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Thread: Plasma cutter basics
07-08-2012, 10:20 AM #1
Plasma cutter basics
I have a Linde PCM 150 plasma cutter that I have found that I can run if I run it at half current (it takes 125 amps) and I only have 65. I played with it yesterday and am having some problems; it is new to me so don't be too hard on me. The first thing was the piece I cut got hotter than the sun to the point where I melted my tip and now need some parts for it; where would be a good place to get some parts? The next thing is should I run argon, nitrogen or co2 and did it overheat because I didn't use gas on it? The machine has hookups for all 3 and I have 2 cylinders of co2. Sorry to be so longwinded I tend to do that and thanks in advance for any advice.
07-08-2012, 01:59 PM #2
Man, that is old, and a giant beast.
Centricut, which is a division of Hypertherm, claims to have consumables for it-
Plasma Cutting Supplies/Parts for ESAB Torches
I would call them and ask, giving them your torch model number. This thing may or may not have the same torch on it now it shipped from the factory with.
here is a link to the factory troubleshooting manual, but its pretty thin.
It looks as if it originally required 2 different gases at the same time- a cutting gas, which the manual says could either be Nitrogen, or H-35, which is a fancy argon/hydrogen mix-
Argon-Hydrogen Mixtures -- Praxair's <I>HydroStar®</I> Gas Blends
and then, it also needs a cooling gas- which can be either C02 or another weird proprietary mix- they spec an Ox/Nit/Air mix.
And it needs LOTs of em. cooling gas wants to run at 340 CFH. (further reading indicates you could use compressed air for cooling gas, but tip selection varies depending on cooling gas and cutting gases used, and material being cut- in other words, to be really flexible, you probably need to stock a few hundred bucks worth of different tips)
The lack of a cooling gas is probably why your base metal heated up and your torch tip melted.
This was a machine cutting power supply, made at a time of big changes in tech, and it was a very complicated, expensive machine. Nowadays, nobody would want something like this for actual machine cutting, its too expensive and complicated to run. Much cheaper easier, simpler, and more reliable power supplies out there now.
I hope you got it really cheap. My guess is you will find it to hard, and expensive, to run, and scrap it.
But good luck.
07-22-2012, 06:18 AM #3
Aww, its not that bad of a machine. The torch is a PITA with having to set tungstens but other than that the power supply is a good stable source.
You dont need CO2/N2 to run it. You can use air for both. You may get slightly shorter life on consumables but it is fine.
Post some pics of the burnt up parts.