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When to change consumables

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moosetracks
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Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 6:52 pm

When to change consumables

Post by moosetracks » Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:59 am

Hello
I am new to this forum and very happy to have found it! I have recently purchased a 4x8 cnc table from FastCut CNC in British Columbia, Canada. I am running a Hypertherm Powermax 45xp. I am very pleased with both units, although, as I've found out, there is a large learning curve in using this equipment! Because, at this time I am only using the table intermittently, I am not sure when to change my consumables. I am using fine cut on 16 g sheet metal. At times I seem to develop poor cut quality and I would change consumables and see an improvement, and some times it would not make any difference. As well, should i change all of the components every time, or just the electrode? Any help in this matter would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you

plasmanewbie
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Re: When to change consumables

Post by plasmanewbie » Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:32 am

Welcome to the forum moosetracks. I find that it is the nozzle that needs to be changed more frequently than the electrode. I typically use 2 nozzles to each electrode. If you see that the hole in your nozzle is no longer round it will not cut square to the plate and it is time to change it for a new one. If you don't have clean dry air you will fight with cut quality and premature consumable wear forever. I use one of these http://plasmaspider.com/shop/dryer_sharpe6760.html and it has been a dramatic improvment.

Old Iron
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Re: When to change consumables

Post by Old Iron » Mon Jan 15, 2018 10:06 am

If the tip of the torch touches the plate, especially during a pierce, chances are it's toast or at minimum the shield needs cleaned.

jimcolt
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Re: When to change consumables

Post by jimcolt » Mon Jan 15, 2018 10:12 am

If you open up the Powermax45 XP operators manual to the section called "consumable inspection" you will find good advice of inspecting and changing the consumable parts. Jim Colt Hypertherm

motoguy
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Re: When to change consumables

Post by motoguy » Tue Jan 16, 2018 10:10 am

I bought one of these on Amazon. I don't know if it was this exact one, but it was a 10x LED loupe. Makes it MUCH easier to examine the nozzles for signs of cratering at the hole perimeter, or see if the hole is eroding/becoming non-circular. I would highly recommend one.

http://a.co/7qn3rEg

As Old Iron mentions, I've found that any time the nozzle touches the material, I've usually destroyed whatever nozzle was in place. Doesn't matter if it's during a pierce, a cut, or whatever. After inspection (with the loupe), I'll usually find the nozzle has blown out (or "cratered") in at least one direction.

I also go through nozzles more frequently than electrodes. How often is dependent on how much I'm paying attention. ;) Again, typically any touch of the torch to the material being cut = damaged nozzle.

I really REALLY like the CopperPlus electrodes for less-than 1/2" material. I find they last far longer, and require less voltage adjustment for my THC as the hafnium element doesn't "retract" in them until the end of electrode life. On the regular electrodes, the hafnium retracts as it's used, meaning the THC voltage needs to be adjusted (increased) with relative frequency.
Bulltear 6x12 w/ Proton Z axis & watertable
CommandCNC/Linux w/ Ohmic & HyT options
Hypertherm Powermax 85 w/ machine torch
Solidworks, Coreldraw X7, Inkscape, Sheetcam

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