Gaete Works

Water Jet Cutting

Precision Cutting Source

Serving the Greater Houston Area

Gaete Works


Steel is a very common material, is relatively easy to cut.

One advantage of an abrasivejet is that you can cut steel after it has been hardened with minimal slow-down of cutting (see Exotic Alloys).

The lack of heat affected zone from the abrasivejet means that you don't change the heat treatment of the steel as you cut it. The abrasivejet also produces a smooth cut on the edge without burn marks, cracking, excess burr, or other problems typically associated with heat-based cutting.


Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is steel mixed with various amounts of chromium, which adds rust and stain resistance to the steel.

Stainless steel machines easily without heat or distortion. All grades of stainless steel machine easily on an abrasivejet, even those such as 304 that are difficult to machine with other processes.



Machining copper can be challenging, but an abrasivejet make cutting copper easy. Copper is impossible to cut on a laser due to reflection. It is also difficult to machine conventionally, because it tends to gum up conventional cutting tools. Abrasivejets are the clear choice for copper.



Aluminum is a light weight but strong metal used in a wide variety of applications. Aluminum is a relatively soft metal and is easily machined on an abrasivejet. Generally speaking, it machines at about twice the speed as mild steel.

Aluminum is difficult to machine on a laser in thicknesses over 1/4" (0.6 cm).


Exotic Alloys

An abrasivejet can machine exotic materials that might otherwise be quite difficult to machine such as Inconel®, Hastalloy, hardened tool steel, titanium, and many other materials.


Inconel refers to a set of nickel/chromium alloys. Inconel resists oxidizing in a wide range of temperatures, from liquid air temperatures up to several thousand degrees. Inconel is used in jet engines, undersea cable sheathing, and race cars. Inconel is easily machined with an abrasivejet with similar settings to steel.

Inconel is a registered trademark of the INCO family of companies.

Hardened Steel

Particularly once it's hardened, tool steel is difficult to machine conventionally. With an abrasivejet, you can harden the steel before or after cutting. Steel hardness has only a minor effect on the rate at which it can be machined with an abrasivejet.

Laser and wire EDM can both affect the heat treatment of the material or cause thermal distortion, but the abrasivejet process will not affect the heat treat or cause distortion in any way.


Titanium is a lightweight, strong metal that is corrosion resistant. Titanium is as strong as steel, but only 45% as heavy. It is also frequently used in combination with other metals.

Titanium is difficult to machine conventionally and susceptible to the Heat Affected Zone associated with laser and wire EDM. Titanium cuts very well using a precision abrasivejet.

Titanium cuts faster than steel on the abrasivejet. One of the huge advantages of cutting titanium with an abrasivejet is that you can save a lot of material. Typically, you can fit additional parts in a given piece of material, and the scrap that is left over is in chunks, instead of chips, meaning that it is still useful material. Since titanium is extremely expensive, this is a big advantage.



Composites are similar to fiberglass and consist of layers of material. Abrasivejets can machine composites without leaving a burr or shredding the layers of material and, while maintaining a better edge quality.



Ceramics are made by heating up minerals to a high temperature. Traditionally, ceramics have been made from clay, but modern ceramics are made from substances such as alumina and from synthetic materials. Ceramics are electrical insulators and resist corrosion.

Some ceramics machine very quickly on an abrasivejet, while some of the very hard ceramics machine quite slowly and require special abrasives.



Abrasivejets can be used to cut designs from stone such as marble and granite. This can be done faster, and with a greater level of detail than traditional methods of working with these materials.



Because wood is very soft compared to metals, the abrasivejet machines intricate shapes very quickly.



Rubber can be cut with a water-only nozzle for faster and cleaner cutting, though some very hard rubbers may require abrasive. Water-only cutting wastes little material, is quieter and increases the nozzle life. Water-only cutting also proceeds very quickly at speeds of 100 inches per minute or faster.



Glass is a unique substance that has traditionally been difficult to machine. Although it has a great deal of structural strength, even small scratches on the surface can lead to breaking and shearing.