Plasma Cutting Vs Flame Cutting

Anyone that works with metals knows it’s crucial to understand the difference between the cutting techniques. What does each unique process offer? and which is the best process to use for a certain material?

In this case we’ll be looking at the two main cutting services that we offer to our clients, Plasma Cutting and Flame Cutting.

What is Plasma Cutting?

Plasma cutting is a process that involves the cutting through of electrically conductive materials. The process works by the shooting a jet of ionized gas through an orifice at a fast speed. The gas, forms a completed circuit back to the cutter via a grounding clamp, the ionized gas in question is known as plasma.

What is Flame Cutting?

Flame cutting also known as, oxy-fuel cutting, oxyacetylene cutting, and oxy cutting is a process that relies on fuel gases and oxygen to cut through metals. For the process to work, it requires a source of intense heat, referred to as Preheat and pure oxygen.

What are the Advantages of Plasma Cutting?

A major benefit that Plasma Cutting offers is that it is a much faster and efficient process than Flame Cutting. As well as this it can be used on most metals that conduct electricity, so is not limited to just to cast iron and steel and can be used on a number of other materials including Stainless Steels, Copper, Aluminum and Titanium.

Plasma cutting’s main disadvantage is that It cannot cut through thick materials unlike Flame cutting so it is not the best process to use for materials that are more than a few inches thick.

What are the Advantages of Flame Cutting?

One of Flame Cutting’s biggest advantages is that it does not need any power supplies meaning that it is a very portable process, all that is required is a cylinder for oxygen, a cylinder for fuel gas, hoses, a torch, and a striker. Another advantage that is offered by flame cutting is that unlike plasma cutting it can cut very thick metals of up to several feet.

Flame Cutting may sound like the perfect cutting solution but it has its disadvantages, one being the range of metals it can cut through, it’s limited to carbon steel, low alloy steels, and cast irons.

Which process is the best option for you?

So, when It comes to choosing a process, there are a number of factors that you have to take into account including the type of material you’re using and the thickness. You also need to consider which option would be more cost-effective for you if the material that you wish to use is suitable for both processes.

RMP Products are UK’s leading Plasma & Flame cutting specialists offering both processes to very high standards. Contact us today.

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