If you need an abrasive for your waterjet cutting machine, chances are you have been told that garnet is the best material for most types of applications. That is certainly true, but that is not the end of the story. In choosing your garnet abrasive, there are some factors that you should consider so that you end up with the right garnet abrasive. Some of the most important of them are as follows:
Hardness dictates the speed with which you can cut materials; typically, the harder the abrasive you use for your waterjet cutter, the faster you can cut. However, hardness also has a direct consequence on the integrity of the cutting nozzle. Softer abrasives generally mean nozzles that you can use for much longer. For this reason, it is important to consider your exact requirements, and then find the right hardness that will not offer a compromise on efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Industry experts consider almandine garnet to be among the best at melding these two things.
As with hardness, abrasive density also plays an important role in the way that you can harness the full power of your waterjet cutting machines. Very light materials cannot be accelerated to the best possible velocity that can speed up the process, and very heavy materials have the same effect. As with hardness, you need to find the right balance between mass and velocity.
Toughness should also be a significant factor when choosing the right garnet abrasive. If the abrasive that you choose ends up breaking down too easily, the resulting cut may be too fine for your liking; similarly, if the garnet is too tough, it will get rounded during the mixing process and become too dull to cut according to specific edge qualities.
Garnet abrasives come in many types, from spherical to razor-sharp. Many facilities typically opt for bead-like abrasives as they have proven to perform well under high-powered streams, but that does not mean that they are the best ones for your applications.
How do you make sense of all these? Asking for personalised guidance from your waterjet cutter manufacturer or supplier can help. Companies like Techni provide customised solutions that do not only give the best recommendations for meeting industrial requirements, but also in working with operational conditions. Do not hesitate to ask as many questions as you need to, look at past project portfolios, and communicate your concern. Your investment in your abrasive will only be well-rewarded if it is the right investment to make, in the first place.