The first thing to do when entering the market for used plastics processing equipment is to forget everything you think you know.
That's the advice of Peder Grimstrup, international business director for machinery supplier Aaron Equipment Co. of Bensenville, Ill. Grimstrup dispelled a number of myths about the used equipment market at Thermoplastic Concentrates 2005, held Feb. 9-11 in New Orleans and hosted by Applied Market Information LLC.
First off, Grimstrup said 5-10 percent of equipment in the used market has never been used in production. Such equipment may become available because of process changes, outsourcing, product discontinuation or changes in ownership.
``Sometimes, people also realize they need fewer essential pieces of equipment to operate, so a machine never gets installed,'' said Grimstrup, who's based in Aaron's Hellerup, Denmark, office. ``Some of the equipment we get is still in its original box.''
Contrary to myth, Grimstrup added that used equipment dealers:
* Upgrade equipment and controls and provide reconditioning in the same way original equipment manufacturers can.
* Can be found easily through Internet searches.
* Deliver equipment easily after first inspecting and testing it, which disproves the ``as is, where is'' belief many buyers have about used equipment.
* Keep equipment and major spare parts in inventory. In one extreme case, Grimstrup said Aaron provided a customer with a vital spare part for an injection molding machine in less than 24 hours - on Good Friday, no less.
Aaron operates a used equipment warehouse in Bensenville, just outside of Chicago, as well as several other warehouses across the United States. In Europe, the firm has warehouses in Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, Sweden and elsewhere. The firm, which opened more than 60 years ago, also is looking to expand into Asia, Grimstrup said.
On average, Aaron keeps 15,000 pieces of equipment in stock.