Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?
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  1. #1
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    Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Howdy all, I'm 13 and have been saving up for a plasma cutter for almost a year now. Doing the occasional odd job, work for parents, washing cars, welding stuff then selling it, and stuff like that. I have $1042 currently saved up in the plasma fund. I've been looking at the Hypertherm Powermax 30XP recently. It costs $1210. Before I buy it, and because I'm coming up on it fast, I was wondering if this is a good machine. I don't want to waste my money and a few months later to be like.... "Well crap, I need to go rent a bigger plasma". Are there any common issues with it? Is the warranty good? Is it sufficient? I will be cutting mostly 3/16" by the way for BBQ's, firepits, and wood stoves. I may cut some 1/2" occasionally, (Every 3 years) to round off corners on a welding table top, or scrap something. Would it be sufficient? I will be staying in a garage with 220 service. Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    ......aaaannnnnd this belongs in the Hypertherm subforum. You must be VERY new if you're wondering if Hypertherm makes good machines.

    Yes, it's awesome. Will cut 1/2. Slowly but it will cut it. It will work fine for your purposes, so long as you have an adequate, clean, dry air supply and suitable 240V dedicated power.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Merrell View Post
    Howdy all, I'm 13 and have been saving up for a plasma cutter for almost a year now. Doing the occasional odd job, work for parents, washing cars, welding stuff then selling it, and stuff like that. I have $1042 currently saved up in the plasma fund. I've been looking at the Hypertherm Powermax 30XP recently. It costs $1210. Before I buy it, and because I'm coming up on it fast, I was wondering if this is a good machine. I don't want to waste my money and a few months later to be like.... "Well crap, I need to go rent a bigger plasma". Are there any common issues with it? Is the warranty good? Is it sufficient? I will be cutting mostly 3/16" by the way for BBQ's, firepits, and wood stoves. I may cut some 1/2" occasionally, (Every 3 years) to round off corners on a welding table top, or scrap something. Would it be sufficient? I will be staying in a garage with 220 service. Thanks
    It would be a fine machine to start with but if it were me, I'd still be saving for a PM45 as you will be limited with the 30 and 3/8" is about the limit with that machine IMO. It will do fine in your application but the cut rate will be quite slow. I don't know price differences between the two machines but stronger is always better to me.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Hypertherm is definitely the wise choice, THE ONLY ONE TO BUY !!! Even though the 30XP will serve your needs NOW , being a young guy I agree on saving a little longer. As mentioned by Slob wait a little longer and get the 45 XP. That could very possibly be the last one you'll buy .
    There are many posts about deciding oh the 30 or 45 here. My local supplier has about $530.00 difference between the two.

    Hypertherm Powermax 30xp Plasma System NEW MODEL In STOCK! $1,214.00

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  5. #5
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    It's a great plasma cutter. No need to worry about anything.
    You will need to save up some cash for extra consumables as they do wear out and a nice air dryer. Hypertherm has a great air filtration kit.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    I think I will go with the 30XP just because I need it relatively soon for some "important" projects thanks for the advice and I will seriously consider it!

  7. #7
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    BTW, I don't have a welder that will weld over 3/8......... yet

  8. #8
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    I have been very happy with mine so far.

    I too was on a budget so went with the 30XP, but I do have a really nice torch set with a half dozen tips so anything 3/8" and beyond I use the torch. Thus far it has done everything I could want.

    The shop I a currently sub-contracting at has a couple of Powermax 85's and a couple of older Powermax 1000's. The shop likes them for everything because they are fast and the apprentices find it easy to operate, (turn it on, adjust for thickness and pull the trigger).

    Maybe I am old school but I like a properly tuned oxy/acetylene torch for 3/8" and thicker.
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  9. #9
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Merrell View Post
    I think I will go with the 30XP just because I need it relatively soon for some "important" projects thanks for the advice and I will seriously consider it!
    Maybe consider getting a short term loan from MA and PA .

  10. #10
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Merrell View Post
    Howdy all, I'm 13 and have been saving up for a plasma cutter for almost a year now. Doing the occasional odd job, work for parents, washing cars, welding stuff then selling it, and stuff like that. I have $1042 currently saved up in the plasma fund. I've been looking at the Hypertherm Powermax 30XP recently. It costs $1210. Before I buy it, and because I'm coming up on it fast, I was wondering if this is a good machine. I don't want to waste my money and a few months later to be like.... "Well crap, I need to go rent a bigger plasma". Are there any common issues with it? Is the warranty good? Is it sufficient? I will be cutting mostly 3/16" by the way for BBQ's, firepits, and wood stoves. I may cut some 1/2" occasionally, (Every 3 years) to round off corners on a welding table top, or scrap something. Would it be sufficient? I will be staying in a garage with 220 service. Thanks
    Sorry, but in my opinion, I would spend my money on a good inexpensive Chinese machine. First, at 13 you’re mind is changing very fast. What you want today may change tomorrow. FWIW, I have the have the 30xp, but I also have a very nice Lotus 50 amp machine that blows the 30xp away. In addition the Lotus was under $400 to my door.

    With the money you save, you can easily buy a nice 140 amp mig welder for about $400 and STILL have money in the bank. You need to remember you’re not a professional by any means and you won’t be using the 30XP even close to the amount the pros do.

    I hate to say, and frankly, I don’t give a damn, but too many people on this and any forum, have very little regard to actually offering the information you “need” rather than what you “want”.

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  11. #11
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Hypertherm might be the one to buy, but it's the S**Ts to try to sell one of the larger machine.I could of sold ten Esab's or Thermal dynamics in the time it take to unload one larger Hypertherm machines..(without taking a huge loss that is)
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  12. #12
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    That maybe a good idea, but I want the best of the best
    Last edited by Keith Merrell; 01-08-2017 at 10:18 PM.

  13. #13
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Keith,

    I am not a welder. I am a Dad who helped my son find some good equipment. For the past couple years, I helped him track down some good equipment at very low prices. So, I may not be able to tell you what direction to go or what to buy, but can offer some fatherly advice and ideas on how to get where you need to be.

    For example, buying new to get what we wanted wasn’t an option. Between the local Craigslist and eBay, we did quite well.

    1) We picked up a used Norhern Tools Klutch 375 plasma cutter for $200. Had an internal air leak and PO didn’t want to mess with it. We took a chance. 25 cents worth of hose and it worked like a champ. New price would have been $695+tax. Savings-$495+

    Later traded it for a full-sized Oxy/Acet rig with bottles, gauges, cutting torch and lots of tips.

    2) Picked up a Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 42 (no torch) for $200. Seller had loaned his torch to his brother in law, who has since moved out of state. We took a chance. Found a torch on eBay for $200. OEM consumables are dirt cheap! Works like a champ! Total cost $400.

    3) Picked up a Hypertherm 45 (no torch) for $400. Still under warranty. Haven’t found a torch for it yet (because I am cheap) but will find one soon and can test it out thoroughly before the warranty expires. No rush. I don’t plan on spending over $250 on a torch.

    Reason for not buying a torch is that we are interested a plasma table and the 45 would make a good starter plasma. So, if I run across a cheap table, I will buy a machine torch. Otherwise I will get and hand torch (which can be adapted for CNC table use).

    That’s how we got where we are today.

    I looked back through your prior posts to get an idea of what types of information you are seeking. From that review, I can say you are way ahead of your years in knowledge and ask some good questions.

    From your prior posts, I also see that,

    1) You have been struggling with the best plasma option (currently focusing on Hypertherm 30XP/45).
    2) You also are interested in a CNC table.

    Achieving both goals requires focusing on what you NEED, not what you WANT. Big difference!

    So, if you will allow me to set up some scenarios for consideration:

    Hand Cutting
    If you plan on mainly hand cutting with plasma (3/8” and under with occasional ½”) there are lots of options. Here are two considerations:

    1) Do you have, or have access to oxy/acetylene rig?
    In addition to handling cutting (at much higher thicknesses than you are considering), oxy/acetylene offers the ability to preheat, bend, braze, solder, weld, etc. Lots of utility and value, and removes the need to purchase a plasma with more cut capacity than you generally NEED.

    2) Do you NEED 110/220 capability on the plasma cutter?
    That decision will determine which plasma machines fit your needs.

    Answering 1 and 2 will help you plot out your NEEDS. If buying used is an option, you can get some good deals on a brand name machine. OR, as has been previously mentioned, you may find a low-cost import unit that meets your specs at a really low price ($400 new – even less used). Then, keep saving up so you can keep an eye out for the plasma that best meets your future NEEDS.

    Plasma Table
    If a plasma table is in your near future, it can influence your purchase decision. Although a lot of guys are doing great work with various brands of plasma cutters, looks to me that for those of us just getting started, it is hard to beat Hypertherm. These guys breath, eat and sleep plasma. On the other hand, also consider other brand name options like the Victor (Thermal Dynamics) Cutmaster 42, 53, 82 etc. I see lots of these pop up used at great prices

    I recently ran across a Hypertherm 45 (still under warranty) with both hand and machine torch for $900. Too far for me to drive and seller didn’t want to mess with shipping. Super deal if I could have gotten to it. Sold that same day. On those deals you gotta watch close and move fast.

    Of course, in the end it depends on your brand loyalty, budget, risk/reward of buying new (higher cost but with warranty and dealer support) versus used (lower cost but Buyer-Beware).


    Keep doing research and asking good questions.

    Dan

  14. #14
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    No oxy acetylene rig, no need for 110, (Although it would be a cool feature), what do I NEED, in reality, the 30XP.

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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by fps View Post
    Sorry, but in my opinion, I would spend my money on a good inexpensive Chinese machine. First, at 13 you’re mind is changing very fast. What you want today may change tomorrow. FWIW, I have the have the 30xp, but I also have a very nice Lotus 50 amp machine that blows the 30xp away. In addition the Lotus was under $400 to my door.

    With the money you save, you can easily buy a nice 140 amp mig welder for about $400 and STILL have money in the bank. You need to remember you’re not a professional by any means and you won’t be using the 30XP even close to the amount the pros do.

    I hate to say, and frankly, I don’t give a damn, but too many people on this and any forum, have very little regard to actually offering the information you “need” rather than what you “want”.

    Pete
    oh I would love to hear this......please enlighten us

    Lets get him started on the right foot. If he buys a quality machine he won't have to sell it to get something better later down the line. Lots of people would agree get the best you can afford and only have to make the purchase once.

    Save up your money, get the hypertherm. Get some work rolling in and save your money for the next purchase and keep it going. By the time you are 16 or 17 you will have some really nice toys.
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  16. #16
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Merrell View Post
    That maybe a good idea, but I want the best of the best
    I thought your original but deleted quote was the best about who to support and why & why not. Shows character is what I thought.
    Slob

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  17. #17
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    I agree with GAMBLE . I said the same thing, buy quality and it will give him years of service until he's old and gray.

    The only advantage to the cheap import junk is you'll always have a current model because they don't last that long. If you cannot afford the good stuff then buy what you think will work and can afford. You might be able to buy a whole shop at harbor freight for $1,000.00.

  18. #18
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    I think I will go with the Powermax 30XP, after all, I just washed a few cars and made $15! Oh man....... SO CLOSE!!!!Only need $153 more!

  19. #19
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by BD1 View Post
    I agree with GAMBLE . I said the same thing, buy quality and it will give him years of service until he's old and gray.
    Now I feel picked on. I'm old and gray and have the same welding/cutting equipment I started collecting in 1977 as a teenager. All good stuff and not a bit of what would be considered Chinese garbage. What I did purchase was good equipment and it's stood the test of time. I'm not one that requires new as don't really care about anything like bragging rights; just want equipment that works first time, every time within reason. Get my plug in for my 1957 Hobart welder being my "go to" machine with my 1965 Hobart welder being it's backup. Those weren't new yesterday but operate just as good today as when new. Just good equipment which has stood the test of time very well with reasonable maintenance.

    If this kiddo springs for better equipment via a temp or supplemental loan from parents, (whom I'm certain will go along given he's already dedicated his ambitions to an acquisition through savings at a young age) he will be very happy with the equipment for a lot of years till ready to upgrade.
    Slob

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    Oh yeah, also an unabashed internet "Troll" too.....

  20. #20
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gamble View Post
    oh I would love to hear this......please enlighten us
    Sorry! What was I thinking......Making a suggestion to a 13 year old.
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  21. #21
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Get the 30xp AIR. Has a built in air compressor!!! No need to run a compressor or air line to it!!


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  22. #22
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by fps View Post
    Sorry, but in my opinion, I would spend my money on a good inexpensive Chinese machine. First, at 13 you’re mind is changing very fast. What you want today may change tomorrow. FWIW, I have the have the 30xp, but I also have a very nice Lotus 50 amp machine that blows the 30xp away. In addition the Lotus was under $400 to my door.

    With the money you save, you can easily buy a nice 140 amp mig welder for about $400 and STILL have money in the bank. You need to remember you’re not a professional by any means and you won’t be using the 30XP even close to the amount the pros do.

    I hate to say, and frankly, I don’t give a damn, but too many people on this and any forum, have very little regard to actually offering the information you “need” rather than what you “want”.

    Pete
    "Lotus" plasma cutter? Under $400 bucks? Thats better them the 30xp??


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  23. #23
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    I sold my 30xp and upgraded to the 45xp and Im very happy with it. 30xp was great and did most everything I needed the 45xp just does it better and faster. The built in filter on the 45xp seems to be greatly improving my cut quality.

  24. #24
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    It's actually exciting to me to see a young man starting out looking to get the best equipment he can afford. And the fact that he's been saving for so long to get it makes it even better.

    My advice, don't compromise. Keep saving and get what you want. You won't be disappointed with any of the Hypertherm machines. They eat, sleep and breathe quality. It's a tool you'll be able to use for years and when you're ready to step up they have a great resale on them (at least the smaller machines do...). In my area they are getting 80% of retail for 5 year old machines that look like they have been stored in the back of a truck in the rain. It's ridiculous. And that's the reason I buy all of my stuff new. If you can find a decent deal on a used one in good shape near you it's a smart move. Otherwise keep saving and get the one you want.

    I will say though if you are planning to do the CNC table sooner rather than later the 45 would be a better choice. People are using the 30xp for tables but you have to hack into the wires to get it to work. The 45xp can be run with a machine torch which gives you more options.

    Post some pics of you and your work to prove you're legit along with a go fund me link and I'll kick you $50 to help your cause. I'd like to see you go with a 45XP personally. The 30 will work for now but the 45 is a better machine all around.
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  25. #25
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    Re: Hypertherm Powermax 30XP?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ovrrdrive View Post
    It's actually exciting to me to see a young man starting out looking to get the best equipment he can afford. And the fact that he's been saving for so long to get it makes it even better.

    My advice, don't compromise. Keep saving and get what you want. You won't be disappointed with any of the Hypertherm machines. They eat, sleep and breathe quality. It's a tool you'll be able to use for years and when you're ready to step up they have a great resale on them (at least the smaller machines do...). In my area they are getting 80% of retail for 5 year old machines that look like they have been stored in the back of a truck in the rain. It's ridiculous. And that's the reason I buy all of my stuff new. If you can find a decent deal on a used one in good shape near you it's a smart move. Otherwise keep saving and get the one you want.

    I will say though if you are planning to do the CNC table sooner rather than later the 45 would be a better choice. People are using the 30xp for tables but you have to hack into the wires to get it to work. The 45xp can be run with a machine torch which gives you more options.

    Post some pics of you and your work to prove you're legit along with a go fund me link and I'll kick you $50 to help your cause. I'd like to see you go with a 45XP personally. The 30 will work for now but the 45 is a better machine all around.
    I'm in too for $50.00.
    Slob

    Purveyor of intimate unparalleled knowledge of nothing about everything.

    Oh yeah, also an unabashed internet "Troll" too.....

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