Metal Fabrication Resources by Blackstone Advanced Technologies

Blackstone Advanced Technologies Blog
Jan 17, 2018 2:37:39 PM

Sheet Metal Fabrication: Is Laser Cutting Invincible?

sheet metal fabrication.jpgAdvanced welding and sheet metal fabrication technology is making it easier to construct custom welding designs for industrial applications -- thanks to laser cutting.


Laser cutting, or laser beam welding, is a unique metal fabrication method that is useful for joining a variety of metal pieces. Carbon dioxide laser cutters are particularly useful for effectively creating robust and durable custom welding designs thanks to this construction method's speed when cutting thick material and ability to cut smooth surfaces. Laser cutting is also versatile for cutting a variety of metals, including aluminum.


While laser cutting offers a variety of benefits, this metal fabrication technology isn't invincible. Here are a few factors to consider:


3 Truths About Laser Cutting in Sheet Metal Fabrication

1. It Cuts Most, But Not All, Sheet Metal

Thanks to laser cutting's versatility, it's a viable welding design technique for cutting virtually any sheet metal. However, it's important to keep in mind that there are limitations to the type of metal the laser cutter would be used for.


For instance, laser cutting isn't useful for cutting copper, brass, or other reflective-type metals


2. The Type of Laser Can Impact Efficacy and Quality

Not all lasers are created equal when it comes to cutting metal.


For example, fiber lasers cut at a slower pace than CO2 lasers. Moreover, carbon dioxide lasers can cut thicker sheets of metal than fiber lasers. However, fiber lasers are useful for cutting certain types of metals that limit how well CO2 lasers can cut, such as brass and copper.


3. Cracking and Optical Surface Damage Can Be an Issue

Because laser cutting cools at a rapid pace, some metals may crack. Moreover, the CO2 laser's optical surfaces can easily be damaged.


Thus, it's important to take into consideration the type of metal being used for an industrial application to ensure you're using the ideal laser for completing the job.


Final Thoughts

Laser cutting is efficient, fast, and versatile in a variety of industrial applications. But it's important to know that laser cutting isn't always indestructible.


Understand your options for laser cutting technology and consider the metal you'll need cut. Consider the capabilities of the laser cutting services you need as well. This can help you determine the ideal laser to choose for your industrial project.


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