So your company has an Amada press brake, and you are wondering if it is time for a new press brake. Your supervisor feels it is only a matter of time before it stops working altogether, and you will be forced to replace it. You know you have to do something soon. The Amada press brake has lasted almost twenty years, and to avoid having to make an emergency upgrade you are shopping around for options.
Should I replace my Amada Press Brake?
Replacing your Amada Press Brake with a new press brake could cost over $120,000, as well as require your company time and energy to train employees and replace the machine. You check the calculator on Amada Capital Corporation’s website, and it tells you monthly payments can start at $2324.91 per month for five years at 7.875% interest. Feel free to click the image below to visit their website to calculate your own cost.
Financials are tight, and your CFO feels the company won’t be able to afford the $2324.91 per month payments. There has to be a more affordable option. Let’s take a look!
Option #1 Keep fixing your Amada press brake
If your press brake is not working, you have no choice but to get it fixed. Putting more and more money into maintenance costs can be more expensive in the long run. You know, at a certain point it is throwing good money at bad business investment. And, it is time to evaluate a cost-benefit for upgrading or replacing the entire system.
How much does it cost to keep fixing your Press Brake?
“If it’s not broken, don’t fix it!” This short-sighted management strategy is destined to put you out of business. After you get your old Amada machine back up and running, it does not mean you are out of the woods. There are many costs to keeping a press brake that is not part of what is needed to get it operational. These are called business opportunity costs and they are associated with running a successful business.
Productivity & Waste Reduction
Add productivity to your bending process
Is your press brake producing accurate results? If you are like most press brake owners, you need to justify replacing your press brake because of accuracy. It is usually a sign that you need a plan in place when your Amada Press brake is:
- no longer producing accurate, consistent, and level results,
- making it hard for you to run a job without a ton of waste.
Depending on your current bending methods, your press brake may be accurate enough for most applications. If your bending method is producing reliable results, it may be tough to justify replacing the press brake. However, you may find that a cost-effective retrofit option will increase your machine’s productivity at a lower price than fixing or replacing it.
Employee Morale & Safety
Improve operator morale and job satisfaction
Unfortunately, many companies consider upgrading press brakes to comply with machine safety standards to be a bad investment with little return. Consider the impact press brake accidents have on a business, both in costs due to business disruption and huge fines, as well as low employee morale. All that considered, it is hard to ignore the fact that new press brake controls and safety procedures in place will save costs, improve productivity and employee morale.
Here are a few examples of frustrating issues that can impact employee morale:
- Employees are handling the same part multiple times.
- Setup time takes longer and longer to do each day
- Too much time goes into reworking parts
- The press brake pedestal control or foot pedal is not functioning correctly, causing delays in operations.
- Press brakes always need more tooling to produce the same accuracy and repeatability.
- Employees need to stop and adjust the height of your gauging surface or fingers frequently to accommodate new tooling.
- Manual adjustments to the ram depth or angle are too frequent, causing slowdowns.
- Operators see frequent programming errors from press brake controls
How your management team handles lower productivity will make all the difference to employee confidence. Do your supervisors complain to employees that they don’t know how to operate the machinery and that it takes too long to do a job? It is easy to see the correlation between making upgrades to your press brake operations and improving productivity and employee morale.
Option #2 Replace your Amada Press Brake with a new one
If you have the money to invest in a new system, you will find many options out there with incredible accuracy and efficiency. In many situations, there is a clear case that it is better to replace your old machine altogether. The market for new press brakes includes state-of-the-art electric press brakes. Electric Press brakes can be great for employee morale as they are quiet, efficient and consume less energy than traditional hydraulic press brakes.
Automec, Inc. is a Certified USA Dealer of CoastOne electric press brakes. Automec offers high tonnage and small electric press brakes that are accurate, low-maintenance, and repeatable to 0.00008. They also have no hydraulic pumps or fluids.
Automec’s price for the Cone Press Brake is RIGHT.
Starting at $65,000.00 you can invest in one of these ergonomic, fast and accurate machines!
- Learn more about Cone Press Brakes.
- For more information read this article on comparing Electric and Hydraulic Press Brakes.
Option#3 Retrofit your Amada Press Brake
Did you know you can hold on to your old press brake by making improvements in processes known as a Press Brake Retrofit?
If you can’t afford to replace your Amada Press Brake, it is time to estimate the cost of upgrading your machine with a retrofit. A retrofit process includes improving the productivity of your existing Amada press brake with features to reduce operating costs. The cost savings can consist of setup time, product waste, and improved productivity.
Replace your malfunctioning Press Brake control with a new CNC component
Since computer technology improves so quickly, the CNC system is the first feature to become obsolete. Hence the mechanical structure tends to last a lot longer than a press brake control. Therefore an affordable way to increase the productivity of your press brake is to replace the control system while keeping the backgauge mechanical structure.
It is possible to achieve up to ten years of additional productivity with a retrofit if your Amada press brake can be run manually without an integrated control!
Watch this video of an Automec retrofit on a Hurco S7 Backgauge
What does it cost to retrofit my Amada Press Brake with a new backgauge control?
Control-only retrofits are a cost-effective way to regain productivity in your press brake. Affordability is experienced most when the backgauge control is where you have most of your problems, and the mechanical aspects are excellent. A new control can communicate with the back gauge, ram, and other system axes.
It costs from $10,000 to $30,000 for a control-only (PC-based) retrofit. The cost will vary based on the complexity of your press brake and the way the machine integrates OEM control. If your existing machine is working properly (mechanically, hydraulically, and electrically), the cost will usually be less than purchasing a new press brake.
Replace or Retrofit your Amada press brake?
In summary, if you need to replace or retrofit your Amada press brake, you will want to consider both the financial and opportunity costs of the investment. Overlooking savings from productivity improvements and employee morale are common. There are solid business cases for both replacement and retrofit options. Consider a press brake retrofit if you are on a tight budget. This is most often possible when your press brake control is not needed for the press brake to run. When your press brake operates independently there are a lot of affordable options to retrofit and upgrade your backgauge control in a short period.
Click here to find an Automec Backgauge Control Upgrade Kit that fits your requirements. For more information on pricing and Tech specs, please contact us at 781-893-3403, press 1 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.