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What's the best way to cut Lexan?

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What's the best way to cut Lexan?

Old 09-05-2007, 07:01 PM
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fiveoboy01
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Default What's the best way to cut Lexan?

I'm thinking a small grinder with a cut-off wheel...? Then using some fine grit sandpaper to smooth the edges.

If any of you have an idea that you think would work better, I'm all ears. I know lexan can crack while trying to cut it.
Old 09-05-2007, 07:47 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

You need to be more specific, what thickness and what are you talking about cutting?
Old 09-05-2007, 08:20 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

A skill saw with a plywood blade (finish blade, preferably carbide 32+ teeth) does a beautiful job. Mask the lexan so that the saw table is riding on the masking tape to avoid scratches.

If it's 1/4" or less you can use sabre saw with a medium to fine blade. You may have to stop on occasion and clean the lexan off the blade. Just mask the lexan so that the sabre saw is riding on masking tape to keep from scratching the lexan.
Old 09-05-2007, 08:32 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

Or if you have access to one, a bandsaw is even better. It doesn't cause as much melting because it carries more of the heat away. Gentle use of a disk sander will clean it up but the best clean up is a ******* file.

Dave
Old 09-05-2007, 09:02 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

Oops sorry, I'm going to make myself a Tx tray. I'm guessing the lexan will be less than 1/4 inch thick or so.

Thanks for the bandsaw idea, my dad has a small one. I can use that thing.
Old 09-05-2007, 09:56 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

If you're cutting a straight line, you can score it and break it along the line like a piece of glass. You need a hard edge directly under the score, like a table edge, and give it a quick, downward snap from the middle of the scored line. It gives a clean edge when done correctly. This only works well when the piece you're breaking off is fairly large; also, the thinner the material is, the easier it is to score and snap. If you are trimming a narrow piece, you have to cut it. Any blade you use will heat the lexan to melting point along the cut, and it will fill the kerf with clumps of melted material. You make the cut fairly quickly to minimize this, but going too fast can cause the saw teeth to splinter the material, and it will split.

Play with a small scrap to get your technique down; it's not difficult, just have to watch for the peculiarities. Once the cut is made, you can sand it smooth and have a nice edge. Using a belt sander runs the same problem of melting the material.
Old 09-06-2007, 12:58 AM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

Use the finest tooth saw blade you have. And mist the cut with water from a spray bottle to keep the blade from melting the material as you make the cut.
Old 09-06-2007, 03:54 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

I use a table jig saw with a fine tooth thin blade
Old 09-06-2007, 04:33 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

I too use a bansaw and disc sander. If you want the short cut to clearing the edge you can gently waive a propane or soldering torch across the surface being carful not to melt the corners.

Also FWIW Lexan is not that prone to cracking but acrylic and plexiglass are.
Old 09-06-2007, 07:45 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?


ORIGINAL: vicman

If you want the short cut to clearing the edge you can gently waive a propane or soldering torch across the surface being carful not to melt the corners.
AH HA! I knew there was a way!
Old 09-06-2007, 08:14 PM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

AH HA! I knew there was a way!
LOL, I'm glad you liked it.
The other way is to use progressively finer sandpaper and go to Simichrome polish. Heat is quicker.

Heck you may even be able to use your heat gun...just thought of that one.
Old 09-13-2007, 06:28 AM
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Default RE: What's the best way to cut Lexan?

Good tips here. I have found that a fine finish blade in my table saw works very well for thicker stuff "3/16 and up" and a plexiglass knife and a straight edge works good for thinner "3/16 and under" As VICMAN said heat works well on the edges just be carefull and don't get to hot.

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