Tools and devices I have tried that work

We have all tried various tools and additions to our armaments for working with CNC Plasma cutting. I thought it would be informative to share “Stuff that worked.” It does not have to be your own discovery but you need to have tried it. You are under no obligation to share where you got the idea, but you can if you want (many times we forget where we first heard something). These are Add ons and tools you have tried and what issue did it solve:

  1. How to regulate fan on pre-cooler (@ToolBoy). Inkbird ITC-308 Digital Temperature Controller 2-Stage Outlet Thermostat Heating and Cooling. I wanted something that would turn the fan on and off at the appropriate time and did not feel the electric circuit of the air compressor would fit quite right. I also have it controlling my electronic compressor tank drain.

  2. How to drain my compressor tank without me needing to remember. Electronic Automatic Tank Drain for Air Compressors. There are cheap and expensive versions. I have bought one of each and have thoroughly tested the expensive one so that is the one I will show: I also added the “muffler” but now that mine is triggered when the compressor starts, there is no need to try to silence it. I cannot hear the drain release over the sound of the compressor.

  3. Extension for torch firing. This may be taboo for some setups (therefore I will not reference who suggested) but has worked well for me without issues. I wanted to move my cutter away from the table.

  4. Extension for USB to table control box. This may be taboo for some setups (therefore I will not reference who suggested) but has worked well for me without issues. I wanted to move my computer away from the table. MOSWAG Long Printer Cable 16.4FT/5M Scanner Cable USB Printer Cord USB Type A to Type B.

  5. Removing mill scale. Nothing beats the effectiveness of the vinegar bath but this works 200% better than flapper discs if need to remove it quickly: S SATC Strip Disc Blue 5” x 7/8” Stripping Wheel Premium Silicone Carbide Strip Disc for Angle Grinder. This disc will remove the mill scale without significant scratching of the metal.
    There are times that it is simply inconvenient to use the vinegar. (I do know that some wipe the 30% vinegar on metal and get quick results for $22 per gallon.) This wheel will also remove dross but will deteriorate the disc much more quickly.
    Strip discs

  6. Couplers for lead screws. Very secure and promoted by @Bigdaddy2166. Ruland CLX-4-4-F One-Piece Clamping Rigid Coupling, Black Oxide Steel, 1/4" Bore A Diameter, 1/4" Bore B Diameter, 5/8" OD, 1" Length. Fixes loosening issues.
    Lead screw Coupler

  7. Sealant for water table (especially at the seam). 3M Marine Adhesive Sealant Fast Cure 5200 (06535) Permanent Bonding and Sealing. Fixes the leak.

  8. Bluetooth control of the plasma table: Bluetooth keypad. Bluetooth Wireless Number Pads, Numeric Keypad 22 Keys.

  9. Plasma cutting fluid. STERLINGCOOL-PLASMACUT. (Photo omitted as it was only a bucket - unimpressive). Anti-corrosive, biodegradable, limited foaming and affect on metal. SterlingCool-PlasmaCut (Premium Plasma Water Table Fluid) - 5 Gallon P – Cutting Fluids Direct

  10. Straight edge added to table. This helps to align the piece of metal to the travel of the torch.


Thank you great set of tips.


Nice Thread thanks for sharing.


Have a really cheap and simple one to add. Collapsible silicone bowl, got it from Walmart. Trimmed it down with a pair of scissors and cut a hole to slip over the torch. Makes a huge difference in reducing the water splashing up and helps shield the arc flash.


As my user name indicates, I’m new to CNC plasma cutting. The things this community offers is awesome. ChelanJim; can you tell me what the key pad is used for when it comes to running the CNC table?

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@GreenHorn welcome to the forum!

If you want to get someone’s attention, you can call out their user with the @ symbol beforehand.


@72Pony Thanks for the information. That will definitely be helpful.

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@ChelanJim Lets try this again…what a Greenhorn. :rofl:

As my user name indicates, I’m new to CNC plasma cutting. The things this community offers is awesome. ChileanJim; can you tell me what the key pad is used for when it comes to running the CNC table?

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The keyboard arrow keys are used to jog the machine around the table. I jog my machine to the lower left corner and set work home… then using the visualizer in fire control, I jog around to make sure the design fits inside the material. Your process may be different if you have the limit switches installed. I have the kit but have never installed them.

There are other hot keys… there is a list of them somewhere. Space bar stops the cut.


You can use it as a remote to your computer to move the torch in FireControl. Page up/down moves the torch up and down. “2” moves the torch/gantry in the -y direction, “8” moves the torch/gantry in the +y direction and so on. That way you can get your torch where you need it over the spot of metal. Notice the arrows on the number keys.

Oh, I see my friend Eric has already answered. Good show!


Thank you guys for your prompt responses. I love the wealth of knowledge that is offered here.

Here’s that list of hotkeys----->


@KX9M thanks for that list of hotkeys.

“Obviously you’re not a golfer”.

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Do you have a link to that collapsible silicone bowl?

Craig, @holla2040 here is a topic that discusses and gives links to the silicone bowl:

Edit: On that thread, the first link takes you French Amazon site and the item is a silicone mug. I would imagine it is more durable than the silicone funnel that is also referenced.

I found a similar listing in the U.S. Amazon:

Edit #2: After cutting a bunch of 14 gauge aluminum last week, it makes me think, something like this would be worth trying. Since the title of this thread is [Tools and devices I have tried that work], I can’t really say that I have seen this work.


Thanks, I’ll try it and let you know. I’ve seen these on people’s torches and didn’t even know what they’re called.

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holla2040, I do not. Just found it hanging on an endcap one day. It has since worn out and I am now using a “pinch bowl”. Not quite the same coverage but much more durable.

These are them. Used one and gave the other 3 to the wife.


Thanks, I’ll get some.

Maybe I looked right over it, but has anyone tried using a bluetooth connection between the control box and their laptop? To avoid using the USB cable? I see some of you use a bluetooth keyboard for jogging, but I’m wanting something to allow full firecontrol… control…

The control board only supports a USB connection.

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