Forum: It All Needs a Home

Today’s Machining World Archives September 2010 Volume 06 Issue 07

I would first like to say that I very much enjoy your magazine and have been a reader from day one.

In your “Swarf” column in the July/August issue, you discussed a recent auction sale in Traverse City, Mich., called “MetaVision.” To clarify, the actual name of the sale was MetaVation, and my firm, Loeb Winternitz, conducted the auction. You have always been very detailed in the accuracy of your reporting and I thought it would be beneficial to clarify the results that you described, as your readership does appreciate updated market information from many reporting venues, including your publication.

MetaVation ran only automotive related work, but did not have a lot of older cam equipment that went to the scrap yards. There were a lot of older CNC machines and a few newer CNC’s, as well as many machine tools, plant support equipment, etc. But the cam equipment you mentioned consisted of only three machines out of 1,600 lots. The buyers consisted primarily of manufacturers and dealers, but as in most auctions, scrap buyers did participate at this two-day auction. Our clients, and all of us at Loeb Winternitz, were thrilled with the results of the auction sale. Hopefully, the strength of the auction indicates a positive movement toward economic recovery. Are we in a recovery? Based on the results of our sale, we are working our way out. We have heard the same reporting from other auction companies that we are friends with and partner with.

Your statement that a large amount of equipment went to the scrap yard was a little too broad. We did scrap equipment from this sale, but at a nice profit. I think a big key to the success of this sale was that all of our expectations were in check. There has also been a pent-up demand in the buyers’ marketplace. We had over 250 registered bidders, 110 of whom purchased something at the auction. The results were significantly higher than pre-sale estimates, including the prices of the three New Britain model 88 chuckers that you alluded to.

I think it’s safe to say that whether the sale consists of brand new equipment or older more experienced equipment, it all needs a home. I’m just glad that this auction was a nice success story and I hope that the economy continues to recover.

Charles Winternitz
Loeb Winternitz Industrial Auctioneers
Chicago, Ill.

A Good Old Machine

I was going thru some old TMW magazines and came across the article on 86-year-old Emil Pakula and his shop. Is he still living and machining? It was a neat story but also a sad one as all across the nation corporate America has sold its soul to the Communist Chinese all for the almighty dollar. I was hoping the story could have brought someone to buy his business so he could enjoy his remaining years not having to work.

I know you probably do not remember me, Lloyd, but I started out in my business in 1985 in my parents’ basement with a Hardinge type turret lathe. A couple of years later I moved into a rented building and wanted to get into CNC turning. I came across a Miyano BNC-34 you had on your floor. If I remember right, you said you were holding it there due to the owner’s bankruptcy. You gave me one day to see it and make a decision about whether to buy it, as there was a list of people who were interested in it. Well, I bought it and it was a good machine.

In the mean time I’ve gotten more machines and got into Swiss turning. In 1994 I sold the Miyano for almost what I paid you for it. I take very good care of my equipment. Now I have five Star CNC Swiss machines, four Hardinge CNC lathes, an old Wasino, and two Haas VMC’s. I really love what I do, and it’s just my wife, one full time employee, one part time employee, and me.

We have been really busy this year despite the down turn. I do not go out and do sales calls anymore. Probably the last time I did a cold sales call was 13 years ago. I have no sales reps and my work comes mostly by word of mouth. I look forward to the TMW magazine each month and read it cover to cover.

Don Muhlnickel
Hi-Point Machine & Tool, Inc.
New Paris, Ind.

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