I'm a manufacturing engineer working with the tool room designer/supervisor. We currently have some Cincinatti 1250 machines that are 11 years old that were purchased new. Our work consists of making die sections for stamping dies out of 4140 steel, and hard cutting steel. We would like to square material and machine it on the VMC, but this requires a stout machine to push a big cutter. We run two VMC 2-3 shifts five days a week, so the machines get a Lot of use though we don't currently square material on the VMC's. Surface finish isn't ultimately critical since we aren't doing mold cavities, but obviously we need a machine that can produce a good finish. Most parts are one offs, old programs making duplicates, or actually making mulitples of something 2-5 setups. We could honestly do with a 20"x20" area machine to do single setups. Though a 50"x25" machine would allow multiple vises and multiples on one setup. It would also allow us to do die shoes and large stripper plates.
Given our application, what type of machine would you reccommend given:
1) Cost no option large new 50x20 machine
2) New cheaper machine that will last ~11 years 50x20
3) Used machine that will last ~11 years
4) Smaller new machine 20x20
5) Smaller used machine 20x20 that will last ~11 years.
Basically I need to look at all options new/used, larger machine/smaller machine to see what makes the most sense for our shop.