How Thick Can a Plasma Cutter Cut?

Mar 20, 2024 | Plasma Cutting Tips

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If you want precise cuts for your metal works, you can’t go wrong with a plasma cutter. This hi-tech equipment uses a high-velocity ionized gas to slice through metal, and it’s exceptionally accurate. 

Still, how thick can a plasma cutter cut without losing its unrivaled accuracy? Cyrious Metal Works, a leading provider of hypertherm plasma cutters shares more about the capability of these devices below.

What Cut Thickness Can You Achieve With Your Plasma Cutter?

While there are almost limitless applications for these machines, the wide range of plasma cutters available on the market makes this question tricky. 

Plasma cutters come as one of two main types: a handheld plasma torch or an automated plasma cutter. Each type has its maximum cut thickness.

Handheld – 38 mm

Generally, a handheld plasma torch can cut a steel plate as thick as 38 mm. This thickness is sufficient for most DIY projects. You often work with thinner metal sheets but will need something more for the thickness of metal in industrial settings.

Automated – 150 mm

For anything beyond 38 mm, you’ll likely need a more powerful industrial-grade plasma cutter. Some of these machines can cut as much as 150 mm in thickness. If you’re a DIY enthusiast, the power of an industrial plasma cut might be slightly out of reach because you’ll have to pay through the nose to get one.

Factors Influencing How Thick a Plasma Cutter Can Cut

How thick can a plasma cutter cut? Ask an experienced metal fabricator, and they’ll shrug and say, “It depends.” Let’s look at the two most notable factors. 

Type of Material 

The material you’re cutting can influence the thickness your plasma cutting equipment can handle. You can use a plasma cutter on a wide range of metals, such as:

  • Stainless steel
  • Mild steel
  • Carbon steel
  • Steel alloys
  • Brass
  • Aluminum
  • Copper
  • Titanium
  • Iron-containing metals

Its thermal conductivity also affects the equipment’s cutting speed and efficiency. That’s why the process is often more efficient with materials that have high conductivity, like stainless steel and aluminum. You may have more difficulty or be unable to cut materials with poor or zero conductivity, such as lead, plastic, and wood. 

Power Source

A plasma cutter’s efficiency depends on its power source. A higher-amperage machine has more cutting force, which means it can cut thicker materials effortlessly. 

For example, if you have a 50 amp plasma cutting machine, you can cut a thickness of not more than 20mm. A 100 amp machine allows you to cut through up to 40 mm.

Contact Cyrious Metal Works for Your Plasma Cutter Needs

How thick can a plasma cutter cut? If you want to know more about this and how much air pressure a plasma cutter needs, talk to the experts from Cyrious Metal Works, the go-to for all your CNC plasma metal cutting needs. 

Let us help you find the best equipment for your needs and help you get the most out of it—call Cyrious Metal Works today at 903-345-1841 for a quote.