Positive Changes in the Precision CNC Machining World

New PM magazine editor-in-chief. New PMTS trade show location. Newly proposed PMPA management services strategy. Positive momentum continues to build to best serve and move this industry forward.


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Some of you know of, or perhaps receive, Production Machining (PM) magazine. From Modern Machine Shop’s publisher, Gardner Business Media (GBM), this sister publication launched in January 2001 and focuses on equipment, technology and processes used in the precision-machined parts industry, particularly CNC turning. Some of you also know about the biennial Precision Machining Technology Show (PMTS) that presents new ideas to that industry as well as the Precision Machined Parts Association (PMPA) that aims to assist member shops to better serve the industry.

There have been some notable changes within each of these entities of which you should be aware. These include:

New Editor-in-Chief

Chris Koepfer, editor-in-chief of PM since the magazine’s inception, retired at the end of last year. Those of you who know him or have talked with him understand that he has a vast knowledge of machining and manufacturing and a talent for telling shops’ tales in his articles. He was also very influential to me as I learned what it took to be a successful, thoughtful magazine editor.

That said, Chris Felix, who has been on PM’s staff for the past 14 years, has taken hold of the reins as editor-in-chief. Having worked with him as a colleague for nearly all my 15 years with MMS, I know that PM is in good hands moving forward as his industry involvement and machining acumen have significantly grown over the years.

New Event Venue

PMTS 2019 is the 10th edition of the biennial show that is presented by the PMPA as well as PM, MMS and Products Finishing magazines. Until now, the PMTS event was in Columbus, Ohio. However, this year’s edition, which runs April 2-4, will be at the Huntington Convention Center in Cleveland, Ohio. In part, this move was made to better present the more than 300 exhibitors of precision machine tools, shopfloor equipment, manufacturing software and so on that will span approximately 70,000 square feet of floor space (both show records).

PMTS will also feature multiple, live show floor product demonstrations, “tech talk” theater presentations (including one about Top Shops benchmarking survey findings), a student day and the co-located Parts Cleaning Conference.

New PMPA Management Services

GBM and the PMPA have been long-term partners in growing PM and PMTS. That is why it made sense for them to develop a proposed a PMPA Management Services Agreement (MSA). This MSA begins with a six-month initial exploratory phase in which GBM will assess the trade organization to identify performance optimization opportunities and then collaborate to improve deliverables to member companies. The goal is to make the PMPA even more sustainable to ensure that it continues to provide members with the technical support, industry information and networking opportunities for which the association has been known. This initial collaboration will be under the PMPA board’s oversight, and at the end of the exploratory phase, the board and GBM will decide upon on a possible second phase to further extend the collaboration.

At the end of the day, changes like these are good. Similarly, if you have not attended PMTS, change it up and consider spending a bit of time there. I think you will find it to be a valuable use of your time away from your shop as well as an effective means to work on your business, not just in it.


PMTS 2019 logo

PMTS 2019

The Precision Manufacturing Technology Show runs April 2-4, 2019, in Cleveland, Ohio. Register here.