Torchmate Plasma Cutters


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Plasma cutter history
 
How they work
  
Selecting a plasma cutter
  
CNC plasma cutting
  
Sample cuts
 
Plasma vs High Density
Plasma vs Laser

  
Links to related sites
 
Hypertherm plasma cutters

View Torchmate Catalog

Thermal Dynamics

 

 

 

 

Manufactured by:
Torchmate Inc.

Torchmate Distribution Center
280 South Rock Blvd., Suite 150
Reno, NV 89502

International Calls: (775) 673-2200

Toll Free:
(866) 571-1066

Email:
sales@torchmate.com

LASER,   PLASMA,  & HIGH DENSITY

Left - High Density Plasma        Center - Laser              Right - Plasma

Three brackets, each cut with a different process. The piece on the left was produced with a $100,000 plus CNC shape cutting machine, as was the center piece. The bracket on the right, as were all plasma-cut pieces shown on this page, produced with a Torchmate machine assembled from a kit.

Let's take a look at the differences between the three processes.

cuts3.jpg (11961 bytes)Top right - Plasma is the bargain, at $3,000 to $4,000 for the unit without a CNC machine. Like the other processes, plasma can cut non-ferrous metals as well as steel.;

Middle right - High density plasma is perhaps 25% slower than plasma, and costs approximately $45,000 for the plasma cutter alone, with no CNC machine.

Lower right - The laser process is the slowest of the three, and the most expensive at over $100,000 for the laser alone, not counting the CNC machine that runs it.

Plasma cut slots and holesLeft - One peculiarity of plasma is that it produces a slight bevel in the cut face which is more noticeable in small holes than in other shapes.

In the photo at the far left, two 1/2" dia. holes were cut in 3/8" thick mild steel. The plasma cut top hole shows a taper from top to bottom that is not present in the laser cut hole below. High density plasma produces less of a bevel in holes than plasma, but more than laser.

The photo at the immediate left shows the piece containing the plasma cut hole. Interestingly, the bevel does not appear in the slots or the exterior of the shape. The bevel in plasma cut holes becomes less noticeable in thinner materials.

flange.jpg (9449 bytes)Left - In this plasma-cut 1/4" thick flange, the holes have a slight taper, but are fine for bolts. Cut smoothness is on par with laser.

 

 

 

hidef.jpg (4951 bytes)Right - These sample cuts were produced by a Hypertherm High Density plasma cutter in steel and aluminum.  The process seems to get slightly better results on aluminum than plasma is able to achieve.

 

washers.jpg (6275 bytes)Left - Detail is where laser really shines! These 5/16" ID flat washers were laser cut in 1/8" thick mild steel. Neither plasma nor high density plasma would be capable of this.