Ever since water jet cutting was first developed, it has been used in manufacturing and fabrication for applications across industries. As the technique has evolved with new technology and become more sophisticated, new forms of water jet cutting have been developed. Today, both 2D and 3D water jet cutting are used for various applications, but there are a few important distinctions between these methods that you should keep in mind as you prepare for your next water jet cutting process.
The basics of 2D and 3D water jet cutting
The basic difference between 2D and 3D water jet cutting is in the complexity and intricacy of the capabilities of each type of cutting. Traditionally, water jet cutting has been performed on a flat, two-dimensional plane. Using 2D cutting enables manufacturers to achieve a wide variety of cutting patterns, depths and shapes, but 3D cutting components take these capabilities to a whole new level. With 3D water jet cutting in San Francisco, CA, technicians can achieve an even wider variety of cuts, including angled holes, bevels, weld preps and other intricate designs. There are a few specific features that distinguish 2D and 3D water jet cutting:
- Positioning and fixtures: Because of the high degree of pressure that’s applied to components during water jet cutting, it’s essential for pieces to be fixed securely to the cutting surface. With 2D water jet cutting, this is done with standard fixtures that hold the slab in place. For 3D water jet cutting, however, it’s necessary for custom fixtures to be made. This can contribute to a greater cost for 3D water jet cutting projects.
- Water jet components: Many of the components and water jet fixtures used for 2D cutting are relatively standard and can be used for various different types of cutting. With 3D water jet cutting, more intricate designs require more sophisticated water jet cutting accessories and components. The cutting heads that are used in 3D water jet cutting are able to rotate 360 degrees for complex and intricate cutting designs.
- Safety considerations: Safety is an essential factor to consider in any industrial process, including water jet cutting. In most cases, 2D water jet cutting is a relatively safe and straightforward process that can be conducted with little risk. With 3D water jet cutting, the range of motion of the water jet head creates additional safety considerations. To account for the increased versatility of this process, it’s necessary for water jet cutting professionals to exercise increased caution.
Water jet cutting in San Francisco, CA
You can find out more about 2D and 3D water jet cutting and determine which option is right for you by reaching out to Mach 1 Waterjet, Inc. Since 1997, our locally owned and operated business has been dedicated to providing unparalleled services, including water jet cutting in San Francisco, CA. Whether you need water jet cutting for a one-time artistic project or you are looking for cutting services for mechanical or industrial components, our team is here to help you. Give us a call today to get started with our services and to find out more about our rates.