plasma/flame table

B&A Motorsports 1

Active Member
ive been searching the web for weeks for a orbital eye tracer plasma table for cutting one off tabs or mounts. seen some years ago but dont know if their called a diffrent name or who even makes them. any info will help thanks guys
 

ZTFab

Well-Known Member
ESAB makes a couple of versions of them.

They have their "Silhouette" series of cantilever optical tracing machines.

There is also a company that will sell the optical tracer as a kit but I can't remember who at the moment....I'll look into and see if i can come up with a name.
 

ZTFab

Well-Known Member
OK....I found it. Check out Lowbucktools.com

This is a kit that you can buy and build the rest of the components but it is not an optical tracer it is a pattern tracer (magnetic).

You will have to have a single piece of what it is that you want to cut so that it can trace it unlike the optical eye that works off of a continuous black line drawing.

Hope that helps.
 

ZTFab

Well-Known Member
BTW, you want to search for an OPTICAL eye tracer...not an ORBITAL eye.
 

Brian Mapes

Well-Known Member
Koike Aronson also makes a few different models. Victor also makes one as well, oxy/ ac though, not plasma. You can go online and search for koike. If you are serious about getting one I can get you in touch with a Koike Aronson salesman, who can help you pick out the proper product. Let me know.
 

john92223

Well-Known Member
If your looking to build a pattern tracer check out E-bay in the welding section item # 160332350213. It is the plans for a Pantograph Plasma Oxy-Fuel Shape Cutter. It's going for 100.00. Lowbuck Tools only sells the Magnetic Pattern Tracer.
 

B&A Motorsports 1

Active Member
Hlloy Sh%$ some of these are pricey might well get the cnctorchmate the ones i looked at last night where 10 grand the ony reason i was thinking this way thought they would bee cheaper then the cnc ones does anybody know of any used ones never seen one in the classifieds.? also any body have one how well do they work and is the upkeep high
 

atomicjoe23

Well-Known Member
Having used an optical tracer for the last year and used it to cut braces, tabs, number plates, etc. . .I would strongly urge you to save up for a Torchmate!

The optical tracers are a real PITA to use. . .the upkeep is not bad, but getting them set-up takes longer than a CNC machine would (not counting the time to draw your pattern in CAD, but I used CAD to draw my patterns anyway so for me there would be no additional drawing time to convert to CNC) and the optical tracers cannot cut sharp corners, they can only cut radiused corners and there is a limit to that as well. . .I have been able to cut down to a 1/4" radius with our optical tracer, but no smaller (I don't know the brand that we have, but it's pretty old). . .

. . .as I am slowly, but surely buying my equipment for my own shop I will be saving for a Torchmate with a Thermal Arc Cutmaster 82 set-up. . .the extra time that it would take me to save for the CNC will be well worth it in that I will be able to do more work quickly and cleanly with less need to re-cut pieces because the optical eye got lost and couldn't follow the line. . .

. . .things you need to consider with the optical tracer is the increased time to set up for the cut (you should run through the pattern at least one to make sure that it can follow the pattern. . .and don't forget that you will have to manually moving the eye/torch combination or workpiece each time to cut multiple items (all of which is lost time), the potential for having to re-cut a piece is probably double or more what it would be for a CNC machine which is lost time and material. . .

. . .just some things to consider when you are thinking about an optical tracer. . .

Good luck and I will be jealous of you regardless of which route you go because I don't even have a plasma torch at home yet!!! Just a medium-duty Victor Oxy-Acetylene welder/cutting set-up and a Miller Millermatic 211 GMAW machine. . .saving now for the tube bender, tube notcher, plasma cutter/TorchMate set-up and a Miller Dynasty 200 GTAW welding machine. . .
 

amrein1743

Well-Known Member
I used a Koike machine for years and love them. I ran high volume production on it as well as 1 off r&d work. I still use it today and like it because I am sort of old school and like that I can make a paper pattern fire up the torch and have a part in my hand in 5 minutes. CAD/Plasma/Laser technology is great but there is some lag time between drawing the part, nesting the part on the laser/plasma, and cutting the part.

If it's high volume production you're after, I'd say CNC is probably the way to go, but for quick turn-around, 1 off work I think the optic-eye/flame torch is hard to beat.

Chris
 

tmathews

Well-Known Member
ive been searching the web for weeks for a orbital eye tracer plasma table for cutting one off tabs or mounts. seen some years ago but dont know if their called a diffrent name or who even makes them. any info will help thanks guys
I believe Hypertherm also makes one. But first you need to decide how much you are willing to spend.
 

DUGFAB

Well-Known Member
I bought a torchmate II small shop machine about a year and a half ago. best investment ever. I have gotten very fast at drawing parts and am able to do it faster than laying it out on a peice of paper and then cutting it out with scissors. look at the slc ranger to see the parts that I have cut out with it.
 
I have a K-N ARONSON that i cut down to a 4x4.I run a L-TEC power source.burns 1" very nice. its an optical eye tracer.Its a pain in the ass.I print out templates to scale off of SW.Trace that onto the paper.cant do tight radiuses.If the papers not perfectly flat or clean it won't read it. But hey, cant go wrong for 300 bucks:D.looking at buying a torchmate soon.
 

DBMETALWORX

Well-Known Member
hlloy sh%$ some of these are pricey might well get the cnctorchmate the ones i looked at last night where 10 grand the ony reason i was thinking this way thought they would bee cheaper then the cnc ones does anybody know of any used ones never seen one in the classifieds.? Also any body have one how well do they work and is the upkeep high

i've been running the torchmate 1, which is a kit you build yourself. In my 3rd year using it, with no problems.. Just keep it clean. I built a 5' x 10' water table. The water traps the smoke, and helps stop warping on thin stuff.torchmate will help over the phone, and they're patient with beginners, still consider myself 1.. Check e-bay,i've seen them on there before. As far as the power source goes, thermal dynamics machines are awesome. I run the cutmaster 151, on the cutting table. It cuts to 3/4" thick. Also use hypertherm , and thermal dynamics manual units. Consumables as well as initial cost are more with the hypertherm. But the hypertherm uses less power input, for the same capacity. I've seen the plasmacam, it is really thin and flimsy, but the cad looks easier to use. That is watching the video they have, so its can't be as easy as it looks.hope this helps. I know i'm very happy with mine.... Oh yeah, they do go to all bitd races, and even had 1 running @ parker and primm this year. H
 
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