The constant advancement in technology is introducing harder-to-cut materials to the pipe and tube market. How can laser cutting help the metal industrialists?
FREMONT, CA: No matter what metal industrialists do to a tube or a pipe before shipping it to their customers, the first task that is likely to be performed is a cutting process. Though many conventional cutting process choices are still available, many machines being used today are much more advanced than their predecessors. One of these advanced systems is laser cutting.
Laser Cutting Upgrades for Construction, Manufacturing
There is a wide array of lasers available that handle tubing and structural elements. The most common machines are the one that grips long tube lengths with chuck and tackles the most common pipe and tube sizes, up to 4 in.
Other machines are designed for cutting short lengths of tube-like hydroformed tubular components, bent tubular assemblies, and other 3D shapes.
Accommodations for Tube
Being a different product, the tube is designed in a very distinct manner and utilized in different industry segments. The tolerances also differ.
Tube and pipe products are very rarely straight and are nonround products that often exhibit some twist. For precise cutting and avoiding collisions between the laser head and the workpiece, the machine needs to determine the original shape and position of tube relative to the cutting head and comparing it with the anticipated shape for compensating for dimensional variations. The onboard laser measurement systems measure the boys and do the comparison of the chuck positions and the steady rest position for determining twist. The company’s laser machines utilize an optical system which is based on the inputs of two cameras for optimizing the tube orientation relative to the weld seam.
The machines of LVD Strippit were the first ones who had two loaders on a single machine, one for bundles and another one with a seven-position magazine for loading individual tubes. When making use of the bundle loader for a production run, the operator can disrupt that task and load some tubes one by one for fulfilling a rush job, and then resume the first job.
Huge diameters, heavy walls
The preciseness of the laser machine in creating countersunk holes for fasteners, beveled ends for weld prep, and miter cuts for joint connections makes jobsite assembly and welding occur faster.
To accommodate different workpiece geometries, the machines of TRUMPF utilize a self-centering chuck for avoiding tube damage. The clamping system is amalgamated with a sensor that offers constant supervising for making any vital changes in the laser head’s path to avoid collisions.
The bottom line is that laser cutting technology is greatly beneficial in empowering tube and pipe fabricators in meeting increasingly challenging cutting applications.