Any of you guys do any regular amount of prototype work?

Ok, a little about myself. I currently am in partnership with a long time friend of mine in a residential general contracting company. It's not too bad of a gig, but it's way more managerial work than anything else. My true love is design/fabrication/repair of equipment and machinery. I have often thought about starting up a shop that would mainly deal with engineering models and such. Basically, a shop that would be completely turn-key from concept to paint and everything in between. I've never been a fan of prodution work, simply because it's a matter of doing it a nickel cheaper and a minute faster. A case-in-point example of what I'm talking about would be similar to a company that my CAT saleman calls on. They take old CAT machines, strip them down to basic machine and drive mechanism, then build one-off custom oil field pieces out of them that get shipped world-wide. That's an extreme case, but it gets the picture accross.

I'm currently pursuing a mechanical engineering degree (don't cuss me just yet....I worked in the field first, so hopefully I won't be the Engineer you want to drive your rig over at the next jobsite...face it, we've all had that idea in our head!). I've slowly been collecting the equipment for this endeavor as I've had the money. My next two big ticket items will be a lathe and mill. I figure from there I can build anything else I need.

Let me know your thoughts on this idea, especially if you are involved in this kind of work.

SSS