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Industrial CNC Machines Versus Mid Grade and Hobby CNC Machines

Industrial woodworking machinery offers the greatest reliability, production capacity, longevity, and value retention of all grades of woodworking machinery. But it is not the only grade of CNC machinery that one should buy. Depending on your woodworking needs, mid grade or hobby grade machines may be the best choice. Below, we profile the three grades of CNC routers—industrial, mid grade, and hobby routers—to help inform your router purchase.

Industrial grade

According to a study on router use, industrial CNC routers account for almost 80% of CNC routers currently in use—a statistic that reflects the importance of industrial CNC machines to woodworking businesses. Industrial CNC routers range in price from roughly $25,000 to over $1 million, with the most expensive models typically being the largest. Regardless of what price range you buy in, you can expect the following features, among others:

•    High powered spindles with top RPM
•    Advanced user interface with crisp display
•    High power built in dust collectors
•    High power vacuum table
•    Heavy, rigid construction for handling high capacity work
•    Automatic tool changer that accommodates multiple tools

Industrial CNC routers may have more than three axes, whereas mid grade and hobby routers typically feature only three.

Mid grade

The biggest difference between mid grade and industrial CNC routers is size. At their largest, mid grade routers feature roughly 4’ x 8’ of cutting space, whereas industrial models can feature cutting tables as large as 15’ x100’. At their smallest, mid grade routers have a footprint small enough to place them on desks and counter areas in woodshops.

Mid grade models can offer the same cutting accuracy as industrial models, but not the same production capacity. They also lack the features that are standard in the latter, such as vacuum tables and built in dust collectors. In some cases, these features are available as add-ons from the manufacturer.

Hobby grade

Hobby grade CNC routers can be purchased from retail hardware stores. They can also be built on one’s own using instructions. As their grade suggests, hobby grade routers are small, generally have no extra features, and offer cutting speeds suitable for light woodwork. Unlike industrial and mid grade routers, however, they are affordable on most home budgets.

RT Machine has the industrial and mid grade routers you need

At RT Machine, we offer a variety of mid grade and industrial CNC machines for woodworking companies and woodshops. Our pre-owned machines are carefully inspected and serviced before being listed for sale, and are priced based on technology, dependability, and longevity. If we do not have the machine you need in stock, our locator service can search for it among inventories of new and used woodworking machines across the globe.

We also sell woodworking machines on consignment. For buying or selling mid grade or industrial CNC machines, or buying or selling other types of woodworking equipment, the professionals at RT Machine are here to help. Call us today to learn more about buying or selling routing equipment.

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