F.A.Q.

Waterjet - General Questions

Why should I use to cut water than the laser ?

Laser is an high productive cutting system but water jet has many advantages over laser:

  • No thickness limits
  • No mechanics and heat change
  • No material limits
  • Maximum manufacturing and application flexibility (starting from rubber to titanium , from sponge to ceramic, from polystyrene to stone metal 60 Roc, from glass to stones, from gasket to the composites)
  • No environmental problem (no smog and pollution) because is a clean technology that use just ecological abrasive and water
  • Low manufacturing process cost
  • High performances
  • Minimum hole diamater from 0.1 (0,004” water only) and 1 mm (0,040”) hydro-abrasive
  • Accuracy from 0.05 – 0.15 mm. (0,002” – 0,006”)
  • No holding devices request for many applications
  • Multiple synchronized headsusage to increase production
  • Easy maintenance directly on end user's site
  • Relevant saving

..... respect milling?

There is no piece holding process and it performs a through-cutting, so it is possible to realize any kind of shape with a single cut, either internal or external, without moving the piece, and with no further operations.

..... respect plasma or oxycut ?

Plasma or Oxycut are hot processes, that causes thermal material deformation, creating an heat-affected zone. Using a water jet cutting the result is a cold, clear and sharp-cut breaking on the material.
The water-abrasive cutting has also no thickness limits because it uses a 1 mm (0,040”) cutting tools (jet diameter). It optimizes the material reducing the scrape.

….. respect wire (EDM)?

EDM is extremely precise, but very slow: using the new I.T.C.  technology (Intelligent Tapering Control)  it is possible to create parts with an accuracy near to the EDM ones, but with a 50-80% reduction of time and cost

What is the maximum thickness able to cut ?

Up to 150 mm(6”)
We have been able to cut up to 300 mm (12”) in a lab environment.
However good results will be achievable by applications in the 5-50 mm (1/2” – 2”) thickness range.

Which accuracy can we obtain with waterjet cutting?

The majority of the users are expecting a tolerance of ± 0.1 mm (± 0.004”):
if you need this range to be reduced, you should choose the new advanced I.T.C. control system.

Which is the better performance pressure?

Using just a water jet, the cutting thickness starts from 0.1mm (0,004”), instead with the hydro-abrasive one it starts from 0.5 to 1.5 mm (0,020” – 0,060”), because the water jet becomes the transport vehicle of the abrasive tool that will be mixed and ejected from a focusing tube with a diameter 3 times the orifice's one

What taper does Waterjet cutting generate?

Using just a water jet, the cutting thickness starts from 0.1mm (0,004”), instead with the hydro-abrasive one it starts from 0.5 to 1.5 mm (0,020” – 0,060”), because the water jet becomes the transport vehicle of the abrasive tool that will be mixed and ejected from a focusing tube with a diameter 3 times the orifice's one

What taper does Waterjet cutting generate?

In a standard working process through a water jet cutting the taper depend by a cutting speed; more speed more taper because the jet closed down on the thickness increasing the taper from a minimum of 0, 1 mm (0,004”) up to 0,4 mm (0,016”) for each side of the cut; this means that the bottom parts will be bigger respect the top one. By the I.T.C. (Intelligent Tapering Control ™ ) system is possibile to control the taper compensating by a 4 axis inclination system

How much water does the process consumes ?

The water consumption is related to the orifice diameter and it is directly related to the power of the intensifier pump.
0,25 mm = 0,010' orifice uses 1.9 lt/min = 0,6 GPM
0,35 mm = 0,014” orifice uses 3.63 lt/min = 0,9 GPM
0,381 mm = 0,015” orifice uses 4.1 lt/min = 1 GPM
0,40 mm = 0,016” orifice uses 4.69 lt/min = 1,2 GPM

Why is it better to cut underwater?

The underwater cutting allows to reduce the noise of the process under 75 dB but you can't see the process: by the optional automatic submerged cutting device it is easy to control and change the level in a few seconds in order to check the quality of the process

Which is the time frame for the standard maintenance ?

The high pressure pump seals will need to be replaced after 400 to 1000 hours
The ceramic carbide focusing tube must be replaced after 80 to 120 hours of usage
The diamond orifice will be replaced after 500 to 1000 hours of usage, while the ruby or sapphire one will last 60 to 100 hours

What kind of abrasive is suitable to use?

The most common is the Garnet one (seeAbrajet ™) and it is the best in terms of performances, components duration, manufacturing costs, and environmental impact.
80 Mesh is the most common grain with 7,5 Mohs scale: we use 120 Mesh to increase the cutting quality; for special applications we use the 180 up to 220 Mesh to cancel the burrs on a very small thickness or for ultra small piercing (0.5 mm = 0,020”) on hard materials

Olivine is not used anymore because of the lower hardness (5 Mohs scale) and lower performance.

How much abrasive consume ?

The abrasive consumption depends on the pump range but overall on the orifice diameter and its focusing tube which will be utilized for cutting ( Ψ Foc. = 3 x Ψ Orif.)

  • Ψo 0,25 mm (0,010") / Ψf 0,76 mm (0,030") = 300 gr/min (0,7 lb/min)
  • Ψo 0,38 mm (0,015") / Ψf 1,02 mm (0,040") = 450 gr/min (1 lb/min)

How long the grids will last ?

The support grids will last for hundreds of hours before it will be completely destroyed. The grids are all same and they can be interchanged, reversed and moved to extend the total supporting table life.

How is the pre-drill hole executed?

The water jet automatically pierces all materials of all the thickness, with a diameter ranging from 1mm to 2mm (0.040” – 0.080”), and pressure can be managed in case of soft materials. If the materials are composite, an automatic pre-piercing mechanical device pneumatically controlled is required to avoid the delamination during the piercing process.

Are Water jet machines easy to use and manage ?

The water jet cutting system is basically an easy system that, thanks to the CNC automatic control can transform a design made by a WaterCad-Cam ™ software into a finished part

This software is compatible with other Cad software through DXF and has all the technological parameters so you can create a customized cutting program with just a click, completely optimized by an automatic nesting.

How much cost the water jet cutting?

The cutting price basically includes 5 cost elements for about12 Euro/hourvalue : (not included manpower, depreciation and disposal costs)
Electric Power (depending on pump power)
Garnet Abrasive (depending of the world location)
Focusing Tube
Diamond Orifice
Pump Maintenance

This cost can differ from country to country due to the different cost of the electric power and the transport of the abrasive

It is possible to recycle the water?

Closed-loop recycling systems are available. However, because waterjet systems use a low amount of water, these kinds of installations are not convenient .

How much is the sell price for Water jet cutting?

The job shop cutting centers sell the hydro-abrasive cutting at about 80 to 150 Euro, depending on the application .

How noisy is it?

The noise depends on the gap between the nozzle and the material: If you are cutting underwater the noise level will be less than 75 dB, while if you are cutting above the water level it will increase up to 85-95 dB.

What happens if you put your hand in the direction of the jet?

It will get cut.
However the water jet cutting system is one of the most safe technologies because, during the working process, a protective covering is mounted surrounding the cutting zone and the water jet distance from the worked material is about 1-2mm. (0,040” – 0,080”)

Where we can dispose of water/garnet abrasive?

Neither water nor garnet abrasive are toxic, they are ecological.
The water, when properly filtered, can be put down the drain, while the abrasive must be dumped with not toxic materials.
Instead, if you are cutting toxic materials (as steel) it is mandatory to dump it in an a special areas.

Which water is used for cutting ?

The softened drinkable water filtered up to a 1 micron is perfect: further clean through an INVERSE OSMOSIS is not needed, because the water will become too aggressive

WaterStone - General Questions

Why I should use water texturing process over flaming?

The water texturing system have several advantages over the flaming one:

  • Only high pressurewater jet
  • Standing out of theoriginal colourof the material: (no yellowing caused by a flamming process)
  • Automatic variation of theroughness degree
  • Smoke, pollution and heat free
  • New texture process for any thickness(> 10 mm)
  • New texture process for all kinds ofgranite
  • New texture process formarbleand stone
  • Highperformances
  • Low production cost
  • Maximum working processing flexibility

What I can do using WaterStone ™ technology ?

A lot of finishing can be obtained, all with the unique feature of original color magnifying:

  • LIGHT ROUGHNESS
  • DEEP ROUGHNESS'
  • CHISELING
  • WATER AGEING
  • WATER BLASTING
  • HAMMERING
  • BRUSHING
  • LEATHER EFFECT
  • HONEY EFFECT

Which pressure level is needed?

Depending on the fragility of the material and the results you want to obtain you will use a different water jet pressure

What is the copper slag for ?

It is used while working on fragile materials. The objective is to obtain a surface roughness, or to remove the polishing which will not permit the use of the WaterStone ™ process

How much water will you use?

The water consumption is related to the high pressure pump power: 28lt/min

How long before maintenance is required ?

High pressure pump components will need to be replaced after 1500 hours of usage.
Ceramic pistons will need to be replaced after 3000 hours of usage.
Instead the nozzles will be replaced after 50 to 100 hours of usage

What is the copper slag consumption?

About 60 Kg/h (150 lb/h)

How many square meters (square feet) of the texturing production can I obtain in one hour?

The production is related to the material hardness, and also to the depth you want to reach:

LIGHT ROUGHNESS: from 30 to 70 sqm/h (350 – 800 sqf/h)
DEEP ROUGHNESS: from 20 to 50 sqm/h (220 – 550 sqf/h)
CHISELING: from 10 to 20 sqm/h (110 – 220 sqf/h)
WATER BLASTING: from 30 to 40 sqm/h (350 – 450 sqf/h)
BRUSHING: from 50 to 100 sqm/h (550 – 1100 sqf/h)

The WaterStone ™ system is easy to manage and program?

The complete system is very easy to use because all the working tables are already inserted into the PLC control system.
You have just to set the width of the plate and the distance from the nozzle to the material; all the translation parameters of the nozzle, trolley movement and the pressure of the working process will be automatically synchronized to obtain the desired finishing.

How much does the water texturing system cost?

The cutting price basically includes 4 consumption elements for about20 Eur/per hourvalue : (not included manpower, amortization and disposal costs)
Electric Power 90 KW
Nozzles
Water
Pump Maintenance

This cost can differs from country to country due to the different cost of the electric power and the water

How much is the sell price for WaterStone process?

The processing centers that works on behalf of a third party sell the water texturing products at about 8 - 10 Euro per sqm (100 sqf) , depending on the application

How loud is it ?

The nozzle ejects the supersonic water jet from a distance that vary from 10 to 100 mm on a surface, producing a noise that can reach up to 110 dB.
The Machine has a soundproof cab (that reduce the noise up to 80-90 dB) in which the working process can be carried out

How do we dispose of water and copper slag?

The water when properly filtered, can be put down the drain.
The copper slag must be dumped as special waste even if it can be reutilized many times in the same water blasting process.

Which water is used for water jet texturing process ?

The softened drinkable water filtered up to a 1 micron is perfect: further clean through an INVERSE OSMOSIS is not needed, because the water will become too aggressive.

It is possible to recycle the water ?

Closed-loop recycling systems are available. However, because waterjet systems use a low amount of water, these kind of installations are not convenient.
Instead the same water can be reutilized, through a water recycling systems, for the washing (88 lt/min = 22 gal/min) of the slabs

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