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A humble request for mentor. Potential new shop.

Sure glad that "the internet" was an unknown term when I started my shop.
Words of caution always seem to come accrost as negativity here.


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Think Snow Eh!
Ox

I'm not trying to be a "negative Nancy" over here, I just don't see how this particular situation works without the customer becoming the mentor that this gentleman is searching for; at least in part.

I find no enjoyment in shitting on the ambitions of others. Nowhere in my post did I mention the word failure or claim that his dream could not be accomplished - other than becoming operational in 30 days on his own, without direct help.

I support every effort for someone to go out on their own; even the guys who post "I want to learn how to do machining and start a business" type of threads. We are only on this earth for a short time; taking risks and failing is still far better than a life of mundane, monotonous safety.

@CTFL It would be a good idea to amend your plan to provide for 90 days without positive cash flow of any kind.
It would not necessarily need to be an amendment to your budget; if you can set up access to a $40k line of credit as a SHTF contingency fund, that should suffice. Credit cards would even work fine given the situation.

Next, I would ensure that you have everything else in the budget already. Do not assume that vendors will extend net 30 to a new business for material and other things. Alternatively, the customer could provide material for the first p.o.

If the customer were able to provide programming support and any job specific fixturing that they already have, it would take a huge load off of your very full plate. This would also give you time to learn NX while still paying the bills.

You may or may not have to get the shop inspected by the county after it is set up. At the very least, it wouldn't hurt to plan for a visit from the Fire Marshall. I would consult the local chamber of commerce and go from there.

The MTB should provide a tech to do the machine setup, it isn't always the same week as delivery though. There are quite a few "new machine day" threads on the forum. You could read through them to get an idea of the experience others have had. You could also start a new thread titled; "What was your experience getting a new machine installed and operational?" to get more insight for things that haven't been considered yet.

Once your money printer is set up and operational, things should smooth out. I hope you haven't found my input to be too discouraging and I truly hope for your success.
 
Sure glad that "the internet" was an unknown term when I started my shop.
Words of caution always seem to come accrost as negativity here.


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Think Snow Eh!
Ox

They really do. It's not that all this is impossible. It's that it's harder than you think if you haven't done it.
 
Once your money printer is set up and operational, things should smooth out. I hope you haven't found my input to be too discouraging and I truly hope for your success.
"Money printer" ;)

No sir. I haven't found any of your input to be discouraging. Quite the opposite.
What more could one want than know exactly what they have to tackle. It's providing light on things that are dim in my mind due to naivety. I love it.

Thank you for the kind words as well. I didn't start this thread looking for positive reinforcement but I appreciate your gesture more than you know.

I totally agree with your point about time on earth and striving to live life. Quite a driving force if one really reflects on it.

HAHA, it looks as though your username captures your philosophy. Best wishes and continued success for you too Sir. (y)
 
How well do you know this customer, simple talk is not enough. with not positive assurance then you may be spending 50% of your time knocking on doors.
likely you have to make or beat customers current bids or agreements will fail.
Plenty of retired guys who might work for a reasonable rate.
 
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I will meet the production manager for the first time (responsible for outsourcing the work) tomorrow.
He is a good friend of a good friend. Stronger ties than I can indicate without a long story.

No triggers will be pulled until I am sure of business.

Best case scenario:
I sign NDA tomorrow, receives some models and prints, give it the "college try" on a quote, possibly some pricing guidance and a PO. Pull the trigger and let "Hell Quarter" commence.

Worst case,
all the above, verbal assurance no PO, get burned and knock on doors and fight for life.

Somethings gonna happen. Somethings gotta happen. And I'll do my damnedest to make sure its good things.
 
QT: (I will meet the production manager for the first time (responsible for outsourcing the work) tomorrow.
(He is a good friend of a good friend. Stronger ties than I can indicate without a long story.)
*You might fund a three couples fancy dinner date.
 
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And other machines at auction in Dallas


 
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In talking to a few people, the past few days, it looks like the very small job shops may be making a comeback. You know how this is, this whole industry is just a roller coaster. Some of my former customers have told me that it is very difficult to find a ship that is willing to address the smaller jobs. Go for it!!
 
In talking to a few people, the past few days, it looks like the very small job shops may be making a comeback. You know how this is, this whole industry is just a roller coaster. Some of my former customers have told me that it is very difficult to find a ship that is willing to address the smaller jobs. Go for it!!
Sure, go for it, but the question is do you go for it by taking on 1/2 million loan right out of the gate, before the first PO has been delivered and paid? You don't want to take that first big roller coaster plunge without being buckled in.
 
Yeah, it's a little scary. And honestly REALLY frightful when I allow my mind to act as a scale and feel the weight of everything.

I don't think there is a stop to this though. I've worked for companies, delivered the goods, gone above and beyond, created the cool stuff.
I can bear the thought of failure more than I can bear the thought of giving my all for someone else aside from me and my family. (and friends and others who I can do right by)

@LOTT, I don't see another way around it. If I had 100k parts with +/- .004" that fit on a VF2-SS I would go that route.

I dont. I have a 5axis opportunity that I can fill. If not 5x, I've got $500k mill + lathe combo for O&G.

If I start with less, its not what I want to build off of.
If I give it my all,I, and others around me, believe that I can do it.

And "go for it" without walking the track and sending a racecar is silly.
You are watching me walk the track right now, ya know?
 
Does that 2 machine combo yield you a higher or lower throughput (2 spindles turning at once)?
Does it leave you open to a broader array of work?
Does it just mean you spend 2x as much time making fixtures instead of parts and have more touch points to potentially mess up, in which case you should just get the 5x machine?
 
@LOTT, I don't see another way around it. If I had 100k parts with +/- .004" that fit on a VF2-SS I would go that route.
Sorry, should have been more clear, that post was more addressed to @p-moon than you.

It looks from here there's about as much consensus as there ever is on PM:

-10% saying you're crazy and will fail.
-10% saying send it, nothing to worry about.
-80% saying it's absolutely doable, but there's some big hurdles along the way and some caution is needed.

Reminds me of a saying, don't know the origin: "Everyone overestimates what they can do in a year, and underestimates what they can do in a decade."
 
Sorry, should have been more clear, that post was more addressed to @p-moon than you.

It looks from here there's about as much consensus as there ever is on PM:

-10% saying you're crazy and will fail.
-10% saying send it, nothing to worry about.
-80% saying it's absolutely doable, but there's some big hurdles along the way and some caution is needed.

Reminds me of a saying, don't know the origin: "Everyone overestimates what they can do in a year, and underestimates what they can do in a decade."
Sorry LOTT, I didn't mean to come off short. As you know, I agree that starting small would be better. I just don't know or have that option at the moment.
Thanks for all the advice, truly.

Perfect saying. binge studying vs 30min/day for life kinda thing.
 
-10% saying you're crazy and will fail.
-10% saying send it, nothing to worry about.
-80% saying it's absolutely doable, but there's some big hurdles along the way and some caution is needed.
For the first time ever, I saw the numbers related to opinions as a Bell Curve.
Typically truth lays somewhere in the middle of all the numbers.
 
I can bear the thought of failure more than I can bear the thought of giving my all for someone else aside from me and my family. (and friends and others who I can do right by)
Emphasis added.

One thing I was never prepared for was just how much I'd have to give [to the business]. Just when you think you've given it your all, you'll be forced to dig deeper.
 
It's easy to lose a day when everything is new. Post processor issues; becoming familiar with a new machine and spending hours reading the manual to work through annoying alarms; 'oops, I ordered the wrong retention knobs'; 'why won't this stupid cam software do what I'm telling it to do.' - the list is endless and 30 days can fly by in a blur.
"when everything is new" LOL
Nothing new about anything I have or do, but I still loose days all the time over trivial shit.
It is only compounded greatly when everything is new. The more I read in this thread, the crazier the plan gets.
 
Machine shops are time machines. Time in there flows faster than normal time. You start at say 5am and before you blink its noon. Where did the morning go. Two more blinks its 5pm and you need to go home or risk burnout and getting FARTHER behind. A few more blinks your 5 years in starting to kinda figure it out. Maybe a few more years and you feel like things are finally going good only to still worry about work and money and cash flow every night and every moment you are not at your shop.

Be careful what you wish for...
 








 
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