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Tactical CNC Plasma Tables Blog

Introduction to Plasma Swirl Ring

Plasma Table Gantry

When we discuss CNC plasma cutting there are a few common topics that tend to come up.  But, because of that, some important smaller components of the system do not get examined as closely as they perhaps should be.  It is always a good idea for a fabricator to fully understand not just how the complete system works, but how each component of the system works in conjunction with the other components to achieve the final precise cutting process.  The plasma swirl ring is one of those components that may not always be closely looked at but every fabricator should know what it is and why it matters.

What is a Plasma Swirl Ring & Why Is It Important?

To be able to cut with plasma, a plasma arc must be created.  The arc does not just magically appear, there are different components that combine particular gases that create a plasma arc.  A high quality swirl ring is important because it will help prolong the life of consumables and create the ideal plasma arc, as Hypertherm points out, “The swirl ring’s job is to control and swirl the plasma gas around the electrode and into the nozzle. This is done to control the arc attachment point on the electrode emitter, and the gas flow through the nozzle orifice in a way that delivers the best edge angularity. Controlling and swirling the plasma gas also creates a centrifugal effect that slings heavier un-ionized gas molecules to the edges of the nozzle orifice helping it to last longer…The swirl ring also ensures perfect alignment between the electrode emitter and the nozzle orifice and it electrically insulates the negatively charged electrode from the positive nozzle. Basically, the swirl ring is relied on for a lot of things. Without one, you would see much shorter life for all your consumables, and poor cut quality…Besides a chipped or broken swirl ring, there are two more reasons swirl rings need to be replaced. The first is if it is cracked. Even small hairline cracks can impact gas flow. The second, has to do with the O-rings. Swirl rings have inside and outside O-rings that sometimes get torn, cut, or wind up with flat spots that prevent the formation of a tight seal. Inspecting your swirl ring What all this means is that with careful use and clean hands, a swirl ring can last through 50 electrode / nozzle change-outs or more! Despite this, you still need to regularly inspect your swirl ring to make sure it is not compromised.”

Do Tactical CNC Plasma Cutters Come with a Good Plasma Swirl Ring?

Tactical CNC plasma cutting systems come with everything you need to start cutting right away.  We pay close attention to all component and choose only the highest quality components to ensure that our customers are always satisfied with the cuts achieved.  Eventually your swirl ring will need to be replaced so choose a swirl ring recommended by your plasma torch manufacturer that can withstand use and ultimately create the precise and pristine cuts that you want.

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Still need an oxy-fuel station for the really thick plate?
Not a problem.
Tactical CNC introduces a single oxy-fuel station to compliment your plasma cutting system.
With the new Tactical 5 software, oxy-fuel parameters are also loaded for operator convienience.

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