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Thread: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

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    What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    I am in the market for a plasma cutter and my budget is roughly $500.

    What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?
    How well do the consumables hold up?

    Not looking for a cheap POS that is going to give me trouble down the road.

    Thanks,

    LoneStar

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    when you stop dreaming or increase your budget youll be on the right track..lol
    Of all the things I lost I miss my mind the most...
    I know just enough about everything to be dangerous......
    You cant cure stupid..only kill it...

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Cutmaster 42

    Order it today from Zoro Tools and get 25% off making it $863.

    http://www.zoro.com/victor-thermal-d...Q&gclsrc=aw.ds

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    For that budget, Craigslist
    Tiger Sales: AHP Distributor www.tigersalesco.com
    AHP200x; AHP 160ST; MM350P, Spoolmatic 30A; Everlast PowerTig 185; Thermal Dynamics 60i plasma.
    For Sale: Cobra Mig 250 w/ Push-pull gun. Lincoln Wirematic 250

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    craigslist OXY cutting is in your future. your $500 budget and list of requirement sounds like a Diddy backstage rider. So no plasma cutter for you. Do you even have a big compressor with a new or fully serviced dryer and water separator?

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by LoneStar View Post
    I am in the market for a plasma cutter and my budget is roughly $500.

    What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?
    How well do the consumables hold up?

    Not looking for a cheap POS that is going to give me trouble down the road.

    Thanks,

    LoneStar
    Stick to your budget. It is VERY possible to get a decent plasma cutter for that price.

    Others here can laff, but a few years ago I bought the older blue Harbor Freight plasma cutter...Then I hunted down mechanic 416 and bought consumables from him including circle cutter for it....The machine really performed well for me...never the first problem...I used it several times to cut 1/2" HRS, but usually thinner.

    I got a bug up my butt and bought first the Hypertherm 30, then added the Hypertherm 45 and gave the HF cutter to some kids in the hood that were into big mud trucks...They still use it with no problems.

    I've heard good and bad about the newer Harbor Freight plasma, but I can only attest to my experience with the older blue unit and it was all good.

    Friend, I'm the first to tell you plasma is cool to work with, but also the first to say that a good ole gas torch burning oxy/propane is usually all a guy needs to cut steel....I have both because they both have their best to offer depending on what's needed....Oxy/fuel will never go out of style because plasma simply can't heat and bend and braze, or easily go out in the boonies with you like gas can.

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by wornoutoldwelder View Post
    Friend, I'm the first to tell you plasma is cool to work with, but also the first to say that a good ole gas torch burning oxy/propane is usually all a guy needs to cut steel....I have both because they both have their best to offer depending on what's needed....Oxy/fuel will never go out of style because plasma simply can't heat and bend and braze, or easily go out in the boonies with you like gas can.
    Good observation you old super-swabbie.
    Jerry
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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by storeman View Post
    Good observation you old super-swabbie.
    Jerry
    And it makes one of the most versatile welders aluminum included, people forget oxy acetylene welded a lot of this country, me included, plasma cutters are way overated, to inaccurate by hand unless close is good enough

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by pat h View Post
    , plasma cutters are way overated, to inaccurate by hand unless close is good enough
    That little light plasma torch takes some getting used to......It's super easy to forever etch in metal your bobbles and wiggles, huh? A gas torch is much heavier and less prone to wandering when you twitch.

    It really helps to get a plasma torch setup that allows you to drag the tip....Even possible with the HF unit with right consumables.(mechanic416)

    I've learned best bet for me is to use a pattern or straight edge when cutting with plasma....plasma seems more sensitive to speed and standoff over gas....Using a guide removes just one variable where the the remaining ones are challenge enuff.

    Don't get me wrong-I love plasma...I just hate that I often ain't good nuff to use it the best it is capable of being.

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Worn out welder I agree with your last paragraph, 100%, me either, same with a torch anymore,

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by soutthpaw View Post
    For that budget, Craigslist
    I can vouch for Craigslist. I only paid $40 for my plasma cutter! Granted it had been crushed under a truck on a lift and took 3 months to rebuild, but after parts it only cost $120 total.
    My "collection":

    Homemade Stick Welder
    Victor O/A Torch
    AC 225
    Ideal Arc 250

    HF 90 Amp Flux Core
    HF Mig 170
    Solar 2020 Plasma Cutter
    Power i-Mig 140E
    Harris O/A torch
    HF Dual Mig 131
    140ST
    Alpha Tig 200x

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by LoneStar View Post
    I am in the market for a plasma cutter and my budget is roughly $500.

    What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?
    How well do the consumables hold up?

    Not looking for a cheap POS that is going to give me trouble down the road.

    Thanks,

    LoneStar
    http://www.harborfreight.com/240-vol...lay-62204.html
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    Hypertherm Powermax45
    2015 AHP Tig
    Razorweld 195 Mig
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    ViperMig 180
    Razorweld, Vipercut/Vipermig, SSC Foot Pedal & MK Products & Atlas Positioner Dealer

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    When it comes to cutting metal, there really ain't no cheap way out...or I would have found it.

    Yaknow, when we first get into welding, we always first consider the cost of the welding machine where we buy whatever we can afford....THEN we discover the metal we want to weld needs to be first cut.....so perhaps we get a cheap grinder with a thin cutoff wheel and/or maybe a hacksaw....and it's THEN we discover just how hard it is to cut metal accurately and cheaply, just so we can weld it up.

    I'll tell you right now the biggest investment I ever made, and continue to make, is in how to cut metal before I weld it. Plus grind and shape it. Plus clean it.

    I just tonight dropped over 3K buying a horizontal bandsaw and clamp just so I could cut metal accurately...Plus I have another 1K in grinders and disks and table clamps easy...And I bytched cause I paid 1500 for my mig, and 3K for my tig, and another 1 or 2K for gas bottles...Just so I could weld up stuff....Stuff that first had to be cut and sized and ground and cleaned and handled before I could make the first arc.

    So ok, let's total it up....I got over 3K in plasma and gas cutting crap....Plus another 1 or 2K in grinding/shaping stuff. PLUS another 3K in just a bandsaw....but on the welding end I got maybe the same-no, not near the same.....so ok, cutting proves to be just as expensive or more as welding when it is done right, and can go much higher when you figure in notchers and rollers and other fab stuff.

    If you are serious about welding, then calculate that cutting equipment will cost the same as welding equipment or more....and take up more space....and make more noise...and use more electricity....and take more time.
    Last edited by wornoutoldwelder; 11-04-2015 at 01:03 AM.

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    The Eastwood Versa Cut40 is listed at around $550 but is only advertised to cut 3/8". The Cut60 goes to 7/8" but also jumps to $699 ($679 at CJ Pony Sales).

    http://www.eastwood.com/versa-cut-60...parent_id=5571

    I just bought a Versa Cut60 and it's a pretty nice machine. I haven't used it over the 30 amp setting yet but it has blown through everything I've put under it.

    For $500 and 1/2" you might end up looking at used cutters. I've watched for months around and there haven't been any used ones for sale at all. You might get lucky in your area though.
    Millermatic 180

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Thanks for all of the feedback. I took some of the advice on here and was able to get a gas torch set up for almost nothing. This will make due until I can increase my budget for a decent plasma cutter.

    Best Regards,

    Lonestar

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by roadkillbobb View Post
    when you stop dreaming or increase your budget youll be on the right track..lol
    Man ain't that the truth, must have wondered over from the GJ, lots of beer pocketbooks & with Champaign taste hang there.
    Magazines have issues, everything else has problems

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by roadkillbobb View Post
    when you stop dreaming or increase your budget youll be on the right track..lol
    Isn't this the truth!!! If this were so,everyone and their dog would have one.HaHaHaHaHa

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    I wish I could purchase stuff for what people think it should cost.....gona plant me some money trees in the spring.$$$$$$$$$$$$
    Of all the things I lost I miss my mind the most...
    I know just enough about everything to be dangerous......
    You cant cure stupid..only kill it...

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Everlast has a 50amp plasma/200amp tig combo for $650 on amazon supposed to cut up to 3/4"

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Jasic Razorweld is selling some pretty nice units at reasonable prices.

    Saw some real budget friendly machines in their display at Fabtech. The company officers are first rate. Three year industry standard warranty, no games or BS posts on Internet forums. Just a decent product for the money. Sure, their Chicom machines, but the guys running the company struck me as some decent stand up dudes not trying to bullshlt anyone or scream at the top of their lungs how much better their product is over the "other" guys.

    Dan from Razorweld posts here once in awhile. I've met him twice in person. I would give him my business.

    Hoping to pick up one of their stick machines to demo at some point soon.
    Last edited by 7A749; 11-16-2015 at 11:23 PM.

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilBunny View Post
    Everlast has a 50amp plasma/200amp tig combo for $650 on amazon supposed to cut up to 3/4"
    No, Just no. Do not buy a combo machine with built in plasma.
    Tiger Sales: AHP Distributor www.tigersalesco.com
    AHP200x; AHP 160ST; MM350P, Spoolmatic 30A; Everlast PowerTig 185; Thermal Dynamics 60i plasma.
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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by 7A749 View Post
    Jasic Razorweld is selling some pretty nice units at reasonable prices.

    Saw some real budget friendly machines in their display at Fabtech. The company officers are first rate. Three year industry standard warranty, no games or BS posts on Internet forums. Just a decent product for the money. Sure, their Chicom machines, but the guys running the company struck me as some decent stand up dudes not trying to bullshlt anyone or scream at the top of their lungs how much better their product is over the "other" guys.

    Dan from Razorweld posts here once in awhile. I've met him twice in person. I would give him my business.

    Hoping to pick up one of their stick machines to demo at some point soon.
    PM Gamble, he is pretty familiar with razorweld product line
    Tiger Sales: AHP Distributor www.tigersalesco.com
    AHP200x; AHP 160ST; MM350P, Spoolmatic 30A; Everlast PowerTig 185; Thermal Dynamics 60i plasma.
    For Sale: Cobra Mig 250 w/ Push-pull gun. Lincoln Wirematic 250

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by soutthpaw View Post
    PM Gamble, he is pretty familiar with razorweld product line
    Yeah, we hooked up at Fabtech. I'll prolly get with him with what I have in mind when I'm ready and see what his thoughts are.

    I'm not saying by far I know everything there is to know about Razorweld, but I was thoroughly impressed with the guys I met both times in Chicago. They just seemed like real straight shooting dudes who put a lot of their own personal time and money into bringing their machines to the US. I believe they have been selling Jasic for some time in AUS and NZ.

    I've never been a big fan of the Chinese stuff, but I have come to see that if you get the right ppl selling it, it's not a bad value at all for the money and when you get stand up guys running the sales end of things and standing behind their product, it takes a great deal of the "Mailorder Mayhem" as Terry likes to say and risk out of the equation.

    Reputation alone is a big reason I feel the way I do about certain import sellers. Dan and Chris made a point of telling me they had invested considerably in this and didn't wanna fall on their faces right out of the gate. They have a lot riding on this from what they said. They wanted to do things right.

    Makes me more than willing to give them a shot.

    IMHO of course

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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    I sure hope the Jasic line is a lot better then it was 5 years ago
    www.georgesplasmacuttershop.com
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    Re: What is a budget friendly quality plasma cutter that can cut at least 1/2"?

    Quote Originally Posted by wornoutoldwelder View Post
    Friend, I'm the first to tell you plasma is cool to work with, but also the first to say that a good ole gas torch burning oxy/propane is usually all a guy needs to cut steel....I have both because they both have their best to offer depending on what's needed....Oxy/fuel will never go out of style because plasma simply can't heat and bend and braze, or easily go out in the boonies with you like gas can.
    Excellent point. And you can cut pretty darn well with oxy/fuel, too, if you take time to practice. About a month ago I was watching an old-timer cut some 3/8" plate with a plain vanilla oxy/acetylene rig. I swear that cut was smooth as butter, and there was maybe 1/16" of slag on the underside, almost none. He has no use for a plasma cutter.
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