Powermax SYNC mechanized integration

Posted on 10/15/2021 in Setup and support, Plasma cutting

This brief video will provide an overview of the basics of integrating a Powermax SYNC™ plasma system onto a X-Y cutting table. Installation information in this video generally applies to cutting machine manufacturers guidelines. Make sure you follow the safety guidelines called out in your Safety and Compliance manual when installing a Powermax® system into any mechanized application.

To begin, let’s look at the Powermax SYNC power supply rear panel. Here you will find the system’s on/off switch, an inlet gas supply connection, and a pre-installed 10-foot input power cord.

If your Powermax SYNC system was ordered with the optional mechanized configurations, there will be additional connections. These can include either the voltage divider kit with circular plastic connector (CPC) port for discrete signals, or an RS-485 serial port connection for external control. These connection types are typically used for cutting tables, track burners, pipe cutters, or other devices that require remote inputs.

On the front panel you will find the main display, a process mode selection switch, FastConnect torch connection, and the quick lock work lead receptacle. All controls and connections are intuitive and designed for easy installation.

There are 2 Powermax SYNC mechanized torch options for X-Y cutting tables. These include a 180 degree mechanized full-length torch or 180 degree mini mechanized/robotic torch. The full-length torch has an integrated lock switch that can disable the system and prevent the torch from firing accidentally when the power supply is turned on.

Mechanized torches use the Powermax SYNC mechanized cartridges. There is a standard mechanized cartridge, as well as a FineCut™ option for thin kerf, fine detail cutting. Either cartridge can be used with the new clip-on style Ohmic clip for contact sense cutting.

  1. Once your cutting machine has been installed and tested, begin by determining the proper location for the power supply for electrical power and clearances. Make sure the system has at least 0.25 m (10 inches) of space around the power supply for proper ventilation. Also, to avoid toppling, do not set the power supply on an incline greater than 10 degrees.

    Locate the power supply near a power receptacle for your installation. Use a line-disconnect switch for the power supply so that the operator can turn off the incoming power quickly in an emergency. Refer to your Operator Manual if there are any questions about circuit requirements or proper connections.

  2. Install the Powermax SYNC mechanized torch into the torch holder.

    • When installing the torch into the mounting bracket, make sure it is straight and level.

    • Install the machine torch perpendicular to the workpiece. Use a square or digital level to align the torch at a 90 degree angle.

    • Position the mounting bracket lower on the torch to keep vibration at the tip of the torch to a minimum. Do not over-tighten the mounting bracket. Too much force from the mounting bracket can cause damage to the printed circuit board inside the torch or damage the torch shell.

  3. Once the torch is secured in place, run the torch lead through the track of the cutting machine.Make sure the lead is flat and not allowed to twist or kink. The minimum bend radius of the torch lead is 76 mm (3.0 inches). Be sure to avoid bending the lead beyond this minimum.

  4. Once you have installed the lead securely, connect the torch into the receptacle until you hear and/or feel a “click”. This will ensure a good, tight connection and prevent improper operation.

  5. Install the communication cable that will be used for the cutting operation.

    • Whether you are using a discrete or Serial cable, make sure the cable is laid flat and not allowed to twist or kink.

    • Make sure you route the cable as far away as possible from the torch lead to eliminate any interference between the power supply and machine controller.

  6. Once the cable installation is complete, connect your communication cable to the appropriate receptacle on the power supply. If you discover your Powermax SYNC power supply does not have CPC or Serial connections, you can purchase kits through your Hypertherm channel partner. All kits come complete with hardware and detailed instructions for easy installation.

  7. If there are additional questions about how to interface to your cutting machine, refer to your mechanized equipment manufacturer for proper installation requirements.

  8. Grounding is a critical factor when installing a Powermax SYNC plasma system on a cutting machine. Refer to your machine manufacturer’s instructions when attaching the work lead from the plasma power supply to the cutting table.

  9. Remove any rust, dirt, paint, coatings, and other debris so the work lead makes sufficient metal to metal contact with the cutting table.

  10. Also, keep the work lead separate from the communication cables if running the lead through the cutting machine track. This may prevent any potential interference with machine controllers.

  11. Connect the work lead to the power supply by inserting the connector and twist a quarter turn.

  12. Connect your gas supply to the Powermax SYNC system.

  13. Most cutting tables use a CNC controller or software to operate the system. There are two options for controlling the system externally.
  14.  
    • The CPC receptacle is “Discrete” communication. When installed, it allows the operator to control the plasma start and stop signal, divided arc voltage for torch height control, and transfer signals for table motion. The factory-installed voltage divider PC board supplies a divided arc voltage that is in proportion to the cutting arc voltage. From the factory, the system is defaulted to a 50:1 voltage ratio, however, depending on the cutting machine being used, it may require different settings.

      The Powermax SYNC system has additional selectable divided arc voltage settings for easy installation on different cutting machines. Always refer to your cutting machine manufacturer for the correct values for proper setup and operation.

    • The RS-485 serial communication option provides increased external control capability. When ordered with this configuration, the power supply includes the RS-485 serial interface port. This allows precise control of the cutting system and can provide additional functionality and information such as amperage adjustments, gas pressure settings, cartridge process, and usage data. To utilize this feature on the Powermax SYNC system, you will need to locate the Hypertherm mechanized cutting guide to find information on how to access the Serial communication setup screen on the power supply. It is recommended that you refer to the Serial communication protocol guide in conjunction with the cutting machine manufacturers guidelines when setting up the system.

Now that your system is installed and is ready to cut, let’s go over the SYNC cartridge recommendations that are located in the cut charts. Hypertherm provides a cartridge selection guide based on the material you’re cutting. The information provided is considered a good starting point for your process. Adjustments may be needed depending on your application and desired outcome.

If you have any additional questions, refer to your Mechanized cutting guide for more information and troubleshooting or find additional resources.

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