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Thread: Problems with plasma cutter

  1. Default Problems with plasma cutter

    Ok Ive already posted a few times about my new machine, just very very new with this and please dont tear me open when i ask what im about to ask. I already have NOOB written on my forehead

    ANyways so i was excited to start on a new project making steel shooting targets out of 3/8 AR500. Well since that stuff is $$$ I decided to start out with a plate of just 3/8" mild steel. (think they call it AS36?) anyways got home all excited and powered it up for a test run. I would have been better off taking a lighter to that steel... (overexagerated) but it just wouldnt peirce it all the way through and when it did it took repeated passes. After 20 minutes of playing with it and ruining my consumables with all the back splash of slag i got i gave up and assumed the 50 amps werent strong enough to get through it. Then I saw peoples videos with the same machine on youttube blowing through 1/2" steel with 40 amps like it was butter! Whats goin on!?!

    Ive looked for stickys on the psi/amperage settings and didnt see much, and the owners manual didnt help after a quick scan. Can anyone tell me what im doin wrong? I was running it on about 42amps with the psi from 80-100. Im getting the feeling im not getting enough air pressure from my compressor but the main gage never dropped the whole time. Its just a 20 gallon 1.5 horse 150psi but surely it could handle cutting for a few seconds.

    Also here comes the newb question. Do you need the ground clamp for this machine. I just realized I wasnt using it but it still was melting away. Im going to feel like an idiot if the answer is yes but i though that maybe the pilot arc was taking its place since u dont use that when you tig and stick. Thanks for whoever helps me on this. I really appreciate it.

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jef_Replogle View Post
    Ok Ive already posted a few times about my new machine, just very very new with this and please dont tear me open when i ask what im about to ask. I already have NOOB written on my forehead

    ANyways so i was excited to start on a new project making steel shooting targets out of 3/8 AR500. Well since that stuff is $$$ I decided to start out with a plate of just 3/8" mild steel. (think they call it AS36?) anyways got home all excited and powered it up for a test run. I would have been better off taking a lighter to that steel... (overexagerated) but it just wouldnt peirce it all the way through and when it did it took repeated passes. After 20 minutes of playing with it and ruining my consumables with all the back splash of slag i got i gave up and assumed the 50 amps werent strong enough to get through it. Then I saw peoples videos with the same machine on youttube blowing through 1/2" steel with 40 amps like it was butter! Whats goin on!?!

    Ive looked for stickys on the psi/amperage settings and didnt see much, and the owners manual didnt help after a quick scan. Can anyone tell me what im doin wrong? I was running it on about 42amps with the psi from 80-100. Im getting the feeling im not getting enough air pressure from my compressor but the main gage never dropped the whole time. Its just a 20 gallon 1.5 horse 150psi but surely it could handle cutting for a few seconds.

    Also here comes the newb question. Do you need the ground clamp for this machine. I just realized I wasnt using it but it still was melting away. Im going to feel like an idiot if the answer is yes but i though that maybe the pilot arc was taking its place since u dont use that when you tig and stick. Thanks for whoever helps me on this. I really appreciate it.
    Yep, gotta have the ground clamp on your work and it's gotta make good contact. You were only using the pilot arc. Set your machine to mantain 60psi while cutting.

    PP 256 (SOLD) : 2013 250EX : I-MIG 250P/w 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60/w p80 torch : Hobart Handler 135/w 12' .023" Profax gun : 3M Speedglas 9100XX
    I'm not an expert or an Everlast employee, I'm just a hobby welder sharing my experience and helping where I can.

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    Damn... Figures haha i had just been cutting very thin sheet metal and the pilot was enough to get through it. Well thats a relief! Thanks again zoama, ill clamp that sucker on and give it a go

  4. #4

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    Also check to see that the air flow from the torch is enough (60PSI) is what you need. But if your not putting out that at of the torch find out why. Your compressor is big eough unless its running all the time to keep up. But that will show in the tank gauge if it drops less then 60.

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  5. Default

    Ok now Ive got it grounded but for some reason my amps arent staying where I want them. I have it at full 50 amps but when i start cutting (had my wife watch the digital read as i was cutting) it drops to 22 and hangs there causing the cut to take longer. What could be the cause of this?

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jef_Replogle View Post
    Ok now Ive got it grounded but for some reason my amps arent staying where I want them. I have it at full 50 amps but when i start cutting (had my wife watch the digital read as i was cutting) it drops to 22 and hangs there causing the cut to take longer. What could be the cause of this?
    Possibly poor ground.

    PP 256 (SOLD) : 2013 250EX : I-MIG 250P/w 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60/w p80 torch : Hobart Handler 135/w 12' .023" Profax gun : 3M Speedglas 9100XX
    I'm not an expert or an Everlast employee, I'm just a hobby welder sharing my experience and helping where I can.

  7. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by zoama585 View Post
    Possibly poor ground.
    Its latched on there tho... ugh frustrating.. it jumps to 22amps then as soon as i let go of the trigger it creeps back up to 52. Ill play with it some more but that ground is on there and metal is clean.. shouldnt matter that its on hot rolled right? I didnt think the carbon coating would really take away from the ground.

  8. #8

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    Yes, it will drop to 22 amps as long as the pilot arc is in play. When the arc transfers to the metal during the actual cut, it will jump back up. IF not, you may have done damage to the torch or the pilot arc circuit trying to use it without the clamp for so long. The Pilot arc is NOT designed for running continuously as you had done previously.

  9. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by performance View Post
    Yes, it will drop to 22 amps as long as the pilot arc is in play. When the arc transfers to the metal during the actual cut, it will jump back up. IF not, you may have done damage to the torch or the pilot arc circuit trying to use it without the clamp for so long. The Pilot arc is NOT designed for running continuously as you had done previously.
    I did it without a clamp for mere minutes. I didnt continualy use it for days or something without. Ive already emailed customer support I really dont think this is from user error. Im going to be really disapointed if my warranty is voided because i didnt have it grounded for a few short occasions (a mistake every noob makes along with forgetting the gas is not turned on)

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jef_Replogle View Post
    Its latched on there tho... ugh frustrating.. it jumps to 22amps then as soon as i let go of the trigger it creeps back up to 52. Ill play with it some more but that ground is on there and metal is clean.. shouldnt matter that its on hot rolled right? I didnt think the carbon coating would really take away from the ground.
    The mill scale is likely insulating the clamp quite a bit Should be ground off.
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  11. #11

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    Mere minutes, is enough to melt down a consumable and possibly a torch head. The arc is being carried through the torch body on tiny wires and the being fed back through a sensitive series of circuits. The pilot arc is designed for mere SECONDS of continual use. OE is a large cause of issues. Having a work clamp left over is a should be an immediate warning that something isn't right. 80-100 psi is way too high, and that is discussed in the manual I believe as well as some of the basics. The coating on the steel is mill scale, and probably oil. It can interfere, but not usually if it is fairly clean metal. What model do you have?

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    Its a powerpro 205 and yes metal is clean.

  13. #13

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    Is your torch in the negative or positive?

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    Negative. I assumed the ground is always in positive.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jef_Replogle View Post
    Negative. I assumed the ground is always in positive.
    I think you might be yanking our chain being your 3rd thread and 3rd account name on the same problem. (2 more @ weldingweb)

    PP 256 (SOLD) : 2013 250EX : I-MIG 250P/w 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60/w p80 torch : Hobart Handler 135/w 12' .023" Profax gun : 3M Speedglas 9100XX
    I'm not an expert or an Everlast employee, I'm just a hobby welder sharing my experience and helping where I can.

  16. #16

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    No, Zoama, I don't think so, but I do wonder why ? Those guys never offer any helpful advice. The thing is that it didn't give the full story explaining why it ate up the consumables to begin with, which does make the product look bad, and did not explain the original blunder, which MAY have caused a further issue. I try to help customers, with issues like this, and usually find at the source operator error, but not always, hence the elementary questions.

    If the arc isn't transferring, which does seem to be the problem, likely the cause is simple. I do believe, that it possibly fused something in the torch head or burned out in the plasma cutter after long sustained use with the pilot arc. It's sort of like holding the throttle wide open on a stock V8 and expecting it to not do damage, even if it is held for a few minutes. It can go to wide open throttle of course, but holding it there for any real length of time will make things go bye bye real quick.

    It seems that The pilot arc is indeed engaging but it is not transferring when continuity is sensed (if it is). The amps then ramp up to full scale amperage as the arc is transferred from the torch circuit to the metal. The reason the torch does not take the full power, the arc will blow out the consumables very very quickly. It eats them out with the pilot arc engaged for very long as it is.

    Jef,
    Is the swirl ring still in the torch?

    You can call me tomorrow as well and we can go over some of the basics if you need to about this.
    And as an additional note, the torch is switched to positive for stick welding.

  17. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by performance View Post
    No, Zoama, I don't think so, but I do wonder why ? Those guys never offer any helpful advice. The thing is that it didn't give the full story explaining why it ate up the consumables to begin with, which does make the product look bad, and did not explain the original blunder, which MAY have caused a further issue. I try to help customers, with issues like this, and usually find at the source operator error, but not always, hence the elementary questions.

    If the arc isn't transferring, which does seem to be the problem, likely the cause is simple. I do believe, that it possibly fused something in the torch head or burned out in the plasma cutter after long sustained use with the pilot arc. It's sort of like holding the throttle wide open on a stock V8 and expecting it to not do damage, even if it is held for a few minutes. It can go to wide open throttle of course, but holding it there for any real length of time will make things go bye bye real quick.

    It seems that The pilot arc is indeed engaging but it is not transferring when continuity is sensed (if it is). The amps then ramp up to full scale amperage as the arc is transferred from the torch circuit to the metal. The reason the torch does not take the full power, the arc will blow out the consumables very very quickly. It eats them out with the pilot arc engaged for very long as it is.

    Jef,
    Is the swirl ring still in the torch?

    You can call me tomorrow as well and we can go over some of the basics if you need to about this.
    And as an additional note, the torch is switched to positive for stick welding.

    I don't doubt your customer service and I was straight forward on this forum for the get go. If you read the other post it was posted BEFORE anyone on here had posted about the new problem. Do u really think I wanted to sound like an idiot about not grounding it? No but I asked anyways and WAS upfront with every problem I've had since it occurred. I will call tomorrow this forum has just been trouble. Thank you for the responses anyways.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jef_Replogle View Post
    I don't doubt your customer service and I was straight forward on this forum for the get go. If you read the other post it was posted BEFORE anyone on here had posted about the new problem. Do u really think I wanted to sound like an idiot about not grounding it? No but I asked anyways and WAS upfront with every problem I've had since it occurred. I will call tomorrow this forum has just been trouble. Thank you for the responses anyways.
    No trouble here... were're all being up front.

    PP 256 (SOLD) : 2013 250EX : I-MIG 250P/w 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60/w p80 torch : Hobart Handler 135/w 12' .023" Profax gun : 3M Speedglas 9100XX
    I'm not an expert or an Everlast employee, I'm just a hobby welder sharing my experience and helping where I can.

  19. Default

    POSTED ON WELD WEB AFTER I GOT OFF WORK AND HAD A CHANCE

    "Thanks for all the input guys and moving it to the right thread. Since i started this thread ive found out a lot and mike the sales rep has brought to my attention that it could be my fault but I hope its not because like assassin_works said im broke as a joke because im married haha.

    The problem started way before I posted on here like a couple days ago. I've been welding for years but not to big on plasma cutting. Just lots of oxy settling burnin'. Well this whole "pilot arc" ordeal was a bewilderment to me because normally on the plasmas ive used in the past if its not grounded its not gonna do more than give u a little arc and go out. Well the pilot arc kept goin and on accident i realized i didnt need the ground to cut through thin sheet metal when i was playing around with it trying it out. Then i realized i do need the ground becuase when it came to thicker material it just wouldnt cut. (biggest noob mistake ever i know) well now they are thinkin Ive ruined the torch and now made it so the pilot just stays on at all times. Reason i didnt come out and say anything about it on here was because i didnt think it was related if you look at my original post I thought i just wasnt running enough power to the unit.

    Not sure if i caused it but just had to clear the air because people on the other forum were accusing me of spamming since i have two different usernames on this and everlast and had two similar threads going. "

  20. #20

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    Jef,
    Don't worry, if there is a problem we will help you out.

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