Over the last year, Techspex has linked editorial content about new products and articles on machine tools published in the “New Products” and other sections of Modern Machine Shop Online, Production Machining Online, and Mold Making Technology Online to specific model specification pages in www.techspex.com whenever a machine tool model is mentioned in the article. In turn, we link the model specification page back to that article. We do this to bridge the gap between the machine specs and the story behind the machine in order provide a more useful research tool. When used together these resources provide a deeper, richer, more useful research experience. Look for the Techspex Model Specification logo on product announcements and other articles. When you find one, it means that the specs of the model mentioned in the article are linked. In turn, you will find links to articles on many model specification pages in Techspex. Look for a “Related Content” label near the top of model spec pages. If you find one, an article about that machine is linked. Here is an example of the specifications icon on a new product article in Modern Machine Shop’s online site. View the link back to the article on the model specification page under the label that says “Related MyCenter 3XD Content.”
What makes Techspex unique is its comprehensive database of new machine tool model specification sheets. Over the previous 19 years in business, www.techspex.com has published the model specifications on approximately 15,000 new machine tool models that have been available for sale in North America. Models come and go, but currently, about 7,000 new model spec sheets are accessible online through the model search page or by viewing the model lists and model pages of over 500 machine tool builders, each with their own “showroom.”
We have always said that Techspex is the first place to look. We don’t say that because we’re boasting. Rather, Techspex is a research tool, that’s best used at the very beginning of a machine tool buying project. Techspex is kind of like a menu, that helps machine tool buyer’s quickly, comprehensively, and at no cost, identify all the suppliers and their machines, that fall into the users own self-defined profile of the machine they think they need by type, style, size, and other tangible machine capabilities. Buyer’s should look at Techspex at the beginning of their search to help them avoid overlooking a possible solution and to learn about the market to better prepare them to meet with suppliers.
Techspex is not the second, third, or last place to look when it comes to buying machine tools. We put the buyer in the driver’s seat by identifying the players (including the local distributor of the equipment) that can handle the buyer’s self-defined requirements. But other resources will be needed to help make the best decision. And it’s best to use these resources in the right order.
Gardner Business Media, parent of Techspex, also publishes Modern Machine Shop, Production Machining, Moldmaking Technology, and other manufacturing related trade magazines, each of which includes an online component. I think of these magazines and their resources as the second or third place to look when a company is in the market to purchase a machine tool. All three of these magazines employ knowledgeable editorial staff that daily tell the interesting and often complex story about machine tools. Beyond the specs is the story of machining processes, implementation, engineering, performance, and all the ramifications of making parts. Digging deeper, by reading the story behind the machines may provide insight that suggests or eliminates one machine compared to others.
Oh sure, reading Modern Machine Shop is a good idea even if you have no immediate buying objectives. Each magazine has an angle from which it approaches the industry to illuminate trends, insights, new technology, and all things metalworking. Modern, PM, or MMT are must reads for any professional who’s serious about their career. But when in the market, these publication resources are a great way to read between the lines to find out what model specifications can’t and won’t tell you.
So what’s the last place to look? Hopefully, the final two or three candidates that survive the cut, including the supplier of the best machine for your application.