Acrylic Edge Prep Help

Toua

New member
Hello,

My dad does some woodwork and since he had the tools I figured I'd give acrylic a try. I've just been doing some frag racks but am wanting to get into making smaller tanks and am at a standstill as of now. I can't seem to be getting a perfect edge. When I'm done it feels smooth but I can see some very micro dips in the edge and am trying to perfect this. Also, sometimes there's looks to be like a small streak/line in the middle of the acrylic, almost looks like if that section didn't get routed. I'm using a Kreg router table and routing against the stock fence. Router is a DeWalt DW618 with a WhiteSide 1/4'' upcut spiral flush trim bit (RFT2100). Can you take a look a the pictures and let me know what I"m doing wrong? I've tried different feed speed but they are coming out the same. The router is running at a 3 setting which according to the DeWalt manual is 14,000 rpm. Thanks in advance!

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Toua

New member
I was contemplating that but reading through Jame's acrylic thread the router seemed like the way to go and I don't have a planer readily available.
 

Gorgok

New member
Have you tried going up or down with the bit to see if that one steak shifts?

I don't really see that edge as being all that bad, but maybe the picture makes it look better than it is... You could always cut a tiny piece like that and see what it looks like once bonded to something.
 

leveldrummer

New member
i would use a bit with more teeth, the direction that you push the cut across the bit will change the edge of the cut, have to tried to cut the other direction?

for what its worth, i agree with gorgok that the cut looks really clean. and its worth attempting to weld some together to see how the seam ends up.
 

Toua

New member
Okay, i will try and weld to see what it looks like. I've used weld on 4 with a hand scrapped edge but that has always kind of left small bubbles a the end like there's small gaps or it's not evenly flat. For the most part the feel of the prep is very smooth, I've only cut it against the spin but I'll try the other way as well and see.
 

Toua

New member
i guess in the shaky pic (first one) you can kind of see the reflection. i just tried at 21,000 rpm and it's still not much better. there are small little lines going up and down and that haze in the middle. i might just be picky or haven't seen a good routered edge in person yet. it's smooth to the touch with no bumps so i'll see what it looks like once welded. thanks for the input everyone.
 

peppie

New member
I have had great results with a straight flush cutting bit 1/2'' with 1/2'' shank.
If you run the speed to high on the router it will melt the acrylic, well maybe not melt it. But it will increase the heat on that edge.
I have in the past used a cabinet scraper to prep the edge. It must be sharp and help 90 deg to the face you are preping. It will take some practice, but vary doable.
 

Toua

New member
Thanks peppie, I did try with a two flute 1/4'' bosch carbide flush cut bit but I couldn't get it to cut as good as the whiteside bits. I went with the whiteside because James mentioned it in his acrylic thread.
 

Gorgok

New member
By the same token shorter stick-out and a larger shank would probably produce a cleaner cut, i know it does on mills. Less chatter both ways.
 
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