How a machine shop can help save lives

While we’re always proud of our craftsmanship, and know our customers depend on us to meet deadlines, we don’t often find ourselves in a genuine “life or death” situation.  That all changed when we received a phone call late in the afternoon of Friday, April 3, 2020.  A customer needed immediate assistance making stainless steel parts for respiratory ventilators. This one was hot: truly, the sooner these were in production, the sooner they could be helping patients.

We rolled up our sleeves and got to work. Standing six feet apart in the driveway of Laura’s house, our customer showed us samples of the parts and full specifications. Could we do it?  By Saturday morning, we had the part quoted, and we started writing programs for the three lathes it was going to run on.

On Monday morning, April 6, we were sawing blanks and setting up the three lathes to run them in. By Wednesday the 8th, we were able to begin daily pickups, and on the following Saturday, April 18, the last of the 8,786 pieces were picked up.

That’s 426 machine hours over 20 shifts on 12 work days from start to finish. Are we proud? You bet we are!

We know that healthcare workers on the front lines treating patients bear the heaviest loads these days. It’s rare that someone in our industry gets to make a contribution they can see makes an immediate, vital difference. We are grateful to be able to use our special skills in this pandemic to rapidly help get needed equipment into their hands.

What more can we do?

We have committed to our current and prospective customers that if they have immediate need of parts to help with the coronavirus pandemic, we will give them the next available slot in the work cell where it would run. The Bothe team has proven that not only will we promise this, but we can and will do it. Come see what else we can do for you at

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