A recent blog post at the Solid State Technology website titled – Managing legacy fabs and the role of secondary equipment – brought several thoughts to mind. The authors definitely touched on some industry truths that are worth restating, including:
…older semiconductor factories need high-quality sources of used systems and components as well as the tribal process knowledge that goes with them.
The old model of aggressively brokered, “what you see is what you get” used equipment of unknown condition sitting in unopened containers has been replaced by a value-added, collaborative approach that brings new tool-like quality and reliability to the secondary space as well as a dedicated support team of experts with deep knowledge about older equipment and processes.
This is a great point that sheds light on how important quality secondary equipment is. That said, only the OEM can offer quality, used equipment – which means the same warranty and specifications as when the product was newly purchased.
In the comments section, Bill Kohnen makes reference to the fact that working with an independent company for refurbished equipment provides ‘the best total cost and lowest risk solution. In fact, we would argue that the inherent risk with using fab equipment that hasn’t been refurbished by the OEM negates any potential savings that would otherwise be achieved. The lowest risk comes from the OEM because they use the same production techniques and personnel that built the equipment in the first place.
Let the buyer beware, as they say. Caveat emptor.
What’s been your experience with secondary equipment? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.
If you are interested in purchasing certified pre-owned equipment from Cascade Microtech, feel free to contact our Sales Department.