Rocklin Manufacturing Blog

Posted by Ross Rocklin in Rocklin Mfg on 3/8/2022

Before you make any investment, you deserve to understand exactly what you’ll get in return. If you aren’t cutting your costs and/or boosting your sales by far more than the cost of the investment, why would you change what you’re already doing?

We believe it’s important to help our customers connect the dots using actual user experiences, which is why we developed the Rocklinizer 3-Year Savings Calculator. The calculator estimates the 3-year savings from extended machine life and reduced downtime by coating metals, tools, and dies using the Rocklinizer’s proven hard surfacing process.

The calculation is simple:

  1. Input the equipment type you’ll be coating with the Rocklinizer
  2. Enter the cost to replace it and how often you replace it in 3 years
  3. Enter the repair and downtime costs in 3 years

The solution is your savings in just the first 3 years of use. Judging by older Rocklinizer models we still service that are 10, 20, 30, even 40 years old, 3 years is very conservative. Rocklinizers are built to last.

We also created the formula – which again is based on aggregating actual customer results – to further err on the conservative side. In short, we expect our customers to save far more than what the calculator shows.

For most Rocklinizer users, the calculation stops here. The Rocklinizer is designed for ease of carbide coating using a handheld applicator, and that’s the ideal method for most applications. But what if you have a lot of the same parts that need a hard surface coating? Or a large die that may take a while? And what if you’re facing labor challenges and would rather free up time for other activities while still reaping the many benefits of the Rocklinizer? Over 500,000 manufacturing jobs currently remain unfilled just in the United States, so you’re not alone here.

As we shared in prior posts, we’ve developed two solutions for turnkey Rocklinizer Automation, both of which are low cost and straightforward to implement. One is a gantry solution with controlled X-Y-Z coating, which you can see in action here. The other is a compact robot integration with 6-axis range of motion for precision coating, which can be seen here.

So how do these automation options fit into your ROI calculation? First, take the savings you’ve calculated from the Rocklinizer Calculator linked above. Then, include the following simple calculation:

  1. Estimate the number of hours you expect to coat your parts with the Rocklinizer over 3 years.
  2. Calculate your total, fully burdened hourly labor cost for the person(s) doing the coating
  3. Multiply the two together

Again, we’re using 3 years as a starting point, but we expect our customers to use the Rocklinizer much, much longer, and each unit is manufactured as such. You can also include other advantages, such as:

  • Working on other value-added tasks instead of coating
  • Reduced inventory costs
  • Scrap avoidance
  • Rework time saved

But to keep it simple, take:

Rocklinizer 3-Year Savings Calculator Result + (Estimated hours coating with the Rocklinizer over 3 years x Fully burdened labor cost per hour) = Estimated 3-Year Savings of Rocklinizer Automation.

Then, compare those savings to your preferred Rocklinizer Automation setup, which is a mere fraction of the cost of other automation solutions. As the article “Automation in the Fab Shop” in the January 2022 issue of Fabricating and Metalworking noted, “Cobot solutions for common fabrication shop operations such as welding and machine tending are available for $70,000-to-$90,000” and “the cost of a traditional robot cell approaches $200,000.” With Rocklinizer Automation, the time and money investment is dramatically lower and the payback is much faster.

Getting back to where we started, do the Rocklinizer cost and time savings from extended machine life, reduced wear, and optimized grip justify the investment for you? Get in touch and we’ll help you connect the dots to find out.

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Tags: rocklinizer , rocklinizer automation , automation , roi , automated coating , cutting costs , boosting sales , investments , savings calculator , carbide coating , handheld applicator , welding , machine tending , cobot

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