Evaluating Used CNC Machines

Buying a used machine can be a difficult decision, especially if that machine is a high end CNC router. Is it possible for secondhand woodworking machines to deliver top performance and reliability as a new one would? Thankfully, the answer to this question is yes, but you have to be vigilant about assessing a machine's overall quality and value. Below are six criteria for doing exactly that.

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Warranty Vs. No Warranty

Some woodworkers want a used machine that has a warranty, which is fine, but if you plan to buy industrial CNC machinery, its maintenance record and state of wear could hold more importance than its remaining warranty. Because industrial woodworking machinery can last for decades, a machine purchased for long-term use should be chosen for its overall quality, not the short-term benefit of its warranty.

Maintenance Record

The older a machine gets, the more its maintenance record determines its remaining lifespan. For used CNC machines whose sensitive cutter heads and operating systems require vigilant servicing, only a spotless maintenance record will do.

A spotless maintenance record is one in which a logged service sheet shows that a machine has received the appropriate maintenance on the right dates. CNC machines require too much investment to take a chance on their maintenance history. If a machine's maintenance record is missing or incomplete, find a different one.

Inspection for Internal Wear

Most sellers perform internal inspections as a matter of course. However, these inspections may apply to their owned machines and not those that are sold on consignment. Because the quality of a consigned machine is the responsibility of its owner, buyers should ensure that internal inspections have indeed been performed. Most woodworkers prefer to inspect consignment machines firsthand before buying them.