Modern Machine Shop

DEC 2016

Modern Machine Shop is focused on all aspects of metalworking technology - Providing the new product technologies; process solutions; supplier listings; business management; networking; and event information that companies need to be competitive.

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mmsonline.com December 2016 MMS 89 FEATURE Even though total machine tool consumption is expected to be down in 2017, core machine tool spending is projected to be up 9 percent next year. Core machine tools are machining centers, turning centers, grinding machines, and EDM equipment that represent basic, mainstream metalworking processes. Therefore, it appears that sales of niche or ancillary equipment, such as rotary transfer machines, gear cutting machines or broaching equipment, are pulling down the total projection for 2017. Notably, the main reason that core machine tool spending is forecast to increase is a surge in purchases of horizontal machining centers (HMCs; see Figure 3). HMC spending is expected to approach $1.6 billion in 2017, an increase of almost 50 percent over 2016. This level would make spending on HMCs nearly equal to the spending on vertical machining centers (VMCs), which has CORE MACHINE TOOL SPENDING WILL MAKE THE DIFFERENCE IN 2017 HMCs are the main driver of the projected increase in core machine tool spending, but VMCs and EDM are also up remained at a consistent level since 2014. The total for HMCs and VMCs is expected to account for roughly 50 percent of all machine tool spend- ing in 2017. According to Modern Machine Shop's latest Top Shops benchmarking survey, about 80 per- cent of facilities use a VMC compared with just 45 percent that use an HMC. (This annual survey asks shops of all types to provide key performance indicators and cite technologies and equipment used in their facilities.) Therefore, the 2017 Capi- tal Spending Sur vey indicates that shops are making a significant investment in new technology with their planned spending on HMCs. This devel- opment is likely because HMCs are generally easier to automate and therefore can potentially boost productivity more than VMCs. This spend- ing pattern reflects increased productivity as the primary motivation to buy a machine tool in 2017. Fig.3—HMCs are the main driver of the projected increase in spending on core machine tools. In fact, the total spending for HMCs and VMCs is expected to account for 50 percent of all 2017 machine tool spending. HMCs VMCs Turning Grinders EDM Screw Machines $1,600M $1,400M $1,200M $1,000M $800M $600M $400M $200M Spending (Mil. or Real USD) 2007 2012 2017 2007 2012 2017 2007 2012 2017 2007 2012 2017 2007 2012 2017 2007 2012 2017

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