Manufacturers have been cutting and forming metal for hundreds of years. What is it about laser cutting machines that makes them stand out and provide such great advantages for retailers?
Larger choice of material
Unlike some cutting processes that are only good for a few materials, laser cutting machines can work with a wide range of materials including; stainless steel, mild steel, coated mild steel, aluminium, copper, and brass.
Greater turnaround speed
Lead time can often be a major problem for retailers who need an item quickly. With cutting processes, such as turret punching or using a blanking press, new tooling may be needed, or you could be limited to specific tooling already available. Not only does the purchase of new tooling add significantly to the cost of the job, there is also the delay caused by waiting for the tool to arrive before manufacturing can begin. Laser cutting machines do away with all of this. Parts can be quickly produced with manufacturing beginning the same day the order is received.
Improved flexibility is probably the single biggest factor in the growth of laser cutting machines. Traditional cutting methods place limits on the complexity of designs. The right tooling has to be available, or capable of being manufactured. When cutting with a laser, as long as a shape can be drawn, it can probably be cut out.
More accurate finish
Traditional cutting methods rely on stretching the metal to the point where the tool finally cuts through. The result of this is often a rounded finish on the topside of the work and a jagged finish at the bottom which needs to be removed with an abrasive. Laser cutting works differently and produces a cut that is square on the top of the work, and smooth to the touch at the bottom. Laser cutters are programmed by computer and can therefore repeat the same job, over and over, with a perfect result every time.
Better aesthetic result
One of the greatest strengths of laser cutting is its ability to create work that is not only highly accurate but also aesthetically pleasing. It is even possible to add engraving on the finished product if required. To protect the newly cut work it can, if needed, be supplied with a protective plastic coating which can be peeled off once the job is complete.
These are just a few of the reasons why laser cutting machines are now one of the most popular options for creating the products we use every day.