If you are searching for the safest technique to cut plexiglass, various cutting tool suggestions can be available. The critical question here is, are they perfect in performing their job?
The only method to know is to use them all practically, but this cannot happen if we look at the price list. Everybody knows how brittle and fragile plexiglass is, so I suggest using a jigsaw.
It has been a verified technique for sure, and it’s fair to say it is the ideal tool that you can use to cut plexiglass. We know plexiglass is more like a glass material that is also known as acrylic glass.
This lightweight substance is used in making sheets and for home painting as well. And on the contrary, a jigsaw is a highly versatile tool that we can use to cut all materials, whether hard or soft.
We will guide you on how to cut plexiglass with a jigsaw along with safety tips and suggestions to help you along with the whole procedure.
Essential Things You Would Regret Not Knowing About Plexiglass
Plexiglass is more like a transparent glass with different names like Lucie, Acrylite, Perspex, and plexiglass and the most common name is acrylic glass.
This substance doesn’t get damaged easily, but it can get scratches if no scratch-resistive cover is applied. Most professionals suggest using a laser to cut plexiglass, but it imparts a clean-cut than many other tools. Still, because of the laser’s unavailability, people use a jigsaw because it is the perfect alternative.
The Best Methods to Cut a Plexiglass
There are many methods to cut plexiglass, and it will rely on the end product you want and the angles and shapes you want to get. Below are the different techniques.
- To make curved cuts, a jigsaw can be the ideal option as it is strategically placed. The jigsaw being handy and small makes it easy to steer to make such cuts.
- You can use a table saw blade to make long straight cuts.
- You know plexiglass is a brittle material, and to cut it perfectly, you can use a band saw.
- Hack saw is another substitute for band saw, table saw, or jigsaw.
Why Should You Choose Jigsaw to Cut Plexiglass?
Plexiglass is a sturdy and durable substance; it only breaks into big pieces when extreme pressure is put on it. Using a jigsaw to cut plexiglass is an ideal option for so many reasons.
The top reason is that welding machines or heated tools can melt plexiglass because it has poly-bending construction. The melting point of plexiglass is roughly 320 degrees; that’s why, in this scenario; a jigsaw can be a better option. That’s because its blades don’t heat to the extreme as compared to the other welding devices.
Furthermore, you can create artistic designs with a jigsaw from nice curves and angles to basic minimalistic cuts. To cut sensitive material, nothing can beat Jigsaw for a smooth and satisfying cutting of edges and curves.
These are some of the prominent reasons to consider a jigsaw machine to cut Plexiglass. In addition to this, here are some necessary steps for you to cut plexiglass with a jigsaw, and you won’t be experiencing any kind of trouble to complete any project that demands cutting of tender stuff.
When Do You Opt for a Jigsaw?
Now when you know that there are several kinds of saws that can be used to cut plexiglass. Still, the jigsaw is believed the best option to make cuts and curves according to your requirements.
It can cut in a straight line like other kinds of saws, but their distinctive design lets them cut the things in a curving motion as well.
You can commence cutting in the middle of a piece of the substance without coming in from the corner. This can be achieved by drilling a hole in the plexiglass and then positioning the jigsaw blade in the hole.
The versatility of jigsaws to cut in a circle, angular or straight motions makes them ideal for cutting materials like Plexiglass. A phenomenal jigsaw can handle all types of cuts easily on various forms of materials.
How to Cut Plexiglass With a Jigsaw?
You will be able to cut Plexiglass by following these super-easy-to-learn steps without harming the material’s entire shape or facing any injury. Choose a surface that is supportive enough for your plexiglass sheet while you’ll be cutting it.
Dropping the sheet with a jigsaw in your hand not only can damage your project, but it’s dangerous too. You must be wearing safety glasses to avoid any breakage in the jigsaw blade or plexiglass. Jigsaw blades can collapse and end up in your eye, so you must wear safety glasses, ear-covers, a mask, and gloves.
Secondly, you must know that with attention and measurement comes accuracy. Thus, use a ruler to draw the cutting line on the Plexiglass, finding how much you want to cut and in what angle or shape.
The third most important thing is, you can visualize the cutting point better by wrapping it with a painter’s tape. And then stick with the cutline to cut it finely. Moreover, mark it once again over the tape and make sure that the measurements are correct.
In the last, turn on your jigsaw and start cutting the material with calm find and great focus on the cutting line. The best way to avoid the breakage of your plexiglass as you cut is to apply covering it with tape. Sometimes your material will have a protective plastic layer on it. In such a situation, leave it on rather than using another masking tape. You can remove it after cutting through the plastic.
Also, if the type of Plexiglass you are cutting allows for it, try fixing it down to a surface. Once you adjust it into the cutting go into the cutting process, it can be difficult to hold the Plexiglass in place.
1.Pick the Correct Jigsaw Blade
Selecting the correct jigsaw blade is a substantial part of the preparation because a blade that is not good enough will only chide the Plexiglass. A very shallow and fine blade is the perfect way to get a smooth cut, as is commencing at full speed before drawing the material close.
An excellent option to cut Plexiglass with a jigsaw is using a bi-metal jigsaw blade with a 10 TPI. One more suggested choice is a hollow groundwood blade.
Don’t use the very fine metal blades because they can choke off during the cutting and they can melt the plastic of the Plexi. Selecting the correct blade is probably a vital part of the entire cutting procedure.
2.Handle the Cut
Keep away from positioning right into the plexi with the jigsaw. This could end up in breakage, melting, and burs. If you begin at a low speed, this could lead to a hit-or-miss job, causing pressure breakage along the angle or early point of your plexiglass.
If you see the “soft start” feature in the specifications of your jigsaw, you perhaps cannot use this to cut plexiglass.
This kind of jigsaw doesn’t have good speed until they collide with anything resistant, and this feature makes them difficult to use for some particular applications.
Other than that, you should be all good. Practice on a tinier piece first. Take a small scrap of plexiglass before going for your first cut. This will let you get the hang of plexiglass before the actual operation, take your time to get familiar with the tools and prepare the area and your stuff first.
3. Start With Some Speed
Don’t commence just by placing the jigsaw in contact with the material. Better get it stirred up before time and begin your cut with a little momentum.
The possible issue while using a jigsaw is that it can cram while cutting, so you want t to have a lot of momentum as it touches the plexiglass.
This momentum can goof up your precision a bit. That’s why practicing is essential. You can reduce your speed a bit once you start out cutting, but striking the corner of the plexiglass with some momentum is the secret.
4. How Can You Prevent Melting of the Plexiglass?
As plexiglass is pure plastic, it is vulnerable to melting from heat and blade friction. There are methods you can use to avoid the melting of your plexiglass.
This can happen because the substance can melt together instantly as the jigsaw and the plexiglass are in contact, running any progress of your operation.
Cut at pace
If your speed is slow, it will give the jigsaw enough time to transfer heat to the material. However, the jigsaw won’t get at high enough temperatures to melt the whole piece of the plexiglass; It can melt the substance enough to close the project and make an odd cut.
If you cut steadily, it keeps the plexiglass cool, but don’t hurry, or you will risk breaking the material. A steady, careful, and moderate speed can help you earn the best results.
If you are thinking like – I should be cutting it not too fast and not too slow, you are totally right. This is the key to cut the plexiglass in the most refined shape, particularly angles and curves cut with a jigsaw.
Too slow can cause breakage or jamming, and too fast can cause melting and fracture. Try to balance it and be moderate.
Don’t Cease It
For the same reason, if you choose to cut slow, it can be dangerous, so it is pausing in the middle. Leaving the saw in a position for too long can heat up the surrounding plexiglass, possibly destroying all your efforts.
As an out-of-the-way approach, this is the point where a perfect cordless jigsaw can help; as for that, you never have to bother about the cord getting in the way and must be stopped after the cut.
5. How Can You Prevent Plexiglass From Breakage?
One more problem you can face while cutting plexiglass is its propensity to break. Even though it’s sturdy, brittle, and durable, many people want to score and crack thinner sheets.
This may not be the most accurate way of making a blunt cut, but it can help in some situations. Still, for angles and curved lines, your jigsaw can make a better cut than just cracking the sheet in half.
You can use a cooling lubricant to reduce friction and keeping the plexiglass safe from melting. You can also use water to keep your jigsaw and its blade cool. And by placing a layer of masking tape over the sheet, you can avoid chipping.
6. Clean Up the Edges
After cutting the plexiglass, you might see a few ragged edges or corners. Curved edges and sharp cuts can at times cause all this.
You can clean up these curves and make them smooth by sanding the areas with sandpaper. You can use a router as well for smooth edges.
FAQS About Cutting Plexiglass With a Jigsaw
1.Can You Use a Jigsaw to Cut Plexiglass?
Jigsaw can be used to cut anything in a straight line, but it won’t work on thicker sheets of plexiglass.
2. What Kind of Blade Is Perfect for Cutting Plexiglass?
Sharp teeth are compulsory to achieve fine results. Carbide-tipped saw blades are suggested for better cuts and durability of the cutting edge.
3. Is There a Particular Drill Bit for Plexiglass?
Traditional or regular modified drill bits can drill plexiglass with their high speed. To change standard bits, the small flats on the cutting edges of the bits are ground. This helps the bit scrape up the plexiglass as a contradiction to fragmenting and grabbing the material.
If you are a rookie to cut materials like plexiglass with a jigsaw, then you can learn how to cut acrylic sheet with a jigsaw by reading our guide.
If you follow every step mentioned in this guide, it will be effortless and easier to cut the material cleanly and just the way you want it.