What is the difference between a CNC water table vs. downdraft?

With a CNC plasma table, it is vital to control the fumes and dust produced from the cutting process. Incorporating a water table is an ideal option. This table has a layer of water that is below the metal being cut. As a result, prevents the generation of fumes. On the other hand, a downdraft table actively transports the air down through the table, effectively pulling the fumes and dust away from the cutting space. At Boss Tables, we offer an array of affordable CNC plasma table options to meet the manufacturing and fabricating needs of our clients.

Now, let’s review some of the pros and cons of water tables and downdraft tables.

Water Table Advantages:

  • Restricted for use with plasma and oxy-fuel cutting machines
  • Fumes and particles are forced into the water, keeping them from dispersing into the air.
  • Ideal for cutting mild steel workpieces.
  • No sparks
  • Less noise
  • Reduced arc flare
  • Less expensive installation and operation since a fume collector or filter is not required.

On the flip side, water table disadvantages include:

  • Not applicable for some plasma cutting surfaces
  • Regular addition of water and chemical required to prevent growth of algae
  • Periodic draining and disposal required
  • Aluminum cutting produces hydrogen bubble buildup when molten aluminum contacts the water, creating a risk of explosion
  • Higher maintenance costs

Moving on to downdraft table advantages:

  • Filter system keeps the air clean by collecting fumes and particles
  • Easier to clean
  • Can cut an array of different metals
  • Easier to extend the table for expanded production

However, downdraft table disadvantages include:

  • Adjusting or removing certain table parts is more time-consuming because of the need to wait for cooling-off before handling with tongs or gloves
  • Regular filter replacement required
  • You must change the filter depending on the metal being cut.

In conclusion, the type of table you choose between these two options will depend on your specific business needs. Boss Tables assists you in selecting a table that suits your needs and business.


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