Friday, April 13, 2007

Checkout Used Excellon Equipment Before Buying

Everyone wants a great deal on Excellon machines or any used equipment. With many circuit board shops closing down, and their equipment being auctioned off, it is wise to have the machines checked out before buying.

The Tale Of The Uninformed Used Equipment Purchase

Excellon, Kennard, PDA, Pluritec, Hitachi, Mania, Klingelnberg, Advanced Controls, Trudrill, ESI, Dynamotion, ATI, Wessel, DAC, and other PCB drilling and fabrication equipment, that supposedly were running before being shut down have cost thousands of dollars to the unsuspecting buyer when buying blindly online through an auction or even the buyer looking at the machine in person. Instead of having a qualified and experienced service technician inspect the machines, buyers go it alone. Buyers think they are getting a great deal, but many times what they are getting is a big boat anchor. The outside of the machines can look all beautiful and cleaned up, while the inside is falling apart.

We have seen machines that looked like they have gone through an acid bath, with components being etched away on the computer circuit boards, heat exchangers that are corroding, lead screws that have never been maintained, clogged coolant passages, air systems that had pumped years of oil and water to the machine, air shoes clogged, granite damage, air bearing or ball bearing spindles that are frozen, and general lack of overall machine maintenance.

At best, many of these issues can cost thousands of dollars to repair. At worst, the repairs are so cost prohibitive, that it would cost more than what the machines are worth. The auctions are only one part of the problem going on today.

Here is a list of some of the most common used Excellon Drilling and Routing Machines on the market today.

Excellon Drilling and Routing Machines

  • XL 3
  • XL 3 DR
  • EX 110, EX 110 DR
  • EX 200, EX 200 DR
  • EX 300, EX 300 DR
  • XL 5, XL 5 DR
  • Mark IV, Mark 4, Mark IV DR, Mark 4 DR
  • Mark V, Mark 5, Mark V DR, Mark 5 DR
  • Mark VI, Mark 6, Mark VI DR, Mark 6 DR
  • Mark VII, Mark 7, Century
  • Uniline
  • System 2000, System 2001
  • Excellon and Kennard Routers

Optical Machines

  • Opic

Used Circuit Board Equipment Dealers

Used equipment dealers have notoriously made a bad name for themselves over the years. We have even heard that China got so ticked off with some of the junk that was being dumped into their country, that they put a stop to it and started buying new equipment as a matter of policy.

The 1990's were the golden years for the printed circuit board industry in the United States. This was the time where everyone was going after the latest and greatest equipment available. When the new machines could not be delivered quickly, many of the circuit board shops looked to the used equipment market to tide them over. Many of these machines were beat down in the late 90s and early 2000s. So, now a lot of the equipment has numerous issues to contend with.

To be fair, not all used equipment dealers are shysters. Some rebuilders of circuit drilling and routing equipment do a fairly good job. They do more than just putting on a new coat of paint. Some will offer extended warranties for both parts and labor. Still, it is wise to invest in an impartial inspection of the equipment before, in ideal circumstances, or even after the drill or routing machines have been installed from a dealer that is giving you a warranty. This way, you can make sure everything is right, while the machines are still under warranty.

Contact Probe Industries today to have a scheduled checkout. We are available to travel anywhere in the world. Get in touch with us today.

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