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Thread: Cutting Steel???

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    265

    Cutting Steel???

    Does anyone know someone with a blaster big enough to cut 18 ga. steel? (.048"). Attached are pictures of a wind mobile that has been laser cut. It is about 10.5" across with a lot of concentric cutouts. I would like to make large quantities of this with a few variations. 500 to 1000 per month. I have AutoCAD drawings of the object.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Harrisville, PA
    Posts
    1,696
    Hi Mike,

    Are you looking to buy or rent time?

    I don't know what size lazes you would need but plasma arc or water jet would work. You would have to talk to the dealer about the plasma arc to see about the closnes of the starts that they would not connect. This should be able to be controlled by the size of the tip. I'll look for their website. We just bought a heavier on for steel construction. Ours will cut 3/8" plate. The best thing about your need is the smaller the unit the less it cost. You will need a torch that will fit in a CNC controller. I know that Shopbot has a burn table setup.

    No affialiation to any companies mentioned.

    I hope this hepls
    Chuck

    When all else fails increase hammer size!
    "You can know what other people know. You can do what other people can do."-Dave Gingery

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    265
    Thanks Charles. I talked to a friend that has a water jet and he could cut it cleaner, but it would be slower than a laser. I don't think a plasma cutter would do this clean enough. I am familiar with the ShopBot setup.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Middletown, IN
    Posts
    185
    Call PDF Inc. in Brazil, IN. They have at least two metal cutting lasers and know how to use them. Great people to do business with and pretty good fishermen too. 812-443-6000 Tell them I sent you. Ray
    Retirement, it's not for wimps.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    13,404
    Mike,

    Cutting steel with a laser generally requires a Yag laser, the CO2 lasers that woodworkers are purchasing just don't have the power to cut steel...even thin sheet metal.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Middletown, IN
    Posts
    185
    Most of the metal cutting lasers I am aware of are CO2, YAG's have to be in an enclosed room because of the dangers envolved. Most of the folks I know have CO2's up to about 2000 watts. The caveat to all this is I have not had anything cut in 6 or 7 years so the info is about that old. Ray
    Retirement, it's not for wimps.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    265
    Thanks Ray and Kieth. I know it takes a LOT more power. Thanks for the ref.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Richland WA/Lafayette, LA
    Posts
    508
    Begnaud Manufactoring in Lafayette, LA 337-237-5069

    Donald has three (IIRC) laser cutters. He also does a lot of small job and since you have the CAD drawings already, it may not be too costly. His wife and them do yard figures, when they can get time on the cutters.

    BTW, Donald is my cousin.

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