Designing Your Products for Pricing Efficiency

Table of Contents

Getting the most out of your laser cut or waterjet cut order is a valuable skill when ordering machined parts online. Especially when you’re a business who needs to create 100k parts, efficiency and saving money are a big deal. Using a laser cutting company that can bulk cut parts is a start, but you can increase your efficiency in pricing by adjusting your designs long before they get to us. 

Whether it’s for your business or a personal project, maximizing your budget allows you to design mind-blowing products and parts without breaking the bank. We’re going to show you how to design your parts for efficiency in pricing to do just that, with everything from materials to how to get a SendCutSend discount code.

Alternative Materials

Choosing the correct material for your project is one of the most important aspects of maximizing your budget. Everyone loves high strength 7075 aluminum or Grade 5 Titanium, but not every single project requires such high tensile strength or the price tag that comes with it. Many multi-purpose, generic parts with applications in everything from robotics to the medical field can be designed with a more cost effective alternative.

SendCutSend offers a range of high quality materials at a variety of price points. Some of our best and most affordable alternatives are:

Image of 4 SendCutSend laser guns cut in different materials

Inner Geometry and File Setup

Another important part of designing parts for pricing efficiency is keeping the number of pierce points in the design low. The “pierce point” is where the laser enters or re-enters the material to cut out internal geometry. A cost-effective, simple design has few pierce points, minimizing the amount of separate pieces of geometry the laser has to cut out. 

Illustration of a square part with 40 holes next to a square part with 100 holes to show which one is better for pricing efficiency

Ensuring that the designs of your inner geometry are simple can help keep costs low as well. The more time the laser has to spend cutting complicated designs, the higher the cost per part will be. This means complicated shapes and cutouts like perforated patterns, such as a speaker grille, intricate floral designs, and thin bridging will increase costs and the designs have a higher potential of burning out and getting lost in the machining process. 

Image of a grate with simple inner geometry compared to the same grate with more complicated inner geometry

Part of keeping the file simple is making sure that your parts are not pre-nested. “Pre-nesting” is the act of putting multiple parts in one file. It may seem counterintuitive, but pre-nesting your parts like this will cost you more money than uploading one part per file. When you upload one part per file, you’ll be able to take advantage of our quantity discounts that start as soon as you order more than one of the same part. Ordering 50 of the same part can give you a 50% discount. This also allows us to nest your parts for the laser cutter in a way that minimizes material waste and directly saves you money on your order.

Illustration of two different parts in two different files next to an illustration of all those parts copied and put together in one file

The best way to make sure your parts are designed for pricing efficiency and simplicity is to follow our design guidelines for each material (available on the individual material page) and machining process.

Exterior Geometry

Keeping the outer dimensions of your part small will help keep per part costs low. Large parts that require a lot of material and space are inherently more expensive, so we recommend keeping all your designs smaller than 28” on the largest dimension. The total material used in these large designs adds significantly to the area cost of the part, but they also take a longer time to machine than smaller, simpler parts. This increases the amount of time the laser or waterjet cutter spends on just one part, and longer machining times also increase the cost per part. 

If you have a large part that needs to be of a certain size, such as a business sign, we recommend splitting the largest pieces into smaller parts and fixturing them together to achieve a larger size. Keep in mind this is our recommendation for pricing efficiency, but offer instant quoting on parts up to 44” in one axis if your design requires that sizing.

Outside of the material conservation benefits, a large order of the same small parts will once again allow you to take advantage of the quantity discounts that you wouldn’t get with one large part. These quantity discounts apply to parts in any of our many machining and post-processing services, like waterjet cutting, powder coating, and bending.

Image of the SendCutSend quantity discount screen with an aluminum part in front of it

Getting a SendCutSend Discount Code

The last way to save money on your order is with a SendCutSend discount code. We send out discount codes to our mailing list for everything from holidays to adding new services, and they’ll knock a significant amount off your final order cost. These discount codes are exclusive to our mailing list members, however, so be sure to join the mailing list to be first in line for the best SendCutSend discounts. 

Image of someone with tattoos on a laptop getting ready to upload their file for instant quoting with a SendCutSend discount code.

We want to see your designs, projects, and businesses succeed with SendCutSend, so we’ll make sure you’re able to get the most out of your order. Following these recommendations and making sure that your parts fit within our guidelines will help you maximize your budget for a successful project. 

Once you’re ready, just upload your files to our instant quote tool. Most parts ship within 2-4 business days!

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Upload your CAD design or use our parts builder and get a free instant quote on your custom laser cut parts, all delivered to your door in a matter of days.
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We proudly use hardware by PEM

Flush Standoff, 4-40, .250" Zinc plus Clear Chromate

Aluminum: 5052, 6061, 7075 Steel: Mild, G30

Thread Size4-40 x .250″
Hole size in sheet (+0.003/-.0.000).168″
Minimum sheet thickness0.040″
Maximum sheet thickness.125″
Fastener materialSteel
Minimum distance hole C/L to edge0.230″
When determining the distance between two or more fasteners, you can calculate the distance by the formula, C/L to edge + 1/2 the diameter of the second mounting hole..345″
Recommended panel materialSteel/Aluminum
Coating typeZinc
Aluminum material ranges (5052, 6061, 7075)0.040″-0.125″
Steel material ranges (CRS, HRPO, HR)0.048″-0.119″

We proudly use hardware by PEM

Flush Standoff, 4-40, .250" Passivated

Stainless Steel: 304, 316

Thread Size440
Hole size in sheet (+0.003/-.0.000).166″
Minimum sheet thickness0.04″
Maximum sheet thickness.125″
Fastener material400 Stainless Steel
Minimum distance hole C/L to edge0.230″
When determining the distance between two or more fasteners, you can calculate the distance by the formula, C/L to edge + 1/2 the diameter of the second mounting hole. Example shown with x2 of the same hardware..313″
Recommended panel materialStainless Steel
Coating typePassivated
304 Stainless Steel material ranges0.048″-0.125″
316 Stainless Steel material ranges0.060″-0.125″