The new receiver for my entertainment centre is 20Kg or about 45 pounds. I'd
like to have all the components supported by some type of lexan or
plexiglass or similar product. Which of these products are the strongest and
able to exist as a 19" span and be able to support this 45 pound AV receiver
using brass shelving supports and sleeves?
You may want to consider some design techniques with Lexan.
Two ideas that come to mind are:
A) Arrange for a support along the 19" span at the back side of the
shelves even if this means providing a vertical column in the shelf
design at the back. There are ways to make such things look rather
slick in a design. I've even seen taught vertical cables used.
B) Consider hot forming a front side lip on the Lexan that acts as a
right angle stiffener.
I can virtually guarantee that 1/4" plexiglass would bend very
badly, if gradually. I built a case for a turntable from that
stuff once and it could not support the weight of the (heavy)
turntable for long until it deformed. You may need to glue some
vertical supports underneath to strenghen it. No idea what
thickness would be sufficient for the weight you have there,
but I think it'd be hefty.
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Tempered glass is probably a better bet if you want that look--it will
either carry the load or break but it's not going to sag noticeably,
public-education notions about "supercooled liquid that creeps slowly"
notwithstanding. But 1/4 inch is going to be too thin regardless.
Lexan has about 60 percent of the elastic modulus of MDF, acrylic
about 80 percent, glass is about ten times higher (all _very_
The Sagulator http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/sagulator.htm will let you
easily calculate approximate sag for many kinds of wood and for
glass--it doesn't have acrylic or polycarbonate, but if you use
"MDF-LD" I don't think you'll be too far wrong for those materials.
And expensive. For tempered safety glass, 20.75" x 17" x 3/8" I was quoted
from $50 per piece all the way up to $135 per piece with a two week delivery
time. I'm going to check out the $50 guy tomorrow. I'm hoping he didn't
quote me the wrong price considering how much cheaper he was than everyone
can you cut thick glass? look for old dining room tabletops in yard
just bought a 4'x6'x.75" tabletop for $20. not a scratch on it. tinted
even. you can use a silicon carbide belt in a beltsander (with a very
touch) to break the sharp edges. do that on a windy day, standing
dining room tabletops aren't tempered, so i'm not quite sure what your
statement is referring to.
i submit that 1/2" glass isn't going to be broken with normal means.
without special breakers, one would be hard pressed to break .5", let
alone .75", thick glass. i've scored that thickness glass, placed a
dowel under the break, and jumped on the end without having it break.
Possibly, but one of the greatest detriments to my using a wheelchair is not
being able to get around easily to get to things ~ like yard sales. All in
all, it's easier and much less time consuming to just buy something. I don't
like it, but there it is. It is a confirmed fact that's it's considerably
more expensive to have a disability than not. I wouldn't have thought much
about it before being in the chair, but it surely hits me right in the
have your neighbor look for things? i have a set of people who look
for kilns and other glass or ceramic related items in local yard
sales, and they call me up if they find anything interesting.
thick glass is pretty heavy and you do need special tools to cut and
handle it, so yes, it'll be easier to purchase it premade directly.
otoh, a stained glass store may be able to cut down a tabletop if one
was delivered to them by a helpful assistant. i doubt that the glass
shop you approached would do this; they'd want to sell you the new
glass instead of recycled.
btw: another good place is craigslist. i see glass shelves (and
tabletops too) on my local frequently that come out of store closings.
perhaps something close enough in size would do.
It's a possibility and maybe I'll look around a bit. In all honesty though,
I'm not sure I want to. At least not for supporting my new 45 pound AV
receiver that cost me over $1800. I'd have a coronary if the thing dropped
through some recycled glass because I was too cheap to buy the tempered
stuff. Of course, the rest of the components aren't near as heavy, so what
you suggest may be a viable option.
These guys have lexan in 1/2" thick sheets:
A 12" x 48" runs $112, but you could get several shelves out of it. I
would think 1/2" in a 19" span would do the job, particularly since the
feet of the receiver will be close to the support pegs. If it sags
slightly over time and gets on your nerves, flip it over.
While very strong, Lexan will scratch and price will be tied to crude
Might take a look at 1/2" laminated safety glass, cut to size with a
That way, edges will be polished.
HEAVY, but very strong.
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