Q: Can I plug a plasma cutter into a 110V outlet?
A: Yes, but only a limited amount of machines. The simple theory of what you put into the machine is what you can get out is true for any mechanical device that requires electricity to operate. The only plasma cutting machines that will run off of 110V will have up to a 27 amp output.
They will have a rated cut of 1/8" to 1/2". Miller offers the Spectrum 125C, which is available for either 110V or 230V and has a rated cut of 1/8" or the Spectrum 375 and Spectrum 375 X-TREME, which will operate off of 110 or 220V and have a 1/2" rated cut with 27amps of output.
The Spectrum 375X-TREME has the added benefit of being able to switch quickly between the two voltages. It uses Miller’s Multi-Voltage Plugs (MVP), which can be switched in a matter of moments, depending on the type of receptacle.
Q: What about the higher voltages?
A: The Miller Spectrum 625 X-TREME, 875 and 875 Auto-Line is a 208 or 230V machine with 40 amps of output. It has Line Voltage Compensation (LVC), which will give you a range from 176 to 264V. The machine will automatically handle any line fluctuations between those voltages.
These machines use Miller’s Auto-Line™ technology. Auto-Line allows direct connection to ANY primary power level: 50 or 60 Hz, single or three phase, 208 through 575 VAC. Simply connect the power cord to the correct plug or junction box and start cutting. Auto-Line lets you plasma cut at any location, on any job site and in any country without worrying about opening and manually linking the machine or damaging the machine from incorrect hookup.
Q: Can I run a plasma cutter off of a generator?
A: Miller plasma cutters are designed to operate off of generator power. Not all plasma cutters can do this because of the "Dirty Power" produced by generators. Dirty power means that the voltage being produced will fluctuate enough to cause a machine to shut down or even break because of the fluctuation. Miller Plasma machines have LVC or Line Voltage Compensation, which handles fluctuations of plus or minus 15% to perform very well off of engine, driven power.