2010 Machine Shop Market Profile Part 1
It is 2010, and in the movie world, that is “the year we make contact.” If you remember the sequel to the classic Stanley Kubrick movie of Arthur C. Clarke’s “2001: A Space Odyssey,” you’ll realize things haven’t turned out quite as predicted.
By Doug Kaufman
Of course, Hollywood is always making predictions about the future that
don’t come true. Where are the colonies on the Moon? Cures for all
major diseases? And what about those flying cars we’ve been promised?
This being real life, bold predictions can be fun to anticipate, but
it’s the little changes that often have the biggest impact on our daily
lives. Over time, a small drop of water can destroy stone likewise,
small changes can have a large effect on your business as well.
For more than two decades, Engine Builder magazine has tracked those
changes to this industry by surveying the same machine shop/custom
engine rebuilder (CER) population. Though the numbers, like the
industry, aren’t as strong and robust as we remember from the past, the
good news is, contact between shop owner and customer has continued,
and the resulting engines are used for basic transportation, business
operations and management, racing and performance applications and
everything in between.
Because of the twenty-plus years of data we’ve collected, we believe
the information in this study is the most reliable data available for
tracking trends in the production of engines, cylinder heads and
crankshafts, as well as specific business data.
The data generated for this year’s Machine Shop Market Profile was
collected through survey questionnaires sent to the machine shop/custom
engine rebuilding membership of the AERA. Four different
questionnaires, consisting of four pages each, were developed to obtain
the information contained in our profile.
Each questionnaire was mailed to one-quarter of AERA’s rebuilding
membership, selected on a random-start Nth-name basis. A total of 1,557
appropriate usable outgoing questionnaires were sent out in early
A total of 140 completed questionnaires were returned, resulting in a
return rate of 9%. Analysis of the data was completed by Babcox Market
The survey information reflects data for production year 2009. Part 1
of this two-part profile includes data on monthly production of engine
blocks and cylinder heads, broken out by engine size as well as by gas
and diesel configurations, crankshafts, core sourcing, shop equipment
ownership and purchasing, and total production time spent in specific
engine building areas.
Overall, the transportation industry has taken shots to the chin over
the past couple of years. Engine builders have been feeling those blows
for years. How are we doing?
Download a viewable pdf of the 2010 Machine Shop Market Profile Part 1