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Un-Locking Machine Downtime Costing More Than £100,000 In Time
FourJawJun 1, 2022 1:30:00 PM1 min read

Un-Locking Machine Downtime Costing More Than £100,000 In Time


It’s common knowledge that using a CNC machine as a computer to write or modify CAM programmes lowers the machine’s efficiency since the machine isn’t doing its main function of cutting metal. 

Our customer was aware that operators would sometimes make on-machine changes to CAM files, but the extent of their machine downtime was largely unknown. 

Although the FourJaw customer knew that on-machine programming was not the best practice, the production team found it difficult to make a business case for hiring a CAM team.

A manual investigation into the scope of the issue would have been too time-consuming for the production team to make a compelling case for the hires.

FourJaw's Machine monitoring solution was deployed to identify, quantify and enable processes to be changed to increase operational efficiency. 


The customer began by installing FourJaw Pro to monitor three of their CNC machines.

Over the course of the first month, machine operators would log their downtime reasons, so the operations manager could start to identify the top downtime causes. 

Each day, when looking at the machine downtime data, it seemed that small chunks of time were spent for each occurrence of “Manual Entry” downtime.

However, it wasn't until the customer realised the full extent of time spent programming for the first time while utilising FourJaw’s management dashboard which presents the top downtime reason by factory, cell or machine.

To his astonishment, over the course of the month, they found that 3.49% of all downtime was caused by programming. Although this may not seem significant, the cost implication was significant if the trend had continued each month. 



It turned out that downtime from on-machine programming cost more than £100,000 in machining time.

This data was pulled from the FourJaw platform and used to make the business decision to hire two experienced CAM engineers who would work from the office rather than the machines.

Learn more about downtime monitoring.


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