Since laser-cutting can not only cut material but apply finish to a product. It can be a more streamlined process than its mechanical alternatives, which often require post-machining treatments. In addition, there is no direct contact between the laser device and the material, reducing the chance of contamination or accidental marking. Lasers also create a smaller heat-affected zone, which lowers the risk of material warping or deformation at the cutting site.
Laser-cutting can, however, be a costly and technically challenging fabrication method. While drill bit CNC cutting mechanical cutting processes tend to be cheaper and easier to integrate into manufacturing services. Laser equipment usually requires a powerful energy source and consumes energy at a rapid pace. This typically requires a shop to maintain extensive battery or capacitor units in addition to standard power sources. Laser devices are often expensive, and peripheral equipment. Such as gold mirrors or zinc selenide windows and lenses, can yield additional expenses.
Two in one
When choosing between laser and mechanical cutting, it may be helpful to remember that the processes are not exclusive of one another, and that many machine shops provide a combination of the two cutting services. Manufacturers weighing the benefits of one type of cutting versus the other are essentially balancing laser cutting’s precision and reliability against its costs and energy usage, and mechanical cutting’s ease of use and cost efficiency against its risk of damaging or deforming a given material.