Aeronaut Automation makes vacuum tables to suit our cutting systems. In fact we make some of the longest and widest vacuum tables around.
There are a few unique features on Aeronaut vacuum tables.
- Aeronaut vacuum tables are a modular systems made from aluminium extrusions and stainless steel with a sacrificial plastic table top. Vacuum tables are made to suit your fabric and your pattern sizes and your factory. Due to the modular construction of the vacuum tables, the length can be easily added to at any time.
- Aeronaut vacuum tables are strong. Strong enough to be walked on. In fact, where people have run fork lifts into Aeronaut vacuum tables, all that is normally required is to straighten the table, re-align the guide rails and re-calibrate the machine. Aeronaut tables are open at the sides. They have good clearance off the ground, allowing storage under the table.
- Aeronaut vacuum tables are normally fitted with a sacrificial plastic table top. (Laser tables have a steel table top) The cutting blade bears against this while cutting to ensure a clean cut with no hanging threads.
- The table decking, which forms the vacuum cells on Aeronaut cutting tables is built from a custom extrusion. This allows us to section or divide the vacuum area widthways across every cell on a table. On other makes of vacuum table you cannot do this and have to place sheets or curtains of plastic alongside the fabric to seal off the open areas of the table.
- Aeronaut cutting tables are provided either with a series of blast gates on each vacuum cell, or on longer and wider vacuum tables, a series of blast gates on the main vacuum piping to allow you to easily control the vacuum area. Normally these blast gates are pneumatically switched from a panel at the operators end of the vacuum table.
- The plastic we use for sacrificial table tops is normally HDPE, PVC or Polypropylene. These are drilled to make them porous. Depending on the use of your cutting table, the sacrificial table top on Aeronaut tables will last 3 - 5 years. Porex, which is used on the majority of other makes of cutting tables (and occasionally on Aeronaut tables) will last on average just 6 months. Since Porex costs almost twice as much as solid plastic, and will need to be replaced around 6 times over the life of the equivalent solid plastic, there is a huge cost saving on a solid plastic table top.
The advantages don't stop there.
- A typical Porex vacuum table top takes 2 days to remove and replace. More on a larger cutting table. That's almost one week every year when your table is out of action. Sure, it takes as long to replace an Aeronaut table top, but you don't do this very often.
- The plastic Aeronaut uses for table tops gives a remarkably clean finish because the blade does not penetrate so far into the cutting table. This is very noticeable when cutting materials in industries such as window furnishings where the cut edge is not going to be hemmed.
- Porex is thin and brittle compared with solid plastic. Because of this, it needs backing with something solid. This changes the construction of the vacuum table and means getting vacuum divisions widthways on a cutting table is not easy.
- Aeronaut uses Porex occasionally when the application demands it difficult materials such as lace, lingerie or lycra are probably best cut on Porex using a paper overlay on the Porex to ensure that the rough surface of used Porex does not snag and pull threads in the fabric.
For the rest of the story, have a look at the Vacuum Tables FAQ.
Below are some pictures of typical installations. Note the strong construction and clear open space under the table.