View Full Version : Plasma Cutting and Setup - talk to me!

05-09-2018, 11:41 AM
im sure there are many many threads of this nature, but hey im going to start a new one ;)

I know nothing about plasma cutting, not something ive ever needed. but I need to cut 3mm aluminium sheet fast and accurately. im not after big an bulky, im after small A3 cutting size and powerful.

im almost tempted to buy a denford microrouter and mod it.

what would I need to cut 3mm aluminium fast and what sort of finish should I expect?

Robin Hewitt
05-09-2018, 11:09 PM
You move to the cut start point, detect the metal surface, back off to pierce height (the molten metal is going to splash back until you are through) burn through, come down to cut height, move away, detect the Voltage across the "flame", adjust the flying height to try and maintain that Voltage/height.

If nothing has changed since I last looked, people assume the only way to achieve a preset cut and pierce height is to put and enormous stepper motor over the torch which makes adjusting the flying height very tricky.

Americans believe that only Hypertherm Finecut torches are worth having and if you don't fit a water table to catch the dust you aren't taking it seriously.

How's that?

06-09-2018, 03:59 PM
Robin has pretty much summed up the basics.
I'll add that you've got to be careful of aluminium fumes, and the main benefit of a water table is dust control. Plasma dust is a akin to saw dust. It gets everywhere!

I've only got a non-CNC plasma cutter, and cut quality is very much dependant on consistency of all the variables, which with CNC you can control quite tightly unlike by hand.

DaveK, or Stirling (at least I think it's Stirling who makes torch height boards...) are probably the best to comment if they're around, as they've got a lot more experience.

A CNC plasma table is on my list of wants, but there are plenty more projects ahead of it.