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bending perspex ?

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Ralph Harvey28/09/2010 23:30:47
3274 forum posts
315 photos
2 articles
Finally got back in the shed the other day, and i seem to have developed 2 left hands ? going to need plenty of practice after such a long break,
 
Anyhow i have an idea i would like to work on but it will need to include a curved clear section, glass is out but i thought of perspex probably 1/8th or so thick,
 
Has anyone any idea how i can bend it without distorting it i need to see clearly through it like a window ?
 
Ralph
Sparky29/09/2010 02:13:34
7631 forum posts
22 photos
Hi Ralph
 
The only thing I can think of is to use a heat gun. 
 
You will have to bend it over a former of some sorts. Not sure of your size of project but, if you use that bendy MDF  over a frame then lay the perspex on top and use the heat gun moving it up & down over the whole part of the bend and you should see it move into place without any distortion.
 
Someone may have another idea but, if it were me and have limited tools, I would try this way first.
 
Try heating it on a small piece just to see how the heat bends it. don't over heat one part as the hot air gun may burn it and will bubble, easy up & down movements will give you the best results.
 
Good luck
 
Marc
Big Al29/09/2010 07:29:55
1604 forum posts
73 photos
I dont know about perspex, but to bend solid surface materials you need to heat it in a oven at about 160 degrees c for about 40 minutes, and then using a 2 part mould clamp the solid surface for about 20 minutes and then remove from the mould.
 
It may work on perspex.
 
Al 
Julian29/09/2010 09:35:41
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556 forum posts
28 photos
Hi Ralph
 
   Good to see you back. You may have a problem with Perspex, I know when we needed something similar done in work we had to get one of our schools to make the section from some special thermo setting plastic similar to the stuff that baths are made from. A few of our schools use this product in their craft classes and it works quite well. I have no idea of the correct name but I think I still have the contact to find out if you like. We tried perspex or plexiglass but it burned before it started to bend then when it cooled down it was full of stress cracks, I think the only way to do this would have been in a controlled kiln. I gave the kids a former and they did it in a few hours.
 
                            Julian
 
Big Al29/09/2010 10:13:18
1604 forum posts
73 photos
Hi,
 
I just googled thermoforming perspex. For a pdf on the subject click here.
 
Al
Julian29/09/2010 12:19:15
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556 forum posts
28 photos
Good one Al,
 
   Acrylic Sheet, that is exactly what we used to make our clear panels from. Once set they were quite tough.
Thanks for that Al.
 
 
                       Julian
 
Ralph Harvey29/09/2010 12:35:29
3274 forum posts
315 photos
2 articles
Thanks Guys.
 
The idea will need a piece approximatelly 6" x 4.5" with a 3" Radius. so will print out the PDF Al posted and have a read.
 
I had considered heating a piece of perspex in the oven but the better half wasnt so keen ?
 
Ralph
Darren Loucaides 129/09/2010 12:59:03
31 forum posts
18 photos
1 articles
A-ha! You shall have to look out for the Good Woodworking Special Issue, on sale 8th October, for some detail about bending plastics. But don't put perspex in the oven! Marc seems to be along the right lines.
 
Darren
Ralph Harvey29/09/2010 13:36:48
3274 forum posts
315 photos
2 articles
Thanks for that Darren
 
I will just have to wait for it to come out and see then
 
Ralph
Doug29/09/2010 13:43:56
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3415 forum posts
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Ralph.
 
I`ve got this perspex.
 

 
 It`s 1.9mm thick & as you can see very flexible, it looks blue as it has protective film both sides
 
This is an off cut, if you want some i`d happily post you a few pieces.
 
 
Nice to see you back.
 
 
Baz  
Ralph Harvey29/09/2010 13:53:24
3274 forum posts
315 photos
2 articles
Thanks Baz
 
That would be great, the door frame internally would be approximatelly 6 x 4.5" and i would possibly need 2 pieces for front and back, PM me and i will cover the postage etc
 
 
Ralph
Doug29/09/2010 14:11:18
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3415 forum posts
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PM sent mate.
 
 
Baz  
Alan T.30/09/2010 19:21:12
1033 forum posts
98 photos
Hi Ralph, Nice to see you back on the site.  best of luck with the project.     Alan T.
Ron Davis01/10/2010 17:57:18
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1619 forum posts
201 photos
Ralph, nice to have you back with us again. You have intrigued me as to what this project is, can you give us a clue or do we wait for the finished item to appear in your album?
 
Ron
Ralph Harvey01/10/2010 22:15:59
3274 forum posts
315 photos
2 articles
Thanks Alan, Ron
 
Its nice to get back out there but i am certainly "rusty"
 
I have always liked the traditional mantle clocks, so i want to turn one glazed doors arched heads, just playing around with ideas but hopefully it will work
.
Ralph

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