About Mike (aka Shag)

I would like to take this opportunity to tell you a little bit about myself.

Unlike a lot of my current competition, I actually tattoo, and have been doing so for 26 years now. I also have been hand building coil machines since 1999 and started building rotaries in 2008. I believe this makes a big difference as I actually know what I am feeling when I use the machine and where I want it to be. This means I don’t have to rely on a “pro team” or someone else to do that for me. 

I do all the CAD (computer aided design), CNC programming, manufacture, prototyping and testing myself along with the help of tattooer buddies that test and give me feedback before I launch any new product. 

I started off by making my own interpretations of the classic coil machine frames I have always admired for their form and functionality. I have added a few of my own over the years, some of which were designed with friends of mine. These machines are as reliable and well built as they are aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

When I first started making handmade rotary machines, I wanted to challenge myself with something new and some of my first handmade machine can be seen here, in the long gone section of this site.  At that time, and as far as I know, I was one of the first to make handmade rotaries in the US in production volumes. It took artists awhile to warm up to the idea of using a rotary, but I kept plugging away trying to come up with unique forms, and here we are today.

Many of the features of the machines I make today are directly due to conversations about theory and geometry my friends and I have shared. I have also learned a tremendous amount from the feedback given to me by my customers. I continue to learn from these sources, and feel it drives me to build finer equipment all the time. I would like to take this time to thank anyone whom has ever helped me grow as a machine builder, artist, or person.

It has always been my intent to provide a quality, handmade tattoo machine that works well for people while providing good customer service. I believe it is in a tattooer’s best interest to purchase equipment that will best suit his/her needs, in other words the right tool for the job. This is most easily obtained by doing your research and talking with the builder about the specifics of the machine. This is why I mainly only build custom coil machines to order after communicating with the customer. Doing so allows me to get a better understanding of what each individual needs from their new machine.

I have a system for coil machine orders setup that I refer to as “The List”. All orders taken are added to the list, and I complete them in order. This is the fairest system I have come up with and is the reason there is generally a bit of a wait for a custom coil machine. Demand for my machines sometimes surpasses my available time, as I am also a working tattooer, and CNC machinist now, making all our parts in house. However busy i might be, I always try to get right back to people and get their machines out in a timely manner.

There are many choices of machine builders out there today and some of them build a great machine. Others use cheap parts and don’t have years of experience and quality craftsmanship to put into their work. Equipment is an investment, one that you should be able to use and make money with. So please, treat yourself right and do your homework, be patient and make good choices. Buy good equipment from reputable builders and you will get what you want, a good machine.

I want to again thank you for your interest in my machines and hope to hear from you soon.

- Shag