What is a plasma cutter? Is it something out of the latest Doctor Who episode or some science fiction technology?In fact the story begins in the midst of World War II. To improve on the current meth...
In fact the story begins in the midst of World War II. To improve on the current methods of joining together aircraft materials a new method was developed that would protect the weld from oxidation by providing a protective barrier or inert gas around the electric arc.
This is a process used to cut steel, metals and other materials of different thickness. An inert gas is blown through a nozzle at high speeds whilst at the same time the electrical arc is created between the material and nozzle which turns an amount of the gas effectively into plasma.
Since its creation the opening which the gas passes through has been restricted which sped up the gas flow and dramatically increased the heat generated.
A plasma cutter produces plasma arcs that are of extremely high temperatures in the range of 25,000° Celsius. With domestic machines cutting through 5cm of steel and commercial systems cutting through up to 15cm of steel they are a very effective piece of machinery for cutting all types of materials.
Metal is used in every aspect of modern day life due it's strength and durability. But it's strength makes it hard to wield and shape easily which is why the plasma cutter is so useful. Not only highly efficient at the task but due to hand-held models and computer guided designs they are capable of cutting corners, angles and curves to form any shape necessary.
They were once very expensive and only found in professional welding shops or commercial factories but due to cheaper manufacturing processes and a competitive market the prices are dropping and are now available for a whole new generation of hobbyists and do-it-yourselfers.
Not only price but portability and weight have been improved in recent years - at no sacrifice to power or efficiency.
Due to the extreme energy being utilized by a plasma cutter there are of course safety precautions that need to be followed. Welding goggles and face shields are a must-have in all cases to protect your eyes from damage from debris or photokeratitis (also called Arc Eye) which damages your eyes due to overexposure to ultraviolet rays.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Alex W lives on the Sunshine Coast, Australia.
Alex partnered with Get Tools Direct in 2009.
Get Tools Direct have over 25 years experience in the power tool and heavy machinery industry.
For anything Plasma Cutter related visit Get Tools Direct at http://www.GetToolsDirect.com.au