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  • New Plasma

    Hey guys. I am new to the forum. I've found alot of good info on here. Anyway, I am in the market to buy a plasma cutter. I'd like to buy one locally instead of through an online dealer. My lws carries lincoln and miller, and ive got a tsc nearby which carries two hobart models. I've got about 1200-1500 to spend. I would mostly be using it for automotive work- body work, chassis, etc, as well as some light fabrication projects. I've got 220 power in my garage so that is not an issue. I've got a 5 hp 80 gallon 220 compressor as well. I was looking at the hobart airforce 500, but i havent been able to find too much info about. What do you guys think of this machine? Or can you recommend others?
    Lincoln ProMig 180
    Oxy-Acetylene Rig
    Lincoln 225 AC/DC Stick
    Hobart Airforce 500i Plasma

  • #2
    I've had an Ariforce 400 for a few years and love it. I think the 500 would work out good for you.

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    • #3
      Can't help with those specific models but you might want to look at Hypertherm. A lot of LWS carry them. I bought my Powermax 45 online because with an item in that price range the taxes really make a difference.

      I compared specs on different models for a long time. The selling point for me was Hypertherm's involvement and the way they do business.

      Jim Colt of Hypertherm is on a lot of the forums. He is straight up guy. Let him know your application and he'll set you straight on what you need.

      That said, I've used Hobart, Miller and Lincoln equipment and all are good quality companies that make good products. Main thing is to assess your needs, now or in the future, and don't buy too much or too little.


      Al
      Miller Dialarc 250 HF
      Lincoln Classic 300D
      AutoCAD 2010
      Hypertherm Powermax 45
      Milwaukee and Hilti Power Tools
      John Deere Equipment

      Smokin P Ranch YouTube Channel

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      • #4
        Very timely post.I had the chance to test drive a Powermax 30,45 and 65 today.A good thing about the PM 45 is that it will use the PM 30s FineCut consumables for a real nice cut on body work.
        The new Duramax torches on the PM 65 and 85 are very comfortable and even though they make a 15 degree torch for odd cutting angles and gouging I used the 70 degree to do some gouging and MAN what a bad azz machine that is!
        I realize this is a Hobart forum but to me it is hard to suggest anything but a Hyperthem.

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        • #5
          I have a Hobart Mig setting right next to my Powermax45....if that is any help!


          Jim Colt Hypertherm

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          • #6
            i dont know how good they are but the video is good and they are using that joker in outer space son. outer space.................

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRzToDHJiyM

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            • #7
              So, I took the plunge today and bought myself a new plasma cutter. I decided on the hobart airforce 500. I chose it because my lws carries all the consumables in stock and its only 5 mins from my house. I must say, I am impressed with this little unit. I made some cuts in 1/8 inch plate and it cut through like butter, nice clean cuts too. Now, to finally start some of my projects.
              Lincoln ProMig 180
              Oxy-Acetylene Rig
              Lincoln 225 AC/DC Stick
              Hobart Airforce 500i Plasma

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              • #8
                Yes, If you get the amps and travel speed correct the cut will look like it's been sheared. No sharp edges or dross.
                sigpic

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                • #9
                  ..Just be sure you have moisture free air for the inlet. To that end, I'd suggest a dessicant cartridge pre-filter or a Motorguard cannister on the inlet fitting.

                  I use a Motorguard because, while the initial cost is higher, the replacement elements last a long, long time and they capture basically everything.

                  I've had my plasma at least 8 years and I still have the original filter element in the Motorguard.
                  So little time...So many machine tools.........
                  www.flipmeisters.com

                  Miller, Hobart & Lincoln TIG/MIG/-
                  Hypertherm Plasma (Thanks Jim)
                  Plasma-Cam DHC (coming shortly)
                  Harris OA
                  Too many motorcycles.............-
                  sigpic

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