Water burn tables, also called water tables, do not require the use of a dust collector. Water burn tables reduce noise, eliminate dangerous arc light, minimize heat distortion, and keep cut parts cool. Messer Cutting Systems prefers dry cutting tables as the cut quality exceeds the cut quality produced on water tables.
There are advantages and disadvantages with water tables. Not only do water tables represent an older technology but they require environmental treatment. Metal slag builds up within the water, creating toxicity in the water and hazardous gases when cutting certain plate types.
These water burning tables require maintenance over time, as components rust and bacteria forms.
The process of cleaning a water table can be labor-intensive for machine operators, who must don protective gear to avoid getting wet and exposed to the toxicity in the water. The slag comes out of the table wet, making your shop floor slippery as well. Draining wastewater from the table and properly disposing of it, as many municipalities mandate, can be very expensive. Typically it will take 1-2 days to clean and refill a water table.
As you can see, Messer Cutting Systems recommends dry cleaning tables, which are easy to use, clean, and altogether better for the environment than water tables. Moreover, downdraft cleaning tables save shop time and money in the long run.
Water Burn Tables Are Available in Three Designs
Low-Cost Water Burn Tables
A low-cost water burn table contains a tank with an air chamber for raising and lowering water levels. The slats go across the full width of the table to support the plate. Slag and dross fall down onto the top of the air chamber or into an optional slag container.
Tilt Frame Water Burn Tables
A tilting frame water burn table is a semi-automatic water table whose frame pivots and tilts up to a 60-degree angle by overhead crane. Slag is disposed into Slag Buckets below the work surface that can be removed from the table for disposal. As a table option, hydraulic cylinders can be added to the pivot frame. Frame sizes vary with table sizes.
Liftout Frame Water Burn Tables
A lift-out frame water burn table’s design covers over the entire width of the table to capture slag that falls between the cutting slats. The lift-out frame is removed from the table to intermittently dispose of the slag.