Tube Laser Cutting
Tube laser allows you to cut different tubes and profiles of steel, stainless steel, aluminium, copper or brass with great flexibility. The sections can be round, square, oval, rectangular and even open profiles such as channels and H-beams are suitable for this method.
The only limiting factor in profile selection is the external dimensions – a tube’s external diameter or a profile diagonal should be between 12….200 mm.
State of the art tube cutting technology has many advantages over mechanical processes, such as sawing or drilling. Those advantages ensure greater productivity and production flexibility as well as higher precision.
How to Order?
Upload STP files of your tubes to the platform for an instant quote. Should we not have the suitable material and profile combination, submit the files for a manual quote.
What is Tube Laser Cutting?
The machines use the same mechanics as traditional laser cutters. This means that they also use an amplified laser beam for cutting. Both CO2 and state of the art fibre lasers are available, so the use of gases depends on the exact method. Fractory’s manufacturing partners also have both options available.
It is important to keep in mind that some reflective materials are preferrably cut using a fibre laser. Aluminium and stainless steel both require extra attention while mild steel achieves excellent quality also with CO2 cutting.
3D Tube Cutting
We have talked about tube cutting engineering principles. One of them is the “cut to normal” rule, meaning that your 3D models should only include cuts that are normal to the metal surface. While it is the preferred design, it is possible to perform all kinds of cuts. The “cut to normal” design just has more capable producers, meaning a possibility for a lower price.
Left – cut to normal with flat head; right – 3D tube cutting
The capability to perform angled cuts depends on the cutting head. A traditional fixed head, which is still more common, can only execute normal cuts. State of the art 3D cutting heads, though, are becoming more widely spread.
They make angular cuts possible. This can produce more snug fits, chamfers for welding, etc. Fractory’s network of partners includes various manufacturers with the capability of 3D cutting.
Uses of the Technology
Fractory’s tube laser cutting service offers you a vast array of options. If used boldly, it greatly enhances the possibilities at your disposal. Hopefully, the video by Trumpf gives some ideas.
While there are some solutions that probably need a few tests before successful implementation, there are others that are more commonly used. Aside from the obvious bolt holes, using holes and tenons for detail orientation is an excellent way to create a weld prep.
Another cutting technique to keep an eye on is making cutouts for tube bending. If you master the right working methods there, you can order your frame in one part that can be bent by hand, without needing the help of tube bending machines.
Advantages of Using Lasers for Tube Cutting
Selection of profiles – A laser tube cutting machine is suitable for a wide range of profiles – from box sections to pipes and channels. But they can perform the process on all kinds of profiles that fit the maximum and minimum outside dimension criteria. Only flat parts are out of the scope for these machines.
All materials – Mild steel, stainless steel, aluminium, etc. They are all welcome. Although reflective materials have been more problematic for CO2 laser cutting, processing them with fibre lasers is much easier.
One operation – Using this process, you can do everything in one go – cut to length and make the necessary cutouts. No need for secondary operations or manual material removal.
Great precision – Our tube laser cutting machines provide extremely precise and clean cuts with a small cutting kerf. This eliminates the need for extra work on the tubes.
Lower cost – Firstly, it is the preferred method for more complex jobs. The ability to produce everything in one go without any extra work keeps the costs down. The cutting speed of lasers makes processing quick, resulting in faster turnaround times.
Aesthetical solutions – The great flexibility allows developing innovative designs. Improving the looks and functionality of new products raises your value proposition.