16 gage speeds/amps on powermax 45xp

Just assembled my table today and got it up and running. No water table yet.

Figured before cutting some projects I’d experiment with speeds and amps to find what produces the least dross and best cut.

The test pieces were a 3" square and a 3" Mickey head (circle plus a tight radius, plus my girlfriend’s business is based around Disney) per run. Started at 120ipm up to 180, and with 28-35A, though most cuts were at 30.

I wound up at 160ipm at 35 A, but also found 160ipm at 30A worked better when I first started the experiment, and seemed comparable later. Couldn’t get a totally consistent result for dross. Could have been due to material warpage (differing z height) or tip wear, though the later seems less likely.

I couldn’t get rid of dross, just reduce it. I’m not totally sure what an “acceptable” level of dross or minimal dross would look like though, so I may be trying to chase an unrealistic level. Anyone know or have pictures of what would be a “best cut” amount of dross on 16ga?

What combinations have you guys found works best with a powermax 45xp and 16 (or 14) gage?

I can post pictures at a later time if people are curious to see.

I just use the book settings.Thats the good thing about hypertherm all that work has been done for you…just look up the gage of material and type and what consumbles you have installed.You can take that info in the book and create a tool library for everything and wont have to plug in the numbers everytime.I cut 14 gage and the book calls for 200ipm at 45 amp i think.When cutting 14 gage you going to have dross.

Gave that a shot and wow what a difference. Virtually no dross at 250ipm and 45A.

The only thing I noticed is it seemed to produce quite a decent amount of smoke. Had to open both garage doors fully and run a fan to clear it out after probably a 40 second program. I’m relatively inexperienced at this, so is that normal? I have to imagine hypertherm got it right with their cut charts, just wondering if the smoke is normal or I have something not set right (or say air isn’t high enough).
Also, will the water table help with this?

If you’re not running a water table it can get very smokey, even with the smallest cuts. I run a water table and I have no smoke issues when cutting large or small parts. I also use a Hypertherm and use the provided cut charts for every piece. The charts are always spot on!

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Thanks Jason for the confirmation.
My water table hasn’t arrived yet, but was hoping to get a head start experimenting and getting set up. For the most part looks like I’ll have to wait, though i may spend a day with the table outside as well.

Even with a water pan be prepared for a layer of dust on everything.I used to have bright white interior walls lol…Like my wife said…its a shop and its going to get dirty lol

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