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Excerpt from MetalForming

Shop Breaks from Pack with Waterjet Cutting

Machine: MAXIEM 1530

After spending 22 years as a CNC machinist in the Indianapolis area, Richie Price, in 2015, launched his own business…“backwards,” he says, half-jokingly. Instead of adding waterjet capabilities after starting with mills, lathes and other conventional machining processes, Price’s carefully researched business plan called for launching RPM Design in Brownsburg, IN, with a single waterjet-cutting system.

Indy/NASCAR Experience Proves Valuable

Most of Price’s previous experience came from work that included designing and programming five-axis machines to produce complex contours in components such as high-performance vehicle cylinder heads. Customers included Indy and NASCAR teams, as well as top NHRA drag racers. Price had previous experience with waterjet machining and quickly recognized the technology’s versatility and capability.

He also noticed fabricating and machine shops that needed the advantages of waterjet machining, but could not, or would not, invest in the technology. Furthermore, the only other local shop using waterjets was fully contracted with large companies. “I saw people needing a waterjet-cutting specialty job shop,” he says. “I found a niche market, and I went after it.”

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