Frequently Asked Questions
We occasionally acquire used machines, which are then refurbished and offered for sale. Please contact the sales office for availability.
The application specialist you speak with when you call our sales department can advise you on this issue. Test cuts can also be performed to confirm whether abrasive is required.
There are two main steps involved in the waterjet cutting process. First, the ultra-high pressure pump or Electric Servo Pump generally pressurizes normal tap water at pressure levels above 40,000 psi (2760 bar); to produce the energy required for cutting. Second, water is then focused through a small precious stone orifice to form an intense cutting stream. The stream moves at a velocity of up to 2.5 times the speed of sound, depending on how the water pressure is exerted. The process is applicable to both water only and abrasive jets. For abrasive cutting applications, abrasive garnet is fed into the abrasive mixing chamber, which is part of the cutting head body, to produce a coherent and an extremely energetic abrasive jet stream.
Speed and accuracy depend on material texture, material thickness, and the cut quality desired. In case of rubber and gasket cutting, there are waterjet machines whose motion capabilities would allow traversing at 0.1 to 3000 linear inches per minute. Techni Waterjet offers software, which calculates the approximate cutting speeds for a wide variety of materials. We will also be happy to perform test cuts on a sample of your material in our lab. Cutting speed is determined by several variable factors, including the type of edge quality desired. Variables such as amount of abrasive used, cutting pressure, size of orifice and focusing tube, pump horsepower, and etc. can be adjusted to produce the desired results, whether your priority is speed or the finest cut.
Our sales/applications team will be happy to review your application and help you determine what type of system your material will require. Sizes of pump, number of nozzles, etc. are actually determined by the cut speeds you require and how quickly waterjet can cut through your material.
Total price is based upon the scope of supply required for your application. If you provide motion equipment (robot, gantry, etc.), waterjet components fall within the $US65k to $US100k range. Typical ballpark prices for a 2-axis abrasive system, range between $US100k to $US200k, depending on the size, accuracy and number of nozzles required for your application. More complex motion (5-axis, robot, enclosed work cell, flying cross-cutter, etc.) or additional materials handling solutions vary significantly in price, depending on the actual scope of supply.
It varies with the softness or hardness of the material being cut. This can range anywhere from a 1/4 inch up to 30 inches thick. Hard materials are normally cut within a 1/4 to 2.5 inch-range. This does not mean Stainless Steel or stone with a 4 or 5-inch thickness cannot be cut with a waterjet. It all depends on the purpose for which cutting is done (i.e. prototype, production, etc.), as well as the system operating conditions.
We can test your water and provide a chart comparing its results with the recommended water quality specifications for use with ultra-pressurization in the waterjet process.
Our waterjets are designed for use primarily in factory, lab, or production-type environments. Suitable water, power, and abrasive inlets generally prevent field use.
Normal tap water, which is pressurized by an Electric Servo Pump. High pressure tubing through which pressurized water goes to the cutting head(s). If the material requires an abrasive to be added to the cutting stream, a pressurized vessel and metering system store and deliver dry abrasive to the cutting head(s). Cutting heads can be stationary or mounted to motion equipment such as a robot, gantry-style table, cross-cutter, or any variety of systems.
Waterjet allows tremendous flexibility and versatility in manufacturing and provides for more cutting possibilities. Simply put, “waterjet is by far, the most flexible and desirable technology in our business and delivers results with amazing reliability”, says one of the proud waterjet & laser job shop owners. Here are a few examples that set waterjet technology apart from the rest:
- Due to water’s cold nature, the material cut does not show heat affected zones
- Environmentally friendly, in that debris is removed by water, thereby reducing hazardous gases – a process, which other technologies cannot claim
- Cuts fragile materials like glass and stone with ease
- Cuts plastics without showing signs of noxious fumes
- Has the ability to perforate most materials without starting holes
- Saves raw materials due to small cutting kerf width
- Cuts composite materials without any special treatment
- And many more
A waterjet can cut both hard & soft materials including, but not limited to titanium, stainless steel, aluminium, munitions, exotic alloys, composites, stone, marble, floor tile, glass, automotive headliners & door panels, gasket, foam, rubber, insulation, textile, food and many more. Soft materials are cut with water only, while hard materials require a stream of water mixed with fine grains of abrasive garnet.
The following list describes the types of materials that are typically not good applications. Wood is often a poor application, due to its fibres’ absorption of water, which causes them to splay and become rough. Many fabrics do not cut well, as the fibres “squirm” out from under the cutting stream, rather than remain in place during the cutting process. However, the most common application that is incompatible with waterjet is pipe. Any material requiring the waterjet to cut through one layer, cross a void, then cut through another layer does not produce desirable results. The cutting stream does not remain cohesive after cutting through the upper layer, causing a poor edge quality on the next layer(s).