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CNC Pipe Cutting Machine Increases Prefabrication Efficiency

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Accuracy. Efficiency. Reduced Waste. In the ever-changing world of technology, P1 Group is always looking for ways to work better while increasing the quality of our work.The newly acquired CNC Machine will do just that.

CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control. This means a computer converts the design produced by Computer Aided Design software (CAD), into numbers. The numbers can be considered the coordinates of a graph and they control the movement of the cutter. Before this, dimensions had to be taken manually and then cut with the plasma cutter. With the CNC machine, Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) is able to import the dimensions directly from a BIM model and make every cut in an automated process.

This machine is able to make square cuts for bevel pipe for welding, nozzle pipe, and cut out all o-lets. It can cut from 2” to 36” diameter and up to 1.5” wall thick pipe. It can take pipe up to 42’ long. Cutting longer lengths of pipe means less loading and unloading. 

It will cut 60” per minute and can put any angle on the bevels. 

p1 group pipe fabrication

“When we put the fittings on, we aren’t measuring to put an o-let hole in, we are just assembling. This makes our fit up time faster and better," Jeremy Price, Pipe Shop Production Manager, explained. 

The CNC machine is exact, which eliminates the element of human error, like taking wrong measurements, or making bad cuts. 

Jeremy notes the machine also cuts “smart”.

“If you have a 42 foot pipe and you put that dimension in the machine when you import the cut dimensions, instead of having a bunch of “drop” (extra pipe) at the end, you should have minimal or zero waste,” he said.

The pipe fab shop supplies pipes to a multitude of jobs and applications, including water, steam, and glycol. The pipes are installed on everything from air handling units to cooling towers and PRV (pressure reducing valve) stations. Many have been going to local jobs, but also get sent to Las Vegas, St. Joseph, Wichita, and Texas.

The CNC machine will allow the pipe fabrication to be not only faster and more efficient, but extremely accurate as well. This saves money and time for P1 and its customers, and keeps P1 Group ahead of the competition.

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