Category Archives: Acrylic

Cool DIY Acrylic Rubik Cube

 Came across a neat site ( where the author shows you how to make your own Rubik Cube out of acrylic blocks and magnets…

“27 3/4″ clear acrylic cubes are drilled with 108 3/16″ holes, fitted with 108 D32 neodymium disc magnets with proper polarities facing out from each, and assembled into a size-matched magnetic version of the original Rubik’s Cube.”

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Posted by on November 7, 2007 in Acrylic, Fabrication


Bizarre: Acrylic Dishware On Demand


The Dishmaker Makes Plates On-Demand

Leonardo Amerigo Bonanni, a Ph.D. student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has designed a device that makes and recycles plastic dishes in various shapes. His “Dishmaker”, which is about the size of a regular dishwasher, can make plates, cups and bowls in approximately one minute each, taking as much time to return the dish into its original circle-shaped raw material. “In 15 minutes you can have all the dishes you need for a family of four” – says Bonanni.

The process begins when a piece of acrylic is inserted into the device, where heat and pressure are applied to soften the round dish. The heater is pressed against the acrylic and when temperatures reach 150-degrees Celsius, the plastic is passed on to the next station. At the “stamping” station, a motor driven stamp clamps the plastic, and forms it to a variable depth of up to 12.7 centimeters. The recycling process takes place at the same station where the dishes were formed. The plates are reheated and crushed by heavy weights, which return them to their original, perfectly flat shape of acrylic material.

The “Dishmaker” is a prototype machine, developed to make relatively small products, made out of palm-sized acrylic disks. The elastic substance used is non-toxic, and its shape memory properties allow it to be easily modified and recycled up to 100 times, without degrading the material.

Bonanni hopes that this new kind of kitchen appliance will not only provide comfort and an easy way for families to save money to, but also raise our energy conservation systems to a new level. “When designing the ‘Dishmaker’, I considered all of the possible products that a family would need and tried to create a machine that could make them all, but at the same time recycle them, so that they don’t take any extra room. With the ‘Dishmaker’ you don’t have to store all the dishes you might need for any conceivable circumstance (guests etc.), just the material to make enough for a given day” – he said.

Dishmaker showing variable pressure-mold (left) and various dishes (right) (Credit: Leonardo Bonanni/MIT)
Dishmaker showing variable pressure-mold
(left) and various dishes (right)
(Credit: Leonardo Bonanni/MIT)

The “Dishmaker” demonstrates a new tendency in interior design, as more and more designers are focusing not only on the final product, but on entire product life cycles. Bonanni says this single appliance can be operated for many years, using a minimal amount of material. In the future, he says, just like we have printers in our homes, we’ll have printers for materials, “printing” designs we’ll download from the web or create ourselves. And once there is no longer a need for the products, we’ll just insert them into the printers, which will melt them back to their original shapes.   

Bonanni’s device is an example of products made using rapid prototyping – a technique used to construct physical objects from virtual designs. This technology takes models from computer aided design (CAD) or animation modeling software, and transforms them into almost identical physical objects. 3D printing, a category of rapid prototyping technology, creates three dimensional objects by “printing” successive layers on top of the previous ones.

You can watch Bonanni demonstrating his Dishmaker here.

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Posted by on October 29, 2007 in Acrylic, R&D


Scroll Saw Cutting Acrylic Letter Templates

Here’s a nifty tip from  Canadian Woodworking (don’t forget to visit their site!)


Lettering templates

by Ted Duquette

Here is how I make lettering templates out of 1/16″ plexi- glass. I use a computer to print out the lettering patterns first (you could also draw them by hand). The trick to cutting Plexiglas successfully is to buy the type that has the brown paper on both sides of the Plexiglas.


You can glue your pattern on to the brown paper or you can draw the lettering right onto the paper. I use a #5 scroll saw blade with 12 teeth per inch to do the cutting. I set my saw at about half speed. If you only have a full speed saw, it can still be done but you will need to take a lot more care to ensure clean cuts. Take your time when cutting out the lettering – remember this will be the master template for all your future lettering. If you can’t get the brown papered version use un-backed Plexiglas. However, before you start cutting cover the glass with masking tape. This helps cool the blade while cutting so the Plexiglas doesn’t melt. I have made about two dozen of these lettering guides in different sizes and fonts and use them a lot in the shop.


Posted by on October 26, 2007 in Acrylic, DIY, Fabrication, Recreation


Ceramic Coatings Can Control Thermal Expansion


Benefits of Ceramic Coatings-
and a Project with Plexiglas

Solar Radiation Control

Waterproofs, protects and prevents corrosion 100%

Ultraviolet Ray Protection

Reduces thermal shock- contraction/expansion

Acoustical Benefit

(reduces noise)

Surface Temperature Reduction

When applied to a thickness of 20 mils, Ceramic Insulation Coatings will reduce the surface temperature 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Additional coats can decrease the temperature 30 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Easy Application

Shutting down operations is not required because Ceramic Insulation Coatings can be applied up to 360 degrees Fahrenheit.

Plexiglas skylights on roof top section of office building

Ceramic Insulation Coatings applied to 20 mils for control of thermal shock.
(West Edmonton Mall, Alberta Canada)

Ceramic Insulation Coatings Applied to Plexiglas skylights to control expansion and contraction (thermal shock). Saved in excess of $75,000.00
(West Edmonton Mall, Alberta Canada)

Ceramic Insulation Coatings provides higher equivalent R-Values relating to radiant energy transfer than fiberglass or other conventional systems.

Keeping the summer heat out and the winter heat in!

During the winter season in the northern hemisphere, heat naturally, travels from the warmer areas towards the colder outside (ambient) air, or in such instances where the roles are reversed, the same will occur.

Ceramic Insulation Coatings has a low K-Factor which indicates high R-Value the lack of mass thickness in the coatings, as opposed to the conventional insulations will not be enough to act as a conductive insulator through the substrate to the outside.

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Posted by on October 23, 2007 in Acrylic


Acrylic Cake Stands

Acrylic (with brand names like Acrylite, Plexiglas, Lucite, Optix) is an excellent material for supporting your super cake creations.

Clear acrylic is an FDA approved material and its edges can be polished to a glass-like shine.

There’s two grades of acrylic: cast and extruded. For your larger flat pieces you can save money by asking for extruded acrylic. If you need near-optical perfection then you’ll end up using cast acrylic – a bit more expensive but absolutely faultless. How do you glue everything together? You need acrylic glue – click here for an article that might help you.

Here’s some ideas I found on line (click on the images to go to the website):

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Posted by on October 22, 2007 in Acrylic, DIY, Recreation


Use Acrylic For Quilting Templates


Quilters hold virtual quilting bees via the Internet

04:23 PM CDT on Thursday, October 18, 2007

By NANCY MYERS / Special Contributor to The Dallas Morning News Nancy Myers is a Dallas freelance writer.



Debby Luttrell holds the finished quilt from the Patchwork Party 2007. Ms. Luttrell owns Stitchin’ Heaven, in Quitman.

If you think the quilting bee is a thing of the past, think again. The venerable art of patchwork is alive and well, thanks to a modern-day cyber circle that’s the brainchild of Debby Luttrell, owner of quilt shop Stitchin’ Heaven in Quitman, 100 miles east of Dallas.

It’s an example of how an old handicraft is evolving.

Sensing that camaraderie and a mutual fondness for hearth and home were common threads, she launched the twice-annual Internet event called Patchwork Party, inviting quilting enthusiasts nationwide to participate, compare notes and admire the finished works of a select group of shops.

“I had dreamed up a similar concept to use as a marketing strategy at a trade show, and I took it to the Internet a couple of years later because the time was right,” Ms. Luttrell says.

The first sewing soiree was in August 2006, and word quickly spread. Patchwork Party Fall 2007 – appropriately themed Home for the Holidays and featuring a vintage red, green and black color scheme – is in progress.


Although the traditional medium for quilt block templates is paper, acrylic templates are recommended by Patchwork Party participants.

At the heart of this online gathering are 12 stores from throughout the country, each with its own collectible quilt block. Patterns for the quilt blocks are by quilting designer and author Marti Michell of Atlanta, whose focus is on “quilting for people who don’t have time to quilt. We take traditional blocks with basic geometric shapes and try to put a twist in them.”

In addition to its own quilt block, each store has its own suggested quilt design for assembly of all 12 blocks, viewable via that store’s link to Patchwork Party 2007. Participants can collect the dozen block kits and, if they choose, purchase a separate finishing kit to follow a store’s quilt patterns. The finishing kit consists of everything else it takes to complete the quilt, such as sashing, binding and alternative fabric to make a center pattern or other signature element.

Paper patterns are included in the block kits, although Mrs. Michell’s acrylic templates are recommended by many shop owners and participants because they’re more durable and wrinkle-proof. And in the current quilt world, they’re also more collectible. Her acrylic templates, which are sold separately, don’t have to be cut and pinned down like the paper version, although paper is the traditional template medium.

Also Online

A roundup of new quilt books

Participating quilters who prefer not to replicate any store’s quilt design can mix up the blocks any way they wish. Ms. Luttrell says some quilters buy all 12 blocks or just a few to blend with squares of their own design. But most participants tend to buy all 12.

“It’s fun for them when they get 12 packages from 12 stores,” says Kimberly Jolly, co-owner (with her husband) of Fat Quarter Shop in Manchaca, near Austin. “It’s like Christmas.”

Fat Quarter is one of three quilting shops in the Patchwork Party circuit that are online-only operations.

“The stores are all over the country, so it gives us exposure to stores we would not normally have exposure to,” says Diane Patterson, a veteran Dallas quilter. She’s been quilting for about 12 years, and her quilting club meets for a retreat at Ms. Luttrell’s bunkhouse every year.


“The wonderful thing about this program is it allows you to get to know other stores,” says Kim Bicksler of Dallas, a participant in all the Patchwork Parties thus far. “I knew about Stitchin’ Heaven, but I got to know 11 other stores. I just got another newsletter and there was another kit that I just have to have, and they’re all the way out in Georgia.”

Seasoned quilters and novices alike are serious about this skill. “What we aim to do is a really simple quilt so that people would be able to finish it by Christmas,” says Ms. Jolly. “Our goal was to gear things toward the beginning quilter. Each of the stores is different, and each comes up with its own niche audience. That’s part of the fun; they can pick whatever they like.”

As an eight-year quilting veteran at 33, Mrs. Jolly is a living example of the younger audience this pastime continues to attract. “We’re seeing very hip colors from the ’70s, and more and more young quilters are quilting because they can find fabric that’s not ‘grandma’ fabric.”

Most of the stores also offer their own patterns for other items such as table runners, placemats, Christmas stockings and pillowcases that coordinate with the quilts.

Ms. Luttrell says that during the spring event, which ran from Valentine’s Day through Memorial Day, more than 24,000 quilt blocks were sold, averaging 2,000 per store. Nov. 30 is the final day for purchasing the current set of blocks. Expect something different this spring.

“In the quilting world, fabrics come and go really fast,” adds Ms. Luttrell. Of the popular Patchwork format, she says, “It just shows that quilters are Internet-savvy.”

Nancy Myers is a Dallas freelance writer.

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Posted by on October 19, 2007 in Acrylic, DIY, Recreation


How You Bond A 40′ x 4″ Acrylic Sphere…


Acrylic Bonding

Through years of R&D, Reynolds Polymer Technology has developed an ability to chemically bond acrylic, creating a nearly invisible seam, while maintaining over 90% of the parent materials strength.

For larger projects, “on-site bonding” has become a way of creating massive acrylic structures on-site as shipping the finished product would be impossible. In some cases months are spent in clean room environments in order to create that exacting bonding atmosphere as would be at home.

Reynolds Polymer Technology - R-Cast Acrylic

Sudbury Neutrino Observatory Project
Sudbury, Ontario, CanadaThe Sudbury Neutrino Observatory in Ontario, Canada, is a scientific masterpiece. Designed for astrophysics research, this forty-foot (12.2m) sphere is made of 2″ – 4″ (5cm – 10cm) thick acrylic, was created with over 1,550 feet (470m) of bonds, and was constructed 1.25 miles (2km) beneath the surface of the earth in a clean room environment.

The Sudbury Neutrino Observatory was a collaborative effort sponsored by the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom to increase the scientific understanding of particle physics and astrophysics. Approximately 74,000 pounds (33,566kg) of acrylic and over 1,550 feet (470m) of bonds were used to create this 40’ (12.2m) cast acrylic sphere.

The forty-foot (12.2m) diameter seamless acrylic sphere at the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory Project is used for astrophysics research. Reynolds Polymer Technology provided the scientific research and design, engineering, manufacturing and on-site installation of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO) project.

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Posted by on October 12, 2007 in Acrylic, Fabrication, General Knowledge