Can Plasma Cutter Be Used As A TIG Welder?

Can Plasma Cutter Be Used As A TIG Welder

What is TIG welding

The Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welder is similar to welding with an oxy-acetylene torch in its design and use. TIG welding is a two-handed manual welding process that is one of the most difficult to learn. When TIG welding, you should use one hand to add filler metal t the joint while the other develops the welding arc.

TIG welding is usually the slowest option available, but it can work well on critical joints where precision welding is required. TIG welding takes place in three simple steps. The compressed gas is allowed to flow over the weld area, which protects it from air. The electricity passing through the welder’s tungsten electrode, a great choice due to its ability to withstand high temperatures, creates heat along the weld arc. This excessive amount of heat causes the metal to melt, with the operator adding filler metal to piece them together into a single block or sheet.

Can a plasma cutter be used for TIG welding?

Plasma cutters work to cut metal at high temperatures. They  offer a clean and quick cut, which allows for effective work. Unlike saws, grinders and welding torches, plasma cutters make light work of cutting through even the thickest sheets of metal. Plasma cutters transfer energy from a central power source to an electrically conductive material through the use of a specialized gas, such as nitrogen or oxygen. The gas is heated to achieve plasma state, which is then directed at the material to be cut.

Without any alterations, a plasma cutter and TIG welder are two different tools. TIG welders act to melt two metals together, while the plasma cutter makes precision cuts along one single slap of metal. Some combo tools provide both features to help make work easier. If you are planning on using the TIG welder as a plasma cutter, you should be wary of any naked flames and take up safety precautions to protect yourself.

How to use a plasma cutter safely

Plasma cutters can produce about 45,000 degree flames. This means that you have to be very careful when using the tool, as it could cause severe and fatal injuries. These tips should help you out when you are using a plasma cutter.

A good, solid ground which meets the National Electric Code specifications should be first priority when you are planning on plasma cutting. You should also create a 30-35-foot safety zone within which to operate the machine. No flammable items should be kept within this zone, which means that you could look into heavy duty non-flammable clothing, preferably not synthetic material.

Plasma cutters operate under very specific electrical conditions. If your home or workshop does not have a compatible outlet, you should contact the relevant authorities to have it installed. This will protect both you and the machine from damage, while providing efficient service. While plasma cutters carry the risk of electrocution and electrical failure, they are safer than the highly flammable oxy-fuel cutting techniques available, which could make them a better choice. However, you need to maintain the right electrical protocol to enjoy efficient operation.

Next articleHow to Choose a Plasma Cutter
Brian is a part time educator at a local community college, where he specializes in teaching Molecular Biology and Chemistry. He has 12 years of experience in this capacity, but has been doing home based crafts and science experiments out of his garage since he was in high school. When he is not spending time at school or in the research lab, he likes to take up DIY crafts, which he picked off YouTube five years ago. He has become a carpentry and ironwork guru, with many of his crafts donated to the school to help attract the interest of students, who spend one weekend a month at school working on their own crafts. Brian strongly believes that every DIY hotspot needs a strong, durable plasma cutter.


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