Can a WaterJet Cutting Machine Cut Through Metal?

Water Jet Cutting Nozzles

Waterjet cutting machines are among the most indispensable cutting tools that are ubiquitous in almost every machine shop in the country. These pieces of equipment can be taken advantage of when cutting metal with the help of pressurized stream of water. It indeed sounds pretty amazing to think that something as mild and delicate as water can be utilized to cut something tough and durable like metal.

If you have not seen how a waterjet technology works, imagine instead how power washers work. They are similar in many aspects and are at least 30 times the pressure of power washers, and yes I am pertaining to those we see used in local car wash centers. Power washing is integral to the operation of car wash shops. It cuts away dirt and grimes off a vehicle’s wheels, body, and tires. 

To cut metal with the use of water, you need to make sure that your spray remains coherent throughout the process. Ultra-high pressure waterjet cutting machine can be made to cut through tough objects by channeling the spray through an extremely narrow jeweled nozzle at super-high pressure. By this measure, the pressure and the cutting power of the water spray will remain consistent. Unlike metal cutters, there is no chance that waterjet technology will ever get dull or will it ever overheat.  

The Key to Cutting Metals

As earlier mentioned, the key to cutting through metal and other similar and tough objects with the use of water is to keep its flow directed and consistent. Failure to control its flow and high pressure would render it ineffective. The working principle behind this technology is simple to understand. Would you be able to cut through a piece of metal with just a splash of water? Needless to say, we know that it just won’t work, right?

The use of a strong jet machine here is imperative to help the pressured water channel through an extremely narrow nozzle. By doing this, you can leverage on the liquid and its full pressure. Aside from overheating issues, the use of water jet technology in your metal cutting concerns removes many known logistical roadblocks. Other metal-cutters are way too difficult to handle or too expensive.  

Waterjet Cutting Speeds

Plain and simple waterjet cutting is most of the time used for softer materials. But if you want to further intensify its cutting power and be able to cut through tough and hard materials, abrasive granules can be mixed to the pressured water. In the early years of water jet cutting, the water leaving the nozzle would have a whopping speed of 900 miles per hour. This is around 1450 kilometers in an hour.  

But with the latest developments in this department and with the help of automated tools we have now, it is now possible for abrasive water jet machines to have a staggering speed of 3700 km/hr or 2300 mph. This incredible speed will let you cut metal to 0.0002. To have a better picture of how small that is, compare that to the typical size of the tip of the human hair which is 0.0004 inches.  

In the past, you can only cut one piece of metal with a saw or with some other kind of mechanical metal cutting processes. Usually, there is so much drudgery in such processes as they are also expensive and time-intensive.