Misumi Made-To-Order Metal Parts

February 15th, 2010 by KTU | Filed under Fabrication Resources.

Occasionally my expertise as an engineer carries over into the Baubilt world. Here is one such case. If you need to make fussy little shafts or brackets for some DIY project like a light fixture or a toilet paper holder, consider using the Misumi service. Misumi is a Japanese company that has a huge collection of semi-custom parts (hundreds of categories really) that are made to order using your uniquely specified parameters. For example, let’s say you need a stainless-steel rod 8mm in diameter and 96mm long for some perfect door pull you are designing. You can order that part from Misumi and it will be made to order on a computer-controlled machine tool (in Japan) and shipped directly to you…for remarkably short money.

Here are some parts I had made for use with the Ponoko parts described elsewhere. I think I had 10 sets made, and have already used 7 of the sets by now. My recollection is that these parts were $5-15 each, which is a screaming deal for a custom machined part. The trick of course is that these aren’t really custom; they are semi-custom parts that are made to order with your pre-specified dimensions.

Semi-custom parts from Misumi

Here is a Misumi page showing a “shaft support”…could be a towel rod support, no?


One Response to “Misumi Made-To-Order Metal Parts”

  1. Steven says:

    I’m really liking your site; thanks!

    I got here via a search for user stories related to McMaster-Carr, and was glad to find stuff like this. The Misumi site is one of those ones that puts me off at first, with the feeling that I’d never find what I want or be able to order it once I did, but your description got me past that, and I can see myself coming back to the site often in the future.

    The reason I was browsing today was to put some meat on my intuitions about factors that contribute to the (seemingly) recent acceleration of innovative power available to the the DIYer/maker. This sort of service seems to be one of those factors; I’m pretty sure that 20 years ago I couldn’t have configured a precision linear shaft, previewed it in 3D, and had it shipped to me from Japan from a company I only heard about 20 minutes ago. It’s just astounding to me.

    But then, that factor might be offset by a corresponding decrease in my interaction with local machinists, or my decreased motivation to find alternate configurations using scavenged parts or something…

    Anyway, all I really meant to say was “thanks for the pointer!”, but when I saw that you are a professor of innovation and entrepreneurship, I thought I’d expand on that some. I’m in the process of starting a company related to the maker movement, so I’ve been thinking a lot about these things.

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