When it comes to getting the cleanest cut using your WaterJet machine, the orifice plays a crucial role. The orifice is a small part that absorbs much of the abrasion from the water. It also focuses the water into a very thin stream which ultimately pierces the material. There are different types of orifices in the WaterJet industry. Diamond, being the hardest material (10 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness) and also able to withstand thermal changes, is the number one choice. The only drawback is that a diamond orifice is costly to stock in inventory. They range from $450-$600 and the product life averages over 1000 operating hours.
Two great alternatives to the diamond orifice are the ruby and sapphire orifices. These two types of minerals fall under the same family of minerals. Corundum measures a hardness level of 9-9.5 mohs. Although the difference may seem insignificant, the quality of the diamond is far better. In contrast, Ruby and Sapphire Orifices are not as reliable as they last on average 50 hours. Each of these two alternatives adds a minimal expense of only $60-100.