A model is derived for waterjet cutting of soft materials. These are low shear strength materials such as leather, soft woods, rubber, and some plastics. The model is based on the deflection of the jet within the material and an assumed erosion process. This model is able to describe the depth of cut obtainable in a material with given cut parameters, as well as the surface finish obtainable at any depth in the cut. Results of tests on the model are presented from which two empirical constants are derived. The complete model is then tested with different cut parameters. Finally data on surface finish is presented and compared to results predicted by the model.

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