For the highest quality metal fabrications, look no further than G.E. Mathis Company. Our precision CNC plasma cutting services offer unmatched quality at reduced costs.
Through the use of CNC and high-definition cutting actions on 4-axis equipment, we can produce parts up to 10 ft wide, 90 ft long and 3″ thick—with ease and remarkable accuracy. Four-hundred amp dual-head, straight, and contour beveling systems allow our team to process components with the tightest tolerances in the industry, using a variety of materials including carbon steel, stainless steel and aluminum, among many others.
At G.E. Mathis Company, our CNC plasma cutting capabilities have served a variety of markets and industries, including agricultural, mining, aerospace and military. We also have experience in manufacturing components for a diverse range of applications, such as lifting equipment, truck cranes, wear parts, boom components and frame rails, among many others. Simply put: There are few projects our plasma cutting capabilities cannot undertake.
In addition to its exceptional precision, CNC plasma cutting is also a quick and cost-effective option, with lead times averaging just 1 to 2 weeks for prototype to production runs.
Precision CNC Plasma Cutting
When a gas is subjected to extreme heat, it begins to ionize. This ionized gas then becomes plasma, a more electrically conductive state of matter.
Precision CNC plasma cutting harnesses plasma’s conductive properties to cut conductive materials such as aluminum, carbon, and stainless steel. Its ability to use the energy found in plasma makes it faster, cleaner, and more precise than other cutting methods, making it an ideal choice for most cutting applications.
The Plasma Cutting Process
A plasma cutter consists of several components:
- A plasma power supply capable of generating 200 to 400 volts of direct current, which powers the plasma arc responsible for ionizing the gas and regulates the power output based on the material’s type and thickness
- An arc starting console capable of generating 5,000 volts of alternating current at 2MHz, which generates the spark inside the torch that creates the plasma arc
- A plasma torch through which ionized gas passes
When the arc from the power supply is combined with the gas, it results in a plasma jet that can reach a maximum temperature of 40,000°F. This jet then passes through an alloy copper nozzle, allowing the torch to cut through any conductive material.In turn, the plasma torch entails the following components:
- An electrode connected to the negative side of the power supply
- A nozzle connected to the positive side of the power supply
- A gas baffle used when swirling the gas
The actual cutting process begins by sending a start input to the plasma system. After starting the power supply, the system places a negative voltage on the electrode located within the plasma torch. Gas then begins to flow to the torch while the baffle begins to swirl it.
During plasma cutting, the gas needs to be swirled for maximum cutting efficiency and quality. Swirling is often achieved by injecting water at the point where the arc exits the nozzle, further constricting the arc. The temperature of the water used to swirl the gas must be kept below 70 °F.
At the next stage of the process, contacts in the nozzle are closed, allowing it to connect to the positive side of the power supply. A high-frequency generator then causes a spark to pass between the nozzle and electrode, ionizing the gas. The pilot arc begins to flow between the electrode and nozzle, the gas flow blows the arc out of the nozzle, and the pilot arc makes contact with the material to be cut. After the main arc increases power to the cutting amperage, the shield gas restricts the plasma arc to ensure a neat cut.
Advantages of Plasma Cutting
CNC plasma cutting has a number of significant advantages over alternative cutting methods. Some of its benefits include:
- The ability to cut up to 500 inches per minute, or about five times faster than other methods
- Better cut quality
- The ability to cut through thick steel, aluminum, and other metals
- Increased safety, since it relies on gas that isn’t highly-flammable
- A minimal risk of warping
Thanks to its simple design, CNC plasma cutting is a highly cost-effective approach to cutting than laser or water-jet cutting. Since minimal training is needed to use it, a cutter can be easily employed by most employees, helping companies reduce their labor costs. The cutter can also be used as a gauge to properly align materials.
Plasma cutting results in higher-quality materials at a fraction of the cost of other methods such as laser or water-jet cutting. For precision components in particular, it offers unmatched accuracy, quality, reliability, making it the golden standard in modern manufacturing.
Headquartered in Chicago, G.E. Mathis is proud to offer elite CNC plasma cutting services to customers in every industry, as well as precision laser processing, press brake forming, CNC punching, plate rolling, shearing, and welding. If you’d like to explore our offerings, request a quote from us today.
For additional information on G.E. Mathis Company’s precision CNC plasma cutting services, please click to expand the tables below.
CNC Plasma Cutting Capabilities
|Cutting Action Type||CNC High Definition|
Beveling System (Straight and Contour)
Double and Single Bevel Capacity
|Intended Cutting Material||Carbon Steel
|Cutting Thickness||Up to 3″|
|Cutting Length||Up to 90 ft|
|Cutting Width||Up to 10 ft|
|Tolerances||Tightest in Industry|
|Production Volume||Prototype to Production|
|Typical Lead Time||1 to 2 weeks|
|Intended Application||Lifting Equipment
Storage Tank Components
|Industry Standards||ISO 9001:2015 Certified
|File Formats||AutoCAD Inventor