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Old Woodworking Machines: How Useful are they?

Whether you’re starting a new woodworking business or buying new machinery for an existing business, one of the biggest obstacles you’re likely to face is the cost of the machinery, especially if you need industrial machines. Unlike domestic grade and light commercial grade machinery, which are affordably priced and generally last for a few years, industrial machinery is expensive and is designed to last decades, causing many woodworkers to consider buying it used. But do old woodworking machines really offer the same production value as new machines? In most cases, the answer depends on two factors: the quality of a particular machine, and the capacity in which it will be used.

How to Determine Whether Old Woodworking Machines will Meet Your Needs

The most important part of determining a used woodworking machine’s usefulness is evaluating its quality, a process that ideally involves four steps: buying from the right type of sellers, evaluating a seller’s reputation, evaluating a machine’s maintenance record, and conducting a firsthand inspection of a machine.

1. Buying from the Right Type of Sellers

To minimize the risk of buying improperly assessed machinery, it’s best to buy from professional sellers of used woodworking machines, avoiding company auctions and eBay merchants, unless the Ebay store is connected to a professional used machinery seller.

2. Evaluating a Seller’s Reputation

This step involves two sub steps: checking a seller’s reputation at the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and asking for a list of references beyond what is initially offered. If you find that a seller has unresolved customer complaints at the BBB, or that its extended references don’t paint a glowing picture of its products or service, it’s safest to move on to another seller.

3. Evaluating a Machine’s Maintenance Record

Machine’s that receive poor maintenance simply don’t last as long as those that receive proper maintenance, making it essential to request an official copy of a machine’s maintenance record prior to purchase. If a machine doesn’t have a maintenance record or has one that shows spotty service, it’s safest to move on to another machine.

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This post was written by who has written 35 posts on Industrial Woodworking Machinery Blog.

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