CNC (computer numerical control) plasma cutting has been around for 30 years, but only in the past decade has it become affordable enough for the small shop. The plasma cutting process, itself, is capable of almost surgical precision.
It is the human hand that guides a manual plasma cutting torch that is responsible for the roughness sometimes seen in plasma cut pieces. Today’s CNC plasma cutting systems typically use the operators personal computer to create the shapes to be cut and control the cutting machine. The resulting shapes are smoother than would be possible with a band-saw and can include intricate curves, inside cuts, and sharp corners.