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Thread: A different side of COVID-19 pandemic

  1. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Starr View Post
    As some you you may be aware, I'm involved in a small (tiny) machine shop. We closed per the PA order, and were immediately taken to task by several of our customers. With their support, we applied for and obtained permission to re-open to produce their critical component parts. Let me say, it is a challenge. Firstly, we are trying desperately to keep all of our employees safe and healthy. All office personnel are working either staggered shifts or from home, depending on their duties. Shop floor employees are practicing social distancing and are not permitted in the break room, restrooms or other common areas at the same time. Outside delivery personnel may not enter the building. Too this end, everyone is being cooperative and supportive of the goal.

    Our customers are placing orders for triple and quadruple the normal quantities and we are running lots of overtime trying to meet their needs. Unfortunately, it is very difficult obtaining raw materials, specialized secondary operations etc, as many of those businesses and/or their suppliers did not obtain waivers to continue operating. Additionally, as other vendors to these customers are closed, we're receiving purchase orders for parts we haven't produced for years. All of this is good . . . but oh the stress.

    Just thought maybe others would like to see a different side of COVID-19.

    Be Safe.
    Lisa, what kinds of things do you make that people are ordering double & triple?

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Longview WA
    Posts
    21,350
    Blog Entries
    1
    To top it off the whole world is playing 'six degrees of Kevin Bacon" with who was in Wuhan and then who did they come near, and so on.
    That is part of the problem here. Not here as in my current state of residence, Washington. In the Seattle area contact tracking was put into effect. In the rest of the country, not so much.

    In China the infection rate is now below the recovery rate.

    Here is a bit of good news from China > https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...-a9393991.html

    Stay home, stay safe & stay back if you must go out.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    418
    Mark, We run CNC Lathes primarily making parts from higher grade Stainless Steels and exotic metals such as Monel, Inconel, Titanium and others. The products are components of medical, hydraulic, check valve and energy sector products.

    As mentioned earlier, this economic down turn will weed out some of our competitors. We've been weathering the storms since 1962 and know what it takes to survive. It will be uncomfortable, but doable.

    Some of the work we're seeing right now are parts that were outsourced to India about 10 years ago. Now, in a crisis, the parts are going to be made in the US again, and at much greater cost, as all the casting patterns are in India. We'll be producing the parts from solid bar stock.

    Lastly, on the lack of material availability. One of our customers shipped a semi load of material from one of their plants to us halfway across the country. It is all oversize, making the production of their parts take longer. This morning I had a machinist sent up one of our older CNC lathes that can't hold tight tolerances anymore and I spent the day hogging pieces down to rough size. I'm no machinist, but I can load parts and push the "go" button. At least then my real machinists aren't tied up longer making the actual parts.

    None of this is complaining. It is just the way the industry is...boom or bust. We'll do whatever it takes to service our customers and later we'll take some time off while they deplete the over buying.

  4. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Starr View Post
    Mark, We run CNC Lathes primarily making parts from higher grade Stainless Steels and exotic metals such as Monel, Inconel, Titanium and others. The products are components of medical, hydraulic, check valve and energy sector products.

    As mentioned earlier, this economic down turn will weed out some of our competitors. We've been weathering the storms since 1962 and know what it takes to survive. It will be uncomfortable, but doable.

    Some of the work we're seeing right now are parts that were outsourced to India about 10 years ago. Now, in a crisis, the parts are going to be made in the US again, and at much greater cost, as all the casting patterns are in India. We'll be producing the parts from solid bar stock.

    Lastly, on the lack of material availability. One of our customers shipped a semi load of material from one of their plants to us halfway across the country. It is all oversize, making the production of their parts take longer. This morning I had a machinist sent up one of our older CNC lathes that can't hold tight tolerances anymore and I spent the day hogging pieces down to rough size. I'm no machinist, but I can load parts and push the "go" button. At least then my real machinists aren't tied up longer making the actual parts.

    None of this is complaining. It is just the way the industry is...boom or bust. We'll do whatever it takes to service our customers and later we'll take some time off while they deplete the over buying.
    Wow-sounds very cool! Best of luck to you, I hope things get better for you and everybody else quickly.

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