Happy to report that the new tool has been designed, coded and manufactured in our own workshop using our own machinery, without any external help or support. The tolerances are as per expectations, precision has been improved, the tool is lighter without sacrificing rigidity, and there is a substantial saving in raw material used in watch main plate production. I can't wait to see the new parts coming out this week.
Time invested in this project: over 120 hours.
Another important detail: we are able to do the CNC equipment maintenance ourselves! Thanks to video support from Germany, and local support from Japanese makers, the down time is minimal. This was something that was worrying me from day one, and knowing that we can do almost all maintenance ourselves is certainly making the project less stressful and more enjoyable.