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3 Tips Plasma Cutting Machine Operator Needs to Know

Plasma Cutting Machine

1. Operation Process

Before Use And When Cutting

  • Check and confirm that the power supply, air source, and water source have no leakage, air leakage, or water leakage, and that the grounding or zero connection is safe and reliable.
  • The trolley and the workpiece should be placed in the proper position, and the workpiece should be connected to the positive electrode of the cutting circuit, and there should be a slag pit under the cutting working surface.
  • The nozzle aperture should be selected according to the material, type and thickness of the workpiece, and the cutting power, gas flow and electrode shrinkage should be adjusted.
  • The automatic cutting trolley should run empty and the cutting speed should be selected.
  • Plasma cutting machine operator must wear protective masks, welding gloves, hats, filter membrane dust masks and soundproof earmuffs. Personnel who do not wear protective goggles are strictly prohibited from directly observing the plasma arc, and bare skin is strictly prohibited from approaching the plasma arc.
Plasma Cutting Machine Structure
Plasma Cutting Machine Structure
  • When cutting, the plasma cutting machine operator should stand upwind to operate. Air can be drawn from the lower part of the workbench, and the open area on the workbench should be reduced.
  • When cutting, when the no-load voltage is too high, check the electrical grounding, zero connection and the insulation of the torch handle. The workbench should be insulated from the ground, or a no-load circuit breaker should be installed in the electrical control system.
  • The high-frequency generator should be equipped with a shielding cover, and the high-frequency circuit should be cut off immediately after the high-frequency arc is used.
  • The use of thorium and tungsten electrodes should meet the requirements of Article 12.7.8 of JGJ33-2001.

Cutting Operation And Personnel Protection

  • The plasma cutting machine used on site should be equipped with rainproof, moisture-proof, and sun-proof sheds, and corresponding fire-fighting equipment should be installed.
  • When cutting at high altitude, safety belts must be worn. Fire prevention measures should be taken around and below the cutting, and special personnel should be supervised.
  • When it is necessary to cut pressurized containers, sealed containers, oil drums, pipes, and workpieces stained with flammable gases and solutions, first eliminate the pressure in the containers and pipes, eliminate flammable gases and solutions, and then flush toxic, harmful, and flammable substances ; For containers with residual grease, rinse them with steam and alkaline water first, and open the lid to confirm that the container is cleaned, and then fill with water before cutting. Measures to prevent electric shock, poisoning and suffocation should be taken when welding and cutting in the container. Air holes should be left for cutting sealed containers, and equipment and ventilation equipment should be installed at the inlet and outlet when necessary; the lighting voltage in the container should not exceed 12V, and the welder and the workpiece should be insulated; outside the container should be supervised by a dedicated person. It is strictly forbidden to cut in the container that has been sprayed with paint and plastic.
Plasma Cutting Machine
Plasma Cutting Machine
  • It is strictly forbidden to cut pressure vessels and pipes, live equipment, load-bearing parts of the load-bearing structure, and containers with flammable and explosive materials under pressure.
  • Welding and cutting are not allowed in the open air on rainy days. When working in a humid area, the operator should stand in a place covered with insulating materials and wear insulating shoes.
  • After the operation, the power supply should be cut off, and the air and water sources should be turned off.

2. Operating Procedures

Manual Non-contact Cutting

  • Touch the torch roller to the workpiece, and adjust the distance between the nozzle and the workpiece plane to 3~5mm. (When the main machine is cutting, turn the “cut thickness selection” switch to high-end).
  • Turn on the cutting torch switch to ignite the plasma arc. After cutting through the workpiece, it will move at an even speed in the cutting direction. The cutting speed is based on the premise of cutting through, which should be fast rather than slow. Too slow will affect the quality of the incision and even break the arc.
  • After cutting, turn off the torch switch and the plasma arc is extinguished. At this time, compressed air is sprayed out in a delay to cool the torch. After a few seconds, the spraying stops automatically. Remove the cutting torch to complete the entire cutting process.

Manual Contact Cutting

  • “Cut thickness selection” switch is used for low-end, single-machine cutting of thinner plates.
  • Place the cutting torch nozzle at the starting point of the workpiece being cut, turn on the torch switch, ignite the plasma arc, cut through the workpiece, and then move at a constant speed along the cutting direction.
  • After cutting, open and close the torch switch. At this time, the compressed air is still spraying. After a few seconds, the spraying stops automatically. Remove the cutting torch to complete the entire cutting process.
Plasma Cutting Machine Operator
Plasma Cutting Machine Operator

Automatic Cutting

  • Automatic cutting is mainly suitable for cutting thicker workpieces. Select the “cut thickness selection” switch position.
  • After removing the cutting torch roller, the cutting torch is firmly connected to the semi-automatic cutting machine, and the connecting parts are provided in the accessories.
  • Connect the power supply of the semi-automatic cutting machine, and install the guide rail or radius rod according to the shape of the workpiece (if it is a guide rail for linear cutting, if you cut a circle or an arc, you should choose a radius rod).
  • If the torch switch plug is pulled down, replace the remote control switch plug (provided in the accessories).
  • Adjust the appropriate walking speed according to the thickness of the workpiece. And set the “reverse” and “shun” switches on the semi-automatic cutting machine to the cutting direction.
  • Adjust the distance between the nozzle and the workpiece to 3~8mm, and adjust the center position of the nozzle to the starting strip of the workpiece kerf.
Plasma Cutting Machine
Plasma Cutting Machine
  • Turn on the remote control switch, after cutting through the workpiece, turn on the power switch of the semi-automatic cutting machine to start cutting. In the initial stage of cutting, you should always pay attention to the cutting seam and adjust to a suitable cutting speed. And pay attention to whether the two machines are working properly at any time.
  • After cutting, plasma cutting machine operator turn off the remote control switch and the power switch of the semi-automatic cutting machine. So far, the whole process of cutting is completed.

Manual Circle Cutting

According to the material and thickness of the workpiece, select the single or parallel cutting method, and select the corresponding cutting method, and tighten the crossbar in the accessory to the screw hole on the torch holder. If one is not long enough, it can be connected one by one. To the required radius length and tighten, then, according to the workpiece radius length, adjust the distance between the tip and the cutting torch nozzle (the factor of the slit width must be considered). After adjustment, tighten the top fastening screws to prevent loosening and loosen the retainer fastening knurled screws. At this point, the workpiece can be rounded.

Plasma Cutting Machine
Plasma Cutting Machine

3. Plasma Cutting Machine Maintenance

Assemble The Torch Correctly

Install the cutting torch correctly and carefully, make sure that all parts are well-matched, and ensure that the gas and cooling airflow. Install all the parts on a clean flannel to avoid dirt sticking to the parts. Add proper lubricating oil to the O-ring, subject to the brightening of the O-ring, and no more.

Replace Consumables In Time

Do not replace the consumable parts after they are completely damaged, because severely worn electrodes, nozzles, and swirl rings will produce uncontrollable plasma arcs, which can easily cause serious damage to the cutting torch. Therefore, when the cutting quality is found to be degraded for the first time, the consumable parts should be checked in time.

Clean Connecting Thread of Cutting Torch

When replacing consumable parts or daily maintenance and inspection, be sure to ensure that the internal and external threads of the cutting torch are clean. If necessary, clean or repair the connecting threads.

Clean Contact Surface of Electrode And Nozzle

In many cutting torches, the contact surface between the nozzle and the electrode is a charged contact surface. If there is dirt on these contact surfaces, the cutting torch will not work properly and should be cleaned with a hydrogen peroxide cleaning agent.

Check Gas And Cooling Gas Daily

Check the flow and pressure of the gas and cooling airflow every day. If you find that the flow is insufficient or leaks, you should stop the machine immediately to troubleshoot.

Avoid Torch Collision Damage

In order to avoid collision damage to the cutting torch, it should be programmed correctly to prevent the system from walking beyond limits. The installation of an anti-collision device can effectively avoid damage to the cutting torch during a collision.

Cutting Nozzle
Cutting Nozzle

The Most Common Cause of Torch Damage

  • The cutting torch collides.
  • Destructive plasma arc caused by damage of consumable parts.
  • Destructive plasma arc caused by dirt.
  • Destructive plasma arc caused by loose parts.

Precautions

  • Do not apply grease on the cutting torch.
  • Do not overuse O-ring lubricant.
  • Do not spray anti-splash chemicals while the protective cover is still on the torch.
  • Do not use the manual cutting torch as a hammer.

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Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

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2 thoughts on “3 Tips Plasma Cutting Machine Operator Needs to Know

  1. Mohamed says:

    Hi sir. I just read it, and need plasma cutting machine, please give me the price

    1. Sissi says:

      Hi, can you tell me more details? So that we can recommend the right model

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