It will surprise you to know that plexiglass sheet form part of contemporary home designs capable of creating a modern look. The properties of plexiglass, although somewhat similar to glass, are not the same. It is a type of clear plastic acrylic material that is more resistant than glass. And coupled with the fact that it doesn’t break easily makes it a new favorite of aspiring homeowners and people looking to change things around their homes.
It is also available in various shapes and sizes (transparent, opaque, and translucent) which have varying prices depending on the size required and the number of panels needed. Despite all these advantages, Plexiglas still chips, smears and scratches in a twinkle of an eye. The risks are however higher while cutting especially if you’re looking to embark on a DIY-project. That is why we are going to be looking at the best ways you can cut your plexiglass in order not to mess up your design.
Why not buy the desired size instead of a large plexiglass sheet?
You see, the cost will always be an issue. Especially when you’re looking to upgrade to better home décor. Plexiglas is way more expensive than regular glass and you understandably, you will be tempted to go for inferior material. Please don’t. The cost can be kept on the low side if you instead opt for pieces of the plexiglass than a whole unit. That is why it’s expected that you measure the required length and thickness of Plexiglas you’ll need before contacting Fab Glass and Mirror. That way, you’ll save money by not overbuying.
What are the possible ways for cutting plexiglass sheets to the required size?
Cutting with a hand saw:
Cutting with a hand saw is perhaps the most widely used method of cutting PLEXIGLASS SHEETS. Simple as well as it is cheap will produce a beautiful product for the actualization of your design fantasies. Carefully use tape and ruler to mark the appropriate size of the glass. With your hand saw, cut along the lines. For thin layers, use a saw with more teeth. Fewer teeth will not produce a beautiful panel to shape and you could chip it while at it.
Do well, however, to wear goggles while cutting to avoid the chips getting into your eyes. To get a smoother glass, use fine sandpaper to smoothen the edges. Your Plexiglas is ready to use after this so carefully place it where it’s needed.
Cutting with a jigsaw:
Perhaps you’re looking for another simple way of achieving your dream of beautiful home décor, then jigsaw would do the trick. Being a handheld tool with blades and a mechanical function that makes the blades move up and down, then the jigsaw will be appropriate. Let’s just say that a jigsaw helps you achieve the maximum result in the shortest time. You must, however, be careful if it’s your first time with a jigsaw in order not to spoil your work.
Cutting with a band saw:
Another great alternative is a band saw. The extra automation gives you the flexibility to truly produce a masterpiece. So carefully select the right blade and feed rate to avoid the melting of your acrylic. Nonetheless, a band saw is better suited to thicknesses greater than 0.4 inches to achieve the best result.
Laser offers you the best precision by any mechanical tool for your little home improvement project. It lets you imprint your designs on acrylic and translates it to reality. Intricate and complex designs are only achievable with a laser cutting machine and my favorite.
Which method is cheaper?
0.12 inches thick acrylic sheets can be cut comfortably with a utility knife or any other sharp tool for cutting. However, a hand saw or band saw is advised for acrylic sheets of higher thicknesses.
In my opinion, the use of a utility knife is the cheapest method for cutting plexiglass but the finesse required for the task might be too much then you can take. So it might be cheaper but not necessarily effective for the kind of design you fancy.
However, hand saw while not on the high side in terms of cost, offers you better chances. Consider a saw with a very fine blade and one that you are comfortable with. A handheld jigsaw will be a portable option for the task ahead.
While cutting, the heat from the blades often melts the acrylic so the speed of cutting is important. Stop intermittently and consider using coolant to avoid too much heat.
To avoid errors, it is advisable to use masking tape to serve as a template while cutting. This helps to minimize the risk of chipping off your plexiglass sheet.