Plexiglass hides nothing but acrylic glass. The thermoplastic material can be processed in many ways, which is why it is just as famous in the industry and other sectors of the economy as it is for artisans and do-it-yourselfers. Below is a list of how versatile you can process Plexiglass.
Plexiglass – almost 90 years old
Already in 1933, Otto Röhm succeeded in bringing polymethyl methacrylate, PMMA, for short, to the production stage for mass production. It was invented a few years earlier almost simultaneously in England, Spain, and Germany. It was also Röhm who had the plastic branded “Plexiglass” protected for the Degussa.
Hardly any other plastic is so versatile in processing
Even the outstanding product properties reveal why Plexiglass is too handy and can be found in many industrial, commercial, and private applications:
- cold and heat resistant in moderation
- UV radiation resistant
- Easy to saw, drill, grind, glue, etc.
- stable dielectric strength
As already mentioned, you can process Plexiglass in many ways. Afterward, we will tackle the various technical possibilities for you. You will also find a link for each processing option that deals with the respective processing in detail.
Sawing acrylic glass is probably one of the ideal processing options. The sharper and more beautiful a saw toothing, the better you can saw Plexiglass saw. Since Plexiglass is only partially heat-resistant during processing, the feed rate and speed must be optimally adapted to the sawing work.
Of course, you can also cut Plexiglass. Of course, we have also put together the plexiglass for your information. Cutter knives (even Stanley knives) are most suitable, preferably equipped with a hook blade. Special attention is paid to the cutting process itself, as it is easy to slip off with the knife. Then the cutting edge would not be straight anymore.
However, a Stanley knife is also suitable for deburring a saw edge or a hole on Plexiglass or chamfering the edges. When cutting, however, note that you must pull the blade several times. The rule of thumb here is that the material must be trimmed once per millimeter Plexiglass thickness. For a 3 mm acrylic, pull the blade three times along the cut mark.
If you want to drill Plexiglass, mark the hole, preferably with a grain. Plastic drills are best suited, but metal drills can also be used to drill acrylic glass. The angle of the training should be between 60 and 90 degrees; a sharp exercise is a minimum requirement for perfect drilling results. Of course, the drilling speed must be adapted to the drilling diameter and the material.
Working with a milling machine generally requires a little more skill. When milling plexiglass, particular care must be taken to ensure that the milling head is as beautiful as possible. The coarser the milling attachment is, the more the speed must be adjusted (increasing).
Grind and polish Plexiglass
You can sand Plexiglass with conventional sandpaper. The application should always be carried out in at least three steps: coarse, medium, and beautiful. But also files and not too coarse rasps you can use to grind Plexiglass.
When plexiglass polish, the most excellent attention is paid to the composition of the polish. Make sure that the polish is compatible with PMMA and is specially approved for it.
Glue Plexiglass and paint
Also, you can glue and varnish Plexiglass. Adhesives are available with a wide range of properties, from fast-adhesive over color-matched to transparent. When finishing Plexiglass, pay particular attention to the composition of the paints. Not all colors can be used to varnish acrylic glass.
Particularly exciting is the processing of Plexiglass with numerous new products. Thus, more and more liquid plastics are coming onto the market, which you can also optimally use with an acrylic glass. Therefore effects are possible, which many a home improvement had dreamed of years ago.