If your shop has been relying on contract metrology for inspections consistently and over a long period of time, or if your contracts are expanding for components you typically send to an outside lab, it could be time to grow your in-house inspections by purchasing more metrology equipment. Buying a used coordinate measuring machine is an effective way for businesses to introduce or expand their measurement abilities without risking too much capital that you need for other projects. Why should you buy used instead of new when you’re expanding?
#1 Decades of Use
Coordinate measuring machines are mechanically sound for decades, and their useful lifespan can be lengthened with regular preventative maintenance (such as cleaning the bearings), as well as by periodically upgrading probing systems, controllers, and software. Calibration alone is not enough to keep a machine running at optimum accuracy through the years, however. Bring in metrology experts to provide preventative maintenance: cleaning air lines and bearings and replacing worn out parts. You can help extend the lifespan of a used tool by regularly cleaning the guideway and measuring tables of dust and particles, delicately wiping down stylus tips, and wiping off the adaptor plate.
When you’re buying pre-owned equipment, make sure you can see it in use first. Trustworthy vendors put their secondhand purchases through a rigorous inspection process and fix or replace any part that is not functioning optimally. That is why buying from a vendor like Canadian Measurement Metrology Inc. (CMM) will come at a higher cost than purchasing at auction. As often as not, auctioned tools are missing computers, come with outdated or unlicensed software, and there is no guarantee that they will even operate.
#2 Save as Much as 50% of Your Investment
You may have heard stories of the bargains you can get buying at auction, but these are real caveat emptor situations. Most shops cannot afford the downtime that comes with purchasing equipment that needs further repairs once it’s on the shop floor. However, a pre-owned device from a quality dealer will still be only 50-65% the cost of buying new. That gives your shop more capital to invest in other projects that match your expansion. Dealers also let you compare machines from various OEMs, and are happy to accommodate modifications to meet your needs. To see an extensive list of used coordinate measuring machines, stop by CMMxyz.com/used-cmms.
#3 Turnkey Delivery
Turnkey delivery is another advantage that dealers provide over auctions and OEMs. Dealers go the extra mile providing:
Installation– One of the things buyers most frequently forget to budget for is transportation and installation. At dealers like CMM, delivery is all included in the tag price.
Calibration and Verification – Once it is delivered, you will need your machine calibrated and verified by a metrologist to ensure that it is up to ISO standards.
Guarantee – Warranties are hard to come by when it comes to used coordinate measuring machines, but better dealers should provide a guarantee that the equipment will be up and running on delivery.
Training – You expanded your inspection department in order to improve the efficiency of your process and stay on schedule. Don’t let your new investment collect dust in the corner because you did not factor in training. A turnkey package often includes fully training operators, whether through offsite training or e-courses.
When it comes time to expand, seriously consider the benefits of buying used.