How do you recoop your tooling costs?

Anyone with experience in running a millwork company would almost swear that tooling is the blood of making it all work. Cutters, blades, bearings, sharpening, maintenance .. on and on. As machines have gotten more sophisticated so has the tooling.

So who’s paying for all this? Certainly when it’s a clearly defined need such as special profile knives or routers it’s clearly definable as part of the project cost. But when it’s more general, like drill bits or finger joint heads .. things that are more generally used in the day to day, who’s paying?

Do you bury it in the overhead? Do you even consider it as something more than “incidentals”? Do you charge your machinery time differently from other labor in an effort to cover tooling and maybe energy use?

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