Cutting Lexan

Does anyone know an effective way to cut lexan so the back after cutting it doesn't melt and stick back to itself?
Rich
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RotoZip works well with plexiglass, so my guess is that it would work on Lexan. Anyone have any personal experience?
EvoDawg wrote:

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Yup..and depending on the thickness, and how fast you try to cut it, it will not only cut it clean, but very clean.

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Art Todesco wrote:

Depends on the thinkness of the lexan, and how fast your cutters are moving. If you have trouble with melting, Use a lower speed setting and stop trying to force the cutter through the plastic.
I have fairly good luck with a simple reciprocating (saber) handsaw, and a metal-cutting blade, on 1/8" lexan.
--Goedjn.
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If you have a great deal of cutting to do then a plastic cutting blade is the best solution. A plastic cutting blade has a different angle on the cutting teeth than a blade designed for wood. I have cut quite a bit of Lexan, Plexiglass, phenolic, and nylon and I usually used nothing more than a new, sharp, carbide tipped, saw blade. I have heard that you can turn a carbide tipped blade backwards and it will hinder the melting; I would not recommend reversing the blade because the carbide bits will sling off and do damage. A router (with a 4 flutted bit) will do a great job too.
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leave the protective film on and use a fine tooth saw blade.
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I've used a jigsaw. I've also used a tool that scores the material deeply so it can then be snapped -- like "cutting" glass.
MB
On 01/22/04 03:21 pm EvoDawg put fingers to keyboard and launched the following message into cyberspace:

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Table saw with a medium or fine tooth blade does well. A hand-held circular saw as well, if you use a guide so the saw doesn't twist.
Just about any wood cutting saw will do the trick. Including jig saws.
The key with power saws is to keep the stuff moving at a good clip, and select a blade that will have 1-3 teeth in contact at all times. Too many teeth, the blade won't clear, and it'll melt. Too few teeth, and the cut will be very rough, and in some cases may shatter (not so much with lexan, much more of a risk with plexiglass).
If you're using a jig saw, be sure to choose a blade with a set to the teeth.
If it's very thin lexan (like 1/8" or less), you might be better off scoring it with a knife and straight edge and bending it over a straight-edge as if it were glass. Or even a shear. However, I've had very fine results even with formica sheet with a fine tooth blade (80 or 100 teeth) on a table saw.
My lexan cutting has mostly been 3/8" lexan. Cuts very nicely on a table saw.
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Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
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Score and snap is best. A circular saw does not melt the stuff but it is still a nasty job.

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One technique is to heat the sheet up in your oven and use a straight-edge like a cookie cutter to make the cut. Then just wait for it to cool down and harden again. If you decide to cut it with a saw and want a really nice edge, sand the cut edge with increasingly fine grades of emory cloth on a flat surface, and then spill some ethylene dichlorided on the flat surface (cookie pan) and stand the cut edge in the puddle. You can either just let it set or stick it against another piece of plastic for a nice, transparent joint.
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Lexan is a thermoset. It will not "melt back to itself".
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it, it will certainly melt. John
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Lexan in NOT a thermoset. It is however a thermoplastic and will "stick back."
RB
Oscar_Lives wrote:

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EvoDawg wrote:

yep... a nice coping saw and a lot of time and effort
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On Thu, 22 Jan 2004 20:21:38 GMT, EvoDawg

I had pretty good results using a 7 1/4 inch thin kerf carbide tipped blade available from Home Depot. It takes out a lot less material and therefore generates less heat. Cuases a lot less chipping at the cut edges too.
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