Tagged: Alignment Machines
April 6, 2018 at 11:07 am #36589
We are trying to determine which alignment machine and alignment rack to buy for our shop. We are projecting to do about 2 alignments per day. Budget is an important factor, Hunter wants about $65000 for their top of the line machine and rack. Whereas CEMB wants $27000 for their machine and rack. Waiting for other manufacturers to give us a quote. Wanting input from experienced shop owners.April 10, 2018 at 7:24 am #36732
It’s kind of like the difference between a 200 dollar tattoo and a 2000 dollar tattoo.
Hunter has a great product and usually their support is good and fast. I guess it would depend on what part of the country you are in.
What are your expectations of an alignment machine? Do you have a POS system that will interface with the machine so it can get your quick checks etc over?
If for some reason you stopped doing alignments for a month will the payment be an anchor around your neck? Will you be able to expand to 3,4,5, alignments per day?
What is your weekly car count? You should be doing alignments on about 30% of the vehicles that come through your shop.
Which one of these machines will be with you 5,10,15 years from now?
Make sure to figure any tech costs loaded into your payback figures. If you plan on doing any advertising specific to alignments you need to include that cost into your payback as well.
Chris@autofixsos.comApril 10, 2018 at 7:36 am #36734
Have you considered alignment tables and a used machine? Alignment tables are a nice alternative to an alignment rack and only cost 2 k with turn tables. A used machine usually works just fine. we have a hunter machine we bought from a school on eBay for $500. and do 5 alignments a day. The machine has been in service in our shop for 3 years. The new alignment machines will become old in a few years and a lot of shops go out of business and liquidate. If you want to be profitable day one, this is the way to go. good luckApril 10, 2018 at 10:47 am #36747
Just bough a new V3300 from Snap-On (Johnbean),love it,you get what you pay for.We had Hunter for years and tried their new one and it too was a nice machine.It came down to the service where we are located as all our big equipment is Snap-On. I just like dealing with less vendors on equipment and we see the Snapy guy every 2 weeks.If any issues happen on machine it can be looked at remotely by Snap-On as the Techs work for Snap-On,as for Hunter they are independent.Should really not need a human on site.All updates and issues are done wireless.Our old machine needed to be calibrated on site at least once a year.We now can do about 2-3 alignments to 1 on the old machine.Productivity! The name of the game.Hope this helps.April 10, 2018 at 7:13 pm #36773
I am on my 4th Hunter Machine in 38 years and would have nothing else. Every machine I had prior is still in operation to the best of my knowledge. We average 5 – 7 alignments a dayApril 10, 2018 at 9:06 pm #36778
Ive had techs tell me the JohnBean systems are simple & fast (but not cheap). Tech I know now does 10-15 alignments every day… said he has used other systems but they all add time to the set up & alignment…. said he would not go backwards with another system.April 16, 2018 at 11:28 am #36963
The big issue here is making sure there’s a healthy return on your investment for the equipment purchased. I’m attaching a simple Excel spreadsheet that will break down the information for you showing when you break even with the machine and then how much profit you’ll make over the life of the machine.
After you know you’re profitable with the purchase, the decision comes down to getting the highest quality and the best service you can for your dollar.
I hope this helps.
You must be logged in to access attached files.April 20, 2018 at 3:55 pm #37148
I think you should use the ROI speadsheet above and factor that into the equation. For what it’s worth I’d go Hunter based on prev. experiences with not being able to get my old John Bean machine fixed properly, and then having nothing but good experiences with Hunter service. We have a used Hunter DSP600 with rack I bought 4 yrs ago on a relatively low interest payment plan, I paid 17K for everything installed. Has needed about 2K worth of repairs since then. Glad I bought used because the amount of alignments we do keeps getting lower and lower based on our markets “race to the bottom” alignment pricing structure. Frankly the only reason I still have it is so we can control the quality of our own alignments. Currently we are only doing about 3-5/week.
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