The technique of waterjet cutting uses a high-pressure jet stream of water to cut various types of metals and other materials. With the use of a carbide nozzle and a fine garnet abrasive, a waterjet cutter is a very unique cutting tool.
It basically speeds up the natural erosion process by combining high-pressure jet water with abrasive particles.
Waterjet cutting machines differ from other machine tools because they use the above bespoke process and can provide a quality cut edge that needs no secondary finishing. Waterjet cutting machines are flexible, fast, and extremely accurate in comparison to other types of cutting machines, too.
Let us take a more detailed look at how waterjet cutting equipment differs from other machines and how waterjet cutting could benefit you.
You Can Cut Almost Any Material
In comparison to other fabrication techniques, waterjet cutters can handle a much wider array of materials. In fact, a waterjet cutting machine can cut pretty much anything. In addition to different types of metal, the tools can cut materials such as plastics, laminated materials, glass, and stone.
Waterjet cutting machines can also be used for materials with uneven surfaces. Another great thing about waterjet cutters is that used ones are just as good as brand-new ones. They are also more affordable.
So, when you are ready to purchase a waterjet, you should opt for one on the second-hand market. You will get great quality at a good price.
You Can Cut Several Layers of Material in One Go
Another advantage waterjet cutting machines have over many other types of machine tools is their ability to penetrate very thick pieces of material. That means you can stack sheets of raw material and cut them in a single go.
In mass production, being able to cut through several layers is a blessing as it speeds up production time a lot.
You Can Cut Complex Shapes
While complex shapes can be cut by other fabrication methods, the process becomes much easier when you use waterjet cutting machines. Metals and other materials can be cut into any shape you desire. Bevels, sharp corners, hole piercing, and other things are all possible.
Waterjet Cutting Machines Are Better for Handling Heat-sensitive Materials
One of the most significant and distinct advantages of waterjet cutting is materials can be cut without the use of heat, such as the burning, melting, and cracking methods that are commonly used for working metals.
So, waterjet cutting machines are ideal for cutting a heat-sensitive material. They are not prone to fatigue from process-induced thermal stressing that can cause materials to harden, warp, and emit hazardous gases. With a waterjet cutter, you do not get any of those undesirable results.
No Reworking Is Required
Because other fabrication techniques generate high temperatures, you will often end up with burn marks and other blemishes that need to be cleaned from the surface, which take time to rework. But no reworking is required when you use waterjet cutters, which enables increased productivity. When you use waterjet cutting machines, a smooth and blemish-free surface is generated.
You Can Reduce Waste
Arranging part profiles on a raw material surface in the best configuration is known as nesting. Because waterjet cutting tools are incredibly precise, it means parts can be laid out extremely close to one another.
In turn, that means waste is minimized. Many other machine tools end up resulting in producing too much waste, which is not only bad for the environment. It is also bad for a business’s bottom line. By using waterjet cutting machines, you can reduce waste and, in turn, reduce costs.
Waterjet Cutting Machines Are Environmentally Friendly
Not only are waterjet cutting machines environmentally friendly because they produce less waste. They also produce little or no hazardous waste. You lower your carbon footprint because there is less waste to dispose of, too.
Furthermore, waterjet cutters use less water than you probably think, because the water can be recycled through a closed-loop system. And the wastewater that is produced is usually clean enough to filter and dispose of via a drain.
Waterjet Cutting Machines Are Reliable and Easy to Use
Compared to many other machine tools, waterjet cutting machines are very reliable and easy to maintain. It is, therefore, no wonder that more and more machine shops and large manufacturers are using waterjet cutting equipment.
While waterjet cutters can differ from one brand to another, most leading brands have waterjet cutting tools that are designed with user-friendliness in mind and therefore do not require extensive training to operate. Parts like seals and tubes are easy to change on most waterjet cutters, as well.
You Can Use Waterjet Cutting Machines to Make Your Own Subassemblies
Large machine shops often contract out subassemblies. The problem with that is you put the quality of the parts and the production schedule in the hands of another. Being dependent on a contractor can wreak havoc for your production line if the contractor turns out to be unreliable.
By using waterjet cutters, which speed up production processes and provide high accuracy and quality, there is no need to contract out subassemblies. Instead, you can make your own. You, therefore, maintain control over the production and delivery schedule, which in turn leads to customer satisfaction and loyalty.
In short, waterjet cutting machines differ from other machine tools in that they can cut a wide variety of metals and other materials with a high degree of accuracy and quality, they can cut several layers at one time, they minimize waste, and they are ideal for cutting heat-sensitive materials.
Waterjet cutters can also cut complex shapes. They reduce the need for rework, they are easy to operate and maintain, they minimize waste, and they are environmentally friendly.
If you are not yet sold on waterjet cutting, you really should be! Waterjet cutting machines are increasingly being used by large manufacturers and small machine shops. So, whatever your fabrication needs are, a waterjet cutter could be the best option.
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