacrifice the quality of your project. When working with metal machined parts, there are a few ways to meet your budget while still producing a high-quality component. As you examine your project’s bottom line, consider these cost-cutting tactics for metal machined parts

4 Cost-Cutting Tactics for Metal Machined Parts

1. Choose the Right Materials

This is the first and one of the best cost-cutting tactics for metal machined parts. While quality is essential—and the materials you use are a key factor in quality construction—it’s important to balance quality and expense. In many cases, you can still get the functionality you need from your metal machined parts while still cutting costs.

To find the right material for the job, it’s important to address the part’s function and utility. This way, your part will still function the way that it’s supposed to, without adding extra expense from materials that are unnecessarily tough or complex. For example, if your component is going to be used indoors and won’t be subject to intense temperature extremes or moisture, a carbon alloy will probably meet your needs, and stainless steel may add unnecessary expense.

Consider the following to guide your decisions about materials:

  • Force: In the component’s common and regular use, what type of force will it be subjected to? This includes regular wear and tear or abrasion, weight and pressure, pushing or pulling, and more. If the component must withstand heavy force in its regular use, a tough steel will be important, but a component that won’t see intense use can be made with a lighter, more affordable alloy.
  • Temperature: Temperature considerations are especially important for metal machined parts. Temperature swings will cause some metals to expand, contract or warp significantly, while other metals will hold their shape more consistently. Consider any aspect that might create temperature swings, such as friction, outdoor use, cooling fluids or heating elements, and more.
  • Corrosion: All metals corrode in some form, though some are much more resistant to it than others. If the metal machined part will be subjected to moisture, including washing water, steam, high humidity and other aspects, the metal must be resistant to corrosion. If the component will be mostly enclosed and used indoors where corrosion will be much slower, corrosion resistance probably won’t add much value to the component.

2. Leverage Supplier Relationships

Once you’ve decided on the right material for the job, the next step is deciding where to source the material. If you’re working with a subcontractor for the components, they have existing metal supplier relationships that they can leverage. Or, if you’re subcontracting the labor, but you already have valuable supplier partnerships, you can supply the materials yourself. Choosing the right type of contract and partnership can help you take advantage of the skills and equipment you need.

3. Plan Your Purchases Carefully

Pre-planning is another important cost-cutting tactic for metal machined parts. With a reliable timetable and production schedule in mind, you can take advantage of blanket purchases. These pre-arranged orders with delivery across multiple dates can help your manufacturing partner plan production more easily, and they can help to cut costs.

With a good idea of your production needs, you can also place a bulk order, which can reduce per-unit costs for metal machined parts significantly. Set up costs often account for the bulk of an overall order’s expense, and bulk orders help to spread these expenses across more units. You benefit from economies of scale, and you can be more confident that you will have the components that you need when you need them.

4. Simplify Your Design

Even small details can quickly add expenses for metal machined parts. Simplifying your design is one of the most effective cost-cutting tactics for metal machined parts. Small divots, cuts or holes that are excessively delicate or excessively deep creates unnecessary complexity and expense. Once again, a clear understanding of the component’s common use can help to streamline the design and cut costs.

If you’re unsure how to streamline or simplify your component’s design, talk to an experienced metal fabricating partner. With a detailed understanding of the machines and processes needed to produce the part, an experienced fabrication partner can suggest ways to simplify the design without sacrificing product quality or utility.

Working with an experienced manufacturing partner can help you cut costs on metal machined parts in multiple ways. Experienced designers, engineers, fabricators and project managers can all help to keep your project on-time and on-budget, while still delivering on quality and consistency.

5 Best Materials to Use for Heavy Machinery Equipment Parts

With such a vast selection of materials to choose from, it’s important that you select one that is right for your heavy machining equipment part. Each material has a list of pros and cons that come along with them, ranging from price to strength and durability. So, how do you know which material is right for your part? Learn more about the most widely-used materials below.

1. Carbon Alloys

Carbon alloys are beneficial to use when creating machinery parts due to its corrosion resistance and extreme temperature stability. The carbon content in our alloys is below 5% by weight, meaning the steel can achieve a greater weldability and formability but still maintain the strength of steel. Carbon alloys are commonly used for parts that require corrosion resistance, strength and wear resistant properties.

2. Aluminum

On the other hand, aluminum can be used for parts that don’t require much strength. Due to the lack of density in aluminum, the energy output for machining is fairly low compared to machining other materials. If your machine has weight restrictions, using aluminum parts may prove to be beneficial due to its low density and light weight. Aluminum also has excellent corrosion resistance, and is easy to work with heavy machinery due to its thermal and electrical conductivity. Because of its lightweight and general availability, aluminum is fairly inexpensive compared to other metals.

3. Brass

Along with having great strength and being resistant to corrosion, brass is often used for heavy machinery that is visible to others due to its favorable appearance and color. Brass is also very resistant to rust, making it a favorable material for machines that will be operating near water or in high humidity atmospheres. Brass is known as being extremely malleable, so it can be easily transformed into any part that you may need. Although regularly more expensive than other materials, it may be easier to work with depending on the part you need for your heavy machining product.

4. Stainless Steel

One of the most widely used metals for machining purposes today is stainless steel. Although it’s very popular, it may be hard to machine due to its intense strength and hardness. However, because of its hardness, it is a great material for heavy machinery that will be used outdoors, as it has a low corrosive property as well. Stainless steel also has a high resistance to heat, allowing it to retain strength at high temperatures.

5. Plastics

Plastic can be used for a variety of different purposes, including creating parts for heavy machinery. Although plastic isn’t very heat resistant due to its low melting temperature, its light weight and high versatility makes it an easy-to-use material for majority of machine parts. Because plastic is generally lower is strength, it would be beneficial to use it for a machine that requires light weight material.

What Projects Need CNC Manufacturing?

M&M Automatic Haas CNC Turning Machine

When you’re making plans for your next production or prototype project, you may be wondering where you’ll get the custom parts you need to manufacture your products, or generally what projects need CNC manufacturing? That’s where a company like M&M Automatic Products comes into the picture. Providing high-quality parts—such as screw machine components—on time is our speciality. The next time you’re planning out your next product, consider if it will need CNC manufacturing.

Production Projects with Custom Parts

When you need to keep costs down and still receive your custom screw machine parts on time—which could include nozzles, fasteners, spacers, connectors, seals, or precision shafts, contact M&M Automatic Products. We know that the custom parts you need can’t always be manufactured in a cost-effective way at your own site, so that’s why we specialize in making custom screws, bolts, and much more. We have produced custom parts for industries all over the board—we have served clients in the aerospace, automotive, restaurant, and medical industry, plus countless others. When you’re selecting a CNC manufacturer, hone in on the quality of parts used, how the prices compare to competitors, and how fast of turnaround is available. Whether you’re looking for custom machined parts (bushings, spacers, connectors), custom parts made of metal, brass, steel, or a custom machining and screw machine shop, know that M&M can produce the parts you need.

Prototype Projects and Screw Machining

Custom parts are often a necessity for prototype projects. You may not be sure exactly what parts are needed for your prototype—that’s when it’s time to get in touch with a CNC manufacturer. Regardless of the complexity or variety of materials required, the right CNC manufacturer will work with you to transform your prototype to production. CNC milling machines at M&M Automatic Products are capable of running multiple types of materials, including carbon alloys, aluminum, brass, stainless steel, and plastics. Even if you don’t have all the details of your prototype project finalized, a good CNC manufacturer will help you narrow down your best material options that fit within your budget. With M&M CNC manufacturing, you can purchase custom pieces for your prototype. Prototype projects typically require 100–1,000 pieces. Take advantage of working with a company that can not only work with you to develop your ideal prototype, but can work with you if you want to start larger-scale production of custom parts. Because we work with clients of all sizes, you can enjoy the seamless transition of taking your prototype to production because we will already understand your needs and project parameters.

Whom to Entrust Your Production or Prototype Project?

Whether you’re ready for a large scale production of custom parts, or looking to start out with a prototype project, be particular about the CNC manufacturing you partner with for your project. Here at M&M Automatic, we understand the need for your project to stay on cost. We offer the lowest and most competitive pricing possible for your custom parts, and are flexible to the turnaround time you need to complete everything on time. Learn more about how to select a CNC manufacturer. If you’re ready to work with a cost-efficient and knowledgeable CNC manufacturer, request a quote today for your project.

How to Select a CNC Machining Company

How to Select a CNC Machining Company

When selecting a CNC machining company for your project, it’s essential to do your research and be willing to make some phone calls in order to choose the company that’s best suited for your needs. Take a look at the tips below on how to select a CNC machining company.

1. Examples of Previous Work are Available

Whatever the project is that you have in mind, you likely have a blueprint of the parts that need to be produced. In turn, your CNC machining company will use that blueprint to create a prototype for you to approve. Take note of the quality of the prototype, and ask for examples of their work for other clients. You probably have a budget in mind for your parts production, so ensure that the quality of the CNC machining company’s previous work are up to your standards and expectations. Ask for customer testimonials, and consider reaching out to previous clients to get first-hand reviews of their work, and to know if they were pleased.

2. Use the Prototype Process to Gauge the CNC Machining Company

Throughout the process of communicating your design, you not only want a product that meets your company’s standards and stays within budget, you also want to partner with a CNC machining company that is easy to work with on a project. Use the prototype process to gauge how easy it is to communicate with them, if they listen to your needs, if they stick to deadlines, and overall—do you enjoy working together? If the CNC machining company meets your needs through the prototype process, they’re more likely to be a good fit when you’re sorting out large orders with them.

3. Is the CNC Machining Company Flexible to Your Needs?

When you’re wondering how to select a CNC machining company, look for one that is flexible to your changing needs, deadlines, and budget. Work with a company that will help you understand which materials are best suited to your project, and are willing to try something new in order to meet your quality standards. Be wary of companies that get bogged down by process logistics. A good CNC machining company understands that expedited orders are sometimes necessary and will work with you to get you the parts you need on your schedule.

4. Work with an Experienced CNC Machining Company

The length of time the CNC machining company has been in business is a testament to how well their products and services met their customers’ needs. Look for a CNC machining company that thoroughly understands your request, and has years of service under their belt. Working with an experienced CNC machining company will ensure that you receive exactly what you want and to the quality standards you expect.

If you’re interested in working with a CNC machining company with 20 years of experience, and is focused on providing you the high-quality parts for your business needs, contact us today. Take a look at the offer below to learn even more about what to look for in a CNC machining company.

Top Manufacturing Cost-Reduction Strategies to Try Today

M&M Automatic Turning Machine

No matter what industry you’re in, manufacturing parts (internally or outsourced) can take a big toll on a company’s budget. Thankfully, there are experts that have been in the industry for decades now that know what it takes to keep your costs low and your profit high. Try these cost-reduction strategies to keep your manufacturing costs at bay.

Improve Your Process

From overhead costs (if you’re manufacturing internally) to forgetting to solidify a process of working with another company to stay in-budget and on time (if outsourcing manufacturing), there are many ways that companies get tripped up, costing them in the long run.

If you have the resources to produce your own parts, keeping a close eye on your overhead costs, such as building costs, administrative costs, storage costs, etc.. Re-evaluate regularly to reduce the amount of unnecessary money going out.

On the other hand, if you need to outsource your manufacturing, setting a clear, defined plan and design will reduce the amount of time that you spend going back and forth with the manufacturing company and making changes during billed time. Also having a point-person is essential to making sure everything stays on task.

Manufacture in Bulk

There can be many benefits to blanket orders, but the biggest benefit is that your labor costs of either manufacturing internally or the costs of hiring an external manufacturing company to manufacture your parts or components will significantly decrease. From an internal standpoint, all your time, resources and staff will be used at one time instead of spread across multiple time frames, and you get the same benefit when outsourcing, reducing startup time and labor which only adds to the bottom line.

Rethink Your Materials

Some materials like titanium or steel cost more to purchase and can take more time to manufacture with than other materials like polymers or certain alloys. Reworking your manufacturing design to substitute more cost-effective materials, while still maintaining the integrity and strength of your parts is one of the best ways to cut manufacturing costs.

Work With a Qualified Manufacturing Team

Let’s face it – whether you manufacture in-house or outsource, a lot of time, energy and resources can and have been wasted by utilizing a team that is not equipped for the job. To solve this, it’s crucial to either have the right trained machinists and engineers in place to efficiently and cost-effectively manufacture in-house or make sure you do your research first to ensure that you choose the right company that is going to fit your specific needs.