Acrylic may be stronger than regular glass, but it's still brittle! Many DIY plexiglass and lexan sheet projects require a hole or two. 5 years ago If possible, set the hole back at least ½" from the edge to prevent it from splitting like the one above! The key to cutting acrylic with a jigsaw is to keep the speed low. It should break cleanly along the cut line. Retract your drill bit from the hole often to let it cool. Apply a strip of painter's tape to the cut line to prevent cracking. Use raw dishwashing liquid on drill tip/hole and drill slowly through perspex/acrylic. . Using the right kind of tools is important when working with many types of plastics. When drilling an acrylic or polycarbonate sheet, you should secure it to your work surface to preventing it from slipping. Larger tip angles commonly cause cracking and blow out as the bit exits the sheet. Here's what you'll need! The method by which you choose to cut your plexiglass will be determined by just how thick it is. I keep one in my workshop to make it easier to break down large sheets of plywood outside. Use the saw at a slower speed, or keep the material cool by spraying water over the cut point during the saw operation. I'm also thinking up a project or two for these fun colored acrylic sheets! They're the economical … Thicker slabs are best handled by scoring; those of intermediate thickness can be cut well with a scroll saw; the thinnest are typically managed with a handheld rotary tool. They look like this. I Just got done using a circle sutter that has a 1/4" drill bit in the center on a thin sheet of plexi. If you want to drill in acrylic without the steps, use special drills for plastics. If you can’t get any, you can also use a regular drill that would run with speed of between 500 and 100 RPM, but with plexiglass drill bits. Rotate the piece so that the cut line is on the edge of the work surface. Drilling a hole (like for a screw, or to start a hole for the jigsaw) can cause it to shatter if you don't use the correct drill bit. With the barrier in place, start by marking the location of the hole using a permanent marker or grease pencil. Good advice, sometimes I'm in a bit of a hurry so I use a piece of masking tape on both sides where I am going to drill, it does help reduce the splintering effect, I also modify my most popular bits by re-sharpening them to a greater angle, say 60-70 degrees. Unfortunately, if you want to cut curves in acrylic, you can't use the score and snap method. Use an O flute up spiral plastic cutting bit to cut acrylic with a router. Two scraps of 2x4 lumber work great for this. The gradually go up in drill bit sizes until you reach your desired diameter. Diamond Dusted Drill Bits Diamond dusted bits enables the bit's cutting edge to remain sharp. 6 years ago We drilled, tapped, sawed, bent, heated, you name it, and I can't remember it ever so much as forming even a small crack. All you need is a thin acrylic sheet, a straight edge that is longer than your cut, clamps and a scoring knife. Hot bits will melt the plexiglass around the hole. Much slower speeds and better support are definitely a good idea, if possible. Flip the glass over (carefully) and start drilling through the hold on the opposite side. This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. Position the wood so that the wood hole is centered over the pilot hole in the plexiglass, and clamp in place. On the markings, place masking tape on the mark to help prevent chipping during the drilling process. Lay your acrylic sheet on a flat work surface, and mark the line to be cut. This blog is for entertainment purposes and is not professional advice. Insert a sharp twist bit into the drill and tighten the bit in place. Larger tip angles commonly cause cracking and blow out as the bit exits the sheet. There are precautions that you must take to ensure that the hole does not get hot and melt the acrylic sheet or that the exit side of the acrylic sheet does not crack. Once you’ve nearly reached the other side, stop. Turn the glass over. The cut line may be sharp and uneven after snapping the acrylic sheet. You can finish the hole, directly, if you have a routing table. Reply When creating a hole or holes in an acrylic material, you’ll always use a drilling machine. While drilling the final hole use a spray bottle to lubricate the plexiglass with … This will keep the hot air out and the cold air in, while still giving us plenty of sunlight! First your drill bit needs to reground to a very shallow angle, second the hole needs to be marked on masking tape and the back of the sheet supported with a block of clean, flat timber or board. For small cracks, use a 1/8" drill bit to drill a hole on both sides of the crack. Designed specifically for plexiglass and polycarbonate lexan, these drill bits are great tools for drilling through plastic sheets. No excuses! With the barrier in place, start by marking the location of the hole using a permanent marker or grease pencil. Plexiglass is a great substitute for glass, but it has one limitation. Same here, but I do always drill one small pilot hole to ensure perfect centering. on Introduction. Water or a water soluble oil works well. Even though it's stronger than glass, it can still crack when cut or drilled into incorrectly! The gradually go up in drill bit sizes until you reach your desired diameter. Did you make this project? Keep renewing and cleaning holes after each step and put a bit more detergent on the the drill tip each time. Once you’ve nearly reached the other side, stop. For thin sheets of … Attach a hole saw to your hand drill or drill press to cut the hole. It was trmendously expensive then, but as I recall, virtually indestructable. Progressively enlarging a small hole can be a disaster in Plexiglas because it invites the bit suddenly jam in the hole and will crack it … 90° point, 0° rake. I plan to create a window panel with a cutout for a portable air conditioner vent that I can screw into the frame. Using step-up method to drill the hole will not eliminate this problem. These bits have a different... 3. Steps 1. Stop drilling before you break through the other side. Then sand down the cut edge to remove any sharp or uneven areas. This point angle must be ground to 60-90°. A ½ inch hole would require a ¼ inch pilot hole. The plexiglass drill bits have geometric structures different from the traditional drill bits that allow them to puncture easily through the acrylic. Back in the 1970's when I first encountered Lexan polycarbonate, we used a lot of 1/8", 1/4" and 3/8" sheet to make machine guarding and enclosures. It also is a MAJOR help to put the plastic flat onto a sheet of wood. 5 years ago Drilling holes in acrylic requires the use of a drill bit specially designed for use with plastics. Now that you know how to cut acrylic or plexiglass sheets, go make something creative with it! The speed for creating holes is, therefore, an important element in this process. If you do, tag me on Facebook or Instagram so I can check it out and share it! Then remove the foil tape from both sides. Conventional high speed drill bits do not work well with hard plastics. This barrier will help avoid cracking of the sheet when drilling the final hole. Make 5-10 scratches with the scoring knife along the straight edge, until you've cut about halfway through the thickness of the plexiglass. Two types: cast and extruded acrylic sink itself through the material cool by spraying water over cut. Has a 1/4 '' drill bit sizes until you reach your desired diameter your safety glasses, and slowly the... 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