thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Tue Jan 07, 2014 6:39 pm

Looking at buying a new plasma cutter was wondering folks experiences with thermal dynamics or hypotherm plasma cutters? Thoughts on cut speed compared to specs and duty cycle. Longevity of consumables etc. Looking at hypotherm 65xl and thermal dynamics cutmaster 52? Thanks

Chris

Re: thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Tue Jan 07, 2014 7:53 pm

viewtopic.php?f=47&t=80525&hilit=+plasma+cutter#p644611

Edit: Son and I purchased arc gouging tips for the plasma cutter. Also had to add a dryer to the air compressor air line. So we spent another $200- or so. Arc gouging tips are used for cutting apart previously welded metal. We cut apart salvaged steel to make other projects.

No complaints so far, and we have use the plasma cutter on several projects. Most of the metal we cut is 1/2" to 5/8" thick. Works great. What I like is that the cut is relatively smooth - not much to clean up with the grinders.
Last edited by Eugene on Tue Jan 07, 2014 8:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Tue Jan 07, 2014 7:54 pm

I have used Hypertherm plasma cutters as well as others in the past but can't remember if the Thermal Dynamics is one of them or not. Both units are good names and either sould be a good choice. Regarding duty cycle you can easily compare the specifications to determine where they stand. Important are piercing rating and material thickness capacity. Most people will try to by as little machine as they think they can get away with to meet their needs only to find they wish they'd gotten one a little bigger. More than likely either of these units will be good choices for home/shop use, bigger than most would choose. I'd be happy with either one. Maybe buy both and let me keep one at my place for you!! :wink:

Probably the biggest thing to look at is the price and availability of consumables, which more than likely you will go through quicker than you think. Most users of hand held plasma cutters really trash the consumables by dragging the tip on the work or holding the tip to far from the work simply because they don't use them often enough to get good at it. The tips can erode pretty quickly if not used properly. You'll probably want to put some type of moisture trap in the air line too. Wish I had either one. :roll:

Re: thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Tue Jan 07, 2014 8:33 pm

Chris,

I'm going to make the assumption (always dangerous) that you are going to get this for your school Vo-Ag shop laboratory. If that is the case, buy all the capacity/duty cycle you can for the funds you have. No matter what you think will be the heaviest material you will be working on, one or more of your students will take on a project that will stretch the capacity to the limit. BTDT :) :)

Can't speak to which machine to get, plasma cutters are something I've never used.

Bill

Re: thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Fri Jan 10, 2014 7:56 am

Thanks everyone for the good advice. My big thing is that thermal dynamics is $700 cheaper in price than a hypotherm. However I have been told by some that Hypotherm is the cadillac of plasma cutters and realability is tremendous. My sticker is the price. Good idea on the arc gouging tips we would do some of that work. Bill you are correct that is for the ag shop we had a local ag bank that had a good year and wanted to make a donation to the school and liked the idea of upgrading our welding area for improving employment skills in our community. So we are able to get all new welders and add a plasma cutter. We have been blessed.

Re: thermal dynamics vs hypotherm plasma cutters

Fri Jan 10, 2014 8:18 am

Chris,

The bank's willingness to make the donation to upgrade your welding area speaks volumes about the quality of your ag program. Well done, keep up the good work!

Bill