Tips For Choosing A Plasma CNC Machine

Posted on: 13 September 2017

If you're expanding your fabrication shop, one of the best upgrades you can consider is a plasma CNC machine. These machines are ideal for crisp, clean, precision cutting. They're affordable to operate, though they do require a significant initial investment. If you want to be sure that you're getting the best you can from your purchase, there are a few things to think about:

Consider The Table Design

The first thing you need to consider is the table design itself. The gantry shouldn't be too heavy because that will make it difficult to precisely control the torch. The added weight can make the torch sluggish and a bit awkward, so opt for lighter weight.

Make sure the roller hold-down components are easy to keep clean and free of dust. Otherwise, plasma dust can pack into the crevices. Over time, that dust will combine with the oil in those parts and create a thick mess that will damage the cutter. Look for a hold-down assembly that's as enclosed as possible to avoid this.

Evaluate The Motor

When possible, opt for a machine with a servo motor. The servo motor has a greater range of motion than the stepper motor. In addition, for new laser CNC operators, the feedback provided by the servo motor is helpful. It supplies information back to your operator about its position, making it easy to monitor. The servo motor is more expensive, but the cost is worth it for the improved accuracy and peace of mind.

Assess The Software

The software component of a CNC machine is the most important feature. It's the foundation for programming and designing what you want to create, and that software is the primary control source for the torch. Look for an AutoCAD and EXG-supported machine for more precision and detailed control of the torch.

Look For Dust Ventilation

Plasma cutting generates a lot of dust and smoke. You need good ventilation in the machine to ensure that it doesn't damage the equipment or harm your fabricators. The machine may include a water table, which is a shallow water source that sits right under the cutter. Just make sure you clean around the water table daily so that there's no standing water splashing and causing rust.

Downdraft systems are the other alternative. They draw the dust away from the cutting area using a ventilation and fan system. Just keep an eye on the filter if this is the system you choose. It'll need to be cleaned regularly for the best function.

Contact a company like Hardy Machinery for more information and assistance.