Introduction to Plasma Cutting Systems
Plasma Cutting is a way to cut electrically conductive substances using an accelerated jet of hot plasma. Hot plasma is a state of matter where the gas phase is energized as it is made up of positively charged and unbound electrons. Typical materials cut with plasma are copper, steel, stainless steel, brass aluminum, and all other conductive metal.
Plasma Cutting has numerous uses in fabrication shops, industrial construction, and salvage scrapping operations. The process is trusted due to its low cost and high-speed that’s suitable for industrial-scale cutting.
The plasma cutting system is set with a flow sensor that gauges the flow of the plasma. Since plasma is very powerful, any improper flow without proper gauge by the flow sensor can reduce the electrode’s life, nozzle, or lead to bad cuts, poor starting, or overheating of the plasma.
To protect your plasma cutter, you need to get the best plasma cutter flow switches. Here is the list of the best flow switches to protect your plasma cutter.
800 Series Flow Meter
This flow meter is scaling done on this 800 flow switch meter to gauge the water at 25 °C or 77 °F. It would help if you used the flowmeter only with water only to ensure high precision.
- It gauges a flow range of about 0.2 to 227 LPM / 0.05 to 60 GPM.
- Fluid heat must be about -40 to 140°C / -40 to 284°F.
- Can stand stress up to 1724 kPa / 250 psi
- Scaled to 0–5 VDC output
- Relay trip point – 16 preset settings
- Compact design
800XHT Flow Meter
The eXtreme High-Temperature flow meter is rugged and can work at very low or very hot fluids. It can give very accurate readings from -60 °C to 200 °C. The flow meter can help cool the plasma cutter to ensure it retains the right heat to cut the metals and reduce ruin.
- These types of flow meters are meant to handle fluids of up to 200 °C
- Gauge flow at ranges from 0.95 to 60 LPM / 0.25 to 16 GPM
- Produce full-scale accuracy of 3%
- -60 to 200 C / -76 to 392 °F optional temperature measurement
- Accounts for fluid viscosity effects and operating temperature due to specialized calibration
- Digital signal processing and stability boost accuracy.
- 0–5 VDC or 0–10 VDC and 4–20 mA outputs > Standard NEMA 4X / IP66 enclosure
- OEMs customization option available
How to choose a Plasma Cutter
Now that you have a way to protect your plasma cutter with the best gauging tools, here are the key points you can look out for when buying a Plasma Cutter. There is a wide selection of cutters, but you need a cutter that will last and serve your cutting needs.
Put your needs in mind.
- You will not make the right decision for yourself on the plasma cutter you need if you don’t know what you need. Please take you to a cutter that fits your usage and needs.
- You can set up questions to help you decide the right plasma cutter for your needs.
- How do you plan to cut? By hand or on a table?
- Do you need a portable to move around your workspace?
- How often will you be using the plasma cutter?
- How much is your budget?
- What is your source of power?
Look at the cutter’s power output.
A cutter with a high power output can cut through thick metal, while a power cutter with a lower power rating cuts through thin sheets of metal; depending on the types of metals, you have to choose the right power output. Ensure that the cutter’s thickness rating fits with the amperage of the material you regularly cut.
Look at the cutting speed.
Do you want to have high efficiency while cutting with your metal cutter? Look for a cutter with a higher relative thickness to the sheet being cut so you can work faster and on more sheets per day. It is bad to have a cutter take you ages to complete a simple task.
Some makers can even solve the exact cutting speed in Inches per Minute (IPV). You can also ask your product maker about the cutting speed.
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Have a look at the duty cycle
A duty cycle is a total time within 10 minutes that the plasma cutter can operate without cooling or breaking down. A 2 minutes duty cycle means the plasma cutter can run for two minutes and cool down for 8 minutes. Long duty cycles are ideal for long and deep cuts, while a shorter cycle is ideal for regular and small cuts.
Look at the operating costs.
Each plasma cutter has a very close relationship with its consumables. Consumables are parts that have to be replaced over time in the life of the Plasma Cutter. The more regular a cutter has to replace it consumable, the costly it is to your work.
Plasma Cutters have made cutting metals easy and cheap. One must be careful when using a plasma cutter as it is an electronic tool that can lead to electrical shock. It can also heat it if the plasma is not regulated by a flow sensor reducing its longevity.