RE: '99 conference & confused - rapid milling?

From: T Schuett (
Date: Mon Apr 26 1999 - 16:12:46 EEST

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Monday, April 26, 1999 8:55 AM
Subject: Re: '99 conference & confused - rapid milling?

At the currrent prices of RP systems, most of the RP manufacturers are
selling their machines below cost. (That is why nearly all of the
publicly traded manufacturers are reporting a net loss on their business
Now you are asking them to take even a bigger loss.

There was an earlier posting that suggested CAD/CAM should reduce their
pricing, but I don't think my posting in any way infers manufacturers should
lower their machine costs. I did present that there are very low-cost
alternatives in the rapid milling market, but that was my only reference to

You bring up an interesting point, though. Surely, to be effective tools,
all the high-tech rapid prototyping stuff must earn its keep, both for the
builders and the buyers. As a much more mature product, rapid milling meets
that need for both builder and maker today. Alternately, while you submit
that most rapid prototyping machines are not profitable for their builders,
they are challenged with trying to meet a need for more, better tools. To
the victors will go the spoils, as I doubt they'll share their profits
when/if they make it. Can we hope that Helisys and others will pay back
their research grants and so on once/if they make it? (I think I'll put on
my flack jacket now!)

Overall, I'm disappointed that you missed the point, though. As a business
owner myself, I want and need profits to survive and would not ask for lower
prices today. Especially in the arena of CAD/CAM, there are terrific
bargains with unreal performance. I have no gripe on the affordability or
justifiability of most all products out there, rapid prototyping or
otherwise. The point, once again, was to emphasize the need of the user,
the rapid prototyping shop, to make a profit and to utilize all the tools
available to their best advantage to make THEIR profits. Rapid milling
meets that mandate, yet seems largely ignored in this group.


Todd Schuett
Creative Technology Corporation

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