Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Plasma

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Plasma

    I am finally getting all the goodies I want for my shop. I had a Hobart Handler 140 that will now just do mild steel work (I don't do hardly any), a MM251 will be in the shop within a week, and I have had my Synchrowave 250 for a month now.

    The next big thing I need to get is a plasma cutter. Does anyone have much experience with the different brands? I have mostly used Hypertherm and they are pretty good. I will mostly be doing 16 guage stainless, so it doesn't need to be anything big. It also won't get much use, and of course price is an object!

    Thanks guys!
    Syncrowave 250DX w/Bernard cooler
    Handler 140

  • #2
    The best bang for the buck (IMO) for that size material and a bit larger is a Hypertherm Powermax 380 or a Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 38. Both are 110V/220V units which is nice. The Powermax 380 looks and from a specs standpoint is identical to the Miller Spectrum 375. It's also about $175 cheaper. I personally have a Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 51 which is a 40amp unit and it works EXCELLENT. It goes for under $1400 and the Powermax 380 / Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 38 can be had for around around $1000-$1050 online.
    David W.
    Machines: Millermatic Passport; Millermatic 350P, Dynasty 300DX TIGRunner, TD Cutmaster 51 Plasma, Hypertherm 190C Plasma,
    Machinery and Project Pictures: Click Here

    Comment


    • #3
      JET,

      The MM251 will weld 1/2" steel in a single pass and thicker weldments with multipasses. Therefore, I would look toward a cutter that woould do at least 1/2" mild steel with ease. My choice is the Miller Spectrum 2050. I've had mine a couple of years and it has seen a good amount of mobile use. The machine cuts very clean and does 1/2" like butter and still makes a nice clean cut on 3/4" and 7/8" steel with a drop in travel speed. It performs very well powered in shop or on the road with a Trailblazer!

      Comment


      • #4
        I agree with Hawk. Get the 1/2" capacity unit.

        I purchased an ESAB 380 ( won't do that again) and it's great for 1/4" and less, but the lower power units do not have tip guides. These are cones that slip over the ceramic cone to hold the tip up off the material. They work great for slow hand designs and keep the tip from sticking to the base material.


        jim

        Comment


        • #5
          HAWK has a good point about the 1/2" you can always turn it down but if there isent enough available you are stuck
          and i ashure you after you get it you will find so many more uses than you ever thought.
          i got the spec.125C and love it for the thin stuff, it would most likely do what you want but i would recomend you go to the spec375 just due to the $$$ of consumables, strangely enough the spec125 consumables are more $$ than the spec 375. if i had it to do again i would get the 375 but not do to a problem with the cutter it has worked flawlesly. but i do now have air in the shop so a built in comp is not needed.
          but with the weld capacity of your setups you realy should consider keeping all the machines in the same range, as i said befor you will find your self using the plasma all the time for all kinds of things, and turning it down will just make it last longer.
          thanks for the help
          ......or..........
          hope i helped
          sigpic
          feel free to shoot me an e-mail direct i have time to chat. [email protected]
          summer is here, plant a tree. if you don't have space or time to plant one sponsor some one else to plant one for you. a tree is an investment in our planet, help it out.
          JAMES

          Comment


          • #6
            I guess I should have been a bit more specific. I make high performance exhausts and intercooler piping. I also do aluminum intake manifolds. All of the piping is 304 or 409 SS and 16 guage at the thickest. I have used a hypertherm 380 at the last 2 places that I worked. We have had some small issues with the torch, but overall it seems good. I do have air at my shop too, so that isn't a problem.

            The machine will probably get 20 hours of use a year and I haven't been able to find any uses except for piping. So basically I would rather stick to a smaller machine and the cheaper the better, but I want a reliable unit too. I want the TSW185 of plasma cutters
            Syncrowave 250DX w/Bernard cooler
            Handler 140

            Comment


            • #7
              Jet,

              Most of the guys here go a little overboard - and that's not a bad thing if $$$ is not an important factor. The common recommendation was to buy a bigger machine than you saw yourself using for the next couple of years. I did my homework and picked a unit that should last me a while and one that will do 1/2" quality cutting. Not everyone needs to cut really thick materials. I stand by my recommendations - they are about the cheapest you'd want to go on a name brand. If you want something cheaper, then you can go with an off brand like a Mitec or something from Ebay that will get the job done as well. HTP also offers some smaller plasma cutters in thier "Microcut" line.

              Good luck! Go with the Hypertherm Powercut 380!
              David W.
              Machines: Millermatic Passport; Millermatic 350P, Dynasty 300DX TIGRunner, TD Cutmaster 51 Plasma, Hypertherm 190C Plasma,
              Machinery and Project Pictures: Click Here

              Comment


              • #8
                Not Overboard

                I really do not see my recommendation and reasoning as "going overboard". My real feelings behind the 2050 or some other brand in a larger capacity unit is what if you need to cut thicker materials in that your machine IS capable of welding.

                More than once I have purchased a machine with my current needs in mind and having to sell it and purchase a larger capacity machine. Here is one example that cost me too much because I did not plan for the future:

                I had a new BOBCAT 225 a few years ago and found I needed the capacity to gouge with 1/4" rods, a nice neat spoolgun package, higher amperage, a cv feeder, and other features of the Trailblazer 301 for mobile use. I sold the BOBCAT and bought the TB301G. Needless to say that was a loss. Fortunately it was a short term business loss and quickly recovered. However, this is not always the case...

                I guess I have to ask why a MM251 if 16 gauge tubing is the maximum thickness material you will be utilizing in the welding process? I would think it is a good decision for future planning. A larger plasma cutter is really no different.

                On the other hand I own a welding business and purchase machines based on my customer's needs or potential needs. There is nothing worse than turning away business because you can't do it based on the equipment you own. If you have the knowledge, skill, and necessary certifications for the job and the undersized equipment is dragging you down, then the cost of upgrading can sometimes be cost prohibitive.

                I just hate the thought of JET or any other forum member having to buy a small machine and find a need for a larger machine and have to eat $$$ on a trade in or outright sale.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The reason I got the MM251 was that I am getting a 3 year old machine for $875. We don't need it at my day job, so I am buying it for my shop. Obviously it is a great deal that I can't pass up.

                  If I was a welding shop or a general shop I would get a larger one (I have actually been looking at them a bit more now), but I am strictly a piping manufacturer. I think I may get a used 40-60 amp machine.

                  If anyone knows of anything used, let me know!
                  Syncrowave 250DX w/Bernard cooler
                  Handler 140

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by HAWK
                    I really do not see my recommendation and reasoning as "going overboard". My real feelings behind the 2050 or some other brand in a larger capacity unit is what if you need to cut thicker materials in that your machine IS capable of welding.
                    Hawk,

                    I did not mean what I said in a negative way - you're the man in my book. However there is a mix of people on the forum that range from hobby to professional and from heavy production to light production. He mentioned that price was an object and the usage would be low. He also said he'd be cutting thin materials. If the machines do not make you money (or additional money by having additional capacity), then it's hard to kick down the money for casual use or just to have something you might need. I feel that if you don't have a long term vision into your needs for the next 2 years or so, be that welding, cutting, etc - you should buy something you feel you would not out grow. Had I found a forum like this in the first place, I probably would be ahead right now. However then again finding a forum like this also 'helped' me spend additional $$. I saw the Dynasty 200DX and thought that would be so cool to own, and then the next thing you know I own one. Did I need a Dynasty? Nope. But money wasn't a huge object so I went for it. In this case, it is and my recommendation was based in large part on that. Plus he knew what he had to work with. I hope there are no hard feelings - you're the last person I ever wanted to have a disagreement with here!
                    David W.
                    Machines: Millermatic Passport; Millermatic 350P, Dynasty 300DX TIGRunner, TD Cutmaster 51 Plasma, Hypertherm 190C Plasma,
                    Machinery and Project Pictures: Click Here

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Jet

                      All BS aside and overkill.
                      I bought a Miller 375 several years ago for just basic cutting......
                      I then got into plasma cutting via a CNC table..
                      The 375 did me very well for 2+ years and still does.
                      I did upgrade to the 2050 a while back and do alot of cutting with it now, but still break out the 375 for the very detailed stuff.

                      If fine detail is your main point then stay with a 30 amp machine.
                      If cost is as important look at a "625" type machine.

                      The 2050 size will do a lot more "for less"....
                      Consumable cost wise..the 2050 will way out last the lesser machines when running at lowwer amps.......ie. 375 consumable cost me $5.25, cut less then 1/4 inch several hundered inches.
                      2050 consumable cost $8.00, cut upto 1/2 thousands of inches....
                      Keep in mind when you make your purchase.....
                      Blue has always been good to me.
                      sstec

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        99% of what I will do with this is pop holes in stainless for oxygen sensors. I am kind of torn, but I think if I see a good deal pop up on something, I will snag it. I have been scanning Ebay for a week now, there are a few I am looking at. Are there any problems with ESAB or L-tec? They seem to be pretty reputable, but I don't have any first hand experience with them.
                        Syncrowave 250DX w/Bernard cooler
                        Handler 140

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If fine detail is your main point then stay with a 30 amp machine.

                          If you buy a Thermal cutmaster 30 amp to 100 amp the consumables
                          are the exactly the same. So will your kerf, if you turn your machine down.
                          The SL 60/ SL 100 one torch just uses a different power cable.
                          Attached Files

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            No hard feelings here...

                            unixadm,


                            There are certainly no hard feelings here. If what I posted came across in a negative way , I apologize. I am very busy with my business and work day and night based on customer need. I was probably tired when I read JET's original post and missed the money issue. Also I did not realize circumstances surrounding the MM251.

                            Disagreement is not a bad thing, but after seeing the big picture I do agree with you! The HT 380 is a nice unit. I wonder how much difference in money there is between the HT 380 and the HT 600? I demoed a HT 600 a few years ago and really liked it. I bought the Miller because it was ran better on my Trailblazer.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Scott V
                              If fine detail is your main point then stay with a 30 amp machine.

                              If you buy a Thermal cutmaster 30 amp to 100 amp the consumables
                              are the exactly the same. So will your kerf, if you turn your machine down.
                              The SL 60/ SL 100 one torch just uses a different power cable.
                              ScottV,

                              Nice machine, but probably high dollar too.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X