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  • Old Smoothcut 120

    I bought an old Smoothcut 120 3 phase plasma cutter. I see that it had gas bottles N2 and O2 I think. Can I put a new torch on it and run compressed air?
    I can't find any info on this machine on the web at all.
    I paid $150 for it.... I hope I didn't buy an unusable dinasaur.

  • #2
    Probably. I doubt you even have to change the torch. Freshen the tip and cup, give it a go. Usually they use other then air to improve cut quality, speed of cut, errosion, stuff like that. If you don't need special or fancy, have at it is my offering with the expectation of a some what shortened consumable life. That said, avoid excess squeezing of the trigger.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by chevy43 View Post
      I bought an old Smoothcut 120 3 phase plasma cutter. I see that it had gas bottles N2 and O2 I think. Can I put a new torch on it and run compressed air?
      I can't find any info on this machine on the web at all.
      I paid $150 for it.... I hope I didn't buy an unusable dinasaur.
      In the early days of plasma cutting. a nitrogen or nitrogen mixture was often used to secure a higher quality cut. Is this the machine you bought?

      Click image for larger version

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      Plasma has come a long way since then, but, when I looked it up, I noticed that the Hobart 120 plasma torch is identical to one made by Cebora (Italy) and consumables are still available! Also if you list the information from the machine's spec. plate, including serial and model #'s, Keith might be able to supply you with a manual.

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      • #4
        Just like the one in the picture!
        I just got the manual emailed this morning from Miller. I guess they own Hobart's info. now.
        I scanned it quickly and it doesn't talk about air only N2 and O2. I think I might try air! Thanks for the Cebora tip!

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        • #5
          Any suggestions for a torch I could put on this that is easy to get parts for and is meant to work with air? I probably don't need 120 amp capacity. .. maybe up to 100 amp.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by chevy43 View Post
            Any suggestions for a torch I could put on this that is easy to get parts for and is meant to work with air? I probably don't need 120 amp capacity. .. maybe up to 100 amp.
            Since air is mainly a nitrogen/ oxygen mixture, it should work fairly well, and many of the early torches used both. Here is a site for Cebora torch parts.

            https://weldingdirect.com/ho12plto.html




            Note corrected Spelling!


            After thinking a bit, if your machine has separate input of nitrogen and oxygen and the oxygen is added in at the tip, or, somewhere in the machine plumbing, how are you going to use just air?
            Last edited by Northweldor; 07-23-2019, 01:27 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by chevy43 View Post
              Just like the one in the picture!
              I just got the manual emailed this morning from Miller. I guess they own Hobart's info. now.
              I scanned it quickly and it doesn't talk about air only N2 and O2. I think I might try air! Thanks for the Cebora tip!
              After reading some old Jim Colt ( guru on plasma) posts, I think you should hold off any experiments, until you get advice that the machine won't be damaged and any experiment would be safe. Here's what he said back in 2007 about another gas question:

              "Using oxygen in a torch that was designed for air cutting could cause a serious fire and injury…..consequently, the use of an explosive mixture such as Hydrogen/Argon in a system that wasn’t designed to use these gases could cause an explosion. Be careful, follow the manufacturers directions!"

              You can contact him on the Hypertherm website, and let us know what he says.

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              • #8
                I think it's Oxygen that's the danger, increaser of combustion kind of danger. Use pure oxygen out of a cylinder, regulated or not and I think you could expect danger to develop. Stick with air.

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