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'[OT]: eMachineShop.com -- comments?'
2006\05\23@133437 by Vitaliy

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Has anyone used eMachineShop.com?

It looks like they do more than ProtoCase (a company we used in the past to
build prototypes of our enclosures), it's nice that they're US-based.

One drawback is that they force me to use their software (which is rather
simplistic), and they don't accept drawings in any other format. I would
prefer to use SolidWorks instead.

I'm mostly interested in their plastic case prototyping capabilities, but
any comments at all (including CS experiences) are appreciated.

Best regards,

Vitaliy

2006\05\23@182607 by Peter Todd

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On Tue, May 23, 2006 at 10:34:34AM -0700, Vitaliy wrote:
> Has anyone used eMachineShop.com?
>
> It looks like they do more than ProtoCase (a company we used in the past to
> build prototypes of our enclosures), it's nice that they're US-based.
>
> One drawback is that they force me to use their software (which is rather
> simplistic), and they don't accept drawings in any other format. I would
> prefer to use SolidWorks instead.

I do a decent amount of machining myself, as simplistic as their
software may seem, there is a very, very good reason for it, the
interface it geared to forcing you to make parts that are
manufacturable. The problem with accepting raw SolidWorks is it's far to
easy to draw something that is impossible to machine. Much better to
have a restrictive peice of software that enforces sane part designs,
and also makes it fairly easy for a computer to determine if the part is
possible.

> I'm mostly interested in their plastic case prototyping capabilities, but
> any comments at all (including CS experiences) are appreciated.

I've used their software for a few proposed designs, but haven't
actually bought anything from them yet. They are very expensive for what
you get, but then again, so is most custom machining. One drawback is
I've heard a lot of people say the quality, IE holding tolerences, is
pretty bad, but then again what their software promises, +-5mil usually,
is pretty poor for machining.

Overall, I'd say go for it if you can afford them. Just don't try to use
them for parts needing really tight tolerences.

--
spam_OUTpeteTakeThisOuTspampetertodd.ca http://www.petertodd.ca

2006\05\23@190323 by Marcel duchamp

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Peter Todd wrote:
> On Tue, May 23, 2006 at 10:34:34AM -0700, Vitaliy wrote:
>
>>Has anyone used eMachineShop.com?
>>

I would suggest you do the following.

Get an cost estimate for what they provide you.  Then take your design
to a few local shops and ask for cost estimates.

If the local costs are comparable (or less), go local.  This will allow
you to establish a working relationship with a company and you will find
that if you have much business, they will begin to cater to you.  When
you need something special, they will know you and appreciate your
business and will likely offer reasonable rates.  You will talk to the
same person rather than a web interface.  If your parts come back out of
tolerance, they will most likely re-do them.  Not all shops have
integrity such as that but most do.

We took an Zero deep drawn can to a local company and they made a custom
punch to knock out the front panel for us.  They keep it on their
specials rack and only use it for us.  The amortised cost was
reasonable.  They appreciated the fact that we would bring over a years
worth of work and allow them to do it at a non-rush pace.  Steady work
for them, lack of worries for us.

Continual shopping around to save a nickel can be quite costly.

2006\05\23@205525 by Marc Nicholas

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I've used their software a lot. I'd like to think I helped "beta test it"!
But never actually ordered anything.

But what I can tell you, and Marcel insinuates, is that you might be
surprised what a local metalworks can and will do for you.

I manufactured a small metal part a while back....25 units from a local
(read: Canadian) metal shop INCLUDING them doing an aluminum prototype and
then *powdercoating* the production units was cheaper than eMachineshop for
a so-called "prototype". I

There are also manufacturers in Asia who are extremely competitive...and
many of very high quality, who'll bend over backwards for your business. The
leadtimes are longer, the risk is likely higher, but they'll do much better
manufacturing level pricing.....I guess it really depends what you're after
long-term.

-marc

On 5/23/06, Marcel duchamp <.....marcel.duchampKILLspamspam@spam@sbcglobal.net> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\05\23@215349 by fred jones

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I have used them a few times and was satisfied with the experience.  I had
them manufacture panels out of aluminum and stainless.  The first time I did
it I sent the order in 2, one for the front and one for the back panel, they
sent an email right back and told me if I would combine them into one
drawing and one order I'd save some money.  I did that and sent it right
back and saved over $60.  I thought that was pretty awesome that they would
do that.

I draw the panel in Autocad first and then import the drawing into their
software.  Select the tool, material, etc and cost it and send the order.  
They have always beat the time frame specified.
Good luck,
FJ


2006\05\30@151832 by Vitaliy

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Marcel duchamp wrote:
> Get an cost estimate for what they provide you.  Then take your design
> to a few local shops and ask for cost estimates.
>
> If the local costs are comparable (or less), go local.  This will allow
> you to establish a working relationship with a company and you will find
> that if you have much business, they will begin to cater to you.  When
> you need something special, they will know you and appreciate your
> business and will likely offer reasonable rates.  You will talk to the
> same person rather than a web interface.  If your parts come back out of
> tolerance, they will most likely re-do them.  Not all shops have
> integrity such as that but most do.
>
> We took an Zero deep drawn can to a local company and they made a custom
> punch to knock out the front panel for us.  They keep it on their
> specials rack and only use it for us.  The amortised cost was
> reasonable.  They appreciated the fact that we would bring over a years
> worth of work and allow them to do it at a non-rush pace.  Steady work
> for them, lack of worries for us.
>
> Continual shopping around to save a nickel can be quite costly.

Unfortunately, I did not have your luck. The prices I got for our particular
part from local shops were nearly twice as high as what I got from Protocase
and a local high-volume manufacturer (we're not counting nickels here). It
doesn't make much sense to me -- I too assumed at first that small shops
would jump at the opportunity.

Best regards,

Vitaliy

2006\05\30@152428 by Vitaliy

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face
> There are also manufacturers in Asia who are extremely competitive...and
> many of very high quality, who'll bend over backwards for your business.
> The
> leadtimes are longer, the risk is likely higher, but they'll do much
> better
> manufacturing level pricing.....I guess it really depends what you're
> after
> long-term.

Where in Asia?

Based on our experience with a Chinese manufacturer, quality is still very
much an issue there. The factory built three batches of prototypes, and
after the third iteration we realized that the quality will never be
adequate and told them "sorry, but this is not going to work."

We now manufacture the part in Canada.

Best regards,

Vitaliy

2006\05\30@160457 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Vitaliy wrote:
>> There are also manufacturers in Asia who are extremely competitive...and
>> many of very high quality, who'll bend over backwards for your business.
>> The
>> leadtimes are longer, the risk is likely higher, but they'll do much
>> better
>> manufacturing level pricing.....I guess it really depends what you're
>> after
>> long-term.
>>    
>
> Where in Asia?
>
> Based on our experience with a Chinese manufacturer, quality is still very
> much an issue there. The factory built three batches of prototypes, and
> after the third iteration we realized that the quality will never be
> adequate and told them "sorry, but this is not going to work."
>  
Dealing with some manufacturers is like pulling teeth. Some think that
you are really interested in the
lowest price, no matter what you say. They can't believe you want to pay
extra for a quality product.
So they make prototypes to match what they think you really want, when
in fact they can easily build
a quality product.

The first time I saw this I was astonished. See what they can give you
for a certain price. Then, negotiate
the quality up a little at a time.

Quality is always TESTED into a product. Once they realize that you will
test EVERY unit, 100%, then
they settle down and do it right. DON'T depend on them  to perform
testing; either do it yourself of find
a testing house to do it.

--Bob

> We now manufacture the part in Canada.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Vitaliy
>
>  

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