How to Find a Right CNC Machining Supplier in China


When you see this article, you must be interested in working with a China CNC service supplier or ready to look for one, right? As a global leader in manufacturing, China has become a key player in the field of CNC machining.

ok, let’s come to the first question: why i need to move my cnc parts to China?

Firstly, the most important reason is to get much more competitive pricing than your domestic market, I don’t think you will decline. Even China’s labor costs are low, the level of skills in manufacturing — like the operation of CNC machines — is really very high. Or you can say, lower production costs do not mean lower quality parts. If the parts are out of tolerance or the Surface finish not working well, low prices make no sense, right?

the other reason is to avoid high equipment costs. actually, we have some customers even from the same machining industry, after working with us since 2010, now they only do some simple machining or fixing jobs in-house instead of investing on those advanced equipment. except that, the Labor and training cost is also very big. In other words, NC machining is a complex process that requires professional training to operate, which means that companies using in-house technology must have highly skilled operators trained. By outsourcing the professional CNC work services, this customer can take advantage of the technology without incurring the labor or training costs associated with the process.

At the same time, there are some challenges you will meet with. don’t worry, i believe you will have a clear idea how to go from this blog only.

1: You Must Visit the Manufacturer Personally If Possible

If you want to directly contact the workshop owner then it is highly advisable to visit the workshop personally if possible, before closing any deal with the supplier. And you must insist the supplier for the visit in advance as a necessary condition to acquire their CNC machining services. Initially, you will be searching for your CNC supplier online and most likely, you will reach a trading company. There is an immense difference between a trading company and a manufacturing workshop. Mostly, the owner of a trading company and workshop are two different people.

for small businesses, it’s hard to work this way since the cost is very high travelling to a different country, unless you have continuious demand about the parts and look for a long term CNC supplier. We have been working with quite many customers since 2010 and the majority of them never come to China, but it wouldn’t affect our business relations. and it’s not the same for other big ones, they prefer to visit the factories in person as soon as they receive some test parts. and i highly recommend this way: firstly you choose some ones you like to work with, test their sample parts, and then take a visiting here. actually face-face meeting can improve the relations and set up the trust more easily, and a good supplier can really save you lots of trouble not just money.

2: Choose the One Who Offers Customer Testimonials

While choosing a supplier, just remember, choose that machining supplier who offers customers testimonials and consent to contact them for verification. These testimonials should be authentic that must contain full customer details. Keep in mind, general recommendations without customer information are useless.

Selecting a little expensive Chinese CNC machining supplier is wiser than selecting the one who offers low prices and does not agree to provide a list of his satisfied customers. Generally, the Chinese workshop owners do not reveal their clients’ names. But it is up to you, how you make him provide his customers details with contact information. You can set it as the pre-condition to start working with the supplier.

Also when you search suppliers via google, you will surely see b2b sites with thousands of listings of manufacturers. in my opinion, it’s better to select the ones with at least 3 years of experiences there, the longer time they stick to the b2b, the more stable they will be. for example, some new suppliers may find it not a good investment on the platform in the first 1-2years, then they will stop using it.of course it’s not a must, you need to decide from your own vision.

3: You Must Negotiate the Payment Terms

While deciding the payment terms, you must insist on paying 30% as a down payment, and the remaining 70% will be paid when an inspector will approve your consignment on your behalf in China. Generally, the payment terms in China are 50% down payment and 50% money before delivery.

Before shipping your parts, it is highly recommended, you should insist on quality inspection. It does not matter if you are not going to send an inspector. By the way, you can do quality checks by hiring a company. You will ask for the workshop’s exact address for inspection from the supplier. In case, your supplier runs a trading company, he will never send you the address, and you will come to know that he is not the actual factory owner.

If a supplier demands full payment to start manufacturing then just ignore him, even if you have full confidence in him. But if it is a small amount (say less than $1,000) then you can take the risk.

4: You Must Check for Suitable Location of the Workshop

Before finalizing your supplier, make sure that the location of his workshop is nearer to the seaport. As China is a huge country and if your supplier workshop is far away from the seaport then it will affect the cost of land transportation in China.

In case you are working with multiple suppliers in China and want to acquire the services of a new workshop. Then you must try to find such a workshop that is situated in the same region as the other workshops. In this way, you can combine the shipments and will save freight and import costs.

You must also select a workshop that is nearer to the airport. In case, you or your quality inspection inspector visit the workshop in the future then you can easily access the workshop. Otherwise, you must arrange extra money for the stay in the hotel.

5: You Should Ask for Samples

You must check the samples to confirm whether your supplier can provide the required quality and qualifies for the job or not. Check even he is willing or not to provide the samples. If yes, then at what cost? The workshops, which are not a trading company, usually offer the samples free of cost, and willing to build a trusted working relationship. But sometimes, they ask a little amount of money for the samples to check that if you are a serious buyer or not.

But if your supplier asks very much for providing just samples then you must alarm yourself about trading companies. Generally, Chinese CNC machining workshops avoid working with trading companies and ask them to pay for samples. When these companies add their profit to the sample cost, its price will reasonably increase. Finally, it will alarm you about these companies. Beware if a trading company offers a refund if you do not approve the samples. Once you make the payments and they intentionally will send you the poor quality. And then you should forget your refund money.

6: Choose the One with the Best Customer Service and Support

If you are perusing the procurement process on your own and not acquiring the services of any Chinese agent or employee, then choose that CNC machining supplier who offers the best customer service and support. Because this factor can be very censorious. As you will be communicating with your supplier digitally, and you do not want to face such a situation where you want some immediate responses from the supplier, and get no answers for hours.

To avoid this headache, just make sure that your supplier is a professional and has good English communication skills who can immediately clear all your quarries. By the way, when you will first contact him and you will come to know, how professional he is?

Customer service will run through the whole processing from pre-sales, sales, and after-sales. Through different periods, you can observe the staff’s expertise and working attitudes. for example, do they would like to give some technical suggestions or point out the design problems in the early quotation stage? some suppliers wouldn’t like to check the details of your drawings, but a pricing only. when you place an order there, they will tell some tolerance can’t be guaranteed, or the surface finish can’t be done, or some corners can’t be machined, etc. It’s really disappointing, right?

7: You Must Mention Delivery Time

When you close the deal with your supplier, do not forget to mention your expected delivery time. Generally, if your chosen workshop has raw material already available in stock, then the delivery time for samples will be 10-15 days, and the delivery time for the mass production will be 20-25 days approximately. Delivery time will be decided per your order quantity, part size and complexity, type of raw material required, availability of raw material in stock, and other important factors are also considered.

It is highly recommended, if you are short on time, and selecting a new supplier then it is not a good idea to start with. It will be wise, initially starting with just a sample of your part and you and the supplier, both have variability in time. It is indispensable that you confirm the delivery time of both samples and mass production.

If you want things done quicker than it takes to accomplish a batch then workers will compromise many things to maintain the schedule. It will consequently disturb the processing accuracy and efficiency will be affected.

8: You Should Clarify MOQ Before Placing Order

It is advisable to check the workshop’s minimum order quantity (MOQ) requirements before finalizing the things with your supplier. Technically speaking, there is no issue for a CNC machine to produce a single piece. But the cost will be playing a crucial role as it takes enough time and money in setting up a CNC machine.

Mostly, all the Chinese suppliers buy the raw material from the local market and this decides the MOQ for a workshop. To know your supplier’s MOQ, you must send him the drawings of all your parts. In this way, he will be able to tell you the exact minimum quantity by estimating the raw material required for your parts manufacturing.

If your supplier offers a MOQ of a huge amount (say $3,000 to $5,000) then you will be guessing right. The person is claiming to be the owner of a CNC workshop in China but in actuality, he is a trading company.

9: You Must Check All the Important Documents

While finalizing your CNC machining supplier in China, it is once again highly recommended that you ask your supplier to provide you with workshop-related credentials. These important documents include the workshop’s license, company registration number, ISO certificate, raw material certificates, etc.

Once you get all the important documents and those documents that will be in the Chinese language, you must translate them into English. For translation purposes, you can acquire the services of a professional. In this way, you can verify if your supplier is not doing any fraud with you and whether he can be trusted or not.

10: Held the Supplier Responsible

It is very important that you ask your supplier and adds it to the agreement, if he sends any parts with an error then he has to compensate or refund. All responsibility will be laying on the supplier. Do not trust that supplier if he sends you vague answers.

Professional CNC workshop owners prefer building long-term and trusted working relationships with their buyers. They do not go after getting the instant benefits by supplying the disqualified parts. By any chance, if a mistake occurs, they take full responsibility and will deliver a new shipment or refund.

11: You Cant Ask for a Third-Party Inspection Before Shipment

When your supplier informs you about shipping your consignment then ask him for the quality inspection check of your CNC parts. It is better to personally visit the workshop in China with a CNC machining expert who can critically inspect the quality. But if you can not manage personal visitation then you should hire the services of a quality check inspection firm to ensure the guaranteed quality.

If your supplier denies third-party quality inspection then do not waste your time and money in falling for that fraudulent persons. Just forget about him and find another trusted supplier in China.

Anyway,if you are not trying to pay for any 3rd-party or take the trouble looking for the professional 3rd-party, check the below points:

Verify that the suppliers comply with ISO standards, which is a good guarantee they follow QC methodologies and the production quality is high and stable.

make sure they have complete inspection equipment like Hardness tester, Height gauge, Thread gauge, Projector, etc. actually not all they can be used for each part, but for most of the projects with different drawings, some parts need to be inspected by calipers, some need thread gauges, some need CMM. So the full inspection tools are necessary to run different projects if you want stable business relations.

Do they have a full-time quality inspector? Do they calibrate the inspection tools in a timely manner? In my company, we always send the tools to be calibrated on time.

Also you need to ask the supplier to make an inspection report before shipping out, so you can understand if they comply with the good working process, what tools they used to inspect, and if all things come out exactly as requested.

12: Keep in Touch with the Supplier Continuously

Do not through all the matters into the hands of your supplier. Trust him but not blindly and you must take all the necessary precautionary measures. You should keep on contacting the supplier from time to time to check the real progress and ask for a progress report of your consignment regularly. If you do not contact the supplier and then he may not take your work seriously. Contact him most often so he could know that you are worried about the quality of your parts.

You can get our world-class and advanced CNC machining services. We are amongst China’s top-rated CNC machining workshops, and we’re also a long term supplier for those top500 like Honeywell, BMW,Qualcomm, HuaWei, etc. (


If you want a trusted CNC machining supplier in China at a reasonable price and premium quality then you must be a professional and experienced person. But as a beginner, if you carefully take care of the above-mentioned factors, we guarantee that you will successfully be able to hire a good supplier in China.

    Cora Feng
    Cora Feng

    Project Manager working on CNC Machining since 2010

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