Taper effect What is the taper effect and what different types of taper exist?
In waterjet cutting, there are certain factors that affect the shape of the cut through the material. Firstly, the water stream spreads out the further it gets from the nozzle. This has the effect of creating a taper on the cut so that the cut is not square compared to the metal surface. Secondly, the speed of the cut can cause different taper effects by either not allowing enough cutting time or allowing too much. The thickness of the material can also play a role in the natural shape of the water stream through the cut.
There are different types of taper:
- A V-shaped taper is where the cut is narrow at the surface close to the nozzle but wider at the opposite surface.
- A reverse taper is where the cut is wider at the surface close to the nozzle but narrower at the opposite surface.
- A barrel taper is where the cut at both surfaces is narrow but bulges in the center of the material.
Tapers can be eliminated or controlled by making sure that the nozzle wear is within tolerance so that the water stream is focused. The cutting speed must be designed according to the material type and thickness. It is even possible to compensate for a taper by adjusting the angle of the cutting head so that the result is a square cut without any taper.