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Business of Machining

John Grimsmo of Grimsmo Knives and John Saunders of NYC CNC discuss their success, struggles, goals and more as machinists, business owners and entrepreneurs.
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Business of Machining
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Nov 27, 2020

TOPICS

  • Auctions, Warranties, and Riggers
  • Is Saving Money the Ultimate Purchase Factor?
  • Developing Decision Making Framework
  • Formalizing the Interview Process
  • Tom Lipton's Test Jig
  • Pierre - New to GK Team

  • SMW Phase 5 of Shop Overhaul
  • Machine Modifications for Chip Evacuation & Larger Coolant Tanks
  • Water & Coolant Delivery System Update
  • Vendors and Relationships
  • DLC Coating
  • Sandvik QS Holder
Nov 20, 2020

The boys have been crazy busy this week. Saunders' and his team have developed a little bit of a safe word around the shop. PINEAPPLE! This signifies that the person is safe. For example, if you hear a loud bang or somebody drops something and hear the safe word. Than you know that person is ok! Its actually a very good idea especially when you have a lot of ground to cover or a lot of employees. Saunders' also visited the Grob machine manufacturing facility in Ohio! He said that he had an awesome time and learned a lot while he was there.

 

"Confidence is a superpower" - Robin Renzetti

The boys also touch on quality control methods. This is especially important in both Grimsmo & Saunders' shops because of the attention to detail needed for both products. Grimsmo is also buying an Okamoto surface grinder! This is a machine that was thought about for a long while and they are finally pulling the trigger.

Nov 13, 2020

Today the Johns are reppin' each other by sporting SMW and GK tees. 

Grimsmo Knives Tee
SMW Tee

TOPICS:

  • Orange Vise Tour
  • Grimsmo's Next Machines
  • Process for Pressing Bearings into Bearing Cages
  • Surface Grinding Machines - CNC or Manual?
  • Air Compressors & Sound Proofing
  • Tasks - Batching VS. Whack-A-Mole
  • Organizational Chart - G Suite Alias Emails
  • SMW is Hiring! SMW Careers

 

Nov 6, 2020

Have you ever had such a premium custom table experience that ruined every other table in the world for you? Well Saunders has! He is loving the MakerPipe table systems to make some custom solutions for his shop. You can find Makerpipe here.

 

Both Grimsmo and Saunders are falling more in love with the idea of full ERP integration in their respective shops. Grimsmo especially are looking to get very creative with "GERP".

 

Saunders needs a new air compressor while John reminisces about the old shops compressor that would constantly be yelling in the background.

 

Both shops are looking at expanding the team! Saunders is considering hiring a marketing strategist while Grimsmo had two working interviews with some great potential team members! Things are looking great but we are going to need a bigger boat!

 

Grimsmo has a new book he has been reading called "E-Myth Mastery: The Seven Essential Disciplines for Building a World-Class Company".

The book is a must read for any business owner big or small to teach some essential habits and disciplines.

Oct 30, 2020

RASK KNIVES ON HOMESTRETCH, LIGHTS OUT MANUFACTURING, LATHE CRASHES, DATA & TOOL LIFE MANAGEMENT, MACRO VARIABLES, Q PARAMETERS, FUSION 360 BUG, PROVENCUT PART SERIES, and MORE!


Machining Verbiage
The new rule is that when running machines, you add "ING" to the end of the machine brand name to create a new CNC-centric gerund.
Acceptable examples are:

KEARN--ING
TORNOS--ING
HAAS--ING
TORMACH--ING


A BUMP IN THE NIGHT...
Just when you think it's dialed, you hit the lights and leave the shop only to be welcomed in the morning by 200-300 scrapped parts.


Grimsmo shares this one minor detail that derailed the entire lights-out process. Saunders points out that evaluating problems further up stream is worth doing!

FRIDAY - DATE NIGHT WITH A LATHE CRASH
The ST-20Y is set to run the one and done, dialed process for SMW diamond pins but the lathe insert broke on the 2nd pin. And that's not all. Not only was the insert blown, the parting blade took a huge crap! Luckily, Saunders had back up blades on hand, right? WRONG! 

With similar experiences being shared between them, they embark on an in-depth conversation about tool life management, tool counting, macro variables, and Q parameters. The question remains: how do you incorporate these into your shop operations successfully?

Forget textbooks---except the one Grimsmo is a true FAN...uc (I mean, fan of)

Fanuc CNC Custom Macros: Programming Resources for Fanuc Custom Macro B Users 


Machines Personified
Remember the poetic interpretation of Mars Rover's final message to NASA? While the rover never explicitly said, "My battery is low and it's getting dark," that partially humanistic phrase still managed to evoke a tinge of sadness for many. Why? We have a long history of personifying everything under, and including, the sun. In a strange way, machines have their own temperaments, quirks, likes, and dislikes--and that might be why it feels kind of sad leaving them alone in the dark.

Fusion 360 - Team Hubs & Documented Bug
The guys discuss migrating to Team Hubs and the importance of a local back-up copy of data. By the skin of his teeth, Grimsmo saves his butt by using Instagram to approximate the date of the correct version of a specific file. During a livestream, Saunders stumbles across a bug that is driving EVERYONE insane! Finally, Grimsmo discusses how one tiny checked boxed beside, "Make Sharp Corners" has been life changing! Click here for the HSS Spline Shaft Tool Video that incorporates spring passes + make sharp corners for awesome results.

ProvenCut Part Series
Saunders announces a new addition to ProvenCut that makes it more than just a library! Now, you can find parts similar to what you want to machine, select the machine and type of material, use the mouse to hover over the part to see which types of operations were used, and more! The first part being added to the series is a T-nut and there will be many more to come! 


RASK IN HAND & FINE TUNING
All parts have been made and now the only things left are final tweaks for the surface finish, fit, and solving the 5-10% lock-stick issue. Grinding is all systems go. The blades are now the best they've ever been!


Rebuilding The Shop - Custom Tables and Benches for Organization
For Saunders, rebuilding the shop has been in progress for several months now but it's still like a breath of fresh air! He's excited to meet up with someone from Maker Pipe who's offered to help with custom solutions to get SMW to the next level!

Oct 23, 2020

John & John go over the never ending struggle of the classic make vs buy scenario. This time they are talking about making a custom shipping table to help speed up Saunders' work flow. Grimsmo has a Canadian version called FlexPipe.

 

Saunders' has been doing some WORK when it comes to Automatic Brix reading of coolant systems. He has been using a digital refractometer that you can find two versions of them here.

ATAGO MASTER-20M

Atago PAL-1

 

John Grimsmo is still struggling with the Kern. It has been full of little victories and bigger issues. Luckily Angelo had a good idea that helped solve a grinding problem!

Oct 16, 2020

Solopreneurs, Robots & Payloads, ERP + Inventory Tracking, Brix, Automated Coolant Distribution, and MORE!

Business of Machining Podcast = The Manufacturing Entrepreneurcast


You CAN Be The Crazy Guy In Your Garage Forever!
The idea of expanding beyond oneself or even becoming self-employed isn't enticing to everyone---and that's okay! Grimsmo reflects on his evolution from solopreneur to entrepreneur and Saunders shares an experience with an electrician who likes his gig just the way it is.


Speaking of Solopreneurs, check out this shop update with
Adam Demuth, an incredible machinist who made the shift from a 9-5 to being self-employed. If you're not into stress but want to run a business, Adam's zen-rific perspective on entrepreneurship is perfect for you! Also, check out the Precision Microcast hosted by Adam and Joshua Hacko from Nicholas Hacko Watchmaker!

Lockwood Begs to Differ
Idealizing the infallibility of robots is nice and all but Rob's administering a heavy dose of truth!

"Why are we not better at this already!?" 
Saunders is disappointed in our lack of progress when it comes to payload issues for FANUC robot arms. Not to worry, 5th Axis is working on it! Check out their videos here!

THIS SUCKS! (but it will be worth it)
During Phase 3/4 of Nuking the Shop, Saunders faces the fact that all material and supplies must be removed from the racking and the team will have to start from square one. While discussing one of their new favorite topics, tracking inventory, we learn that the Johns are taking different approaches when it comes to quantities!


BRIX, The Holy Crap Scenario, and "Screw This, I'm Goin' Home!"

The guys outline the specifics of their automated coolant delivery systems and air lines. They discuss solenoids, refractometers, ball valves with external motors, IoT (internet of things), Mixtrons, and MORE! They share progress, plans, and solutions to problems. Find out what Grimsmo means by "The Holy Crap Scenario" and the situation that made him throw in the towel, so-to-speak.

The Smoking Gun--I mean, Knife?
Grimsmo tackles the lowest hanging, highest yield fruit during his "days off in the shop"! A few episodes ago, Grimsmo knew the one thing he could do to increase production right away and he nailed it! Now, there's something nice--uh, Norse, that can run lights out on the Mori!


RUN FROM HERE - Running Code from A Certain Point
SMW is focusing heavily on developing reliable processes when it comes to posting code. While they used to run from the "Run From Here" feature, things have changed....

 

 

 

 

Oct 9, 2020

Grimsmo has made some glorious progress on the kern. They have finalized an auto grinding routine for Rask blades. While Saunders' and their team have been toying with the idea of buying a Horizontal machining center.

 

Saunders' also has some awesome upgrades he is adding to Proven Cut.

References:

Surebonder.com

Oct 2, 2020

RASK PROGRESS, THREADMILLING, WORKHOLDING FIXTURES, 5-AXIS ROTARY TOOLPATHS, DIAMOND BURNISHING, GRINDING, SURFACE FINISHES, PROBING, & TOOL BREAKAGE DETECTION.


KERN IT UP.
Grimsmo machines his own ER 16 collet for the KERN! Wait until you hear about how he made this monolithic-integral ER. All this talk about holding parts on center brings back a good ol' Memory with Marv. Saunders recounts an accuracy test for cylindricity on the KERN--Swarf VS. Polar Interpolation in Garmisch- Partenkirchen.


Threadmilling. Single Point or Proper Threadmills? Tool Standardization?
The guys dive into threadmilling and tooling up machines; including single point versus proper threadmills, tool deflection, and whether or not to buy or DIY Collets. Regardless, the process needs to be reliable AND no matter how magical the brand of machine, it's still subject to the laws of physics.


Click here for the Ultimate Guide to Threadmilling on NYCCNC (video and threadmilling calculator).


HEAR ME OUT: The Synergistic Effect of CNC Theory.
Saunders asks an interesting question, "Could the collets be made on the Nak?" At first it seems like an impossibility but with an open mind, new ways of thinking can lead to solutions you never could have imagined.

Cogsdill Diamond Burnishing Tool on the Tornos: YAY or NAY?
Grimsmo shares an update on the SAGA pen clips.

Inconceivable---really!
Saunders teases Grimsmo with the mind blowing video that's in the works. This Covid-friendly collaborative video about MetalQuest's INDEX MS40-8 will be about the harmony between machine capabilities and maximizing workflows. It's hard to imagine the back-work, which is all the more reason it MUST BE SHOWN! Get ready to reduce cycle time, increase output, balance cycle time between spindles, and more!


Covid and Manufacturing: BIG GIANTS FALL HARDER.
No one wants to speak too soon but there's been a sigh of relief that smaller manufacturing businesses haven't felt the same pain as the larger, often over-leveraged, companies. Seeing a "company consolidation" flyer in the mail for an aerospace company feels....weird.


BUYER'S REMORSE?
Does Grimsmo regret the large financial risk he took with the KERN given how 2020 has panned out thus far?


TOTALLY REDEEMED AFTER BEING REAMED.
A few episodes ago, Saunders called Grimsmo out for committing two cardinal sins of grinding. In order to make progress on the Rask, he decided to forego dressing and balancing the wheel before grinding the knife blade.
Maybe Grimsmo's method of madness was intentional all along or maybe it was pure luck that resulted in the perfect recipe. EITHER WAY, IT'S FANTASTIC!


Surface Finish Factors
You hear about tool deflection, speeds & feeds, material type, and machine kinematics but what about presenting an even chipload/tool pressure to the cutting tool? Devon Dupuis from Autodesk and Saunders are collaborating on an OUT OF THIS WORLD part that relies on getting that chef's kiss finish.

Random Ceratizit Clickbait
Sometimes the algorithm provides....
Check out this video showing a new facemill with a vacuum/suction feature.

ERP: Permanent Product and Material Location
A big part of implementing ERP is deciding where things will be stored. It might sound easy to have a permanent location for parts and material but Amazon outright rejects that logic. The key is to make sure the item can be located anywhere at anytime. 

The Johns wrap up this 190th episode with probing, tool break detection, and what's on tap for the day!

Sep 25, 2020

The year 2020 has not been exactly how we have imagined it. But it is in full swing for both Saunders' and Grimsmo, especially in the ERP department. Saunders' is cooking with LEX and Grimsmo is full GERP ahead.

 

Both John's and their teams have worked hard to make it happen this year. It is a great teaching lesson for anyone to make the best of what you have. Focus on the things you actually have control over and take a step back.

 

Grimsmo on the other hand is not happy with their Qualichen 450 and will be switching back to 251 for the time being. Also grinding rask blades on the Kern has been amazing! Saunders also touches on adding Shapeoko fixture plates to his lineup.

 

NYCCNC has a great article on advice for buying a machine tool HERE:

Sep 18, 2020

This podcast is GOOD VENTING and BAD VENTING all things manufacturing and entrepreneurship.

Blade to the Grindstone
After taking Saunders's advice (perhaps a bit too literally) Grimsmo takes a Zedaro Miltera Endmill to a knife blade and ends up with an incredible surface finish but the grinding wheel was another story...

Throughout the talk of grit, mesh, and desired results, Grimsmo casually drops a bombshell---and Saunders calls him out immediately.


PSA CHAMFER OR CORNER ROUND YOUR DANG PARTS
A prospective hire for SMW finds it surprising to see how much deburring is done inside the machine! The guys highlight the benefits of chamfers and creative ways they've used different types of endmills to get that beloved edge break.
Plus, Saunders shares his process for the SMW Diamond Dowel Pins, which come off the lathe a fully finished product.


BUT, BUT....I WANTED IT TO BE COOL!
Grimsmo laments the fact that he's using something a lot more simple than a Swarf toolpath but he knows the more simple, less exciting one still gets the job done. 


FRICKIN' FREIGHT
Without rhyme or reason, a national freight company adds limited access fees or lift gate fees that really aren't sustainable for SMW long term. Obviously, it's a problem that will need solving but how much action does it require? Saunders decided to take action based on an interesting strategy.


THE BIG GOOD VENT
Saunders shares his thoughts on things he's learned about hiring people and buying machines.


HACK IN FUSION
Selecting multiple chains of a sketch or contour can be a hassle, especially if you want to use that same geometry for multiple operations. VIDEO COMING SOON!
Grimsmo's been learning better workflows, component structures, how to organize and lay out sketches all while keeping in mind future Grimsmo Knives employees.

Fixturing & Tooling Standardization
Grimsmo gives an update on the Norseman and while they're still able to make 6 knives daily, he's thinking about redesigning the fixture. The 2 long dovetail clamps on at each end causes the fixture to bow. The Johns discuss possible solutions and luckily, this is what SMW is all about!

Standardizing tooling doesn't sound exciting but once you've implemented it, it's like seeing something you can't unsee!

MINDS THEY ARE A CHANGIN'--and that's a good thing!
RoboDrill replacement was going to be a Haas DT-2 but another consideration is MUCH more important to SMW than the fast rigid tapping.

 

 

 

 

Sep 11, 2020

Overcoming obstacles is the foundation of life. But also one of the most important parts of running any type of business is being able to see an obstacle as a challenge and not a failure. This week on the business of machining podcast the John's talk all about making progress and continuing on moving forward. This includes getting the old machines running again and constantly finding new and improved ways on how to run the business and also create things!

Sep 4, 2020

MANUFACTURING ENTREPRENEURS--THIS IS FOR YOU!

This podcast has 186 episodes about the experience of two entrepreneurs improving their skills in their trade and learning how to create successful businesses.

"The day I stop learning is the day I fall asleep and never wake up." - Grimsmo

DELUSION & HONESTY
Entrepreneurship is a constant battle between delusion and self honesty. Justifying decisions is easy. Playing Devil's advocate is not. Knowing when to ride the wave of delusion and when to snap out of it? Now, that takes real skill. 


Looking For A Few Good Employees...
Both Saunders and Grimsmo are ready to bulk up their respective teams again!
Grimsmo Knives Careers

Saunders Machine Works Careers

Speaking of a few good employees, the latest addition to SMW is no longer a secret! @vince.fab is the new hobby machinist extrordinaire.

Click Image Below For Full Post!

Time to Buy more Pis. This is goin' down.
Grimsmo's got a case of GERP mode and Pi addiction. At least it's not a case of the Mondays...

Bar code scanning guns, charging stations, Raspberry Pi's, Linux, monitors, purchase orders, inventory, maintenance, making sure processes are anti-lazy, you name it, Grimsmo and Saunders discuss all things ERP and solutions to the new challenges they're facing.

IT'S OKAY TO TAKE OFF THE BOOTS.
Saunders shares a story about a chipped lathe insert, 23 bad parts, the bootstrapper mentality, and the struggle to challenge default thinking patterns.


CLIFF HANGER...
Grimsmo leaves us hanging with a story about the 1/8" drill. Now we're all dying to know....WHERE IS IT!? 

 

Other Topics

Aug 28, 2020

What age did you get into CNC machining? This week we talk about the value of learning machining at a young age and the impact it has on the future. 

Grimsmo has gone full GERP, they have developed a wireless barcode scanner for their web base ERP system. Saunders talks all about reevaluating machine tool purchases and constantly improving.

Both shops are expanding. Grimsmo is hiring some machinists and Saunders is potentially looking at another worker for their shop as well!

Aug 21, 2020


The guys have been at this CNC machining thing for over a decade now and the amount of development in both shops in the past few months is surprising!

FACING
If you thought this was about face mills and decking parts, you're wrong. This is the first time the Johns have been able to video chat (reliably) during podcast recording in over a year all thanks to a sweet 220MB internet connection.


EUMACH ME SO HAPPY!
Grimsmo gets into detail about the Eumachs, while one is warming up its spindle, the other has a funky VFD issue and is about to have its spindle removed in order to reach the "tool unclamp" sensor. That being said, they're closer than ever to becoming a productive part of Grimsmo Knives!


Spoiled Rotten
When you go from the helm of a KERN to watching an old 2002 Eumach ramping up, things look...slow. Saunders is also spoiled by the lightning fast spindle and intuitive Next Control of the DATRON Neo.

Phase 3 - Implementing & Evaluating Processes

With the entire SMW team working on Phase 3 of rebuilding the shop, all eyes are focused on making processes easier, faster, and mistake proof. That, in turn, means it's time evaluate current machine tools and decide if they fit into the plan. Right now, the DATRON Neo is too much machine for what SMW needs and the FANUC RoboDrill (with its lack of probing and through-spindle coolant) just doesn't fit the shop right now, so it's time to let go and get the right machines!

3D Printed Poka-Yoke Hardware Counter Boxes
Based on Ryan Wenner's idea of counting trays, Saunders thought of a way to count mulitple pieces of hardware, minimize human error, and pour them into poly seal bags without spills. Lost Hardware 0; Saunders 1.

Check out Seneca Woodworking YouTube Channel Here!

Click Photo Below to View Post!

NEW TEAM MEMBERS
There's so much work to do and that means Grimsmo and Saunders need more hands on deck. Two interns; one from a local robotics team and the other from a machining program have massively increased the manpower since they began a few weeks ago. The third person, who shall remain a mystery for now will be zeroing in on the benchtop/hobby machines and pushing them to their limits! The goal is to add tons of new speeds and feeds data to ProvenCut!

 

KERN + Window Machining + Adding Additional Material To Serve As Workholding = YES.

Grimsmo was able to window machine the fixture for the Rask lockbar inserts and it's just--beautiful! The guys discuss fixturing, probing, updating tool wear offsets, custom tombstones, capto holders, livetooling, and more!

MariTool may not make HSK 40 holders BUT they do know exactly what to send with your order of toolholders. Something that goes really well with lathes....
BTW, MariTool, when all this Covid stuff gets better, would you be open for a visit? Asking for a friend!


CAPTO Tooling: Is Through-Spindle Coolant A Good Idea?
In theory, it sounds logical to buy Capto tools that have this functionality but there's a sticking point you may want to hear before taking the plunge!


Speaking Of Coolant, That Hose Is Lookin' Real Nice!
Angelo is overjoyed when "garden hose" sprayers are added to the machines. MORI? No garden hose? #UNSUBSCRIBE. Saunders and Grimsmo share their plans for a central coolant/water delivery system.

Aug 14, 2020

This weeks episode is about smart business decisions. Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the race of buying new equipment. But its always a good idea to take a step back and make sure it is the right decision. Make sure you are the best tool in your shop and that the machines you purchase will be a good fit. 

 

Saunders gives some great info on zero point fixturing and how to mange fixture offsets. While Grimsmo is on the edge of getting their Eumach machines running.

Aug 7, 2020

THE LOONS ARE HOOTIN' AWAY!
Grimsmo paints a beautiful picture of his family vacation thus far. A couple of spy-thriller books, canoes, campfires, and marshmallows will take the place of machine hum for now. Just make sure to stay away from "Snake Island!"

BREAK ME OFF A PIECE OF THAT...FOOTBALL CREAM?

Does taking breaks decrease productivity? According to Forbes and many other studies, it has the opposite effect. Working for long stretches without breaks leads to exhaustion and burn out.  If that's you, it's time to Kit Kat!


Parenting & Entrepreneurship
Kids grow up in the blink of an eye and if you don't want to miss it, don't! Balancing time between being an entrepreneur and a parent can be tricky. Is it more about quality time rather than quantity? Elon Musk, what do you have to say about this?

Admiration for childhood energy, imagination, and carefree attitude stems a tangential but relevant debate topic: Is it better to follow dreams and passions or find a line of work that produces income?


The Depths
Grimsmo declares an insightful statement about life and expectations. Are you the person who needs to be away from the computer and phone to recharge or are you the one who would rather not? However you relate, keep Grimsmo's point in mind.


LEX & GERP
3 weeks have passed. LEX (the newest name for the custom-built ERP system thanks to Jonathan George) was born. Saunders shares the progress SMW has made in this short period of time. Bar codes, inventory, emergency inventory, job scheduling, purchase orders, and receiving are all necessary components of a high functioning manufacturing business. GERP, which stands for Grimsmo ERP may have started as a joke but this acronym has staying power! GERP's come a long way in the last few weeks in terms of development with a heavy emphasis on inventory and job scheduling.


New Face and New 5th Axis Project
By the time you read or hear this 182th podcast episode, a new intern will have started at SMW!
Saunders details an upcoming project that coincides perfectly with phases 3 & 4 of rebuilding the shop.


Lockwood AU Class on NYCCNC


MetalQuest's INDEX MS40-8
If you haven't heard of MetalQuest, you can watch the tour here.
If you're into reducing your machining time by 7/8ths, rigidity, thermal stability, and impeccable surface finishes, this is for you! Scott Harms, President of MetalQuest, and Saunders are working on a remote video collaboration to show this incredible machine and its capabilities.

 

 

Jul 31, 2020

It is so easy to overlook the aspect of marketing your business. The fact of that matter is that if you can bring the consumer as close as you can to the business, than they have a special attachment. Look at what Saunders' & Grimsmo are both doing on YouTube as an example. They are breaking down that barrier and creating a consumer attachment like no other. That is valuable no matter what type of business you run. This episode is all about the strategies of marketing yourself and business.

Jul 24, 2020

IT'S JUST A PHASE.
While Saunders and his team are busy implementing external phases of re-structuring SMW, Grimsmo's recognizing internal phases of intense creativity that eventually give way to productivity. Grimsmo and Saunders discuss their respective phases in comparison to shops that are further along in development.

Visit These Pivotal Shops Via Video Tour:

S&H Tour
Grimsmo Knives Miltera Tour
SMW Miltera Tour
MetalQuest Tour

Do the hustle! (thoughtfully)
While the word "hustle" sounds like hell on wheels, Mike from Miltera has a different type. He puts ample consideration into resource allocation--and it's not just about material, tools, or machines.


Totally Unexpected Benefits of ERP
You might think ERP is a numbers and organization game but Saunders sees something much bigger and abstract happening to the SMW team.

Grimsmo's EUMACHS---D.O.A.?
The Heidenhain control tech has come! When he opened the panel, it was WAY more than Deja Vu. Grimsmo talks plans for the twins and a plan if the plan doesn't go to plan. Next, maintenance techs are scheduled to perform the 100-point inspection.


A Touchy Subject
Saunders highlights a major drawback for hobby-grade benchtop machines like the SmartCarb, Pocket NC, and Tormach xsTech. He proposes a great way to stop touching tools off constantly.


Rasking for a Friend
Rasks are progressing slowly but they're still progressing. After feeling some burnout from the self-imposed July 1 deadline, Grimsmo's ready to outsource fixture components!


SOURCING MATERIAL #REJECT
During the phase 1 purge, Saunders finds a special blank that reminds him about how he used to source material back in the New York suburb days. Grimsmo discloses a sourcing material story you won't believe. Having up front, explicit delivery, care, and spec instructions are of utmost importance. Accepting material that doesn't meet your standards is hurting your business!

How to Source Material


SMW Pallet Jack FAIL
While googling and watching videos to find solutions is wonderful and can work, other times, it's about physically trying it out.

GK's Getting SHIFTY in here.
One of Grimsmo's employees has move on--to another department. Find out who and why on this episode of Business of Machining!

Jul 17, 2020

This podcast has always shown both sides of the business of machining. This week is no different. Saunders' & Grimsmo are both building out sweet central coolant systems. Saunders' is building out A.L.E.X which is their in house ERP system. Saunder's may have had a little bump with his swiss lathe, very veeeerrrrry slowly but everything is all good!

Jul 10, 2020

TOPICS:

  • Shop Operations
  • Shop Organization
  • Quality Control & AQL (Acceptable Quantity Limit)
  • ALEX ERP
  • Rask Progress
  • Zero-Point Fixturing 
  • Machine Probing (Eumachs, Fanuc Robodrill, DATRON Neo)

Refining Shop Operations & Organization
No longer is the conversation about product and process respectively. The Johns are now at a point where both are inextricably linked. Saunders talks shop revamp, QC, SMW custom ERP (ALEX), and DOITS (Days Off In The Shop).
It's not enough to just make parts. Having refined and dialed in processes that are simple and effective are key to long-term success.

Also, SCREW GOALS. Go for bite-size, actionable steps instead! Saunders outlines 3 phases full of small actionable tasks that will benefit the business and products. Both of these hosts have discussed lots of ideas and theories, but something's changed. The podcast may be all talk but outside of this hour confine, there's less talk, more doing.

Boiling Point

Both hosts find themselves boiling for different reasons. One has to do with QC and another has to do with A/C.  Saunders provides the best analogy for part quality during production runs: the frog in boiling water. With a shout out to Jake Yates from Yates Precision, Saunders is now combining AQL (Acceptable Quantity Limit) and an acrylic stroke of genius from Alex (the person, not the ERP system). In these sweltering temperatures, Monday can't come soon enough for the GK team!

Deadlines Come and Go
Grimsmo may not have made the July 1st deadline for having a completed Rask but the gains made weren't in vain. The deadline simulated an external driving force to keep him focused and driven. He delights in his newfound comfort with running the KERN. Not only are the pallet changers something that make him smile, he's also demanding that zero-point fixturing be used on EVERY machine.


Cut Bait?
Eumachs sat in storage for 6 months and have been in the shop for another 6 months. Grimsmo knows it's time to get service techs to inspect and repair. If push comes to shove, he may end up having to cut his losses and move forward but he remains hopeful that these will soon be dedicated foam cutting machines.

NOTHING COMPARES TO U...
This isn't about getting into someone's personal business....or is it? Eumachs lack of probing summons Saunders' experience with the Fanuc Robodrill, which has neither a spindle or tool probe (video coming soon). The workflow incorporates a Speroni Tool Presetter and Haimer, which works well but nothing---and I mean nothing compares to DATRON's VacuCard and camera-assisted probing. NOTHING.

The Future of Hand Coding
Saunders and Grimsmo ponder about the future of manufacturing. With the advents between CAM and high speed machining, it's difficult to envision a world where hand coding remains ubiquitous.

Grimsmo Holmes
GK is perusing and investigating processes to determine the lowest hanging, high yield fruit to increase production and he's sitting on a smoking gun solution that he can do immediately!

 

Jul 3, 2020

Being in a position of leadership is a tough thing to learn. John & John go in depth about not only leading people in the proper direction but to also be a good leader to yourself. Grimsmo has been holding a super tight timeline to get Rask's back online while Saunders talks "Nuking" the shop. The boys mention an article here about "The soul of a new machine" By Tracey Kidder.

Jun 26, 2020

QUICK MATHS
The Johns have been Business of Machining it for 4.38 years (3.38 years recorded to be exact).

ROI Envy
Sometimes you get a machine, crank out parts, and make money right away. Sometimes you have to invest time to develop reliable processes and workflows. Grimsmo reminds himself that the KERN is not a job shop machine.

THAT HAS TO BE A KERN FILTER!

Click Image Below for Full Post

 

The question is, "how do you cheat the KERN and push it beyond those limitations?" Although the machine is incredibly accurate, Grimsmo still has to chase tolerances. To him, that's proof it's not just about the brand of the machine, it's about tooling, the machining strategy, and various factors that come into play when making parts. Finding out those limitations is key to getting the most out of the machine tool.


BITE-SIZE KERN?
When Saunders asked Marv if the Datron could outpace a KERN, the answer was revealed in this hilarious Instagram post. However, to Saunders, in terms of footprint, rigidity, and usability, the DATRON is pretty much a bite-size KERN.

Full Grimsmo Evolution
Grimsmo shares his story about trying to make a perfect carbide detent press with a PCD endmill. Sometimes entrepreneurs must be willing to bail on an idea or process that isn't working despite sunk time or costs. Full Grimsmo is starting to expand its meaning to more than just being in love with an idea.


Leadership Strategy and Tactics


TOOLHOLDERS 
The Johns discuss REGO-FIX, shink fit, and hydraulic tool holders. Saunders adds that moving away from the bootstrap mentality is tough but it is necessary in some cases. If you buy the beat-down, cheaper version of what you need, that may create a negative perception of the process or how the equipment should be cared for--and that could cost more than buying the new item!


TruePATH + CAMplete 
Grimsmo shares a "pucker moment" on the KERN. Saunders expresses his burning desire to have machine tool parameters set in CAM to avoid having to manually change them. While talking about TruePATH and CAMplete, the one thing they caution is to make sure you don't get used to ignoring the warnings!

JOHN: Cycle Start!

ST-20Y: "I'm sorry, John. I'm afraid I can't do that."

Saunders has a HAL 9000 moment where the lathe REFUSES to make a part! Let's just say it has to do with a spindle thermometer and a specific IF, THEN loop.

Scrapping Parts for Warm Ups - No Big Deal, Right?
As an entrepreneur, your attitude can push the business to unimaginable heights or it can blow up in your face. A seemingly innocuous approach to warming up a machine tool could end up translating to a major case of apathy and huge costs in wasted material for Grimsmo.


TORNOS - BARS. BEATS. BATTLESTAR GALACTICA.
What do you do when the machine's been making great parts all day long? You stay at the shop until 4am and feed it! Fraser confirms that the Tornos didn't stop running from Friday morning until Saturday afternoon.


URBAN LEGEND
Saunders shares an urban legend about a machine at IBM 30-40 years ago that, once commissioned, NEVER turned off the spindle for the entire duration of the machine tool's life. IF ANYONE HAS HEARD OF THIS, E-Mail businessofmachining@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

Jun 19, 2020

"Making parts and growing a business are very similar, just on different time frames." This week is all about learning the sometimes harsh reality of running a business like this. Admitting to yourself that a mistake has been made and what you can do as a person and business owner to correct that. The boys dive into Fusion 360 and all about colletizer.com

Here are the links for this weeks reference material:

https://www.colletizer.com

Leadership book: https://amzn.to/30RZ9bG

https://chiprag.com/

Jun 12, 2020

CNC Manufacturing, Rigging Haas VF6ss Machines, Rasks, and a HARD Question You May Have Never Thought To Ask Yourself As An Entrepreneur!


"There are no PRIORITIES, only one PRIORITY."


During this weekly conversation about manufacturing, business, life balance, obstacles, solutions, and super technical, nerdy machining stuff, a lot is going on.

The SMW shop just got a little heavier. 45,000lbs to be exact. On Monday, twin Haas VF6ss machines arrived. Saunders shares his initial impression, what it was like for him and his team to rig the machines themselves, and the next steps in the process.

Proof that Everything is a Noodle
Since the machines arrived, that also meant the VM3 (SMW's first VMC) had to move. Now, the Z-axis automatic coolant switch needs some attention. They were able to get the machine leveled in thanks to two great videos: Haas video & AT-man Unlimited.

The ONE Thing
Grimsmo's been programming on the KERN but while trying to run a part yesterday, it didn't cooperate. Today, he's digging in to figure out why.
While thinking of the barrage of parts that eventually need to be made on the KERN, it's easy to get flustered and overwhelmed; however, Grimsmo has determined the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT thing he can do for Grimsmo Knives right now---and yer gonna love it.

The ONE Thing by Gary Keller

Living By The Modified Nike Slogan: Just Do It...NOW?
Saunders admits he's been a lot harder on himself lately when it comes to completing tasks from the infamous to-do list. For him, the list allows too much time for procrastination or some other negative emotional reaction. So, he sees it and does it immediately. The question is, is this sustainable and scalable?

WHO ARE YOU?
Some entrepreneurs never consider when starting a business, they should put themselves as the head of R&D and hire in a boss that handles the day-to-day operations & management of the company. Pocket NC did just that!

Bring Back The Million Dollar Question
Grimsmo's surprising answer to the limitless question, "What would you do if someone gave your company a million dollars?"

SYSTEMS & PROCESSES
MetalQuest left a lasting impression on Saunders. Behind the robots and machines is software and processes that culminate into one high functioning organizational system. On the same note, ALEX, the SMW custom inventory tracking, purchasing, & maintenance schedule software is evolving!

Click Image to Watch MetalQuest Tour

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