I am deciding which plasma cutter to purchase. I have narrowed my
choice down to a Thermal Dynamics Cutmaster 81 & a Hypertherm Powermax
1000. I would like any opinions pro & con, Thanks for any info you
Ernie & Sven
That is the problem I been that has me going back & forth from one to
the other. I have been hearing the Cutmaster 81 has the new quick
disconnect 1S torch. I've been hearing good things about both units so
I'm struggling with the decision especially with the $$$ involved.
What I do like about the Cutmaster 81 is the quick disconnect because
the unit will be doing double duty as a CNC & manual cutter. Thanks
for the help.
I have been using my Thermal Dynamics on a CNC table for about 10 months
now. I have had no problems with the plasma cutter. I would highly recommend
a Thermal Dynamics machine. As you mentioned the torch is easily
disconnected from the machine although my CNC table (a PlasmaCam) uses the
hand torch so swapping torches is not an issue for me. What brand of table
do you have? Send me an email and I will give you an address for a Thermal
Dynamics rep that is a super guy and will answer any question you have on
their machines. That is another plus.... great support
You also might research prices and also availability on the consumables. I
came down to the Miller, Thermal Dynamics and the Hypertherm. Miller uses
Hypertherm torches. :) I got the Hypertherm. The Powermax 1000 uses a T60
torch and you can check prices for consumables at
(Electrode #120926 5 for 31.50)
Might not be the cheapest but you can get an idea of the prices. :)
Hypertherm now has a fine cut kit available. I can give you some other links
for more prices if you need at Metalcut101 (AT) yahoo.com I hope we
were able to help you. Jim
From comparing notes with a couple of Hypertherm owners I find the tip and
electrode life to be comparable with my Thermal Dynamics. I don't know if
this is the case with older machines or not.
We have a little bit of everything from the last 50 years of welding
In plasma cutters we have.
Thermal Dynamics Pac 10 (100 amp)
LTEC PCM 150 (150 amp)
Hypertherm Powermax 600 (55 amp)
Hypertherm Powermax 350 (35 amp)
We used to have an awful century plasma cutter, but eventually repair
costs outstripped usefulness.
It was given to us by the autobody shop when they got a new Thermal
Dynamics Pak 55.
The Pac 10 sat unused for 2 years until my boss put the new torch on it.
The PCM 150 sat unused for 6 years because nobody knew that it could be
used with nitrogen and compressed air.
They thought it required the weird Argon/Hydrogen gas mix for cutting.
The PCM 150 is truly impressive to play with, but the torch design is
terrible and there is no aftermarket retrofit torch for 150 amp plasma
cutters that is affordable.
I do not have the table as of yet, I am just beggining the process of
aquiring a complete unit by purchasing the plasma cutter first. What
type of table do you own? I have looked at PlasmaCam, Torchmate &
Pratical CNC units. We just purchased a FastCut unit a work but I have
to say I am not yet impresed with this unit yet, especially for
$17,000 & no Z capability. What type of work are you doing with your
Thank you all for your generous advise, now its geting harder to make
a decision, The way it sounds these two units match up head to head
pretty well. If anyone else has more info I would appreciate your
Rangerod,The new Thermals are the torches to get at this point.The
front ends parts last as long as Hypertherms,and really have a small
kerf.I am putting a machine torch on my 90 amp esab.Great deal too
$350.00 with the adapter for the 1500 esab.I found out the esab
Machine torch is of the older style,and not like their new long
lasting pt 32 style.I been cutting on 90 amps,and it really is ten
times better then the torch that was on my 70 amp 1125(way more
clunky,and stiff though).The patents have run out on the Hyperthem
torches so Thermal took what they wanted,and moved beyond
Hypertherm.With lots of Hypertherms ideas I might add.