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Laser Machining Services and Companies

IQS Directory is a top industrial directory listing of leading industrial laser machining companies. Access our comprehensive index to review and source laser machining companies with preview ads and detailed product descriptions. These laser machining companies can design, engineer, and provide laser machining services to your specifications and application need. A quick and easy to use request for quote form is provided for you to contact these laser machining companies. Each company has detailed profile information, locations, phone number, website links, product videos and product information defined. Read customer reviews and product specific news articles. We are the right resource for your information requirement whether its for a service of laser engraving machines, laser drilling machines, or laser machining aluminum.

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When it comes to laser machining, trust the experts with nearly 30 years of experience! We offer attention to detail like no other, both for our products and our customer service. It is our goal to establish lifelong relationships with our customers to create strong bonds and mutual respect that benefits both companies. Find out more by visiting our website or calling us today!
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We have manufacturing and laser machining experiences dating back to 1865. Our company offers a number of secondary services such as perforating, welding, bending, rolling, forming and more. All of our laser machining services are extremely accurate and tailored to your exact specifications. If you would like more information about our company please give us a call today!
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Are you in need of laser machining? Our company offers short lead times and we are a dedicated manufacturer. Our teams are great at anticipating your needs and we aim to exceed all of your expectations! We are a reliable provider or laser machining. Just give one of our representatives a call today to learn more!
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We offer laser cutting services are fast and extremely accurate. Our staff utilized state-of-the-art technology to create your high-quality products. These products are ideal for cutting a number of materials including: carbon steel, plastic, aluminum, stainless steel, copper, titanium, brass, bronze, celcon, magnesium, delrin and more.
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Our laser cutting division is a full-service laser job shop with cutting capacities of .5"-thick stainless steel and .625" mild steel. We also offer aluminum, copper, plastic and custom laser cutting. Waterjet cutting up to 4"-thick steel is also available. Formerly known as Blackhawk Laser.
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Industry Information

Laser Machining

Laser machining, or laser beam machining, is a non-contact method of removing metal or refractory materials. Using a powerful beam of light from a computer-controlled laser, surface layers are melted and blown away or vaporized. The beam of the laser is an extremely focused radiation of a wavelength, meaning the beam will not dissipate like conventional light beams.

Some laser beam machining services include drilling, graining and 3-D shaping. Serving industries such as medical, aerospace, telecommunication and microtechnology, laser machining applications include thin material processing, thin film patterning, wafer coring and hole drilling. These are just a few of the vast amounts of tools produced by laser cutting machines, since every machine in the manufacturing industry requires such parts. In laser beam machining, the beam may be shaped in two different ways: either through beam focusing, which uses an optical system to focus the laser beam on a particular size of spot, or through a mask, which utilizes geometric optic properties. Once the beam is shaped, it is controlled through a stable motion system, which is a combination of CNC and CAD computer systems, to achieve high edge quality during laser-material interaction. Assist gases such as nitrogen or carbon dioxide are then used in conjunction with laser machining to prepare newly cut surfaces for painting or corrosion resistance. Materials that can be laser machined include plastics, ceramics, cast iron, precious metals, glass and titanium.

Laser machining services have distinct advantages over conventional cutting processes such as thermal machining, mechanical machining, arc welding, EDM and flame cutting. Laser-machined parts have a condition of nearly zero edge deformation, roll-off or edge factor, leaving very little burring on part edges. Because it is often directed by CNC, laser machining rarely makes mistakes and is able to mass produce the same item quickly and efficiently. Laser machining is faster than conventional tool-making techniques and has a quicker turnaround for parts regardless of complexity because design changes can be easily accommodated. Fewer technicians are required and safety can be assured, unlike arc welding, which requires individual workers and can be very dangerous. However, laser machining is costly, mostly because it uses a vast amount of energy to run. It is not negotiable for bulk material, nor is it able to operate on a macro scale. That is why CNC machine shops are around, so that individual companies do not need to purchase these machines individually, but can take their designs to professional laser cutters, knowing the quality of their product is insured.
Laser Machining
Laser Machining - Great Lakes Engineering, Inc.

Laser Cutting vs. Plasma Cutting

Laser cutting and plasma cutting processes are both commonly used techniques for manufacturing industrial parts and components. While these processes are used to accomplish a very similar goal, they both offer different advantages and operate in very different ways. Therefore, it is common to hear the question, "Should I use laser or plasma cutting?" As you might expect, there really is not a straight forward answer to this question, and certain conditions and requirements should be analyzed to make the right decision.

Before diving into this question completely, it is important to first discuss these two processes individually:

Laser Cutting

The laser cutting process was created and first used in the 1960s. This process was originally developed to assist in the cutting of holes in diamond dies but has since been expanded for use in a multitude of industrial manufacturing applications. Laser cutting is classified as a thermal cutting process, and it uses a focused beam of light together with oxygen, nitrogen, and compressed air to melt, burn, blow away, or vaporize the material being cut.

Plasma Cutting

Plasma cutting was first developed in the decade before laser cutting, the 1950s, and was created to serve as an alternative to flame cutting. Plasma cutting utilizes plasma torches which blow inert gas through a nozzle at a high rate, while simultaneously passing an electrical arc through the gas. The electrical arc causes a change of states from gas to plasma, which is simply an electrically-conductive ionized gas. The plasma is then hot enough to melt metals and perform cutting processes.

Laser Cutting or Plasma Cutting?

In modern manufacturing processes, both laser cutting and plasma cutting procedures incorporate CNC technologies to improve accuracy, precision, and control. However, understanding the differences between these processes is the most important way to determine which process is right for your applications. Here are some important differences:

  • The plasma cutting process takes place closer to the nozzle than laser cutting
  • Lasers use highly focused light, while plasma cutting uses gas with an electrical arc
  • Plasma can only be used for cutting processes, but lasers can be used to cut, engrave, and even weld

With this information, we can now discuss the question at hand, "Should I use laser or plasma cutting?"

Laser cutting is best used for the following applications:

  • Manufacturing parts with tight tolerance specifications. Due to the extreme precision that laser cutting offers, it is the best option for components which require tight tolerances or high precision cuts.
  • Cutting parts with thin to medium thickness. Lasers provide exceptional cutting capabilities for materials with thicknesses ranging from 0.003" to 1.5".

Plasma cutting is a better option for the following applications:

  • Manufacturing parts with highly-reflective surfaces. Lasers are incapable of cutting metals with highly-reflective surfaces, but plasma cutting techniques are unhindered by these material properties.
  • Cutting thicker materials. Plasma cutters are capable of cutting through much thicker materials, including parts up to 3" thick and possibly even thicker.
  • Components with simple shapes. Plasma cutting is a very efficient method for making simpler cuts, but it does not provide the same precision that laser cutting offers. Therefore, this process is best used for parts that do not require intricate notches or cutouts.

For the best results for your cutting and fabrication needs, it is best to discuss your specifications and requirements with an experienced metal fabrication company, but this information will provide you with an excellent starting point for deciding which processes will work best for your project.

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