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plasma cutter recommendations

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  • plasma cutter recommendations

    I'm contemplating YAT (yat another tool) - a
    plasma cutter. Any advice from those already
    familar with the variety of brands out there?
    I end up doing a fair amount of fab on various
    projects (see for
    some samples) and it sure would be nice to
    be able to cut stainless easily.

    Bart Smaalders

    Bart Smaalders

  • #2
    My recomendation is not, I repeat, not to get an ESAB. I'll put it as politely as I can. They suck.

    What ever brand you get, make sure it is rated about 30% larger then you think you'll need. The companies like to stretch thier numbers a little bit!



    • #3
      your comment is interesting!! i too lust for
      one, and, esab was on my list! since i have
      a workshop full of miller equipment, it was
      the first that i looked at! at oskosh, miller had a big tent with all of there stuff
      in it. i watched the miller rep demo several
      units, when i mentioned what i saw to my local welding dist. he said that "that was a
      no-no" unless you wanted to buy a new torch
      every day!to say that they overdid the capacity, would be an understatement. so,
      scratch the miller. a lot of people around
      here like the thermal-dynamics yes the 900
      is a little pricey but it will cut apart ft
      knox! matteo


      • #4
        I have three ESAB wire welders and two ESAB Plasma Arcs. The only problem is buying the ammount of steel ect that I need to play with.


        • #5
          You can never have too big a Plasma cutter, although a smaller one is nice for the dainty **** like car doors. Don't buy crap. Tell the welding distributor he will be wearing it up the wazoo if the recommends the wrong one (they usually tell you about "another" model about then). Do not go to sears for serious welding equipment or any of those other "places".

          Hey Bart, you hosers going to bring out a native code Solarius of the 64 bit AMD Hammer - just to piss off intel and MS?

          BTW - How come all you Sun guys are so ugly and the MS guys are all "pretty boys"?

          [This message has been edited by Thrud (edited 09-11-2002).]


          • #6

            Thanks guys.... I've got a Miller
            MIG welder I really like, and when I did
            welding robot systems at work we always
            used Miller Intelliwelds. I guess I need
            to start haunting the demo tent. That
            Spectrum 625 looks nice w/ 40 A at 140 VDC, 50% duty cycle.

            Thrud scored with:

            > Hey Bart, you hosers going to bring out a
            > native code Solarius of the 64 bit AMD
            > Hammer - just to piss off intel and MS?

            Well, I do have a Hammer machine in the
            lab :-)....

            He was less sucessful with:

            > BTW - How come all you Sun guys are so ugly
            > and the MS guys are all "pretty boys"?

            I guess 'cause where I work the code needs
            to be pretty, not me.

            Bart Smaalders

            Bart Smaalders


            • #7
              I've had a Thermal Dynamics Pak 50 for 3 years now. It is used almost daily at a 50% duty cycle. No problems yet.


              • #8
                I've got a Thermal Dynamics Econo-Pac 50 (bought it used) and am very happy with it, but I have a very dry air supply (2 inline driers and properly set up air lines). I've heard the dry air supply is very critical on the plasma cutters.

                rbregn..... I have an ESAB 250A mig (also bought used) that I love.....have you had problems with the welders or just the plasma cutters???
                NRA Lifetime Member


                • #9
                  Don't let anyone sell you on one of the old style (I have seen some new ones just last month) that use nitrigen and carbon dioxide. The compressed air ones are much faster and no extra gas is needed.


                  • #10
                    I have a enco-pac 50 also. I am very pleased with it. The tips are kind of expensive. Here there are about $11+.

                    Also if you think you will be cutting 3/8 stock get the one rated for 1/2 stock. The machine will cut 1/2 stock but real slow and will burn up a tip in short order.

                    The upper end of the cup that holds the tip on the handle is fragel and will break exposing the contacts. The way that I broke mine, was that I made a circle cutter for the handle and clamped the cup too tight.

                    With all this in mind, I love the machine.

                    By the way are you the one with a steam boat?

                    Sorry about the question. I just clicked on your web page and I see that you do have one.
                    Meet you at Klamath Lake a couple of times.

                    Hope this helps. ---Charlie---

                    [This message has been edited by charlie coghill (edited 09-12-2002).]
                    Don\'t ask me to do a dam thing, I\'m retired.


                    • #11

                      MackeralSlurp's Uniform Code of Ethics (stop laughing!)
                      1) Pucker up and kiss Evil Bills butt.
                      2) Those are not bugs - they are undocumented "features".
                      3) Always remind the customer those "features" have been included at no extra charge.
                      4) Cleverly use consumers to pay to beta test "release" OS.
                      5) Never let on it is just a "dos shell" and nothing like the Macintosh.

                      And I still think it would have been a hoot if the exterminators your boss had hired had actually shown up at the MackeralSlurp Big release!


                      • #12
                        That's for all the input, guys... this will help.

                        I'll be sure and dry the air for the
                        cutter, and I'll look for a beefy unit
                        w/ realistic ratings.

                        - Bart

                        Bart Smaalders


                        • #13
                          I don't remember the model of the Esab plasma cutter. We owned it for a year and it was in the shop getting repair more then have the time we had it. It was rated for .5" material, but would only manage .25".
                          Now we have a thermal Dynamic 100 . The only problem we had with it was when one of the guys cut through the cord! You can blame that on the machine! It cuts 1", alltho it is slow. We use a torch on anything over .5" .

                          All of our welders are Miller. Love them!

                          [This message has been edited by rbregn (edited 09-13-2002).]


                          • #14
                            plasma ???? naw, it's time to move foreward to the past. Friction sawing ..... wow !!!!
                            Those old saws were and are bad !!!!