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4 x 4 table for school shop?

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4 x 4 table for school shop?

Post by dreichel » Tue Jan 09, 2018 1:44 pm

I am impressed with the knowledge and help on this board. I am sure this question has been asked before but here goes anyway.

We are hoping to purchase a 4 x 4 table for our school agriculture mechanics lab and are looking for opinions or actual facts about good and bad experiences with different tables. The companies we have narrowed our options down to are most likely the following:

1. PlasmaCam
2. Cyrious Metalworks
3. JD Squared
4. ArcLight
5. Burn Tables

Of course we are open to other suggestions, however some have been eliminated due to budget constraints. Our primary concerns are product support, ease of operation, ease of learning software and that they have or can easily be fitted with a water table. We will be running a Hypertherm Powermax 65 on the table with a machine torch unless we go with the PlasmaCam.

Thanks for any assistance.

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Re: 4 x 4 table for school shop?

Post by djreiswig » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:15 pm

Bulltear should meet your requirements. Not sure what your budget is, but their support is great and the tables are built really well. They use Linux based software now, but mine is Mach3 so I can't give you info on the software. The CandCNC hardware is high quality. I've had very few issues in the 3 years I've owned my table. Give Matt a call. He's a great guy.
2014 Bulltear (StarLab) 4x8
C&CNC EtherCut
Mach3, SheetCam, Draftsight
Hypertherm PM65
Oxy/Acetylene Flame Torch
Pneumatic Plate Marker, Ohmic, 10 inch Rotary Chuck (in progress)

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Re: 4 x 4 table for school shop?

Post by acourtjester » Wed Jan 10, 2018 7:45 am

I built my own table but Arclight has some great tutorial videos, and many here like them. I believe they have CandCNC's Electronics and Linux software also, check their web site. Check past posts here there are 2 on your list I would stay away from for different reasons IMHO.
DIY 4X4 Plasma/Router Table
CandCNC DTHC-IV & Feather Touch
Hypertherm PM65 Machine Torch
Drag Knife and Scribe
Miller Mig welder
13" metal lathe
Small Mill
Everlast PM 256 tig

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Re: 4 x 4 table for school shop?

Post by BanksAg » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:10 pm

We put a 4 x 4 Arclight table in our high school shop just over a year ago, and I know lots of other schools out here in Oregon who have as well, and we couldn't be happier. Ultimately it was the support, training & tutorial videos, and price that led us to Arclight. Being in Oregon I was able to drive out to Bend to do the 1/2 day training they offer with their tables. It was practical, hands-on, and included machine set-up & maintenance (which as a teacher with lots of irons in the fire was very much appreciated). Probably within an hour of starting the training, they had me cutting on my actual table. The part about the training that I really appreciated, was that they set-up several different 'issues' & 'mistakes' that you're likely to see, and taught me how to go about fixing those. On top of that, all of the tutorial videos that they have are awesome. I took the table home that day in a trailer. The following morning we unloaded it and by lunch time we were set-up & cutting. It has been trouble-free and pretty much 'student-proof.'

And yes, they come standard with a water table, which as a school is great. We get some steam, but almost no smoke. The other thing that's nice for school's is that the software they use and provide with their tables is free. The price is right for schools, and the kids can go home and install Inkscape & Solid Edge and work on their own if they want.

Tim Eggleston
Banks High School
Banks, OR

Arc Pro 4800
PowerMax 45XP
Mach 3, SheetCam
Inkscape, Rhino 3D

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Re: 4 x 4 table for school shop?

Post by BTA Plasma » Thu Jan 11, 2018 4:20 pm

We have many happy teachers using Star Lab machines in many schools around the USA. A school would qualify for many seats of full Pronest (A $156,000 value) if the plasma cutter was purchased at time of ordering. www.StarLabCNC.com

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