Your metal fabrication shop is full of tools and equipment with specific uses, and many can degrade over time. Even with an experienced machine operator, the quality of the product may not always reflect that. Here are three tips for a better laser tube cutting experience so that your machines can produce quality cuts and increase productivity in your shop.
Manage the Tube Better
Laser cutting flat sheet metal is similar to most jobs and produces debris, sparks, and slugs that land in your junk bucket or on the table. However, tubes provide a different challenge. When laser cutting a tube, those sparks, debris, and slugs will often fall inside the tubing. To prevent this from happening and debris from sticking to the inside of the tube, you can:
- Precoat the inside of the tube to prevent sticking.
- Put a dummy tube inside the tube to absorb the heat and damage buildup.
- Clean the tube interior after cutting.
Any one of these will help keep your tube interiors clean and functional.
Monitor the Cutting
Like the last point, flat sheet laser cutting can go through easily, and parts can separate without much interference from the metal fabricators. Unfortunately, tube cutting is a little different. After each laser cut, the operators need to inspect the tubes to see if they can separate appropriately. If they cannot separate, the machine cannot move on to the next part. Fabricators also need to pay close attention to the straightness of the tube. Ensure that you program the laser to account for this bend.
Understanding the Job
The most important consideration you need to optimize your laser tube cutting experience is knowing what your machine can cut. There are many laser tube cutting machines, but all of them cannot handle the same tube sizes. Unfortunately, some metal fabrication shops fail to consider this and, as a result, do not get a suitable machine for the job. Consider factors such as tube cut size, power requirements, and tube length.
These were only three tips for a better laser tube cutting experience, but it helps to illustrate how vital tube laser cutting machines are in modern metal fabrication shops. The industry is changing so much with technology, and to stay on top of these new developments, you should look at Mac-Tech, the best place for metal fabrication equipment.