Precision parts, especially small ones like those made at Perfect Coupling Co., Charlotte, N.C. ( and Yardley Products Corp., Yardley, Pa. (, often need to be washed to remove chips, oils, and other residues after being machined. When no washer on the market could be found to do the job, designers at Yardley built and the company now markets a 15-gallon batch washer. "Its tumbling action agitates parts to get them cleaner faster and deburrs the smallest ones, even those with blind holes," says Scott Clarke, plant manager at Perfect.

It comes with baskets made of different-sized screen meshes to correspond with the size and type of part being washed. It works with most liquid cleaners and reduces cleaning times by up to 50%. The $600 machine removes most grease and oil, preparing parts for final cleanings.

— Stephen Mraz