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CNC Reviews and Support3/26/16
I am currently looking at purchasing our first CNC. We are a highly custom cabinet shop with about 15 employees and a 12,000 sq. foot shop. We have currently looked at SCM group but I have heard that their customer service is sub par. I would like to hear some recommendations of what are good quality machines to look at who also have good customer service. With this being our first cnc we will need good support in learning how to use it. Also we are using cabnetware for all of our design and cutlist.
I recommend you take a hard look at Stiles. They sell Homag and Weeke machines. I'm very pleased with both our 15 year old Weeke point to point, and our 2 year old Week Nested Router. The difference with them is service, parts, and training.
Service- They have excellent techs, both on the phone and in the field. Most problems they can walk you through on the phone if you're handy with a multimeter.
Parts- Most parts you can have on your doorstep the next day if need be. They have ridiculous inventory of parts they carry in Grand Rapids for their machines. All of this is right next to the airport, and they are UPS's last stop of the day (or so I heard).
Training- When we bought our Nested router, it included a week worth of classroom AND hands on training at their facility in Grand Rapids. I came back confident that I could program and run the machine to it's fullest extent. This has been invaluable with getting the most out of this machine. Also, at any point, you can send new employees there and they will get them up to speed on specific software's and machines.
Of course, all of this comes with a cost. Stiles isn't the cheapest game in town. But, at your level of operation, you need to ask yourself what it will cost you when that machine isn't able to run because of parts training or service with another brand?
I have no affiliation with stiles other than I'm a happy customer. The disparity between their level of service and the next in line is startling.
Ran 82 hours last week - cnc router, bander and auto doweller All Biesse.
20k square feet supports a top shop, corian work and casework Parts like Stiles for availability. SCM is the same in my experience. Faster if you have a part number
Take a look at Anderson Group which include Omnitech. I have had my router for 9 years now and they if rarely you need them are always there right away. The fact is I hardly ever need them as it is a solid machine of 10k pounds and great training upfront.
Not sure what your budget is, but our shop is similar in scope and size. I have driven most of the European brands, but the current machine, Northwood is hands down the best one I have ever worked with. 10+ years of running with almost no mechanical issues other than wear items. We cut almost as much solid wood as sheet goods and it handles it all with ease.
Thank You everyone for the great responses. This is the kind of information I was looking for.
I'm the SCM Group Product Manager for both SCM and Morbidelli brand CNC Routers. I'm sure when you go to a forum like Wood Web you'll get all kinds of feedback and everyone has their own preferences or opinions. It's like asking about a pickup truck. I'm sure you'll find some that like Ford and others like Chevy or other models and all have some type of opinion pertaining to each model. I'd be happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have and feel free to call me at SCM 770-813-8818. I'd also be like to address anyone who is currently having issues with a machine manufactured by SCM Group so that we can address it and look into the history. I'm sure we're not perfect but I don't think any manufacturer is and you have to keep in mind where these comments are coming from on a Forum. Let me know if I can help.
We bought a 1 year old 5 x 12 SCM Pratix last year. We use Cabnetware also. You will likely buy Screen to Machine, and Nesting from them. We also use Alphacam for the custom stuff. We had to wait a month for the SCM tech to arrive to set us up, but when he did arrive he did an awesome job. Yes, it is frustrating to wait for a call back when you are stuck. We wait on both Cabnetware, and SCM to return calls. Sometimes an hour or so, sometimes a day or so. The machine has been pretty trouble free, and it is amazing to see it perform. I feel like we are limited only by our imagination.
Another person not too fired up on my overall service by SCM.
"you have to keep in mind where these comments are coming from on a Forum"
Yes you do....these comments are coming from other woodworkers who have experience with the user side of CNC machines, and hopefully can steer the original poster in a good direction.
We need to stay on topic. The posters are speaking truths. I have had my issues with Biesse in the beginning and the corrected them. What's more important, is they have not repeated them. We own a slider from SCM and have never had a problem with service or parts.
The OP wants real world experiences to gauge his decision with.
We all appreciate your willingness to work out the problems, but in the long run, you personally will not be there when the machine has a malfunction, and the life line for him is "Gatekept" by a service department that has no idea this guy may have a very crushing deadline over his head.
This seems to have a bit of an anti SCM tone that I personally don't agree with. My experience has been that software/system questions from SCM central in Georgia take longer to answer than I'd like. Machine questions from a machine tech have been answered within minutes, usually. The machine techs that I have had contact with (Bob G, Zac) are awesome. Bob G. set us up, was totally involved, gave us as much info as we could absorb, had personal interest in our success in getting set up right (and this is for a used machine mind you). Meanwhile we are up and running sending one job after another through it with good results. How many times have I had to call? 8 times maybe, not bad. Buying a machine of this caliber is a big deal, complex, stressful, exciting, expensive. Don't think it will necessarily go exactly the way you think it should. If I were unhappy I would definitely say so, but I'm not.
This thread does need to stay on topic. This should never be used to bash a company. This forum SHOULD be used to speak your experience and help others. and if nothing else maybe even help the vendors we rely on to supply us with quality machines. Just the same they rely on us to be happy customers and report when they are performing well.
While I may have had a bad instance with SCM I am sure there are 100's of others that have had great service through them . And my post should not of said not to consider them as a canadate. I should of left it with having a bad experience and that's it.
Same goes for any vendor , my great experience with biesse may not be true for everyone else that deals with them.
Everyone reading this topic should know I got a nice call from SCM today to try and help me with any technical problems I have or had. Rob even walked down to the service department while I was on the phone to get me some answers.
To Ryan the original poster , remeber you will read a a lot of different things. Do your due dilegance and give each company the equal opportunity to show you why you should consider them. My experience should not be your only thought when you chose a manufacture.
we purchased a cnc last year after a long search, we went with Biesse klever. I liked the support and training the best. I had 1 week training in NC on the software and then the tech was here for 1 week to do setup and training. Software will make a difference. Talk to people that use your software and how they like it with each type of machine. Good luck!
Ditto. Not trying to bash any company here, but the OP asked for "who has good customer service", so I figured I'd relay my experience.
crashed hard drive on friday; after new hard drive, biesse tech had all software up and dialed in in less than 1 hour via teamviewer. up and cutting now!
Nice Mike. Do you have to pay for that TeamViewer support (pay Biesse, not TV) after your 1 year warranty period?
I'm a Big Biesse fan. Over 10 years with a rover B. Minimal issues, great tech support, never paid a dime for it. Most of our tech support issues are user created or how to do this. We have had very little down time in 10 years and have run thousands and thousands of sheets. You won't be unhappy with them. I have never needed a tech onsite, phone support has walked us through any problems we have had.
Look up Diversified Machine Systems or Freedom Machine Tool depending on your need. Give both service numbers a call and see what your results are.
I work at the factory but I am confident our customer service is exceptional.
Good luck in your decision!
No, team viewer is free and tech support for life
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