Oxyfuel Cutting Options
Oxyfuel cutting also referred to as oxyfuel flame cutting and oxyfuel gas cutting, is the most economical process for cutting mild and low-alloy steel, even with weld preparations involved. Oxyfuel cutting is regarded as one of the most important production processes in the entire metal industry.
Over 100 years, Messer Cutting Systems has provided and developed leading-edge technology for the global metalworking industry. We have perfected the design and function of straight oxyfuel cutting machines and bevel oxyfuel cutting machines, which deliver high-quality cuts, reliable service, and considerable savings to the cutting process.
When Should the Oxyfuel Cutting Process Be Used?
The oxyfuel cutting process is ideal for when the surface of the material to be cut is made of mild steel and low alloy steel and the thickness of the material to be cut is greater than 2 inches (50 millimeters).
The oxyfuel cutting process is favored when the cut edge of plasma is deemed unacceptable or if you are looking for a low cost alternative.
If you have questions about whether the oxyfuel cutting process is ideal for an application, our sales team is available to address your questions and discuss specific products.
Oxyfuel Cutting Advantages and Disadvantages
With oxyfuel cutting applications, fuel gas and oxygen are used to generate the cutting flame. Messer Cutting Systems supplies gases—including acetylene, MAPP, propane and natural gas—and information relative to your requirements.
- Straight-edge quality and high accuracy.
- Bevel strip cutting.
- Pierce mild steel up to 4 inches thick (101 millimeters) to 5 inches (127 millimeters) thick.
- Edge start and cut steel 10 inches (254 millimeters) to 12 inches (304 millimeters) thick.
- With multiple torches, produce multiple parts, reducing time and labor.
- Cannot cut stainless steel under normal circumstances.
- Slower cut speeds compared with plasma cutting.
- Thin material cutting might warp.
- Difficult to produce holes smaller than two times the steel’s thickness.
What Does the Oxyfuel Cutting Process Involve?
Oxyfuel cutting is a combustion process using oxygen or a fuel gas flame. The heating flame warms up the material to its ignition temperature. Next, an oxygen jet of at least 99.5 percent purity is blown onto the heated spot, oxidizing the metal. Burning metal immediately turns to liquid iron oxide. This oxygen jet is the origin of the term “flame cutting.”
The torch is then moved, and a narrow cutting slot, commonly called a kerf, is created. The slag is removed from the kerf. The cut’s quality depends on the material’s surface condition, cut velocity and thickness.
All low-alloy steel with a material thickness of as much as several inches can be cut using this process. Despite the growing prominence of other cutting processes such as plasma cutting and laser cutting, oxyfuel flame cutting remains a highly economical process. When it comes to cutting heavy material thicknesses up to 35 inches (900 millimeters), oxyfuel flame cutting simply is unrivaled as a cutting process.
Oxyfuel cutting ensures reliable hole piercing and high cut quality. Component production will be at their finished sizes without any need for further processing. For weld seam preparations, V, Y, X and K bevels can be produced.
Oxyfuel Cutting Characteristics
- Plate thickness: ⅛ inch (3 millimeters) up to 35 inches (900 millimeters).
- Typical: ⅜ inch (10 millimeters) up to 12 inches (300 millimeters).
Oxyfuel Cutting Features
- Good cut quality.
- Smooth, vertical planes of cut.
- Metallurgical perfect surfaces (oxidized).
- Carbonizing and hardening within the area of the heat-affected zone.
- High heat input.
- Wide range of material thickness.
- Low cutting speed.
Oxyfuel Cutting Gas Types
Common fuel gas types include acetylene, MAPP, propane and natural gas.
- Acetylene: Hottest gas but can be unstable and expensive.
- MAPP: Hot gas but not as available as other gases.
- Propane: Cheaper and clean-burning but not as hot as other gases.
- Natural gas: Cheaper and widely available but offers low delivery pressure.
Oxyfuel Cutting Machine Options
Messer Cutting Systems offers two broad categories of oxyfuel cutting machine options: straight cutting oxyfuel machines and bevel cutting oxyfuel machines.
Straight Cutting Oxyfuel Machine
For straight cutting oxyfuel machines, Messer Cutting Systems offers its ALFA Oxyfuel Torch and MS832 Turbo Flame™ Oxyfuel Torch.
ALFA Oxyfuel Torch: The ALFA Oxyfuel Torch sets the bar high for oxyfuel cutting. The ALFA Oxyfuel Torch internalizes features such as height sensing and auto-ignition that once had to be placed on the outside. This product’s torch nozzle can be changed without requiring tools, eliminating the possibility of misaligning the torch while reducing setup time. With the cap unscrewed, the nozzles are free and may be easily checked or replaced.
MS832 Turbo Flame™ Oxyfuel Torch: The MS832 Turbo Flame™ Oxyfuel Torch is extremely versatile, able be used with all fuel gases, and is very safe to operate. This torch’s design prevents flashbacks even when piercing thick and heavy materials. Its reduced oxygen consumption, achieved without any loss of cut quality or cutting speed, decreases utility costs.
Bevel Cutting Oxyfuel Machine
Messer Cutting Systems offers the following bevel cutting oxyfuel machines: Triple Torch Unit D/AFL, Single Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit, Three Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit, and Oxyfuel Contour Bevel Unit.
Triple Torch Unit D/AFL: is automatic and infinitely rotating, designed for V, Y, X and K cuts. The bevel cuts up to 3.25 inches (80 millimeters) in plate thickness, and straight cuts up to 4.75 inches (120 millimeters) in plate thickness.
Single Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit: The Single Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit is a manually adjusted machine for straight-line bevels with manual ignition and gas adjustment. Bevels can be cut along the “X” axis only. Cutting a V, Y, X and K cross section in one pass, the manually adjusted Triple Torch Oxyfuel Unit is designed to make a bevel cut in the longitudinal (X) axis.
Three Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit: Our manually adjusted Three Position Oxyfuel Bevel Unit is designed for straight-line bevels with manual gas adjustment and manual ignition. Height sensing is carried out by an electromechanical device that rides on the plate.
The Three Position Triple Torch Oxyfuel Bevel Unit provides weld preparation edges and plate squaring in a single pass. Cutting a V, Y, X and K cross section in one pass, the manually adjusted Triple Torch Oxyfuel Unit is designed to make a straight line bevel cut.
Oxyfuel Contour Bevel Unit: Messer Cutting Systems’ Oxyfuel Contour Bevel Unit provides continuous bevel cuts in mild steel with automatic contour control, manual ignition and bevel angle adjustment. This machine cuts top and bottom bevels in a single pass.
Messer Cutting Systems’ Sales Team Can Help Guide You
If you have questions about whether the oxyfuel cutting process is ideal for applications in your facility, our sales team can address your questions. They can discuss specific products, get sample parts, do live demos and so much more.