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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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Now displaying: October, 2019
Oct 25, 2019

What would Scott Harms do?

We all have people we look up to, and take cues from in our lives. For Saunders, of course, that person is a machinist. Saunders got to TOUR of MetalQuest in Hebron, Nebraska, so keep an eye out for that on his youtube channel

Teaser: This guy is positive AND realistic! It’s a story of slow growth, but it’s very relatable as an entrepreneur. 

GOOD VIBES

Even though Saunders was only at MetalQuest for the day, he got some real mellow vibes from Scott and the employees. Saunders and John talk about what makes a good work environment. 

PLUS the company has their own ERP system! So processes are smmmooootthhh

ERP = Enterprise Resource Planning. An ERP system is “a modular software system designed to integrate the main functional areas of an organization's business processes into a unified system” - Reference

Aka. Lots of things are AUTOMATIC

GOOD PROCESSES

So, basically all you need is robots.

Grimsmo and Saunders talk about how they’re improving their own processes lately (hint: drilling concrete is involved). But remember, money spent one place, can’t be spent somewhere else. 

GOOD INVESTMENTS

Real-estate and machines are top of mind for Grimsmo and Saunders, and the Grimsmo Team has FINALLY found a new shop and is SCALING-UP!

The two Johns talk real-estate advice, and how to negotiate when leasing a new building. You can often talk to the landlord to improve a space in general if the improvement adds value to the property. 

“You can often negotiate a tenant allowance” - Saunders 

“If your broker isn’t totally comfortable talking about this, you need to find a new broker” - Saunders 

Goodbye Erin, it was nice! Hope you find your paradiiseee 

Erin leaves the Grimsmo shop to go to Africa and throw herself into freelancing. Fraser is the latest addition to the Grimsmo team! 

Keep an eye out for the RJ Cylinder Shop Tour on Saunders’ Channel 

Oct 18, 2019

COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

Finding a space that fits your business but still allows room for growth can be tricky. The mammoth 26,000 sg ft building turns out to be a bust for Grimsmo. However, he's found THE ONE and it's PERFECT--as long as the concrete's deep enough (more on that later).

You don't know what you don't know.
Signing leases might seem casual and straightforward especially if you've personally rented an apartment or house. However, there are lease options you aren't aware of that can come back to haunt you.


Check out this basic rental agreement overview to make sure you're on the right track!

GET ON THE FLOOR!
Once you've found a great place for your manufacturing business, you gotta check the floors. In the midst of signing paperwork, you might forget how important the thickness of the foundation or substrate is! Some machines require a certain thickness to guarantee a level of rigidity while others may not.

FINDING EMPLOYEES
Grimsmo and Saunders share their experiences with hiring employees. They discuss the importance of finding candidates who share the same passion, work ethic, eagerness to learn, and what should be done if the "fit" isn't right.


BATCH WORK VS ONE-PIECE FLOW
Grimsmo's honked off at the workflow for the SAGA pens.
He's been batching parts up to this point but would prefer the one-piece flow like the knives. Saunders and Grimsmo discuss potential solutions that include staggering production and dedicated machines.

Oct 11, 2019

Taking it to the NEXT LEVEL 

Should The Business of Machining be more than a conversation between machinist/entrepreneur buddies?

Saunders and Grimsmo discuss what makes BOM stand out among podcasts, and how to be more clear in their intentions for the podcast.  

Who can you trust?? To answer to your question

“Be careful in this day and age because anybody will answer your question” - Quote Saunders liked

In a world of opinions, decide in advance whose opinion you trust. Target your questions to those who can best answer them. 

Saunders’ Baby, ProvenCut, PARTNERS with Xometry

Some Xometry products will go up on the ProvenCut website. 

Lights OFF, camera, action! 

Grimsmo does his first night of “lights off machining” on the Swiss Lathe, and realizes how much help a camera surveillance system would be to allow him to keep an eye on the machines when he’s not there.

“I feel like I’m making the machines feel lonely when I turn all the lights off” - Saunders 

The Power of a $10 End Mill

Grimsmo and Saunders talk about spindles, tool life, and setting up a system to better understand when their tools are wearing out. 

“My one [$10 - $20] end mill can do up to 500 parts!” - Grimsmo

Some measuring equipment is better than others...

“Woah, that’s an optical comparator on steroids!” - Grimsmo

When to Customize your Website

Saunders and Grimsmo talk about different features that web hosts provide, and the pros and cons to getting a custom website. 

Other Topics in this Episode: 

  • Balancing machine time to crank out parts for everything
  • Saunders is going to check out the UMC 500 at a tool show this week

Thanks for listening! 

Saunders and Grimsmo discussed having more specific topics on BOM episodes, such as what to look for in a new hire. If you liked this episode, give us a review on your podcast app! We’d love to hear what you think.

Oct 4, 2019

SHUT IT DOWN FOR CMTS!

Grimsmo and the gang are shutting down the shop and heading to CMTS to learn! Everyone has an eye out for things that could improve GK processes AND now that Grimsmo's in a 5-axis mindset, he's ready to absorb as much as possible.

TIME SUCK/DISTRACTION?

Although trade shows are fun and full of information, they can also steal time from your business. Attending a trade show can feel productive; however, it can also be a cleverly disguised distraction preventing more important, dreaded tasks from completion.

Gearing Up for a Trade Show Visit?
Click Here for some tips to make the most of your time there!

THE PURGE
Saunders gets Marie Condo Points for unloading the Bridgeport, which hasn't been used in over a year---except when Ed's using it as a Broachport. Making decisions to pare down can be difficult because we think our stuff is more valuable than it actually is. The good news is that determining ROI can help!


DOMO ARIGATO, MR. ROBOTO (If you sang this, you get 5 bonus points)
Ahhh, the FANUC Robodrill has arrived but it's lonely and J5 is sizing it up.A sub panel has to be added to feed the Robodrill and and another "evil" machine.

Is it Big Plus? There are a few clues here and there but nothing definitive. Once the wiring is finished, the SMW team will determine the automated workflow for a new mod vise product!

Ready Robotics - Possible Solution to FANUC woes?
During a fireside entrepreneurial chat with FlexArm, they bring up a company based out of Columbus, Ohio (50 minutes from SMW). Turns out, they have an OS that lives on top of FANUC to control FANCUC and other robots. Does this mean that SMW won't have to learn FANUC?

SHOP LAYOUT & RIGGERS
Having 3D printed models of your machines DOES help immensely but they are also limited. After being presented with an abnormally large moving bill for the TM3-P and the UMC-750, SMW finds it valuable to have skates to avoid being at the complete mercy of the riggers.

THE P.O. PLUNGE - Who are you and what have you done with JOHN!?
Saunders signs the P.O. for the lathe (pretty sure the real John has been swapped with a lathe-loving cloned version). He even ENJOYED making a part on the Slant Pro recently....

Since the Robodrill needs to be bolted down, he decides to wait until the lathe and bar feeder arrive before determining its semi-permanent placement.

Not only does SMW have plans for a few new products for this machine, they also plan to add turning recipes to ProvenCut!

YES OR NO?
Grimsmo finally speaks to the elusive guy he's been texting for the last 3 months about the 26,000 sq ft shop.

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