The world of product manufacturing and fabrication is constantly changing. In the past, the OEM typically did all of the production and manufacturing of parts in-house, only outsourcing specific aspects of production that were too costly or too complex to do within the production line.
Today, the opposite is true for most types of production. The largest amount of fabrication and manufacturing is done through outsourcing, while assembly or final fabrication and finishing may be the only things done in-house. The reason for this reversal is not complex; it is all about keeping costs down.
One of the most costly operations to do in-house is precision machining. Using outsourced CNC machining services eliminates the need to buy and maintain costly CNC machining centers, and it also avoids the need to hire qualified machinists and engineers to configure and operate the equipment. However, this is only true if the OEM outsources to the best possible machining service.
When looking for CNC machining services, be careful to avoid the trap of only considering a small number of local machine shops. The larger machining services can offer highly competitive rates for large or small orders, and they have the staff to take the time to ensure you are fully satisfied with prototyping and production work.
Some of the smaller CNC machining services have limited equipment, which may mean that specific types of jobs become more complex. They may not have the right equipment to work with various common or exotic materials, and without past experience in producing parts of a specific industry, they may not have the expertise required.
Whenever an OEM is considering outsourcing, taking the time to find the right service provider is always time well-spent. Review various companies before making a final decision, and always choose experience as a primary point in the final selection.