Industrial Vending Machines Crack Me Up…



Okay, file this under “Easily Amused”…

So I was touring a newly-opened membership-based workshop over in Durham last Friday. Durham TechShop is a tinkerer’s fantasy come true with all the lovely equipment you can imagine. Memberships are about $100/month, you can have access to milling machines, woodworking equipment, a plasma cutter, (frickin’) laser cutter, hand tools, etc… Everything you need to do some serious damage as a hobbyist or professional designer-engineer-prototyper… Also, check out their classes (looking to learn how to make your own aluminum castings?). If you’re in the area, you really should check it out…

Anyways, I was doing the tour, and I saw this vending machine by the work area, but instead of yummy snacky-cakes, this thing was filled with all sorts of workshop goodies… Need some machine screws? Work gloves? Drill bits? No problem, just head over to the vending machine in the corner of the shop… It’s as easy as scoring a Kit-Kat.

Apparently Fastenal makes SmartStore industrial Vending Machines. They can set it up to dispense tools for metal working, general cutting, etc… even first aid stuff. (Insert dorky joke here.)

Like I said, “easily amused”…


4 Responses to “Industrial Vending Machines Crack Me Up…”

  1. 1 Bob Cox August 3, 2009 at 11:14 am

    RE: Industrial Vending Machines Crack Me Up…
    You should be aware that several other suppliers offer Industrial Vending equipment. In particular, our company, Supply Point Systems, has been in the business for nearly 10 years. We sell our equipment primarily through MSC and Kennametal and they place equipment very much like Fastenal.

    Since we’re right here in the Raleigh area (Morrisville, near RDU), we thought you’d like to know about us, too. Let me know if you’re interested, we can show you more of what we do.

    Bob Cox
    Supply Point Systems, Inc.
    100 Southcenter Court, Suite 300
    Morrisville, NC 27560
    T: +1 919 466 0037
    F: +1 919 466 0038

  2. 2 Plasma Cutters September 18, 2009 at 3:11 am

    Good Post. Thanks for this.

  3. 3 Robert Holmes November 25, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    Yes, there are other vending machine suppliers. Our company WinWare, Inc. makes the CribMaster line of products which are software driven point-of-use devices. We have been in business for 17 years and have led the marketplace for quite sometime.

    We brought to market our first industrial vending solution in 1994. The vending machine in our eyes is old technology. We have found great success over the last 4-5 years with RFID solutions and scales systems that are designed to be easy to use with little maintenance because of little moving parts. In fact we are a past Boeing Supplier of the Year and a 2008 Small Business of the Year from Lockheed Martin.

    Take a look at some of what we offer at


    Robert Holmes
    WinWare, Inc.
    888.419.1399 x 312

  4. 4 Jesse February 22, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    I currently work for Fastenal and the most interesting this about us is, we started as a Vending machine company. We didnt have many employees. Just a bunch of Vending machines. Then we started growing at a rapid rate we had to go away from that idea for a while. Now that we have refined the idea we are going forward with it full force. Just over 2000 machines signed and counting. These machines are showing great value to the customer and bringing savings within the first month of operation.

    If you want more info, you know where to find us. We are probably in your back yard. Or you can go to

    Have a great year!

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