Rich Marx has added milling machine capability from MC Machinery Systems Inc. (Wood Dale, IL) to his Infinity EDM shop to meet his customer’s increasing demands for machining capability. Marx, who has a nearly 40-year stake in tool-and-die-focused shops, is a seasoned expert with a wealth of experience with changing machining technologies in the wire EDM machinery industry. Due to his love of EDM machining, he took a leap of faith and opened his own wire EDM shop with partner Mike Knier in 1998 and called it Infinity EDM. After opening with three Mitsubishi wire EDM machines, Infinity EDM has grown over the years to house 16 Mitsubishi wire EDMs.
“We started with three Mitsubishi wire EDMs because that was what I was familiar with and worked on the majority of my career. They are also known to be workhorse machines and I’ve always had good luck with them,” said Marx.
Working in three shifts, Infinity EDM ran all of its EDM machines 24/7. Doing so, the shop was able to offer some of the quickest turn times and shortest runs in the industry. But, Marx realized, the shop’s old three-shift system would not hold up against high delivery demand in today’s competitive market.
“A lot of our customers began asking if we could handle the machining work after the wire work was complete. We knew in this competitive new world we needed to add this capability fast or potentially lose out on some jobs that wanted one shop to handle everything,” said Marx.
Infinity EDM decided it needed to add a machining center to complement its wire EDM work.
“I started my due diligence on finding a machining center and I was overwhelmed at what a wide range of offerings there were. I really needed to focus on what was most important to us and what we do,” said Marx.
To do so, Marx named three main priorities: The desire for a machine tool that is user-friendly—as Infinity EDM did not have a background in this technology—combined with aspirations for a durable product supported by responsive service.
Marx was nervous about any potential loss of production time, and for good reason, too. With only one machining center, any service issues that would take the machine out of production would cause Infinity EDM to lose 30% of its capacity.
“Service was a big one for me,” said Marx. “Being that we were only looking to purchase one machine at this point, it was important to keep the machine up and running. I was also concerned that to some machine builders the fact we only had one machine would make us less important and servicing us wouldn’t be a high priority.”
Infinity EDM’s MC Machinery rep, Steve Brown, presented the DV-1000 to Marx as an ideal machine to meet Infinity EDM’s intricate tool and die work needs. The DV Series machine is a popular machine for job shops because of its performance across a wide range of applications. The DV Series is built for general-purpose machining, featuring a 15,000-rpm direct-drive spindle. This machine can accommodate smaller cutting tools so that more intricate milling work can be performed, in addition to general shop work.
Marx was impressed by the machine and thought it was as good as, if not better, than some of the other cost-efficient machines he was comparing against. The DV 1000 has X-Y-Z travels of 40.2 × 22 × 23.6″ (1020 × 560 × 600 mm), a 15,000-rpm spindle and table capacity of 1650 lb (750 kg) and maximum tool size of 15.4 lb (7 kg). Infinity EDM was so pleased with its purchase of the DV-1000 that it recently purchased two more machines: the DV-1200 and the DV-1000B. MC Machinery’s SV-1000 vertical machining center features heavy-duty box way construction in X-Y-Z axes, hand-scraped Turcite B way guides and Meehanite cast iron construction for rigidity and stability for machining larger parts with large tools.
“I realize we were taking a chance on MC Machinery because the company is more known for its wire EDM and laser machinery and newer to machining centers,” Marx said. “But I’ve never had an issue with MC Machinery’s machines or service department. I really couldn’t be happier with our decision.”
With machines working so well, including unparalleled accuracy without any need for service support, Marx still trusts MC Machinery’s service promise.
“I just like knowing that when we do confront our first maintenance issue, the MC Machinery call center will do everything it can to walk us through the problem—saving us time and money,” said Marx. “And that if a technician needs to come out, MC Machinery will have one to us the next day.”
Infinity EDM, according to MC Machinery’s Steve Brown, is not just an EDM company, regardless of its name. Over the past few years, Infinity EDM has grown alongside MC Machinery and added machining centers to its list of services. They can now take on complex jobs, and take them from start to finish under one roof. “Overall adding the machining centers has been a huge complement to our wire work. We are actually getting more wire work now because we can offer machining capabilities,” concludes Marx.
For more information from MC Machinery Systems Inc., go to www.mcmachinery.com, or phone 630-616-5920.
Edited by Senior Editor Jim Lorincz: firstname.lastname@example.org