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SSC Laser
20th December 2018

Laser Cutting vs Plasma Cutting

When producing precise components for manufacturing you want to make sure that you have partnered with the right company who can produce what you need. What you might not think about is the different methods of cutting metal and their advantages and disadvantages.

A little bit of background.

What is laser cutting?

Laser cutting uses light amplification to fire a laser beam at a material, in the case of SSC Laser, metal, to melt, cut or vaporise it to form a desired shape or shapes.

What is plasma cutting?

Plasma cutting is a method of cutting materials by using compressed air and inert gasses which are fired through a nozzle at high speeds. The combination of the two, partnered with a concentrated area of pressure creates a conductive gas known as plasma.

Why Use Laser Cutting over Plasma Cutting?

Simply put, laser cutting is a much more precise, faster method of cutting metal with complex and intricate shapes. The laser cutting process does not damage the metal during the cutting process while the nozzle of a plasma cutting machine might have issues and can cause defects to the metal. Due to the entire laser cutting process being cut from a detailed CAD diagram, the process can be repeated quickly and easily.

Compared to other cutting methods laser cutting comes with various advantages;

  1. Due to the precise nature of laser cutting, SSC Laser can produce components with small cut slots –  the surface can be used directly for welding and fabrication without any other changes being made or grinding, saving time and money in the fabrication process
  2. Laser Cutting machines are a much faster cutting method, SSC Laser can laser cut up to 60 meters per minute
  3. Laser Cutting machines can run 24 hours a day 7 days a week giving SSC Laser the ability to produce components quicker than traditional manufacturing methods. This means we can maintain the fastest industry lead times and turnaround time
  4. SSC Laser can cut a wide range of metals with very little downtime in switching. SSC Laser can cut stainless steel, aluminium, copper, brass  and mild steel
  5. Laser Cutting is a far more accurate way of cutting components. SSC Laser can cut plus or minus 0.2mm and if needed, we can work to tighter tolerances
  6. Tubular laser cutting removes the need for marking, drilling and sawing while offering a more precise product that can be reproduced quickly and is extremely repeatable. This is also much more accurate than plasma tubular cutting
  7. While laser cutting can be expensive to set up and manage as a manufacturer, using a sub-contractor like SSC Laser, has made laser cutting technology  accessible and cost-effective for manufacturers  – let SSC take the hit on the capital expenditure and just give you what you want when you need it

To discuss your laser cutting outsourcing requirements with the team at SSC Laser contact us on 01889 270241, via email at sales@ssclaser.co.uk or find your local laser cutting sales team.

 

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