Justifying the Cost of Coated Wire

Originally published at: Is high-speed coated wire worth the cost? Yes. | EDM Proud

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Is it worth it?

We think so. Consider than any shop’s most valuable profit driver is its hourly billable rate. Because coated wire is 25% faster than brass wire, it yields more billable hours. In fact, assuming you bill at a typical $60 per hour rate, coated wire provides 520 additional hours of billable shop time. (See this breakdown in the chart below.)

While some balk at the higher cost of coated wire, the actual manufacturing cost of consumed coated wire is small when compared to your billable rate. Again, consider a $60 per hour rate, and factor in an operational cost of 18% for coated wire consumption, and 10% for brass wire consumption. That’s only an 8% difference. 

The benefits of increased profit, speed and productivity outweigh that minor cost. See a breakdown of coated wire operational and part costs in the charts below.

Additional billable machine time with operational costs

  • Cost benefit analysis between brass wire and coated wire
  • Operation cost model comparison for 1 year of operation (2,080 hours)

Increased machining speeds with part costs

  • Cost benefit analysis between brass and coated wire
  • Operation cost model comparison for 1 year of operation (2,080 hours)
  • Coated wire provides a total lower cost of operation for the same output 

For more information, visit our webinar:

Webinar: https://www.makino.com/resources/content-library/webinars/archive/selection-of-coated-edm-wires-what-technology-are-you-missing-/375

1 Like

This is a very interesting perspective. Good thoughts here. Thanks for sharing!

As a job shop we use coated wire exclusively. The only drawback is some brands of zinc coated wire will flake in the wire feed system and clog up the guides.

Moreover, an “A” type of wire, that is a zinc coated wire, is not the best choice for productivity. It is mostly used for extra-fine surface finish.