A plasma cutter (or cutting torch) is an important part of any welder's kit. Metal fabrication projects, especially for on-site construction or salvage yards, frequently utilize plasma cutters. Designers and artists also use plasma cutters for signage and sculpture design and decorative panels for interior works. But choosing the right one can be difficult with so many different options available.
In this blog post, we'll look at four of the best plasma cutting torches on the market today, all of which come in under $300. We'll discuss the features of each torch and help you choose the best plasma cutting torch for your needs. So read on to learn more about these top-rated torches and find the perfect one for your next project!
Why We Chose These Plasma Cutters
We considered four criteria to find the best plasma cutter for your needs. First, we looked at the build quality. We wanted to find a cutter that was affordably priced without sacrificing quality.
Second, we considered the cutting depth. We wanted a cutter that could quickly and easily cut through up to 1/2" thick metals.
Third, we looked at the size and weight of the unit. We wanted a compact and lightweight cutter, making it easy to transport and store. Finally, we considered those with 110V/220V dual voltage power supplies. We chose the four plasma cutters that we felt were the best on the market based on these criteria.
The LOTOS LT5000D is a versatile plasma cutter that you can use on a variety of materials. It can cut for up to 6 minutes before needing to rest. It also has a dual voltage system that can operate on either 110 or 220 volts, making it ideal for use in both home and industrial settings.
With its precision cutting technology, the LT5000D can easily cut through metal up to 1/2 inch thick. Its severance cutting ability means it can handle thicker materials as well. So whether you're a contractor or a hobbyist welder, the LOTOS LT5000D is a great choice for your next plasma cutter.
- (1) 9'9", 3-prong plasma cutting torch
- (1) 6'8" ground clamp and cable
- (1) air filter and regulator
- (6) air hose connections
- (4) clamps
- (2) couplers
- (1) air hose
- 10–50 Amp DC output
- 60% duty-cycle means you can cut continuously for 6 minutes
- Durable machine
- Great after-sales service
- Readily available and cheap consumables
- Easy to set up
- Generates more slag than a pilot arc plasma cutter
- The plasma cutter head is not very durable
- Consumes more consumables than more expensive cutters
- You'll need to buy a pigtail adapter to use it on 110V
Warfox Plasma Cutter
Warfox is not a popular brand but competes with leading welding equipment manufacturers. With its cheap price tag and great performance, the Warfox Plasma Cutter is perfect for any beginner welder starting out. The straightforward design and controls make it easy to operate, even for beginners. Cut through metal for as cheap as possible with the Warfox Plasma Cutter.
- (1) 4-meter PT31 cutting torch
- (1) air regulator
- (1) 120V to 240V power adapter converter cord
- (1) 2.5-meter ground clamp and cable
- (5) electrodes
- (5) cutting torch tips
- (1) 2-meter air hose
- (4) hose clamps
- One year warranty
- Use for 6 minutes at 50 amps and 10 minutes at 40 amps
- Comes with consumables
- Easy to set up
- Also prone to generate more slag than a pilot arc cutter
- The air regulator is quite loose, but you can fix it with enough thread tape
- Some users report having difficulty cutting through 1/2" metal
S7 Plasma Cutter
If you're looking for a reliable plasma cutter, the S7 is a great option. It can cut through non-ferrous material quickly. Plus, it's a relatively compact and portable plasma cutting torch, making it easy to transport and maneuver. It also has an HD LED screen that makes it easy to see what you're doing. Overall, the S7 is a great choice for anyone who needs a reliable plasma cutter at a low price.
- (1) 4-meter S7 cutting torch
- (1) air regulator
- (1) 240V to 120V adapter converter cord
- (1) ground clamp
- (20) common consumables
- Three years warranty
- 20–50 amps DC output
- A duty-cycle of 85%–100%
- Comes with a lot of consumables
- Easy to set up
- LED display instead of analog meter
- Not a pilot arc cutter
- Does not come with air regulator fittings
- Requires a higher voltage (220V) to cut through thicker metals
YESWELDER Plasma Cutter
This plasma cutter is a feature-packed machine worth every penny. It's as powerful and affordable as the other three. One important feature is that the machine doesn't stop blowing air after you stop cutting to cool down the tip, which prolongs your consumables' life. It's great for DIY projects at home and for small shop work.
- (1) 2-meter power cord
- (1) PT31 plasma cutting torch
- (2) electrodes
- (2) nozzles
- (2) porcelain bushing
- (1) 3 meter gas hose
- (1) ground clamp
- (1) quick plug connector
- (1) 110V to 220V plug converter
- (1) relief valve
- Has a cooling system
- Digital display
- 60% duty-cycle
- Includes a few consumables
- Not too durable
- Some parts are loose and need tightening
- Also needs 220V for thicker projects
Frequently Asked Questions
How does a plasma cutting torch work?
A plasma cutting torch uses a high-velocity stream of ionized gas to cut through metal. The gas is typically forced through a small nozzle at up to 60,000 miles per hour. As the gas emerges from the nozzle, it is exposed to an electric arc. It causes the gas to become ionized or electrically charged. The ions are then attracted to the metal, vaporizing on contact.
The entire process happens very quickly, typically taking less than a second to cut through even thick metal sheets. That's why plasma cutting torches are used in various settings, including auto body shops, metal fabrication plants, and even home garages. Thanks to their speed and precision, they have become the cutting tool of choice for many manufacturers and fabricators.
What is the difference between non-pilot arc and pilot arc plasma cutters?
Pilot arc plasma cutters can cut through thicker material than non-pilot arc plasma cutters. They also don't require a contact tip, making them ideal for use with automated cutting systems. However, they're not without their drawbacks.
Pilot arc plasma cutters tend to be more expensive than their non-pilot arc counterparts and can be more difficult to operate. However, non-pilot arc plasma cutters can't cut through as thick of material as pilot arc plasma cutters.
So, which type of plasma cutter is right for you? That depends on your needs and budget. If you need to cut through thick material or need an automated solution, a pilot arc plasma cutter is a good option. If you're on a tight budget or you need a simple cutter that's easy to operate, a non-pilot arc plasma cutter is the better choice.
Do you need an air compressor for plasma cutters to work?
The answer is yes and no. Some plasma cutters have built-in air compressors, while others require an external air source. If you're using a plasma cutter with an external air source, you'll need to make sure that the air compressor is properly sized for the job. Otherwise, you might find yourself with a machine that doesn't have enough power to get the job done.
Plasma cutters are some of the most popular welding tools on the market. They're versatile, affordable, and perfect for a variety of projects. In this article, we reviewed four different plasma cutters under $300. In addition, we looked at how each one works and what makes them unique. If you're in the market for a new plasma cutter, any of these options would be a great choice. But if you still can't decide which one is right for you, head on over to our other reviews, where we take a closer look at even more great plasma cutters.