Waterjet cutting offers a unique process that can provide a quality cut edge, while typically eliminating the need for secondary finishing processes.
These machines are fast, flexible, and precise, offering a set of unique benefits when compared with other metal fabrication techniques.
This post provides an overview of some of the basic advantages of waterjet cutting technology.
What is Waterjet Cutting, Exactly?
Waterjet cutting is a metal fabrication technique that incorporates a carbide nozzle, a fine garnet abrasive and high-pressure jet stream of water to cut metal. Essentially, it's an extreme and sped-up version of erosion, which occurs in nature. A waterjet mixed with other abrasive particles helps to speed up the process.
What Are The Advantages of Waterjet Cutting?
Waterjets Cut Without the Use of Heat
One of the most significant advantages is that waterjet cutting offers cold cutting quality, allowing materials to be cut that would be burned, melted, or cracked by other cutting methods. Waterjet cutting is a viable solution for cutting heat-sensitive material. This helps to eliminate costs due to thermal distortion of machine parts, while also reducing the risk of fatigue failure resulting from process-induced thermal stressing. Other thermal processes may cause surface hardening, warping and emission of hazardous gases, however, waterjet machines don't experience thermal stress, eliminating these undesirable results.
Can Cut Almost Any Material
Compared with other fabrication techniques, waterjets can handle just about any material or product that a traditional cutters can. In addition, materials like plastics, rubber, laminated materials, stone, glass, or materials with uneven surfaces can all be handled through waterjet cutting.
Offers the Ability to Cut Complex Shapes
Waterjet cutting is especially advantageous for projects requiring the ability to cut complex shapes. Materials can be cut into any shape. Sharp corners, bevels, pierce holes, and shapes with minimal inner radii are all possible. Stacking, nesting and tabbing optimizes material and can significantly reduce cutting times.
Waterjets are Environmentally Friendly
Waterjets produce little to no hazardous waste. This inevitably helps to reduce waste disposal costs. Highly skilled operators can cut off large pieces of reusable scrap metal that may have been lost using traditional cutting methods. Beyond that, water jet cutting allows for parts to be closely nested to maximize material use, saving material by minimizing kerf.
Waterjets also use less water than you may assume, as water that is used can be recycled using a closed-looped system. Waste water is typically clean enough to filter and dispose of down a drain
Here are a few other advantages of using waterjet cutting for your next metal fabrication project:
- Easily to integrate into flexible production systems
- Adaptable for automated contouring systems
- Simple programming with standard CAD/CAM systems
- Allows for rapid prototyping
- Cuts multi-layer materials
- No stress impact
- Faster than many conventional cutting tools
CAMM Metals | Waterjet Cutting Services
At CAMM Metals, we use waterjets in several different ways. First, we use them to cut all of our flat sheet metal and plate to feed the fabrication work we do. The precision from the waterjet is just as good as laser cutting and better than plasma cutting. Second, we use these machines to process thick plates and pre-cut shapes and blanks for our CNC Machining centers. Third, we offer water jet cutting as a service to customers who do not have this capability. We can use our material or you can drop ship us your material and generally within 3 days your parts will be cut and ready to go. Lastly, we can cut round and rectangular tubes and pipes.
Click the button below to request a quote for waterjet cutting services or any of our fabrication services.