What is the difference between a CNC machine and a laser cutter?
Nowadays, with the rapid upgrading of products required by the market, higher requirements are put forward for the flexibility of processing equipment. The application of laser cutting machine has brought new vitality to the processing industry.
Compared with the traditional CNC punch press, the laser cutting machine has the advantages of 3C and 3S: cool (fast cooling), clean (cleaning), calm (low noise), sure (reliable), safety (safety), saving (saving).
However, in the whole processing market, the laser cutting machine is equal to the CNC punch press. Why? Next, HGSTAR will introduce five related knowledge, so that you can understand laser cutting machine and NC punch.
1. Processing materials
Laser cutting machine can cut metal materials (including ferrous metals and non-ferrous metals, such as carbon steel, stainless steel, silicon steel, galvanized sheet, aluminum alloy,…) and non-metallic materials (acrylic, plastic, wood, cloth, leather, carpet, etc.). Carbon steel up to 20mm thick can be cut.
CNC punch basically can only punch metal materials, and the thickness is generally no more than 6mm.
2. Flexible Machining
In terms of flexibility, laser cutting machine has more advantages, which can cut holes of any shape and size. The punch can only cut a limited number of holes (the turret of 32 station is large). In case of special-shaped and large-size holes, the small die step punching process is adopted, which has low efficiency and serious die wear.
In order to meet the processing needs of different products, CNC punch must purchase and prepare many molds (materials of different sizes and the same size but for different thicknesses).
Further, a warehouse for storing molds must be prepared, which increases the demand for mold management. In addition, CNC punch has higher requirements for flatness and surface cleanliness of plates.
3. Accuracy and roughness
The laser cutting machine belongs to non-contact processing, with no stress and deformation, positioning accuracy of ± 0.03mm, workpiece accuracy of ± 0.1mm, and fine and smooth cutting section.
The machining accuracy of NC punch is slightly poor, the blanking section has burrs and the workpiece is deformed.
4. Efficiency, cost
A factory originally used a punch + plate shears, which need to be transferred to the punch after blanking. Compared with the laser cutting machine, it needs more labor.
By comprehensively comparing the costs of laser cutting machine (3KW fiber laser) and punch: power, consumables (consumables of laser cutting machine are focusing lens, ceramic body, nozzle, reflector, gas, etc.; consumables of punch are mold, etc.), labor and equipment depreciation, the result is that the cost of laser cutting machine is 179 yuan / hour and punch is 174 yuan / hour.
The processing efficiency of all sheet metal parts (carbon steel, thickness 1.5 ~ 3mm) in a product of the factory is estimated. The result is that it takes only 0.2 hours to use laser cutting machine and 0.7 hours to use punch.
It can be seen that the laser cutting machine has obvious advantages in efficiency and cost.
Of course, if the product batch is large and the specially designed die (such as porous die, but this will damage the flexibility), the efficiency of the NC punch can be improved until it can be equivalent to the laser cutting machine.
5. Functions and limitations
Laser cutting machine and CNC punch have their own functional limitations.
If it is necessary to realize the functions (process) such as shutter, shallow drawing, counterbore, flanging hole, stiffener and embossing, only CNC punch can be used; For the saw blade with silencing seam as shown on the left of the figure below, only the laser cutting machine can be competent.