The paper addresses issues concerning modeling and analysis of tool flow within a three-machine manufacturing cell used for small batch manufacturing of a definite spectrum of prismatic parts. The approach utilizes a method for job and tool allocation to work centers with limited number of machines and capacity of tool resources, based on the analysis of formalized relations: job - tool sets required. Selected tool flow control rules are considered with respect to assumed performance measures of such machining cell. These rules are amply studied using methods and means of interactive simulation. A case study derived from industrial practice, using the database of a medium-sized manufacturing company is also included.