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What to Look For in a Machining Manufacturer

Posted by Mike Sterling

Dec 28, 2022 6:35:09 AM

Selecting a machining manufacturer that can meet your needs requires evaluating their ability to provide tooling and tolerances that fulfill your product specifications. Choosing the ideal CNC machining parts manufacturer can be a challenge, as choosing incorrectly can lead to poor quality, recurring delays, and product issues. By understanding what to look for in a machining manufacturer, you can make a selection that will result in quality products, successful projects, and happy customers.

Think About What You Need

When making your choice for the ideal custom machining manufacturer, consider the following factors:


A manufacturer's experience in CNC machining is one of the first qualities to consider. More experience typically means a higher level of professionalism. If a precision machining business has over 10 years of experience, it should have the ability to work with complex parts and difficult materials.

Because of this, it’s best to choose a machining provider with more than a decade of experience, as they will be more equipped to solve industry challenges. In addition to having expert-level knowledge of production processes, experienced machining manufacturers will have better reputations for product fulfillment and customer service.

Expertise in Your Industry

Choosing a CNC parts machining manufacturer that has worked with clients in your industry or similar industries is more likely to have experience machining the quality parts you need. A manufacturer that has worked in your industry will be familiar with compliance requirements and can identify and solve issues before they become larger problems.

Equipment Capabilities

A professional machining manufacturer should have the machines typically used for precision machining processes, including CNC lathes, CNC milling machines, CNC machining centers, drilling machines, wire EDM machines, tapping machines, and internal and external grinding machines. The more advanced the machines are, the better the machining capabilities become.

Typically, you can check a company’s website to ensure they work with the machines your project requires. For example, if your project needs 5-axis machining, you wouldn’t choose a provider with only 3-axis capabilities. By checking their website first, you can make sure they use the machinery you need prior to starting a discussion.

The number of machines the shop is operating can also impact its capabilities. Some shops operate hundreds of machines that can deliver a faster turnaround time than smaller shops with only a couple of machines.

Quality Control

With CNC machining, quality means everything; therefore, it’s important to understand a machining manufacturer’s quality control practices prior to working with them. Check to see if they have testing and measuring facilities like CMMs, pin gauges, caliper gauges, pass meters, projectors, calipers, microcalipers, etc. A qualified machining manufacturer should measure quality and provide reports throughout the entire process, from material selection through shipment.

For industries such as aerospace, quality is paramount, making it crucial to choose the highest quality machine shop. You must also make sure that their manufacturing facility has the required certifications for your industry. Beyond specific industry standards, quality machining shops will have other certifications, including quality assurance certificates, environmental certificates, and more.


It is vital to ensure that the machining manufacturer you choose can fulfill orders within your budget. Most manufacturers have a simple quoting process covering material, the manufacturing process used to machine the parts, and the project's scope. Quotes can become increasingly competitive with shorter lead times and lower pricing.

The ideal machining manufacturer delivers the highest profit to their clients, knowing it means a higher return for their machining operation. If you are prepared to pay for exceptional service and machining, the manufacturer should be prepared to provide value equal to the cost.

Request a Quote From Ardel Engineering

Ardel Engineering has more than 40 years of experience delivering precision machining services for industries such as medical, aerospace, commercial, communications, and more. With machining capabilities including Swiss screw machining, wire EDM, CNC milling, and various value-added services, we can deliver a range of parts made with plastic, metal, and engineering-grade materials. In addition, we are ITAR registered and ISO 9001:2015 certified to ensure optimal quality and industry compliance.

For more information about our machining capabilities, or to work with us on your next project, contact us or request a quote today.