How many of you in smaller shops are dealing with machinery maintenance on your CNC equipment? I am not particularly mechanical and our shop cannot afford a full-time maintenance mechanic, so we depend on the machinery distributor for mechanical breakdowns. They are sometimes backed up for weeks, so we are down for substantial amounts of time. What do you do to get through these times?
Here are three options:
1) Learn this stuff yourself. It's a long learning curve, but with some help, you can get through it.
2) Use the techs from whoever you buy your equipment. This can get very expensive, with plane tickets, rental cars, hotels, and the hourly wage.
3) Find an independent tech in your area to do the work. I have a guy about two hours away that works on my bander.
You should be able to handle most of the preventive maintenance yourself, as that is just a matter of getting your hands a little greasy.
Brian Personett, forum technical advisor
Preventive maintenance is probably the most important, after a competent operator. Let the spindles warm up, keep the machine clean, check the lube, and use sharp tools.