Plasma cutting tables have indeed become quite popular. Not only has the cutting process become faster, it has become more precise using automated 3d software. Besides, plasma cutting allows for greater standardization of the parts being produced. However, when using a plasma cutter it produces a lot of heat that may cause fires in the workplace and the cutting is also accompanied by a lot of noise. Plasma cutting also produces sparks and toxic fumes which may be harmful to health. One way to address all these concerns is making use of a water table that makes plasma cutters safer and easier to operate.
What Are the Benefits of Using a Water Table for Plasma Cutting?
There are many reasons why making use of a water table is beneficial for CNC plasma cutting. A major benefit of using a water table for plasma cutting is that a water table is not too expensive. Water is an excellent conductor of heat and therefore reduces distortion of the metals due to heat and also cools the metals very quickly. The density of the water reduces the energy of the sound waves, acts as a shock absorber and reduces the amount of noise in the work area. The water also traps the metal particles and washes them away. Water tables make the work area safer and make the cutting process more practical.
How Does a Water Table Work?
The construction of a water table is very simple and straightforward. A large compartment is constructed within the table, which is located beneath a steel tray and the burning bars. Inside the water table, the compartment has openings along the bottom edge only. This traps the air inside the chamber. By allowing air to enter or leave the compartment, the water is forced to move up or down in the table. There are air supply and air release valves that regulate the compressed air’s entry or exit from the compartment.
When the supply valve is opened and the release valve is shut, the pressurised air rushes into the compartment driving the water via the openings that are present in the lower part of the compartment. This causes the water level to rise. When the water reaches the required level, the air supply valve is shut. The air release valve also remains shut, which retains the air in the compartment keeping the water level high.
In order to reduce the water level, while keeping the supply valve closed, the release valve is opened, which allows the air to leave the compartment. The water flows back into the compartment because of its weight and the air is pushed out of the exhaust.
What Is a Water Table Used For?
A water table is mainly used for underwater plasma cutting. You can submerge some plasma torches into the water and cut easily. However, in recent years, the latest oxygen plasma cutters need an air curtain to protect the plasma arc from exposure to water. There are some kinds of plasma torches that cannot be used for underwater cutting. However, these cutters can be used for cutting a plate sitting above the water.
In case of larger tables, a water table having water control facility is suggested, even if you do not plan to do any underwater cutting. This helps to reduce the water level to facilitate easy cleaning in case small parts fall between the burning bars during the cutting process.
In conclusion, a regular water table having a water level adjustment feature is quite popular for plasma cutting. The level of water can be adjusted as per the thickness and type of material and cut quality requirements. A water table is simple and an affordable piece of equipment that can be of great advantage to your plasma cutting business.