View Full Version : Plasma torch question.
07-25-2010, 11:51 AM
I was under the impression that you had to maintain some standoff unless you had a drag type tip. I am cutting some rings from an elliptical vessel that is about 0.100 thick. So one needs to move fairly fast to get the best cut. That is easier to do by dragging the tip.
So I went to the welding supply that I bought the Hypertherm 45 from and they were not much help. I came home and proceeded to make about a 3 ft long cut and everything worked great. When I tried to make the next cut it wouldn’t cut.
Wound up putting a new electrode in and everything worked again.
1. Is there a different drag type tip?
2. How is the electrode constructed? Is the first one repairable or is it toss able?
07-25-2010, 12:15 PM
You can drag just about any tip 30 amps and under. Past that point you need the standoff tip. The one for hypertherm looks like a cone with a castle like structure wher it contacts the metal. Look in your manual. There should be a diagram showing all the tips available.
07-25-2010, 12:17 PM
Plasma torch tips are generally considered consumable items. If it was a fairly new tip before you made the cut, the tip may have become fouled with some slag and you might be able to clean it. Hard to say though without seeing it. How dry is the air to your plasma cutter? Moisture in the air can and will dramatically increase the wear on your torch tips and the humidity around here has been very high for several weeks.
Hypertherm doesn't list a drag tip for your machine, so I think you should be fine with your method. http://www.hypertherm.com/en/Products_and_Services/Manual_Plasma/powermax45.jsp?#tc I've done it several times with my Powmax380 which is smaller than your machine and also does not have a drag tip.
07-25-2010, 04:00 PM
I have a Hypertherm and drag the tip all the time. Yes, the tip will eventually wear out but as long as I start my cut on an angle (so slag doesn't spit back into the tip), I can cut by dragging all day long.
Every now and then I give the tip a quick rub with the leather portion of my gloves just to keep the trash build-up to a minimum.
07-25-2010, 04:31 PM
The drag tip is part #1 in the diagram. Its is actually a drag shield and is electrically insulated from the nozzle. With this you can drag at any current.
If you are using unshielded parts then you can drag at under 30 amps.