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Thread: Cutting acrylic

  1. #1

    Default Cutting acrylic

    I need to cut 3" and 3-1/2" circles in 3/8" acrylic. I'll use the 3/16" cutting bit. Should I cut full depth, or make multiple passes?

  2. #2
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    I would say do multi pass.
    RingNeckBlues
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  3. #3
    Join Date
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    is this cast acrylic or extruded? Like with lithopanes they say to use only cast because the extruded will ball up (melt) on the bit and may break your bit. I'd be very careful and stand watching it if you're not sure what you have. Just my 2 worth.
    CarverJerry

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  4. #4

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    It's cast. Curious if anyone has done a cutout like this.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    i have cut 3/16" on a single pass with an 1/8" bit with no problems. Thinking a one pass should work with the big bit. Do you have a spare piece to try and cut just to be sure.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    I have machined quite a lot of thick cast acrylic. I would not even think about a single pass. Use a new bit. (I use two flute short bits.)

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    I would use a carrier board and 1/4 inch strips of double stick tape to hold the loose circle. I would make a vector path or circle and assign the 1/4 inch bull nose bit. But actually use the 3/16 cutting bit.

    My thinking is that this would lock the feed rate into 1st or it's slowest gear giving you a smoother cut. Not use Cut Path and Tabs. Because remember the machine is going to think you are cutting wood and will likely shift into the faster cutting rate destroying something...

    LHR... What are your thoughts...?
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    Last edited by Digitalwoodshop; 12-10-2018 at 08:12 PM.
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  8. #8

    Default

    Thanks all for the input. I have not had good luck with double-sided tape, but will consider it. I am doing this for a friend who sent me two 12" square sheets, so yes I can screw one or two up but would rather not. I will probably take 1/8" passes.

  9. #9

    Default

    I cut two of these rings today using tabs and 1/8" passes. One of the reasons for using tabs is it allowed me to load the blanks into my drill press to sand and polish the outside edges. The machine did not strain near as much as when cutting oak. No issues with melting or any other problems.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I may have to try making an acrylic clock.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Coeur D'Alene Idaho
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    Default

    That would be interesting!

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