Precision Plasma includes precision cut slots in their rail system to allow you to slide slats in and form the platform for your material. Slats are not included which saves on shipping costs and allows you to source them from a local steel supplier.
At this point we could simply
install slats and be ready to cut,
but we wanted a water table.
No problem because Precision
Plasma designed their table to
easily accept a custom water
Precision Plasma supplies detailed cad plans for building your water table. They give you a couple of options in the plans. You can use angle iron and a bottom welded to the angle to form a pan or if you have the ability or resources in your area you can have a 5 x 10 sheet formed into a pan with slat holders built in.
We did not want to have to weld such a large are as the base would be to from the pan so we opted for using the 5 x 10 sheet formed into a pan. While the plans called for plasma or laser cut slat holders to be cut into the sheet then to have the sheet formed into a pan, no one in our area had the capabilities to do the cutting an bending on a 5 x 10 sheet of 1/8 steel.
So we opted for a variation on Precision Plasmas design. We were able to find a steel yard about 150 miles away that could bend the sheet and form it into a basic pan. We then welded in the slat spacers made from 1.5 angle.
1/8 plate 104 x 52 x 3.5 inches
These 1.5 x 1.5 inch 1/8 angle cut to 2.81 inches will be used to form the slat spacers. 68 are needed to line the table which will give 3 inch on center slat spacing using a gap of .19 inches and using 1/8 flat stock slats.
The plans from Precision Plasma show mounting the .5 angle on the floor of the pan but we changed their design for a couple of reasons.
The plans called for 3.5 x 1/8 angle for the slats. Our local steel supplier wanted nearly $40 each for a 20 foot piece of 3.5 x 1/8 flat stock. We would need Nine of them to complete the table. $360 for slats was not going to work with our budget. Now or in the future with replacements……
We found that for what ever reason 2.5 inch slats were about $15 each. Very expensive inch. So we came up with the plan to raise the angle off the floor of the pan to provide more support across the center of the slat. We placed ½ square tube on the base of the pan to act as a riser and to allow the cutting fluid a better flow path. It also worked to maintain a consistant slat height across the table. Then we added a support in the center of the table to lock the slats into place.