Barrett Steel extends laser tube cutting facilities

Lasertube Cutting, part of the Barrett Steel Group, has commissioned their second LT8 tube laser, with a third on order for delivery June 2011. The addition of the third LT8 will establish Barrett Steel’s Tubes Division as one of the leading laser processors in Europe.

Previous recent investment has been in the LT Jumbo, the largest tube laser in the UK both in terms of tube range processed, lengths that can be produced and scale of machine. Plans to invest in the UK's first LT Fibre laser will bring Barrett Steel’s total investment in new technology to £2 million, further demonstrating the Tube Division’s commitment to serving its customers by using the latest and most advanced processing equipment.

Laser cutting offers a number of key benefits for the customer as complex cutting procedures, including angles and V-shapes in both closed and open section tubes, can be carried out in a single pass. A key benefit is the opportunity to innovate: electronic drawing lists can be programmed direct into the machine, allowing prototypes to be produced quickly in a single pass, saving time and money on processing and providing greater opportunities to redesign and refine. Time savings can be up to 70% over traditional methods of cutting.

David Cleaver, Sales Manager of Lasertube Cutting, part of Barrett Steel’s Tubes Division, comments: ”Acquiring our second LT8 opens up a wealth of opportunities for our customers, not just in the extra capacity it provides, but also in the speed of turn round. It also increases our capabilities for newer and growing requirements in the offshore wind turbine industry and other renewable energy markets where high volumes are required, often to tight deadlines.

“Crucially, the LT8 allows us to guarantee repeatability in terms of accuracy, tolerances and finish.”

Typical applications for laser cut mild steel tube includes arms for excavating equipment for leading yellow goods companies, precision cut steel sections for the UK’s leading coach builder and other vehicle manufacturers, and for bracings in buildings. Stainless steel products that benefit from laser tube cutting include architectural handrailing, racking systems for shop fitting, architectural feature work, security and architectural fencing, lighting columns and office furniture.

The LT8 can process traditional circular, square, rectangular, oval, elliptical oval and open sections such as channel, angle and flat bar. Also equipped with a tilting head, the LT8 offers 3D cutting for time-saving weld preparations.

High productivity is achieved with the machine’s ability to load material automatically from a dedicated bunker or from a single bar loader on the other side, and automatically cut multiple pieces of different profiles and lengths. Automatic nesting helps with scrap reduction and maximises the material available, while customised offloading tables limit metal on metal interaction, reducing scratching and other incidental damage.

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