Table 7-4. - Table of Recommended Electrode Sizes, Current Settings, and Cutting Speeds for Carbon-Arc Cutting Different Thicknesses of Steel Plate
More information on wearfacing applications may be obtained from the NCF Welding Materials Hand-book, NAVFAC P-433.
Metals can be cut cleanly with a carbon electrode arc because no foreign metals are introduced at the arc. The cutting current should be 25 to 50 amps above the welding current for the same thickness of metal.
The carbon electrode point should be ground so that it is very sharp. During the actual cutting, move the carbon electrode in a vertical elliptical movement to undercut the metal; this aids in the removal of the molten metal. As in oxygen cutting, a crescent motion is preferred. Figure 7-52 shows the relative positions of the electrode and the work in the cutting of cast iron.
The carbon-arc method of cutting is successful on cast iron because the arc temperature is high enough to melt the oxides formed. It is especially important to undercut the cast-iron kerf to produce an even cut. Position the electrode so the molten metal flows away from the gouge or cutting areas. Table 7-4 is a list of cutting speeds, plate thicknesses, and current settings for carbon-arc cutting.
Because of the high currents required, the graphite form of carbon electrode is better. To reduce the heating effect on the electrode, you should not let it extend more than 6 inches beyond the holder when cutting. If the carbon burns away too fast, shorten the length that it extends out of the electrode holder to as little as 3 inches. Operating a carbon electrode at extremely high temperatures causes its surface to oxidize and burn away, resulting in a rapid reduction in the electrode diameter.
Carbon-arc cutting does not require special generators. Standard arc-welding generators and other items of arc-welding station equipment are suitable for use. Straight polarity direct current (DCSP) is always used.
Because of the high temperature and the intensity of the arc, choose a shade of helmet lens that is darker than the normal shade you would use for welding on the same thickness of metal. A number 12 or 14 lens shade is recommended for carbon-arc welding or cutting.
Air carbon-arc cutting (ACC) is a process of cutting, piercing, or gouging metal by heating it to a molten state
Figure 7-52. - Carbon-arc cutting on cast iron.
and then using compressed air to blow away the moltenContinue Reading