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questions answers


( What is the maximum penetration for laser welding?)

It is dependent on the material type, but to make it simple typically 0.0001" deep to 0.075" deep with our laser process.

(Can you weld any deeper?)

Yes, we have a cross over point for laser to electron beam. With electron beam welding we can get a penetration grater the 2.000" deep if needed. Keep in mind this is a very simple answer and you should talk to one of our specialist to determine the best process for your parts.

(Do you add filler material?)

Typically no, what we are doing is a fusion weld which is the alloying of material being welded. It is possible to add a filler material but it is not recommended. The beauty of the laser weld is the strength of the welded part, since you are using the parent materials the strength is pretty close to the original material.

(Why use lasers for cutting my parts instead of conventional methods?)

With laser technology getting better each day with increasing power levels lasers will have the ability to cut thicker materials and cut thinner material even faster. With lasers becoming faster in cutting they will start to become extremely competitive with stamping and punching operations without the need for sharpening tools or making expensive dies. Prototyping parts will be going from the concept to CAD to laser in a mater of minuets instead of hours you will be able to make prototype parts quickly which will help you prove your concept and go into production sooner.With the ability to make prototype faster you will be able to try out different designs just by changing the program in the CAD instead of making costly dies.

(What type of laser should I chose CO2 or Nd:YAG for my parts?)

There are many factors in the decision on what type of laser to chose, whether it should be a CO2 laser or a Nd:YAG laser. Some of the deciding factors are

What type of material you will be cutting?
What is the size of the material is it thick or thin?
How much space do you have where the laser will be located?
How big or small is the detail you are cutting?
How will the laser be adapted in a production line environment?
Do you want to cut plastics and glass or just metal?
CO2 laser cutters are bigger then Nd:YAG cutters CO 2 lasers are suitable for cutting most metals, plastics, composites, paper, wood, quartz glass, and to many other material to mention. CO2 lasers are usually used for cutting bigger parts bigger the then 1 inch square. Due to its small depth of field the CO2 laser has to stay in focus within 0.050 inches or better to do this auto-focus is usually used.

The second is a Nd:YAG laser it to can process most metal materials and composites as well but has difficulty cutting plastics and glass. Nd:YAG laser can cut more delicate parts, drill smaller and deeper holes, can cut small diameter tubes, has a greater depth of field, and is more suited for cutting small detail parts. In addition an Nd:YAG laser it can be more directly adapted to a robots arm, or be incorporated into a smaller area of the production line.

(Why vary the laser parameter?)

By adjusting the process parameter it will allow you to make a better part, it will reduce the heat input into the part which will reduce the distortion from the thermal cutting process, it will reduce the amount of recast or burr that is left behind, it will minimize the heat affected zone that is created when laser cutting.

(Dose laser cutting always leave a recast layer?)

The recast layer that is left by the laser cut is will be dependent on the material type and thickness but will usually always be less then 0.010 inches. All laser cutting leave a recast layer of some sort on the material being processed most of the time this recast layer is very minimal, it can be simply removed by brushing it with a wire brush or giving it a light sanding with some sand paper or emery cloth or tumbling the parts dose well.


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California Lasers Inc.
650 Cochran Street Suite #1
Simi Valley, CA 93065
805-579-0111 Fax