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AndyL

Blades For Cutting Board Plastics

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Wow, I guess I am really low tech by comparision. I use a simple hand-held coping saw available in any hardwares store and fine-toothed blades. I think that Marcias scroll saw would rpobably work best as a power tool because it is the same action as a hand coping saw and probably is much more accurate and easier to keep square. I also use a plasma arc cutter for metal dies but I would not recommend going out and buying one unless you have other uses for it, they tend to be quite pricey!

 

Regards,

Charles

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This may sound weird but I really love my plasma arc cutter. I bought it originally when I had an engineering company and we were designing and building industrial equipment. it is a Lincoln and will cut up to 1/2 inch steel plate. All it needs is air and electricity, no special gasses. My company was bougth by ITT Sikorsky for the intellectual property and they had no use for our puny equipment. I sold off most of the equipment except for a few pieces and the plasma arc cutter was one of those. I still use it quite a bit, it cuts so nicely and it is much more like using a pencil than a powerful indsutrial cutting tool. My daughter was in middle school when I got it and she took to it intuitively and was making custom name plates outof 1/8 inch stainles steel and selling them to her friends in school. Incredibly easy to operate and makes a cut tha has a very smooth face so there is very little finishing needed: basicaly just knock off the slag. The plasma arc cutter, my TIG welder and a couple of MIG welders are tools I am very glad I kept, I still use them a lot. :)

 

Best regards,

Charles

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The secret is to cut the poli slowly! if at med or high speed then you remelt the material soooooooooo handcutting or variable speed scrool is the way to go.

FYI - Lincoln plasma arc is a great machine!!!!!!

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I want to make dies for an extruder out of Poly cutting boards but keep melting the plastic and binding my jigsaw blades,. Any tips to this appreciated.

 

 

Andy I used a scroll saw to cut a complicated die to make some tile molding. I bought a blade that was sold for use on plastics, the poly cutting board plastic was the only plastic material that held up to the pressure of the extruder. I tried several different kinds of plastic that I bought at a scrap material company. My collection of dies are simple metal ones so this was a learning process for me, hope this helps. You may be able to get a scroll saw at a estate sale or craig,s list for cheap, weekend woodworkers buy them then find out they don't have much use for them. Denice

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I agree with Deb Evans. Whatever tools you use, either a router or jig saw, use a variable speed to slow the cutting/sawing down, so you are not remelting the Poly material. Clean up with a sharp Xacto knife

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i disagree with the slow speed recommendations...'self-lubricating' plastics like to be processed with high speed cutters. you have to use the right tools for the job, though.

i wonder, if the blade is dull or the correct blade for the material or if your process is too slow...i have a woodworking studio that i use for fabrication. i also use that white poly material for extruder dies and i use high speed equipment to cut them. i cut the blanks on my cabinet maker's table saw. then use my router, zip tool to help or finish the die profile. i've done a lot of work with perspex/plexiglass and the only time i noticed 'melting' was letting the tool stay in one spot, too long. i was even polishing assembled/cast plastics with the same processes i use in my jewellery making. without looking over your shoulder, that's my best guess as to what's happening. use sharp/fast tools and don't linger...and make sure you're using the proper blades...fine metal cutting teeth are good for metal...polys/plastics are "similar" to wood, use wood cutting or specialty plastic cutting blades if you can fine them. for a coping/jeweler's saw, there are special spiral wax cutting blades one could use instead of the regular blades.

hth

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