Going back to our mission statement, we always strive to be able to solve all the different inquiries that arise from our customers. While some of our machines are dependent on the material being cut, the plasma cutter is capable of cutting everything from aluminum to stainless steel to copper steel.
This is a result of the electric arc process under which the plasma cutter runs. In general terms, this means it can be used to cut any electrically conductive material. For a sheet metal shop that labels ourselves as “blacksmiths,” it’s critical to have the flexibility to cut different metals in an efficient manner. If you’re project is fabricated with plasma, you can have confidence that it’ll be done with above-average accuracy and without any heat-induced blemishes.
While plasma cutting has essentially been around since the 1960’s, it is definitely a concepts that has gradually improved over the years. One of the most blatant signs of this is the fact that the machines have gotten smaller and much quicker. This is largely a result of CNC technology. Here, technicians are given the ability to operate the machines by programming cutting instructions into the numerical control.
In the past, you’d most likely find plasma cutters being used for mass producing common products. Thanks to the technological advancements and our team’s knowledge of unique cutting patterns, we’re able to utilize the plasma for a wide range of projects.
As evidenced in our blog, CEO John Svetlecic understands the company would be nothing if it weren’t for the employees. This mindset is inherent in the culture whenever you walk through the doors at Wil-Clair. Dealing with the heavy machinery involved in a sheet metal shop, safety is always a priority.
Although safety procedures are in routine discussion, it’s always nice to have some machines that diminish the likelihood of someone getting hurt. Not that you can’t get hurt with a plasma cutter, but it does lessen the odds. Plasma cutters don’t require any open flames or flammable gases to get the job done. The heat-affected zone is much smaller, thus keeping the heat being produced far more focused.
Speed & Quality
As is the case at nearly every manufacturing plant, the two main qualities we look at when evaluating machinery is the cutting speed and accuracy of cuts. Since plasma doesn’t have to be pre-heated, it can pierce fairly thick steel in seconds. Additionally, depending on the thickness of material being cut, plasma offers many speed advantages when compared to processes such as oxy-fuel welding.
Though we like to get projects completed as efficiently as possible, our skilled craftsmen never like to have a job leave the doors that isn’t 100%. Since our plasma cutting team has so much experience with the machinery and technology, quality is never an issue. One evident benefit in terms of quality is the diminished amount of scrap material left over after the cutting is complete.
Why Do We Use Plasma?
As shown by the four points above, there are definitely some clear advantages to utilizing plasma cutting technology. It’s traditional methodology coupled with connections to ever-growing CNC technology makes it a perfect fit for any sheet metal shop. The ability to cut both ferrous and non-ferrous material is remarkably useful, as well as it’s ease of use. Since it’s our mission to handle everything from projects for huge multi-million dollar companies to unique jobs for local small businesses, we’ve been sure to have a specified plasma cutting team that understands every point in the plasma cutting process. Being aware of everything from the smallest detail to the latest technology is what gets our team excited to come to work each day!
We’re not going to say plasma is the ultimate cutting tool. There are drawbacks, such as it’s inability to cut certain materials like plastic. That’s what we have the waterjet for. However, this doesn’t negate the amazing products that can be constructed thanks to plasma!