Michael P. Cayley, Sr.

Machine Tool Builder

Michael P. Cayley, Sr.

Machine Tool Builder

Quality, versatility and affordability were the keys to the success of our pallet shuttle systems,” states Mike Cayley, Sr. “Being a job shop gave us the perfect insight into the manufacturing needs of others, and that has also paid off in optimum productivity within our own facility,” he adds. Just as they did at the beginning, MIDACO continually reviews their own manufacturing methods for ways to reduce operating costs. The benefits are twofold: They can maintain their tradition of supplying quality products at competitive prices, and their efforts lead to further product innovations and enhancements that are passed along to customers. “We built the company on a tradition of responsiveness, and foresightedness when it comes to servicing our customers,” says Mike, Sr. “That’s not only a tradition,” he adds, “it’s our mission for the future.

Michael P. Cayley, Sr. started MIDACO CORPORATION in 1969 with a handful of employees as your typical job shop providing a quality metal cutting resource for a variety of manufacturers in their area. Under his direction, they have since grown into an original equipment manufacturer of CNC automation solutions. In many ways their growth has not followed the typical path that most machine shops take. Their unique success story made a turning point in the early 1990’s when they investigated ways to improve their own shops productivity and wound up creating a whole new product line for the machine tool industry: Pallet Changer Systems for machining centers.

Looking to increase in-house production and reduce the machining center idle time due to part loading and unloading, they discovered that what they really wanted didn’t exist. “Our quest was for an efficient, cost-effective pallet shuttle system that we could easy integrate onto our existing equipment,” says Mike Cayley, Jr. (V.P. of Manufacturing and Mike Cayley, Sr.’s son). When they discovered that most existing products were over-priced and under-built, they decided to create their own unit that matched their requirements.

Mike Cayley, Sr.’s son, Mike Jr., got right to designing their very first pallet changer, the (Micro Pallet System) MPS-31, which is so named because Mike Jr. was 31 years old at the time. This system, a 10” x 12” “manual lift-off” pallet, not only fulfilled their needs, but it became evident that it would satisfy the manufacturing needs of other shops. After presenting the system to other job shops it was quickly apparent that they had a winner.

Soon it became the foundation for a full line of manual and automatic pallet changer shuttle systems designed by the “MIDACO Mikes” along with their engineer, Malcolm “Mac” Keith. They created a full line for small and large VMCs, machining centers which do not move in Y-Axis, 5-Axis mills and even large bridge mills with travels up to 190” x 72” and a 32,000 lb weight capacity. Designed to increase productivity on new and existing vertical machining centers they are easily retrofitted in the field and their electric servo drives provide locating accuracies of +/- .0001” repeatability. MIDACO has since become the innovative leader in creating universal Automatic Pallet Changers Systems which can fit virtually any make and model Vertical Machining Center.

One good idea begets another resulting in additional accessories for machine shop efficiency, such as Automatic Door Openers and Access Door Systems ideal for robot loading applications, Trunnion Systems for 4th axis machining, CNC chip and coolant cleaning, Grinder/Buffer Guards and Dust Collection Systems, along with other machining productivity solutions. Today, MIDACO is supplying other job shops, manufacturers and OEM’s around the world.

Career Inspiration

The entrepreneurial spark in Mike Cayley, Sr. was originally ignited by his own family. From the age of a small child, Mike always loved to invent, create and problem solve. His family was in the retail business, owning a small hardware store in MI. His involvement in the store and the work ethic he inherited from his family inspired him to achieve his dream of opening his own business. However, he greatly enjoyed working with his hands and preferred engineering over retail. He started out as a salesman to earn a living then set up his own job shop by renting out a small facility and buying a couple Bridgeports and an engine lathe. His creativity and desire to problem solve in his own job shop drove him to develop his own efficiency solution products for the manufacturing industry.

Career History

Midaco Corporation, Founder and President, 1969 – Present


School of Hard Knocks


  • Throughout the years, Mike Cayley, Sr. has been recognized in the local community for charitable works. In 1988 he founded Happy Memories, Inc. as charitable foundation, hosting an annual holiday party, with son Mike Jr as Santa, and numerous volunteers providing food and gifts for underprivileged families and food banks in Elk Grove Village, IL  (where his business Midaco is located) and surrounding areas.
  • Most recently in 2018 he was recognized by the Norwayne Community Citizens Council in his hometown neighborhood located in Westland MI for “outstanding civic dedication or unselfish volunteerism to make our community a better place to live work and play”.   Hometown Life: Westland’s Norwayne Hall of Fame 2018


Michael P. Cayley I have known for many years. He is the owner and designer of Midaco Pallet Systems along with other supporting products. His pallet systems are great products, that will improve spindle utilization on any Vertical Machining Center. Mike is very well respected in our industry, he has a can-do attitude. Midaco builds the most reliable pallet system on the market today.

Larry Schwartz