Rotary Shear Cut for the Aerospace Industry

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Band Saw Cutting Issues

For many companies within the Aviation & Aerospace Industry, tube and pipe applications and products can be a slow and costly operation. In years past, Proto-1 has been approached by multiple customers within the aviation/aerospace industry with the goal of increasing efficiency for the production of vacuum waste tubes and other ducts for airline and aviation purposes. Prior to contact with Proto-1, these customers were often using band saws to cut the tubing into the desired lengths for assembly. This process is not only slower, but it also leaves burrs around the diameter of the tube. Perpendicularity, uniformity, and accuracy of the cut were other variables that were affected during the cut operation. For use in the final assembly, the tubes were then required to be deburred before the assembly process. This deburring process consisted of an operator hand deburring each tube before the next operation. Repeatability and safety were difficult objectives to maintain with this hand process. Coupled with the hand deburring process, the band saws required blade replacements. Many vacuum waste tubes use strong materials such as titanium for their composition. Titanium and other materials like inconel can be difficult to cut with a band saw blade.

Proto-1’s Rotary Shear Cut Solution

Proto-1 saw an opportunity to provide a solution for these various inefficiencies. Our customers were looking for a solution to provide a quick clean cut, free of burrs. Doing so would eliminate the added deburring process. Using our rotary tube end forming machine (RFM) paired with a custom production tool designed for tube and pipe cut off, Proto-1 was able to design and create a solution to fit the need of these customers. Out rotary tube end forming and cut off machines capable of cutting tube and pipe as large as 16 inches in diameter. The custom production cut tooling was designed for specific diameters and utilizes a rotary shear method which uses knives to cut the tube from the inside out, resulting in a burr free inner diameter. Our rotary forming machines use a pneumatic (or hydraulic) clamping system to keep the product in place and square to the knives. This process maintains perpendicularity of the rotary shear cut to the tube. Parts of the tooling could then be used a tube backstop to control the length/location of the cut, giving the operator a repeatable rotary shear cut, every cycle. This rotary tube cut off solution not only eliminated the need for a band saw and deburring but also increased throughput, efficiency, safety, accuracy, and ROI.

Band Saw Method

  • Slower Tube Cutting Process (Perpendicularity will not meet spec)
  • Limited Tooling Life (Expensive Blade Replacement)
  • Secondary Operation required (Deburring)
  • Lower level of safety

Proto-1 Rotary Shear Cut

  • Faster cycle time (4-6 seconds)
  • Increased tooling life (More cost effective replacement knives)
  • Clean burr free cut (No deburring required)
  • Increased Safety

Do you have a project that requires tube cutting of tough materials like titanium and inconel? Check out the videos of our past projects below and contact us today to discover your tube cut off solution!

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