Water Jet Cutting is fast emerging as the go-to choice for the majority of cutting jobs, ranging from simple, quick cuts of a single material to more complex and demanding jobs.
What are the key advantages though? Here we list the main reasons water jet cutting is now so popular.
Cost and speed
Cost and speed often go together – it stands to reason that if a technology can drastically cut the time required to cut an item, it will also reduce the cost. The overheads are reduced, including energy used and the man hours required to work any machinery.
An example of water jet cutting’s performance is with parts for Formula 1 – watch the Grand Prix and you’ll see some of TMC’s work in action. Parts which previously would have been laboriously cut by a milling machine can now be turned round in a manner of hours. You can read more of our work with Force India here.
Controlled by state of the art software, water jet cutting guarantees an accurate cut.
As with other technologies, there are different levels of accuracy available depending on just how neat a cut is required. One key difference though is that because it isn’t a hot cut, unlike laser for example, there is no damage to the edge of the cut and no chance of the structural integrity being affected.
Accuracy also means complex, three-dimensional cuts – known as XD Cutting.
Cuts which would previously have required secondary cuts, or even cutting through a mix of technologies, can now be done in a singular process. The process, from a customer’s point of view, is the same. An image of the completed part is turned into a computer file, which the cutting head then makes a reality.
Cutting complex shapes
Other technologies, especially laser can be a good choice for a very basic cut of thin material. However, anything more complex and it is always worth considering water jet cutting. Not all water jet cutting is equal though, TMC are among the few cutters to use XD cutting with a pressure of 87,000 PSI – this commitment to reinvesting in the latest technology ensures water jets remain at the cutting edge (if you’ll excuse the pun!)
Cutting complex shapes doesn’t necessarily mean big, expensive jobs. Our recent examples include everything from cutting logos into porcelain tiles for high end boutique Boux Avenue to cutting replacement church keys for a parish in a minor crisis.
Another job which required complete accuracy was producing parts for Newtonian Telescopes. Cutting an elliptical 45 degree mirror would have been a laborious process in years past, now it’s simple using XD cutting – as this video shows.
Range of materials
There isn’t an equivalent cutting technology which can match water jet cutting’s range of materials cut, or the thickness of material which can be cut.
It’s quicker to list what can’t be cut- which is diamond, tempered glass and not much more. By way of a contrast, laser cutting tends to only be used for thin plastic and metal- and even then with the risk of some structural damage to the material cut.
To find out whether water jet cutting is right for your job, please call TMC today on 01625 610 441.