-No tooling cost
With conventional die cutting, unique shapes can be expensive in tooling cost. With laser cutting no tooling cost is required, because there is no tool, except the laser itself!
-Simple DXF allows for easy cutting
Laser Cutting requires only an electronic file such as a DXF to function. These files give the machine instructions of how to cut, when to cut, and where to cut.
-Highly precise tolerancing
With conventional die cutting, meeting certain tolerance expectations on highly complex parts can be a challenge. However, tolerancing has never been tighter on laser cutting machines. Our machines can provide some dimensions as tight as +/- .002” depending on the material.
-High material utilization
Part of offering laser cutting services is also to attempt to give the customer the best price possible. We can nest parts in different directions, and orientations to make the best possible use of the material we have. Some materials can be expensive, so material utilization becomes very important.
-Lots of room for adjustments because of no tooling
One of the downsides of using conventional die cutting is that once the tool is made it can be difficult to adjust. For example, if a diameter is the wrong size, we may be able to fix it but sometimes we cannot. With laser cutting you can easily adjust things to make them smaller, bigger, longer, or wider. Nothing is set in stone with laser cutting software. This can be a huge benefit when cutting prototypes.
-Low quantity runs
We would not say laser cutting machines do not move fast. However, laser cutting oftentimes hits it stride at lower quantity runs. With lower quantities, the mix of no tooling cost, room for adjustment, and high material utilization produces a large value proposition.
At NEDC, we are an authorized converter for the 3M Company. We have access to procure many tapes such as VHB Tapes, Transfer Tapes, Double Sided Tapes, and other unique tape configurations. We utilize our laser cutting services to cut these tapes for our customers. Oftentimes, we use our laser cutting machines to be able to kiss-cut parts. We cut parts to liners to make them easy for our customers to remove off during assembly.
Some common 3M tapes we cut on our laser include:
-VHB 3M 5952, 4941, 5909, 5907 and others
-Transfer Tapes 3M 9472, 467MP, 9469PC, 9485PC, 9471LE, 9472LE and others
-Double Sided Tapes 3M 7945MP, 415, and others
Epoxy Film Adhesives
One of the materials that utilizes our laser cutting services fairly often is Ablefilm®. Ablefilm® and other frozen epoxy film adhesives can be laser cut with these machines. Laser Cutting is one of the only to cut these film adhesives. To produce the small diameters, and interesting, dynamic curves that some circuit boards provide, laser cutting may be necessary. These adhesive films are normally on the thinner side- going as low as .002”. Laser Cutting enables a wide amount of latitude on what is possible to be cut. These can include:
These Ablefilm® products may include 5025E, ECF561E, CF3350, 5020K, and 550K.
Paper products traditionally do very well during the laser cutting process. Kraft Paper is also a great candidate for our laser cutting machine. We can cut Kraft Paper, Fishpaper, and Vulcanized Fiber. These materials come in different densities, weights, and specifications.
Plastic Shim Stock
We use laser cutting services to cut many thin plastic like materials. One of the more popular materials is thin polyester(PET, or PETG). These materials are usually color coded to designate thickness. In addition, some other materials besides polyester can be used as shim stock. Not all plastics can be cut on our laser cutting machine but many can be.
NEDC owns and operates several laser cutting machines. As part of our laser cutting services, NEDC is use to demanding requirements placed on parts. As a result, these lasers operate with very precise accuracy, carrying the ability to hold some parts within a +/- .002” tolerance. It is good to keep in mind that laser machines are limited to a certain thickness of all materials. The ability to cut thick materials on a CO2 laser is also a function of the amount of the power the laser is able to produce.
However, it is good to keep in mind that while laser cutting can be a solution of a lot of challenges, there are some materials our laser has trouble with. These materials include metals, thicker plastics, and other materials. For more information on laser cutting or you believe you have a part could be potentially laser cut, please contact email@example.com.
Laser Cutting Blog
It is not often you hear someone say they have a “favorite tape”. However as an authorized 3M converter, I’m not afraid to say it- I love 200MP by 3M. 3M 200MP is an adhesive that is coated onto a number of carriers, and liners that yield a number of different tape...
I thought I’d make a blog about the material any good gasket maker should recognize off the top of their head. That gasket material would be the current A-A-59588 Class 2A/2B. Everytime I see these materials, I smile because I know that there's a good chance we have...
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At NEDC, watertight seals are a common product we sell. Customers come to us for all sorts of gasketing materials that are good for watertight seals, including silicone rubber, neoprene, and other commonly known gasketing type materials. Separately, customers...
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One difficult thing for the team is when a tight tolerance is put on a thermal interface material. Some of our customers understand, gap filling materials are putty like. Alternatively, thin thermal pads are usually coatings coated on a reinforcement layer such as...
At NEDC, we use double coated tapes for a variety of purposes. Sometimes we use it as an aid in manufacturing- other times, we provide it to customers either laminated to a gasketing material, or perhaps just the double coated tape itself. What is a Double Coated...
At NEDC, one of the main things we do is laminate materials with adhesive backing before we cut them. For this we use 3M Adhesive Transfer Tapes. What is an Adhesive Transfer Tape? Essentially an adhesive transfer tape is a type of adhesive that is coated onto a...
At NEDC, gaskets are one of our main product lines. At times the popular tapes that are the “go-to” don’t provide the strong adhesion needed for low surface energy applications. Surfaces that can be difficult to stick to include plastics such as polypropylene,...
In one of our previous blog posts, we discussed some tips on how to pick a transfer tape for your gasket. One of the tips was, “Make sure you utilize a popular tape if you can.” The reason we said this is, popular transfer tapes are widely available, and their large...
All of the information presented above is believed to be factual and accurate; however, NEDC is not liable for any design or application utilizing this information.
New England Die Cutting
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