- Published in issue 5/2019 on page 20
Hot-wire Cutter Controller for Styrofoam
Low-loss hot-wire controller using a low-voltage dimmer circuit
Styrofoam (aka expanded polystyrene foam in the UK) is widely used in model making and domestic crafts. When it comes to carving it into the desired shape with a knife you quickly become surrounded by little white beads with a static charge that makes them stick to everything. It’s better to use a hot-wire cutter, which improves cutting accuracy and leaves no mess to clear up. For consistent results the hot-wire temperature should be adjustable — sounds like an ideal application for a phase-angle power controller.