One And Two Man Shops —An American Phenomenon
EXTRA RELIABLE EDM EQUIPMENT
A 'MUST' FOR THE SMALL JOB SHOP
TO BE COMPETITIVE
LABS, founded in 1987, is a prime example of an American Phenomenon — the one and two
man shop. Many of todays major U.S. manufacturers began with one or two very aggressive people and went on to be-
come large competitors in the world market.
EDM LABS may one day be such a shop. Frank Wenzel, owner of EDM LABS, is a member of this progressive two man team. "I joined EDM LABS as an operator/programmer, and had no idea that I would eventually own the company. Today we have four wire EDM machines and two operators — myself and my brother — so you can imagine that productivity is extremely important to us."
EDM LABS is a busy contract job shop located in Fremont, CA. producing parts for the medical, aerospace, tool and die, electronics, jewelry, injection molding, extrusion molding industries and "any other odd jobs."
For a small one or two man shop to be competitive, reliable equipment that can operate while the employees tend to other tasks must be utilized.
These "silent partners," the machines and equipment, can effectively double the work force. Of course, the machines can't setup themselves, but by implementing an efficient workpiece management program, jobs can be pre-set and ready for loading as soon as a previous cut is complete.
Smaller shops, such as EDM LABS, can produce a high volume of work equal to larger competitors with higher overhead. Their secret to survival is 100% utilization of every resource at their disposal.
competitive. With just two operators, you can imagine how
important accuracy and a high level of efficiency is to us
"One of the systems we use that has made a major contribution to our productivity is System 3R tooling. It's been here
since day one when I joined the company. When I acquired
EDM LABS, I just continued to use the 3R tooling because
Overall view of EDM LABS facility in Fremont, CA. Frank and Richard Wenzel and their wire-EDM "partners" run a very productive operation with excellent machines and proper tooling.
e asked Frank Wenzel of EDM LABS how he
competes with some of the larger companies and
he told CNC WEST: "The productivity level of
the equipment we use is what gives us the opportunity to be
One of our cover photos — After pre-setting outside the machine, part and 3R tooling are loaded quickly and accurately on Mitsubishi wire EDM at EDM labs, Fremont, CA.