A plasma cutter works by sending electrical arcs or electrically conductive gas, to transfer energy from a power unit to any other conductive material. Gases such as nitrogen or argon is forced through a nozzle that is present inside the cutter’s torch. It easily pierces the metallic work piece and gets rid of the molten material in a breeze. Though it is extremely easy even for a novice to work with a plasma cutter, the intensity with which the tool works, makes it very important to follow specific guidelines, in order to have a safe experience.
Nowadays the usage of plasma cutters has become very common because of its affordability and ease of availability. But one must remember that it is in fact a very dangerous equipment and can lead to harm, if not used with caution and care. Here are some tips to follow that can ensure minimized risks and can keep you away from problems:
- Always make sure that any unauthorized person using the plasma cutter is under constant vigilance and supervision. It is better to inform everyone in the vicinity that you are about to start working with a cutter tool.
- It is important for all to wear a personal protective gear such a googles and other heat resistant clothing. Exposure to very harmful fumes and heated metal can be disastrous. A helmet is also suggested in order to have suitable eye protection as bright arc from the welding can cause total damage to eye sight. Wear non flammable and heat resistant aprons and clothing to avoid being hit by a heated metal debris. Also the skin has to be protected from unwanted and painful effects of the ultraviolet and infrared radiations. Do not forget to wear welding gloves that can protect you from serious burns.
- Keep a distance of at least 25 feet from the point of work. In order to prevent a life threatening event, always place a fire extinguisher in the vicinity. Avoid placing flammable materials such as paper or wood in the surroundings.
- Electric Shocks: Do not touch the torch or any other part of the plasma cutter when work is in progress as it can lead to a hazardous shock. It is recommended to well ground in order to avoid a case of electrocution. Check the place under your feet for wetness or presence of moisture. Wear rubber gloves along with the welding gloves. Else you can also place a rubber mat to stand on, while working.
- Assemble the torch in the right way. It is mandatory to ensure that the torch lasts for a long time. The parts must be placed in alignment with each other. It should be free from contaminations caused due to metallic dust particles. Sometimes crashes can damage a torch and this can be avoided by using torch height sensors. Else a break way torch mounted device can prevent such an occurrence.
By following these precautions, you can ensure a safe and effortless usage of plasma cutters.