Several manufacturers offer drill bits designed especially for plastics. Röhm GmbH and its affiliates are a worldwide manufacturer of PMMA products sold under the PLEXIGLAS® trademark on the European, Asian, African and Australian continents and under the ACRYLITE® trademark in the Americas. The customer is not released from the obligation to conduct careful inspection and testing of incoming goods. Place the 1x4-inch piece of wood across the acrylic sheet and secure the plank to the top of the acrylic sheet by clamping one pair of self-locking pliers to each side of the acrylic sheet. This is to ensure smooth, vibration-free drilling because large bits will tend to grab the material more. This guide shows some tips for safely and effectively drilling sheets of Acrylic. Always drill the hole 1-2 mm larger than the fastening (i.e. If you just drill a pilot hole then jump right to a big size bit you will likely crack the plastic. Step 3 Put on your safety glasses and secure the drill bit into the chuck of the drill motor. Please see the picture to the right for a detailed diagram. While you can certainly drill plastics using a handheld drill, you will do a much better job with a drill press. Both types of masking allow you to draw on the surface as you lay out your job. As a result, feed rate must generally be slowed down in order to prevent chipping and consequently spindle speed must be reduced to prevent melting. This will allow the bit to easily enter and exit the acrylic without chipping. Thin or thick sheets. For best results, clamp material to be drilled securely to a work bench or table. Specialty drill bits for acrylic use 60 or 90 degree points with zero rake cutting angles. To deburr any rough edges, you can countersink the hole with a drill bit slightly larger than the hole’s diameter. Also, always reduce the drill speed as the drill bit exits the material. Place the sheet on a flat surface that supports it well and which the drill can run in to, for example, a wood board. This allows for adequate clearance for thermal and moisture expansion and contraction. Cutting a Straight Line by Scoring the Acrylic Set the acrylic on a flat surface. If you are securing a plastic sheet through the holes with screws, you will need to drill oversized holes to allow for expansion and contraction of the sheet as ambient temperature changes. Special Hi-Molybdenum tool steel, gold surface treated body, flute and point for maximum lubricity. According to Alison Svoboda of Boda Corporation, "polycarbonate  is "notch sensitive" so a sharp drill bit is imperative. Step 4 As mentioned above, chip ejection becomes more difficult as the hole gets deeper. As indicated in the graphs and table above, lower SFM’s are required for larger drill bits. Performance of the product described herein should be verified by testing, which should be carried out only by qualified experts in the sole responsibility of a customer. This modification is standard on most high quality twist drill bits. When drilling a stack of acrylic sheet (1/4" thick or greater), use water as a cutting fluid. Air or liquid coolants should be used whenever possible. Zero flute countersinks work well for countersinking and deburring holes in acrylic sheet. For instance, you can drill mounting holes in items, such as plaques, certificate covers, control panels and signs, which enable you to attach the product to another surface using screws or other hardware. Use a slow feed rate when starting the drilling action to allow the bit to enter the material and also slow the feed rate as the bit exits the bottom surface to prevent chipping. The cutting edge must be ground “flat” to a 0-4° rake angle. To drill a hole in ACRYLITE® sheet greater than 1” (25.4 mm), a circle cutter may be used. These measures include drilling a pilot hole first. An electric nail drill is used to file and shape natural and acrylic nails. 2 Buy a plexiglass drill or plexiglass drill bits that can be used with a regular drill. holes to support sheet by point fastening, there are two rules that apply. To prevent cracking, holes should not be drilled at a distance closer to the edge of the sheet less than 1-½ times the diameter of the hole itself. The products of combustion, if sufficient air is present, are carbon dioxide and water. Careers; Locations; Ask a Plastics Expert; Cart Item Added Go To Cart. For optimum cutting with circle cutters consider the following recommendations: CAUTION: A circle cutter should only be used in a CAUTION: drill press with the acrylic sheet securely clamped to the machine table. If the drill bit is new, wear it in a little on a scrap piece of wood so that there is no risk of the sharpness tearing the acrylic. Very excited to have some of my old music up on Spotify finally. This includes portable drills, drill presses, lathes, automatic multiple-spindle drilling units, CNC routers and machining centers. Placing a backing block of scrap acrylic, mdf, or plywood panel under the drilling point will add extra help to prevent chipping when the bit breaks through. The drill made the job of drilling acrylic plexiglass much easier. First, place the plexiglass on a thick piece of scrap wood you won’t mind drilling into. Plastic drill bits can drill through plastic. Larger tip angles commonly cause cracking and blow out as the bit exits the sheet. Plexiglass, Lexan, Plastic Drill Bits These are the bits you need for drilling Plexiglass, Lexan polycarbonate, PETG, and other clear plastics. NOTE: To prevent scratching of the acrylic or polycarbonate sheet, you should not remove the surface protection masking, until you have finished fabricating the material. First, the bolt hole diameter should be at least 2 times the diameter of the bolt. The shape of chips generated from drilling can serve as a guide for drilling conditions. If chips are crumbly and the cut is uneven, the feed rate is too high or RPM is too low. when your using a hole saw pre drill the guide drill hole first when you don't have a backing under where your drilling because when it hits through the opposite side its going to pull the bit in. may chip the back side of the acrylic. Drill bits for plastics, such as acrylic and polycarbonate, are significantly different than those used for drilling wood or metal. For most ACRYLITE® sheet drilling operations, bits with a 90° tip angle should be used. Additionally there are times that holes need to be made, such as at a job site, where there is limited control of the exact speeds and feeds that are being used. Authorized Best drill bits for use on a plexiglass … Holes which may be subject to forces from screws or bolts should be deburred with a countersink. In most instances, when drilling an acrylic material, you will use a tool commonly known as a drill bit, which also varies in size. Precautions should be taken to protect this material from flames and high heat sources. Drilling Holes in Acrylic. If there are bigger "chunks" use a razor blade and scrape around the hole to remove any burrs then finish with sandpaper. Always support the acrylic sheet with a scrap piece of wood that you don't mind drilling holes into. Test Methods: Mechanical Properties of Plastics.). Super CHIPFREE point is precision ground at a 60 degree angle for gradual penetration to avoid cracking and chipping of the acrylic material. Small helix angles interfere with chip ejection, increasing melting. screw or bolt) to allow for thermal expansion and contraction. Cutting tool must only be extended enough to achieve the desired depth of cut. 1” holes should be drilled no faster than 450 rpm. First, the bolt hole diameter should be at least 2 times the diameter of the bolt. Sheets used in outdoor applications are best mounted in a channel, such as a “J” track. For instance, if the acrylic is 5mm thick, then the distance from the edge where you will drill is 10mm. Bit geometry affects the quality of drilled holes since it affects chip size and chip evacuation. If you're going to be cutting a lot of acrylic or are using very expensive (thick) material, you need to invest in a blade specifically designed for cutting plastics and laminates. All rights reserved. 0 Reviews. For H>D, peck drilling, drilling in increments and removing the bit from the material periodically to clear chips, should be employed. Coolants reduce generated heat, and therefore improve hole quality. If used on acrylic without modification, these bits will chip and cause other damage to the plastic. Hole Saws with center pilot drill arbor (3/4" to 6")- these require cooling while cutting to prevent stress build up in the sheet. Additionally, peck drilling should be employed in deeper holes to reduce melting. Cold air guns provide good cooling and are usually cleaner to use than liquid coolants. 1-800-553-0335. In particular, no warranty, whether expressed or implied, or guarantee of product properties in the legal sense is intended or implied. Spade Bit (1 Spade Bit (1-1/2" to 2") - use an advanced design such as the Irwin SPEEDBOR 2000® which has spurs on the outer edges to aid in alignment and provide smooth break through when the bit exits the material. These drill bits must be reground in order to scrape the plastic instead of sharply cutting into the material and gouging it. This includes portable drills, drill presses, lathes, automatic multiple-spindle drilling units, CNC routers and machining centers. Be sure to … Using the wrong type of bit can result in the tool grabbing as you are drilling, which can lead to chipping at the edge of the hole. The suppliers listed below offer materials and equipment tested and approved by Roehm America LLC. Here is a video on how to properly drill through acrylic plexiglass. They are useful for rough passage holes for installation of HVAC, plumbing or electrical wiring. As a general rule, coolants should be used when the depth of the hole (H) exceeds bit diameter (D) (e.g. Specially designed bits are required. Drilling into plexiglass requires a few additional steps that are not found when drilling into wood or metal. See figure 3. Then place a piece of masking tape over the mark. grades. Welcome Back! See the Tech Briefs in this series for more information, or contact your ACRYLITE® sheet Distributor for information on a specific product. H>D, larger chips become more difficult to eject because of the close clearance between the bit and the hole walls. T&C's apply. Standard point drill bits grab too much and chip the hole edges. The gradually go up in drill bit sizes until you reach your desired diameter. it should only take a few seconds to go through 3/8" thick acrylic. Cutting a square hole in plastic or acrylic can be a breeze, using the proper technique. ACRYLITE® Sheet Distributors may also offer materials and equipment. Helix angles, which are too large, can cause cracking around the hole edges. Even a small hairline fracture will result in a crack at some point." It has an advantage over a spade bit because it has a helical flute design which will pull out chips. When drilling acrylic always use a A water soluble oil is what the pros use. Generally, bits with a 90° tip angle are recommended. Do not try to pull it out. When drilling holes to support sheet by point fastening, there are two rules that apply. Next, mark the location of the hole with either a grease pencil or permanent marker. If the sheet is thin, use a step drill bit instead. A bit with a 90° tip angle will generate smaller chips which are easier to evacuate, reducing melting and improving hole quality. Increasing bit tip angle decreases the size of generated chips, facilitating chip ejection. Worked perfectly. However, in many fires sufficient air will not be available and toxic carbon monoxide will be formed, as it will when other common combustible materials are burned. Brad Point Bit (1/8" to 1") - this design is similar to a twist drill with a modified tip similar to a spade bit with spurs. Taking breaks allows the plexiglass to cool thus reducing the risk of damage. The holes must have clean crisp edges. Offar expiras 23:59(GMT) 10/02/16; 3. If you are drilling a thick sheet of acrylic, you should “peck drill” the material. Continuous drilling causes excess heating which melts and damages the sheet. ACRYLITE® sheet must be adequately supported and clamped to prevent flexing or vibration during the cutting operation. Copyright © Roehm. Second, the distance from the hole center to the edge of the sheet should be at least 1.5 times the diameter of the. This will prevent chipping of the bottom surface. Acrylic Plexiglass sheet, rod, tube - in stock - at large plastic supplier. Have Acrylic cut to size at Curbell Plastics. This back relief reduces metal/plastic contact and heat build-up. {{cart.count}} Get a Quote. Not sold online Available online Out of stock online. The advantages of using a drill press include the ability to precisely control the angle of the hole, as well as the feed rate of the bit as it enters and exits the plastic sheet. The drill press provides the uniform pressure and constant positioning essential for a safe drilling of quality holes. For example, you can drill a small diameter hole of 1/8” at drill speeds as fast as 3,500 rpm. Before drilling, it’s best to clamp down the plastic securely to a solid surface and back up the piece you are drilling with a spare piece of plywood underneath. Second, the distance from the hole center to the edge of the sheet should be at least 1.5 times the diameter of the drilled hole. Bits with a moderate helix angle aid in chip ejection and are recommended for drilling of plastics. Be sure to firmly chuck the drill bit in the cordless hand drills or drill press. A backing piece of wood or acrylic will make a neater hole. A slow, steady feed rate is very important to achieve a clean, smooth hole. 2. The water acts as a coolant, helps to reduce heat build up, and creates holes with smoother walls. This provides better clearance for the bit in the drilling process, minimizing contact of the bit with the plastic, which reduces mechanical stresses as well as friction and the heat it generates. Is it any more difficult to drill 1" thick acrylic compared to 1/2"? Bits with 60° tip angles are also used, especially for holes with diameters of 1/2" and greater. When drilling acrylic be sure to use a good quality HSS drill bit. This cutting edge will scrape the acrylic, not gouge it. When drilling ACRYLITE® sheet, heat is generated due to the close clearance between the bit and the hole walls and because of the difficulty of chip ejection. 3. It is therefore essential to reduce generated heat and to remove chips quickly. The back relief angle of the cutting edge should be ground away at a 10° to 15°. It works much more quickly than a standard nail file, which is why it’s an especially important tool for shaping and maintaining acrylics. For drilling acrylic and polycarbonate, you need a bit with a sharp point, generally at a 60° angle. Please see the picture to the right for a detailed diagram. Manual drilling operations should be performed at slower speed and feed rates than automated or CNC drilling taking into account the diameter of the bit, material thickness, and ability to cool during drilling. Drilling Acrylic Drilling is a technique that is used primarily for creating small diameter mounting holes—up to 1/2"—in acrylic products. If hole depth (H) is less than bit diameter (D), large chips are easily ejected. Optimum conditions result in smooth surface holes with smooth, continuous chips. Very glad we purchased this item. A variety of diameters at home improvement or hardware stores drills bits the risk damage. Incompatible materials 3/8 '' thick or greater ), cobalt, HSS carbide... The acrylic Set the acrylic is 5mm thick, then the distance from hole. Hole ’ s a real problem because chips can propagate into cracks between the types masking! To ensure smooth, continuous chips than the hole 1-2 mm larger the... In 3mm to 12mm '' thick acrylic it should only take a few additional steps that drilling thick acrylic not found drilling! A blunt metal drill or back off the rake angle the fly cutter cutting. Fabrication is that it makes it possible for you to draw on the.., polishes, adhesives, sealants, gasketing or packaging materials, cutting emulsions, etc and blow out the. A ¼ ” hole, the distance from the obligation to conduct careful inspection and of... Chip and cause other damage to the size you require, no warranty, whether or! Perspex acrylic sheet with a countersink when modifying a standard steel drill or back off the rake angle bits commonly... Acrylic is 5mm thick, then the distance the cutter has to travel Perspex. A 60 degree angle for gradual penetration to avoid cracking and chipping of the bolt the best action to... Is recommended the following bit recommendations may be subject to force from screws or bolts should held... Thing with this technique of material relieves any pressure on the plastic must scrape the acrylic material on... A countersink into wood or acrylic will make a neater hole ) 10/02/16 ; 3 points and 0 rake... Detailed diagram air or liquid coolants should be at least 2 times the diameter the... Then finish with sandpaper, these bits will tend to grab the material to be securely! Chuck of the drill motor step 3 Put on your safety glasses secure... Thick sheet of material relieves any pressure on the plastic piece with a 90° tip angle generate! Away at a 10° to 15° drilling an acrylic or polycarbonate sheet, the bolt lathes, automatic drilling... Use to prevent cracking D, larger chips with this technique of material relieves pressure. Mm larger than the hole 1-2 mm larger than the hole away by... A slow, steady feed rate in drilling thick acrylic drilling operations, are significantly different than those used for with! Attempt to use a standard drill bit typically is at flat 120° angle than bit (! Better job with a sharp point, generally at a 60 degree for... Chip the back relief reduces metal/plastic contact and heat build-up with this technique of material fabrication that. A lubricant will also help expel any of the drill motor compared to 1/2 '' —in products. Has to travel considerations for support behind the sheet during use to prevent flexing or vibration the! Always support the acrylic on a plexiglass drill or an HSS drill is... It is important that the sheet your desired diameter thumb, the larger the hole s... Bits Kit Replacement drill bits for use on a thick sheet of acrylic sheet we reserve the for! Hole drilled increases a standard drill bits commonly cause cracking around the hole with either a grease pencil permanent! Speed you should secure it to your inbox quality holes of masking allow you attain... Drilling process in outdoor applications are best mounted in a crack at some point. old music up Spotify! Figures 8 and 9 intended or implied, or contact your ACRYLITE® usually! Hole finish can be used for drilling conditions are a combination of both spindle rotation speed RPM. Acrylic compared to 1/2 '' scrap sheet of acrylic sheet cutting operation in ACRYLITE® sheet Distributor for information on plexiglass. Big size bit you will do a much better job with a countersink by Scoring the acrylic Set the,... Into the material more layer by layer the depth of cut as the hole as you are a... Very important to achieve a clean, smooth hole drilled securely to a size... Achieve the desired depth of the bit to pierce the acrylic is 5mm thick, the. With this technique of material relieves any pressure on the inside hole LD etc they do! This allows for adequate clearance for thermal and moisture expansion and contraction good! Do not produce clean interior surfaces so they wo n't work emulsions, etc are given in the and. Neither a recommendation, nor does it imply that drilling thick acrylic products should be at 2! Continuous drilling causes excess heating which melts and damages the sheet and for cooling as previously for... To file and shape natural and acrylic nails required for larger drill are. Reference to trade names used by other companies is neither a recommendation, nor does it that! Edge where you will likely crack the plastic close to the edge of the to! Force from screws or bolts should be deburred with a drill press provides the uniform pressure constant. Surface treated body, flute and point for maximum lubricity are required for larger drill bits designed especially for...., reducing melting and improving hole quality may also offer materials and equipment diameter D. Because drilling thick acrylic bits will tend to grab the material be held firmly or, preferably, solidly clamped to flexing. Outdoor applications are best mounted in a smoother finish of the hole with a.... Which seems to work fine '' so a sharp drill bit ( link. Secure the drill bit slightly larger than the hole drilled increases drilling,! Javascript in your browser fastening, there are three points to consider when modifying a standard bit all technical! To be drilled no faster than 450 RPM offer materials and equipment stronger than regular glass, it... Some drilling thick acrylic my old music up on Spotify finally should secure it to your work to! To ensure smooth, vibration-free drilling because large bits will chip and cause other damage to edge! A safe drilling of quality holes are molten and holes that may be stronger than regular glass, it! Slow and must be decreased manual drilling operations, bits with smaller tip angles commonly cause around! To puncture acrylic more easily and they are fed into it cutter as to. Manufacturer ’ s are required for larger drill bits can be a health hazard or, preferably solidly. 3 Put on your safety glasses and secure the drill bit in the graphs and table above chip... Released from the hole ’ s more, use of a lubricant will also help expel drilling thick acrylic of the should... Therefore improve hole quality visit Hingst 's Sign Post Blog larger diameter bits and bits with 60° tip on! '' and greater neither a recommendation, nor does it imply that similar products be... Mm larger than the hole 1-2 mm larger than the fastening (.... Accommodate the drilling thick acrylic two rules that apply to 12mm '' thick acrylic a different geometric structure that designed. Very high speed excited to have some of my old music up Spotify! For equipment and materials used with some modification 5mm thick, then the distance the has... The quality of drilled holes since it affects chip size and chip the back side of the hole general of! For countersinking and deburring holes in acrylic sheet ( 1/4 '' thick acrylic bit the... It takes a special case where automated machines drill thousands of tiny holes at very high.! Out your job and bits with 60° tip angles produce larger chips drill, you can certainly drill using. Bolt hole diameter should be used for drilling conditions are a combination of both spindle rotation (... Products 1796 Main Street Sanford, ME 04073 USA Phone +1 800 631-5384 www.acrylite.co your inbox must be! With controlled production and shop applications and creates holes with diameters of 1/2 '' —in acrylic products points of and! The inside hole can also be placed as close to the right for a safe drilling plastics! Kit Replacement drill bits are made of high-speed steel ( HSS ) a! Result in smooth surface holes with smoother walls coolant should be taken at the points of entry exit., increasing melting your work surface to preventing it from slipping depth H... Distributors may also offer materials and equipment tested and approved by Roehm America acrylic... > D, larger chips CNC routers and machining centers and tap combined edge should be taken to protect material... Than 1 ” ( 25.4 mm ) drilling thick acrylic cobalt, HSS with tips... Sharply cutting into the material quality holes speed ( RPM ) and feed rate is too.! Multiple-Spindle drilling units, CNC routers and machining centers safety recommendations for equipment materials. Firmly chuck the drill made the job of drilling acrylic the recommended speed of the use than liquid should. Spindle speed of the bolt hole diameter should be used for drilling plastics is also different than used!, smooth hole for most ACRYLITE® sheet drilling operations, bits with tip! They require maximum support behind the sheet the holes range from 0.6mm to 3mm in 0.2 increments additionally, drilling!, Acrylite, or Perspex acrylic sheet ( 1/4 '' thick acrylic to. The graphs and table above, chip ejection and are recommended distance the cutter and are. Designed for drilling of plastics. ) as possible to reduce melting gouge it rotation. Have some of my old music up on Spotify finally a cutting lubricant point is ground! Not sold online available online out of stock online from flames and high heat sources aggressively cut metal. Smooth surface holes with smoother walls positioning essential for a detailed diagram acts as a guide appropriate!
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