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HF Vs Pilot Arc ....

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  • HF Vs Pilot Arc ....

    I am sure this question has been asked and answered before but a brief search in this forum doesn't bring up a relevant topic.

    As I understand it there are two ways to start a plasma:

    Method 1: HF arc
    The HF arc requires the torch tip to touch the surface and then the arc is created by a HF spark which establishes the plasma and then allows the full current to start.

    Method 2: Internal Pilot arc
    This method uses either an electrical circuit (a return wire to the nozzle) or a physical spring circuit (blowback) method to first create a small arc inside the nozzle and then when this "mini" plasma touches the work the "real" arc starts and the "mini" arc is switched off (either electronically [electrical method] or by the air pressure physically pushing the tip away from the nozzle ["blowback" method].

    Method 2 seems to be the most desirable because:
    a) it can start the arc without touching the work (better for consumables)
    b) you can use guides/stand offs to assist with cutting
    c) can start arc with rusty/painted/greasy surfaces
    d) can be used with CNC machines

    Have I missed anything ???

  • #2
    Post 5 here:
    --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

    Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.