Tips for Using a Plasma Cutter

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Plasma cutting is a precious tool for getting quick, precise cuts in steel, aluminum, or stainless. This is done through the use of plasma cutters that mix a high-pressure air or gas flow with an electric arc. The heat could get to a temperature of up to 40,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Below are some things to keep in mind while using a ESAB plasma cutter:

Safety is Priority

Though plasma cutting is not as bright as welding, you need to proceed like it is. Make sure you wear flame-retardant clothing and hair covering. Put on glasses #5 eye protection and work in a safe location. Be familiar with your surroundings. Remember that the heat and light can be great, and you should ensure your safety.

Consumables

In case you notice that your cuts are losing their sharpness, you may have to replace some or all of the parts that compose the cutting head. Mostly, this will consist of a heat shield, contact tip, insulators, nozzle, and offset tool. It’s wise that you check the availability of the said consumables as you purchase your Everlast Powerplasma 50s cutter. Get a new model with a hassle-free process for ordering parts.

The Importance of Moisture

Plasma cutters need clean, dry air in order to function properly. Moisture is the main cause of parts turning bad. There are a few things you can do to stall the effects of moisture, and restrict it to a bare minimum. Give 25 – 30 feet of line going from the air compressor to the moisture trap. The moisture trap will work more efficiently if the air has an opportunity to cool first. Read more here as well: http://www.ehow.com/how_7629565_set-up-plasma-cutter.html.

Buy an air drier that makes use of silica gel to bring out moisture from the air. Get two, in fact – they are cheap. These could be installed at the compressor and at the water trap to stretch the life of your consumables. The air driers themselves are easier and less expensive to replace than the plasma cutter parts.

Cutting Speed

You have to cut at the correct speed. If you’re new to plasma cutting, it might take you a number of tries to dialed it in properly. Among the surest signs is the direction of the sparks as you’re cutting. When you cut too fast, the sparks move towards you. You should take it slow. The sparks and dross have to head to the floor.

The Angle

In most cases, you would be holding the plasma cutter at a 90-degree angle to whatever metal you are cutting. Reaching the end of a cut, pull the angle up a bit to make for a beautifully smooth end of cut. If there’s some dross on your cut’s underside, a small file should take care of that pretty well.

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