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Activity Feed Forums Sign Discussion CNC Router / Engrave I would like to buy a CNC Router, your thoughts on this please?

  • I would like to buy a CNC Router, your thoughts on this please?

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 12:57 pm

    Hi guys, I need a bit of advice.

    We always outsource our composite trays, stencil cuts or flat letters. As I know the sheet prices, most of time I find that I’m being charged too high. Not only by my trade supplier, but generally I think even so-called trade prices are very high. Just to give you a specific example, I needed some composite pieces to be cut & routed out to make kind of U shape panels like C profile to cover some shop front pillars. It’s only using 2 sheets of 5x10ft, the cheapest price I’ve got was £450 from a trade only supplier when 2 sheets cost £130. The job was done in 1 hour. For me this is a huge profit for a trade only supplier. So I’m now seriously thinking to buy a machine and do the work in house. The only thing I’m hesitating with is the labour. I never used a cnc router, is it easy to learn or finding someone experienced with reasonable wages? Would you recommend me buying one? My fear is, I don’t want to buy it and then let it sleep in the unit, or end up with spending all day just to make a tray.

    i want to know about your experience for those who went through the same situation. Thanks all, and Merry Christmas from now..

  • Jamie Wood

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    I would say that it’s the same as any other piece of machinery. The cost has to amortised into the jobs it produces. Add in other costs like rent, bills, rates & wages, and this is why the price is higher. Can’t really expect people to do it at cost.

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 2:01 pm

    Hi Jamie, I understand that but we are talking about making £320 in one hour time. This is just based on 1 hour labour. rent+rates+wages+electric etc shouldn’t make that much difference. If this is the case, I’m wrong with my pricing structure, that’s why now I want to buy a cnc machine and asking for advice. Ta.

  • Jamie Wood

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 3:27 pm

    Have you tried Cherwell for a price comparison? I guess whether to purchase a machine would depend on how much use you would get from it. We don’t have a CNC Router, but I’m sure someone else could give you an idea of price. Otherwise,
    I’d probably shop around to get a better trade price for the panels.

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 3:46 pm

    I assume you mean Cherwell Signs in Brackley?
    http://www.cherwellsigns.co.uk

    I’m based in Manchester/Stockport.
    .


    Attachments:

  • David Wilde

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 4:44 pm

    We use a hand router for trays. We don’t do enough trays to justify a CNC and the hand router does a great job providing you have a flat surface and straight edge. We use the javelin cutter rail as a clamp.

    Anything else goes to a trade supplier. Cost v time and effort is not worth having our own machine.

  • David Hammond

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 5:19 pm

    Time, vs effort, vs cost.

    We’ve toyed with bringing bits of production we outsource in house, sure we’ll make more, it’ll pay for the machine. But can I really be bothered?

    Markup on the material is to be expected.

    I’m sceptical about the 1hour though… how many little jobs do we do that should only take 20mins, but take longer.

    You’re not just paying for 1hours labour, but perhaps years of experience and the use of £1000’s in machinery.

    We use trade suppliers, often not the cheapest but the ones who can deliver what they say, money cant buy a decent supplier like that :thumbsup:

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 5:27 pm
    quote David Wilde:

    We use a hand router for trays. We don’t do enough trays to justify a CNC and the hand router does a great job providing you have a flat surface and straight edge. We use the javelin cutter rail as a clamp.
    Anything else goes to a trade supplier. Cost v time and effort is not worth having our own machine.

    David, I bought Makita CA5000X 4-5 years ago for this purpose, but stopped using it.


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  • David Wilde

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 6:25 pm

    Don’t think that’s the same as a router, looks like a groove cutter.if you get a decent lightweight router (we have found the smaller the better) and the correct flat tipped router bit you shouldn’t have an issue.

  • John Hughes

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    Hi. We went down this route 12 months ago and invested 80+k. Plus you have labour costs, rent, rates, tooling etc etc so although £450 does sound a tad high you need to bear in mind what that company has invested to provide that service. Give us a call if you need help.

    John

  • Hugh Potter

    Member
    December 19, 2019 at 9:45 pm
    quote John Hughes:

    Hi. We went down this route 12 months ago and invested 80+k. Plus you have labour costs, rent, rates, tooling etc etc so although £450 does sound a tad high you need to bear in mind what that company has invested to provide that service. Give us a call if you need help.

    John

    Totally agree.

    On occasion when I get stuff cut by a local colleague (who happends to have a 4m x 2m, £85k + vat router), I’ll be charged £80+vat per hour plus materials, which I’ll generally supply. He won’t et me use cheap tat panels either, a decent branded 10×5 panel is around £80+, they cut much nicer.

    Can’t really expect someone to site on a large stock of different material panels and sizes,and a hugely expensive router to not charge correctly for it. The machine needs to ideally pay for itself within 3-5yrs, and hopefully make a profit too.

  • Jamie Wood

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 9:14 am
    quote Eddie Kaplan:

    You mean Cherwell Signs in Brackley? I just googled it.. Never heard of them.. I’m based in Manchester/Stockport.

    Yes, it’s Cherwell in Brackley. It might be worth getting a comparison price from them, just to see if you can get them cheaper, then shop around locally. Pyramid in Manchester might be able to help.

    http://www.cherwellsigns.co.uk

    .


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  • Phill Fenton

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 11:28 am

    Then again, you could always build your own CNC machine..

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 1:27 pm
    quote Jamie Wood:

    quote Eddie Kaplan:

    You mean Cherwell Signs in Brackley? I just googled it.. Never heard of them.. I’m based in Manchester/Stockport.

    Yes, it’s Cherwell in Brackley. It might be worth getting a comparison price from them, just to see if you can get them cheaper, then shop around locally. Pyramid in Manchester might be able to help.

    Thanks Jamie.
    Pyramid only cuts horizontal & vertical.
    http://www.pyramid-display.co.uk

    I will try Cherwell. Thanks


    Attachments:

  • David Hammond

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 1:45 pm

    There should be a link to our website underneath my photo…

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 1:48 pm
    quote John Hughes:

    Hi. We went down this route 12 months ago and invested 80+k. Plus you have labour costs, rent, rates, tooling etc etc so although £450 does sound a tad high you need to bear in mind what that company has invested to provide that service. Give us a call if you need help.

    John

    John, the machine I want to buy isn’t that expensive. It’s around 15K-20K. It’s directly from from a manufacturer. I know the owner, as I came very close to buy a few years ago but changed my mind in the last minute. I already know a few people who are already using their machines without any problem. So I’m not worried about the amount of investment or return, my main concern if I can manage to work with it, or if I can find an experienced staff to operate.

    To be honest, we are not in desperate need nor we do a lot of cutting, but I’m tired of being dependent on someone else to outsource our jobs.

  • Ian Johnston

    Member
    December 20, 2019 at 8:56 pm
    quote Eddie Kaplan:

    Hi guys, I need a bit of advice.

    We always outsource our composite trays, stencil cuts or flat letters. As I know the sheet prices, most of time I find that I’m being charged too high. Not only by my trade supplier, but generally I think even so-called trade prices are very high. Just to give you a specific example, I needed some composite pieces to be cut & routed out to make kind of U shape panels like C profile to cover some shop front pillars. It’s only using 2 sheets of 5x10ft, the cheapest price I’ve got was £450 from a trade only supplier when 2 sheets cost £130. The job was done in 1 hour. For me this is a huge profit for a trade only supplier. So I’m now seriously thinking to buy a machine and do the work in house. The only thing I’m hesitating with is the labour. I never used a cnc router, is it easy to learn or finding someone experienced with reasonable wages? Would you recommend me buying one? My fear is, I don’t want to buy it and then let it sleep in the unit, or end up with spending all day just to make a tray.

    i want to know about your experience for those who went through the same situation. Thanks all, and Merry Christmas from now..

    you don’t need a CNC for that,
    You want one of these,

    http://www.powertool-supplies.co.uk

    Brilliant for ACM fabrication on-site to clad columns etc

    .


    Attachments:

  • Kevin Mahoney

    Member
    December 21, 2019 at 4:05 am

    I’ve got one of the Festool ones. Brilliant piece of kit can turn an 8×4 sheet into a tray in 20 minutes. We were usually waiting for a quote for 24 hours. Can get it made & installed in less time than that now.


    Attachments:

  • Eddie Kaplan

    Member
    December 21, 2019 at 2:12 pm
    quote Ian Johnston:

    quote Eddie Kaplan:

    Hi guys, I need a bit of advice.

    We always outsource our composite trays, stencil cuts or flat letters. As I know the sheet prices, most of time I find that I’m being charged too high. Not only by my trade supplier, but generally I think even so-called trade prices are very high. Just to give you a specific example, I needed some composite pieces to be cut & routed out to make kind of U shape panels like C profile to cover some shop front pillars. It’s only using 2 sheets of 5x10ft, the cheapest price I’ve got was £450 from a trade only supplier when 2 sheets cost £130. The job was done in 1 hour. For me this is a huge profit for a trade only supplier. So I’m now seriously thinking to buy a machine and do the work in house. The only thing I’m hesitating with is the labour. I never used a cnc router, is it easy to learn or finding someone experienced with reasonable wages? Would you recommend me buying one? My fear is, I don’t want to buy it and then let it sleep in the unit, or end up with spending all day just to make a tray.

    i want to know about your experience for those who went through the same situation. Thanks all, and Merry Christmas from now..

    you don’t need a CNC for that,
    You want one of these,

    http://www.powertool-supplies.co.uk

    Brilliant for ACM fabrication on site to clad columns etc

    That’s 2 grand, Ian..

  • Kevin Mahoney

    Member
    December 21, 2019 at 2:35 pm

    Done loads of them since we bought it, paid for itself over & over. Also a lot easier to mount the vinyl print flat & then fold than to wrap a bought in the tray


    Attachments:

  • Boyan Silyavski

    Member
    December 25, 2019 at 10:07 pm

    The knowledge needed to run a CNC router perfectly is many times the knowledge needed to run a printer. Have both and in fact have designed and build my own 1300x2600x200mm CNC. Have my printer from a month, xc540 roland, and already service it better than my tech, even that still don’t know some simple stuff some times.

    Yes, you could learn for a week or some one can teach you for a day how to cut one material like Dibond. But all the other stuff? Good luck with that. It’s an art itself. Same with complex shapes and 3D routing. Where the money are made really.

    Not to speak of that on the CNC forum the typical stuff is someone to come and cry that spent his money on the wrong CNC , especially if chinese one.

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