Kerfs cuts bottleneck at subcontractor

As a subcontract manufacturer, Q-Laser offers laser, waterjet, press brake and fabrication services throughout the UK. When the main division at Washington, Tyne & Wear, realised its waterjet cutting department based in nearby Hebburn was reaching full capacity, the company needed a solution. Kerf Developments provided the answer with a Semyx Optima 420 twin abrasive waterjet cutter.

Founded in 2012, Q-Laser set up its waterjet cutting division in 2019 to complement its laser, press brake and fabrication services, starting with a five-axis waterjet machine. Except for the pandemic, the waterjet division has grown exponentially, and the existing waterjet machine was struggling to meet the capacity demands of the business, so Q-Laser turned to the Optima 420 twin abrasive waterjet.

With two cutting heads, the 4 x 2 m bed machine instantly doubled cutting capacity in comparison to the company’s existing machine. In a sector where clients expect a quotation in hours and components cut and delivered in less than a week, the addition of the machine has alleviated the bottleneck, created additional capacity and immediately reduced lead times.

Company director Colin Hewitt says: “We gave Kerf a range of trial parts. The productivity, precision, cut quality and edge finishes were beyond anything else we had seen, so our decision to invest was made. A few months after the installation, Kerf has excelled in its service and consumable supply, which was a critical element for us. Kerf stocks all spare parts for the machine in the UK and they are available on a next-day service. This gives us complete confidence.”

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