Plasma cutting uses a focused stream of ionized gas, or plasma, to cut through sheet metal. The plasma flows at extremely high temperatures and high velocity and is directed toward the cutting location by a nozzle. When the plasma contacts the surface below, the metal melts into a molten state. The position of the plasma stream relative to the sheet is precisely controlled to follow the desired cutting path.

On plasma cutting machines, rigidity of construction is not a priority, because there are no cutting forces. The machine should be capable of dealing with kinematic forces during the acceleration and deceleration of plasma cutter. Simplicity of construction design is one of the reasons that CNC plasma cutters are often build in home garage.

To produce good quality cuts, the distance between plasma torch and metal surface should be constant. CNC USB controller uses torch height control (THC), so the torch can be raised or lowered by a motor control (on the Z-axis) during cutting to maintain a constant arc length.

Planet CNC USB software supports DXF file import, that means G code for cutting does not need to be generated in third-party software.

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Plasma CNC and floating Z axis with PlanetCNC

Sometimes we need to modify our CNC machine in order to achieve our machining goals as quickly and as efficiently as possible. CNC machines such as plasma, plotter cutters, lasers need mechanism that helps with measuring of material surface. Good example of such modification is Floating Z axis. The concept is pretty straight forward:  Z axis has […]

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