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Hobart Airforce 27i Plasma Cutter Review

The Hobart Airforce 27i Plasma Cutter is one of those products that is designed with quality and durability in mind, but is perfect for around the home or DIY jobs. It combines fantastic features, functionality, and transportability in one compact and durable package that will absolutely meet your strictest requirements in a plasma cutter.

Made by Hobart, a brand that is well known and trusted in the plasma cutting industry, let’s delve farther into the amazing workings of the Hobart Airforce 27i plasma cutter.

Hobart 500565 Airforce 27i Plasma Cutter 120/240V


Hobart Airforce 27i Specifications

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Name and Model Number: Hobart AirForce 27i Plasma Cutter 500565

Rated Output at 104 Degrees Fahrenheit: 120 V (20 A) – 27 A at 92 VDC,

35% duty cycle; 240 V – 30 A at 92 VDC,   40% duty cycle

Input Voltage: 110/115/120 V, 220/230/240 V

Input Phase: 1-Phase

Amperage Range: 14 A – 30 A

Net Dimensions: 5.5” in width, 9” in height, 13.25” in length

Net Weight: 19 lbs.

Applications: HVAC

Sheet metal

Auto body




Farms and ranches

Light construction work


The Airforce 27i comes with an XT30 Torch with a 12-ft. cable, a 12-ft. heavy-duty working clamp with cable, a 10-ft. power cord, a 5-15P/120V, 15A and 6-50P/240V, 50A MVP plug.


The unit also comes with its consumables such as cup, O-ring, swirl ring, deflector kit, drag shield, electrodes, and tips for the XT30 Torch.

Key Features

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Cutting Mechanism and Capability

The Hobart Airforce 27i employs an inverter-based design that provides powerful cutting efficiency at half the power consumption of other plasma cutters, and can easily power through stainless steel, alloy steel, mild steel, aluminum, and copper at 3/8-inch thicknesses with a severance rate of 5/8.

Dual-Voltage Capability with the Multi-Voltage Plug or MVP Plug

This enables you to connect the unit to 120 or 240 V power receptacles without requiring any tools. You simply choose the plug that will fit the receptacle and you are good to go.

XT30R Torch

The torch is ergonomically designed for comfort and more efficient cutting and tip replacements.

Wind Tunnel Technology

This feature prevents any dust and particles from entering the unit and damaging the integral components inside.


The unit’s cooling system helps reduce the dust and debris that is pulled through the unit during use and will work only when you need it to. This contributes to reducing power consumption, as well.

Power Factor Correction or PFC Circuitry

This unique feature allows the unit to draw up to 30% less amperage for the same cutting efficiency as compared to the nearest competition. It also expands the user’s work area by an extension cord, at the same time, reducing annoying circuit breaker trips caused by drops in voltage.

Line Voltage Compensation or LVC

The line voltage compensation feature allows the unit to work under fluctuating voltage conditions within a range of +/- 15% without affecting its cutting performance, giving you steady and clean-ending cuts each and every time.

Internal Gas/Air Filter and Regulator

The Airforce 27i comes with an easy-to-connect gas and air filter and regulator that will efficiently control the amount of air or gas flow for extra protection.

Postflow Cooling Circuit

This amazing feature automatically cools the torch and tip after use thereby extending the life of the consumables.

Hobart’s 5/3/1 Industrial Warranty

The Airforce 27i carries an impressive 5-year warranty on transformers, stabilizers, and main rectifiers, 3 years on generators, PC boards, and drive systems; and 1 year on the MIG, Plasma, and TIG torches.

Hobart Airforce 27i Plasma Cutter Pros & Cons

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  • The Airforce 27i is 50% smaller than the previous model so it is easier to store.
  • It also sports a 30% decrease in weight when compared to the previous model so it is also easier to transport from one area of your workspace to another.
  • The unit can start without the need for high frequency to protect it from damage.
  • The LED lights allow for quick diagnostics of power, pressure, and cup troubles.
  • It is completely compatible with engine-driven welders or generators with a 240V receptacle of 4 kW or higher.
  • It does not require preheating of the metal to be cut.
  • It also does not need manual flame tuning or gas pressure setting.
  • It also provides you with a more precise cut and a thinner kerf so you have less slag to clean up.
  • The postflow cooling circuit prevents the unit from overheating. In the unlikely event that it does overheat, the thermal overload protection switch automatically shuts the machine off.
  • It also has a protective trigger guard to ensure that you do not accidentally press the trigger, you have to lift it first. 
  • The cable management strap allows you to stow away the cables neatly and safely.
  • The consumables are relatively easy to find.


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  • It does not come with its own air compressor.
  • It runs through consumables relatively faster than other high-end models and does not come with extra consumables.
  • It does not have an auto-refire technology.
  • The leads are shorter as compared to other Hobart models.
  • It can be a bit noisy during operation.
  • The clamps and contacts are prone to rust if exposed to humid conditions.


Why the Hobart Airforce 27i is a Good Buy

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Along with all the outstanding features of the Hobart Airforce 27i on performance, safety, and functionality, one of its strongest selling points is the ease of use. 

All you have to do is plug in the unit, and get the compressed air supply connected and you are ready. You will also find it quite simple to find where to plug in the pipes, torch connectors, and plugs, and determine the correct settings because everything is clearly marked.

It is an ideal machine for DIY buffs and beginner welders. No special skills other than knowing how to use a plasma cutter is required.

The unit has a protective weather-resistant vinyl-laminated polyester cover that can also resist stains and mildew to protect your plasma cutter’s elegant finish.

It also has a strap for easier transport.

Final Word

The Hobart Airforce 27i plasma cutter is a premium choice for people who are searching for convenient, easy, and efficient cutting. Although it does have a few shortcomings, they are not enough to make you shy away from buying what most customers and users have awarded 5-star ratings on every aspect of a plasma cutter. Many even stated that they would recommend it to others because of its excellent and high-quality performance.

It may be a bit more expensive than the average plasma cutter available but its performance can be likened to those of the higher-end models with its cutting power, durability, user-friendly feature, and transportability. It truly is value for money.

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