9 Simple Ways to Make Money With Machines [Automatic Passive Income Strategies]

There is a certain allure to having a business where machines make money for you.

After all, they can do things far quicker and more efficiently than you can, and in some cases, all you need to do is program them and they pretty much run on autopilot.

In this article, I am going to discuss 9 machines that you can buy to help you make money.  Most of them can be used to create a real business which generates passive or mostly passive income.

On top of that, many of these machines can easily help you scale as your business grows.  In other words, the more demand you have, you can simply buy more machines to meet that demand.

For each idea, I will explain what the machine does, how you can make money from it and when available, how much you can expect to earn.

Let’s get into it!

If you would like to see a condensed version of this article in video format, check out my YouTube video on the topic below.

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click on a link and complete a transaction, I may make a small commission at no extra cost to you. 

The information contained in this post is for informational purposes only.  It is not a recommendation to buy or invest, and it is not financial, investment, legal, or tax advice.  You should seek the advice of a qualified professional before making any investment or other decisions relating to the topics covered by this article.

Number 1. Scooters

Renting out scooters can be a great business opportunity, especially if you live near an urban center or an area that has a lot of tourists.  

The cost of acquisition is relatively low, compared to other forms of transportation (like cars), so starting this type of business can be feasible, even if you don’t have a massive budget.

If you want to strike out on your own, try to partner with venues where scooters will be needed, like local hotels, beaches, college campuses, and the like.  

Want a more ready-made solution.  Check out places like Bird, Lime, and Spin – they provide turnkey solutions for those interested in operating their own scooter rental service.

According to Bird, owners who manage scooter fleets on their platform can make up to $1,500 per week, which works out to around $6,000 per month.

Number 2. Cars, trucks and other motor vehicles

If you have a larger budget, you can buy cars, trucks and even much larger vehicles, like tractor trailers and rent them out for profit.

For run of the mill cars, check out Turo.  They are an online car rental platform for individual owners and they have a neat tool called the calculator, which estimates your income based on where you live and the type of car you rent out.  

For example, in Atlanta, if you rent out a Nissan Versa (which costs around $13,000), you are estimated to earn $7,000. That’s an awesome rate of return of over 50%.  If you finance it, the rate of return jumps to around 150%, according to Turn.

If you want to go big, you can rent out semi-trucks and trailers on sites like coop.com.  According to their website, a tractor trailer combo can rent out for $5,890 per month.

Pretty compelling numbers for a relatively passive income business.  After all, you are not driving or doing any work – you are simply renting out an asset.

To learn more about how to rent out a truck, check out me detailed article on the topic here.

Number 3. CNC Machines.

CNC machines are a cornerstone of modern manufacturing. 

As an entrepreneur, you can use these machines to create intricate designs in wood, metal, and other materials, which can then be sold for a tidy profit. 

For example, some popular woodworking items that sell well include custom wood signage, book ends, wall art, cutting boards, jewelry, and much more.

To get started, you’ll need some basic training – either through a local technical school or online courses. 

Once you are fully trained on how to use these machines, you can set up shop on a platform like Etsy.  They specialize in custom made creations that would be perfect to sell your CNC creations.

Number 4. Programmable Sewing Machines

The demand for personalized items has skyrocketed in recent years. 

With a programmable sewing machine, you can capitalize on this trend by creating embroidered clothes, initialed towels, and napkins. 

Selling these unique items on platforms like Etsy or even setting up a Shopify store can generate a substantial income. My friend’s wife did exactly this and is doing well – she sews her customer’s initials onto hand towels and dinner napkins.

They can be great housewarming gifts or just be a cool thing to have in your home when entertaining guests.  It’s definitely something that people talk about once they see it.

Number 5. Cricut Machine

Like programmable sewing machines, initialing machines like cricuts allow you to customize a variety of items – from watch boxes to leather goods. 

I recently bought a watch box that had my initials on it.  I think the seller just bought a wooden watch box from Ali Express and engraved my initials on the glass portion of the box.  It looks great and I am happy with it, but I was more impressed with the slick business model. 

Seems like a pretty low key way to make money.  You can offer what appears to be highly customized item without doing a lot of custom work.

Once you’ve set up the design, the engraving work is pretty much automatic.

I like easy ways to make money and this one fits the bill.

Number 6. Vending Machines

Vending machines are a time-tested money generator. 

They range in price, but high quality new vending machine can costs thousands of dollars, so be prepared for that.

But once you have one in place, all you need to do is find a high traffic location and coordinate with the owner to install your vending machine there.  Bear in mind that this will usually involve some sort of profit sharing.

You will need to restock your inventory from time to time, but the actual sales happen without your oversight or involvement, so it’s a relatively low key business.

If you want to learn more about how to make passive income with a vending machine, check out my article on the topic here.

Number 7. ATMs and Bitcoin ATMs

ATM machines, including Bitcoin ATMs, can also be a source of passive income. 

But like vending machines, they require a significant upfront investment and the bitcoin ATMS are subject to various regulations. 

CoinATMRadar is a helpful platform for finding locations and understanding market trends.

To learn more about how to use ATMs to generate passive income, check out my detailed article on the topic here.

Number 8. 3D Printers

3D printers have revolutionized manufacturing, allowing anyone to create physical objects from digital designs. 

This means you can create things like jewelry, customized figurines and miniatures (which can be great for tabletop game hobbyists), name tags or keychains, toys and much more.

You can sell your creations online, offer custom 3d printing services, or even run workshops teaching others how to use 3D printers. Sites like Thingiverse and Shapeways can help you get started with designs and offer platforms for sales.

Number 9. Drones

Drones offer a unique way to earn money through aerial photography and videography. You can offer services for real estate, weddings, and other events. 

To get started, you’ll need a drone operator’s license from the FAA and a quality drone. Websites like DroneBase connect drone pilots with clients.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, while each of these machines requires an initial investment and some degree of skill, the potential for profit is significant.

 By leveraging technology and capitalizing on current market trends, you can create new income streams and take your entrepreneurial ambitions to the next level