Intro: How to Plasma Cut Calligraphy Letters
I made this at Techshop Detroit.
This is a simple, quick and easy process for making some calligraphy letters out of sheet metal.
Materials and Equipment:
-16 gauge sheet metal
- Plasma Cutter
- Welding gloves and welding goggles
- Bench Grinder
Step 1: Sheet Metal
This is a piece of 16 gauge that I had leftover from a previous project. Any gauge metal will work.
Mine was all ready trimmed down to this size, again that doesn't matter. It can be any size you like, the process is all the same.
Step 2: Safety First (well Technically Second)
Working with a plasma cutter means heat and light, and a lot of it!
These are welding gloves and goggles. Do not attempt without them.
Step 3: Plasma Cutter
The plasma cutter must be plugged in and air connected to it. The switch is on the back.
The settings vary on the thickness so it is best to try a few test areas first to dial it in.
I found that around 20-23 worked best for this 16 gauge.
Step 4: Commence the Cut
I had looked online and found a good idea of the kind of calligraphy I wanted to use. I think the old English looks cool.
I didn't mark, draw or scribe this, but it is certainly a good idea. I like the rough, free-hand look but you are welcome to attempt any way you like.
Step 5: Make Sure You Cut All of It
Checking by holding it up to the light.
You will be able to see any areas that were missed or not cut all the through.
The piece will likely not fall out.
Step 6: Cut Away
To make it easier on myself I just cut away the excess and then twisted and pulled out the lettering.
Moving slowly and steady with the torch will eliminate have to go over any areas, but it happens and this an easy way to pop out the lettering.
Step 7: Grind Down the Burrs
Using a bench grinder I took of all the burrs left over from the plasma cutter. There is a lot of slag left on the piece so it is a good idea to smooth everything down.
Step 8: Done!
You now have a cheap and easy way of making sheet metal lettering!