Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Royse City, Texas (Dallas area)
    Posts
    859

    Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    Hey all,

    I have a Thermal Dynamics "Drag Gun" Plasma.

    I am to the point of needing to get some consumables for it.

    My LWS does not carry TD supplies.

    I checked ebay and found 100 tips for $165 but don't have the cash for that deal. I also found a pkg of ten on a welding supply place for $5 each plus shipping.

    Where do you guys buy plasma consumables online?

    I need TD
    Tips Part number 9-6504
    Electrode Part number 9-6542

    If your online supplier has them for a decent price, please let me know.

    These things are definitely pricey. I guess I should add in one of each for every job so I can afford to get them when I need them.

    Also, does anyone use any of the "Training wheels" or standoffs with their torches? I cannot keep a good even spacing when cutting. Where do you find them?

    My plasma is a 40 amp. Is there any reason to run it at lower amps? If I am cutting thin material, why would I lower the amps? Would I not just be able to cut faster?

    I see videos of CNC cutters and there is no way I can cut as fast as them even at full power on thin materials. There is a learning curve but there should be a faster, sharper curve for those of us that are just in a big hurry for everything.

    Thanks.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    66

    Re: Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    I'd say the thicker you cut, the quick your consumables get eaten. Keep it turned down and your $$$ parts will last longer.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    3,191

    Re: Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    You should be able to find a dealer for consumables for your T-D unit from Thermadynes web site......

    The two biggest factors that affect consumable life are....piercing too thick for your particular system, and moisture and or oil in the airline. By drag cutting (with your machine)....you will shorten nozzle life. Other plasma torches (Hypertherm in particular) have a shield that isolates the nozzle from the plate you are cutting.....which allows drag cutting without affecting nozzle life.

    Not all plasma systems are the same....hence the difference in speed! Plasma manufacturers produce plasma torches that have output power of from 12 to 1000 amps.....yours is a 40 Amp unit. Other manufacturers have different torch designs that can produce faster speeds at the same power levels......Hypertherm's coaxial assist jet technology (patented on it's Powermax plasma systems) allows for up to 50% faster speeds at the same power level as other brands. Hypertherm Powermax units have the best consumable life as well.....if a nozzle is $5 and lasts for 3500 feet of cut, then it is a better value than a $2 nozzle that only lasts for 200 feet of cutting! Be wary of aftermarket parts that fit your T-D unit...you normally will have better performance with parts produced by T-D.

    Many of the industrial cnc plasma systems that you see use gases other than air for the plasma cutting gas.....on steel, pure oxygen is used....this provides dross free cutting at very high speeds with very nice cut quality. Air plasma's can cut very well on a cnc machine but are no match for oxygen or high definition plasma systems.

    To get the best cut...you need very smooth, stable motion with constant speed. This very difficult to do by hand.......so if you are cutting thin gauge materials reduce the amperage and do your cutting at a slower, manageable speed. Use a straightedge or template to guide the torch and you will ave better results.

    Attached are pictures of cuts made with Hypertherm's Powermax45 (equivalent to your machine) on a PlasmaCam cnc cutting machine.

    Best regards, Jim Colt Hypertherm
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Last edited by jimcolt; 06-23-2009 at 07:51 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Dansville NY
    Posts
    5,141

    Re: Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    Question? Jim I know you are using the PowerMax 45 on the Plasma Cam Table. Are you using an air dryer or oxy on that table as well?
    Co-Own CNC shop:Miller :1251 plasma cutter, MaxStar 700 TIG/Stick, & XMT 456 Multiprocess Welder.& 2 Hypertherm HPR260's Plasma Cutter

    Sorry I had a bad stroke but now I am back.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    3,191

    Re: Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    I am not using an air dryer...just a motor guard filter....and I have an auto drain system on my compressor so I don't get much accumulation of moisture.

    The Powermax45 cannot use oxygen as the plasma gas......none of the powermax series are compatible with oxygen plasma cutting.....you would need to move up to our industrial systems to use the oxygen cutting process.

    Hope your summer (nothing but rain in NH so far) in NY is going well!

    Jim

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Dansville NY
    Posts
    5,141

    Re: Plasma cutter consumables and a few ?'s

    Not much for rain here this year except for the last week and then it poured out. My water falls are really flowing this year. I wasn't sure if you supplementing the air flow some how on your plasma cam 45 system. Certainly looks like the filter and auto drain seem to be doing the job removing moisture from the line.
    Co-Own CNC shop:Miller :1251 plasma cutter, MaxStar 700 TIG/Stick, & XMT 456 Multiprocess Welder.& 2 Hypertherm HPR260's Plasma Cutter

    Sorry I had a bad stroke but now I am back.

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