When you're coming up with the tool list for your dream shop, you'll probably include a waterjet. I know I would, and you likely remember when we wrote about the Wazer waterjet last year. Their Kickstarter project attracted enormous interest, the kind of interest that also gets the attention of the big guys who make the large industrial machines. OMAX, one of those companies, decided maybe they should build something a bit smaller, too, aiming at prototyping, light industry, technical education and all of those makerspaces. They call it ProtoMAX.
... the ProtoMAX delivers 30,000 psi cutting power with a 5 hp pump and can precision cut material under 2” thick of almost any type, from metal to composites, glass to granite, plastic to wood, and more. The ProtoMAX cuts with no heat-affected zone and no change to the material properties.
The ProtoMAX is a compact self-contained unit that sits on casters and can roll through a standard doorway. Power comes from a 240 volt dryer style plug. Everything you need to install and set up the machine to begin cutting comes in one package, including a laptop computer preloaded with the their Intelli-MAX software.
Our Intelli-MAX software was designed exclusively for waterjet and includes features you would expect from most CAD packages. It also features waterjet-specific tools, like cut quality and lead-in/lead-out, which help create the right part the first time.
Intelli-TRACE allows you to take an image from a camera, the web, or just about anywhere else and convert it to a vector drawing. Built-in tools help you get your drawing ready to cut. Go from picture to part without additional software.
The whole unit looks impressive. If you're a builder, it shouldn't take long for you to come up with a few uses for this. For low production, custom or prototype work it would be pretty sweet. This constant downsizing of industrial level tools so smaller shops can acquire them is creating all kinds of opportunities. I like it.
The price of the unit is $19,950 and includes everything you need to get started, maybe a bit steep for most personal shops, but for schools and makerspaces, this should definitely be on the short list.