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Preco Enhances RT1000 Micro Tube Cutting System

RT1000 Tube Cutter SystemPreco has been quietly supplying micro tube cutting systems to the medical industry for years primarily for cutting metals. The workhorse system for these applications, our RT1000 system, has been constantly upgraded over the years as new laser tools and components have become available.

The RT1000 is designed to deliver highly accurate parts with demanding geometries and small sizes. The design utilizes a granite base, state-of-the-art direct drive linear motors and a direct drive servo torque motor rotary to ensure the best results. The system comes standard with integrated tooling for holding the tubes and automatic feeding. The system footprint is surprisingly small and all of the components are contained in a single unit.

Stainless steel is used on surfaces that need to be cleaned or come in contact with fluid.

The majority of Preco’s RT1000 systems are currently being sold with a Single Mode fiber laser for fast accurate cutting of metal tubes (typical materials include stainless steel, Cobalt-Chrome, and Nitonol). The fiber laser is a 19” air cooled rack mounted unit and is installed in the machine base. Preco has developed a special cutting head and optics for performing these precise narrow kerf width cuts.

The RT1000 allows Preco the ability to cut polymer and small metal tubes (or stents) that cannot be deburred when processed mechanically for the medical device industry. Cutting polymer stents can be very challenging because the materials are sensitive to heat and need to be cut without charring or melting. By using some of the newer technology available such as shorter wavelength and pulse duration laser sources, we are able to achieve acceptable results. Some of the sources we are integrating are Pico and Femto second lasers and shorter UV wavelengths such as 285 nm, 355 nm, and 532 nm. Preco has an in-house applications lab with a variety of lasers for testing customer material and sample preparation.

“With Preco’s ability to deliver both the machine and the application, we have been able to assist customers getting these difficult parts into production in a timely fashion,” says Dave Krattley, Vice President of Metal Sales.

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