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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want to make some custom panels for my Prodigy, namely a mobo tray and a back panel, this would be done most easily using a laser cutter which I have access to. The question is, is acrylic going to build up static/damage components or attract too much dust? also anyone got any experience with sandblasted acrylic to remove the shine?

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Off all plastic types i would not use Acrylic / Plexiglas,

It might have the highest ''transparant factor'' but also scratched the fastest of allmost all plastic types.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
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Originally Posted by prescotter View Post

Off all plastic types i would not use Acrylic / Plexiglas,

It might have the highest ''transparant factor'' but also scratched the fastest of allmost all plastic types.
it will be white acrylic, and I said that I am considering sandblasting it to remove the glossy easily scratched surface?
 

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If you have the tools to cut steel, then go for steel. The main problem I had with working with steel is that it's hard to work with without the proper tools. Where as acrylic is easier to cut and mold to your hearts content.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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Originally Posted by sebmeikle View Post

If you have the tools to cut steel, then go for steel. The main problem I had with working with steel is that it's hard to work with without the proper tools. Where as acrylic is easier to cut and mold to your hearts content.
my thoughts exactly, I don't have much for working with steel and I would be unable to make any bends with it which is why I am thinking acrylic, acrylic is also way easier to cut accurately i.e. mm perfect.

has anyone even tried sand blasting acrylic? I want to know what it looks like and whether it is worth it (I have access to a sand blaster so it won't cost me anything)
 

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What i meant with scratched surfrace was:

that Acrylic / Plexiglas / PMMA plastic is a plastic that scratches on surface really fast, and breaks first then bending, so handle it with care when drilling holes.

You should try and find Poly-Carbonate plastic, way more sturdy and more scratch resistant, dont know about sandblasting any of these types of plastic though....

Good luck with modding
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by prescotter View Post

What i meant with scratched surfrace was:

that Acrylic / Plexiglas / PMMA plastic is a plastic that scratches on surface really fast, and breaks first then bending, so handle it with care when drilling holes.

You should try and find Poly-Carbonate plastic, way more sturdy and more scratch resistant, dont know about sandblasting any of these types of plastic though....

Good luck with modding
thumb.gif
thanks, the plan is to get all the holes laser cut so no drilling involved
biggrin.gif
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gardnerphotos View Post

thanks, the plan is to get all the holes laser cut so no drilling involved
biggrin.gif
Good, just be careful when you want to make a quick mod you have to clamp the acrylic hard down ( 2 f-clamps per side and 2 g-clamps + f-clamps for a big workpiece ) because it will break with the slightest warp and you have to go slowly in with waste wood covering the entire surface (Just put some aluminium foil so the acrylic won't be scratched)
 

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I haven't tried sandblasting it yet, but that sounds cool. Since you have access to a blaster, try it out on a piece of scrap and see how it does. I'd assume the edges would become more eroded, so I'd consider blasting the panel before cutting. If I want a dead flat matte finish, I just hand sand it with 220 grit. You can use a random orbit sander to hurry it along, but I prefer to finish up the surface by hand.

Acrylic shouldn't produce enough static buildup to do anything to your mobo. It will be attached to the case which is grounded. And if you give it a nice matte finish, it won't show fingerprints, dust or other smudges as easily. There is also frosted acrylic available in many colors, with the frosted look cast through the entire panel. www.acrylite-shop.com Prices aren't too bad, but their shipping/handling is a bit high for ordering up smaller single pieces.

White is cool, but there's also a couple versions of translucent white, frosted, and a couple versions of clear privacy texture that would look sweet in the mix. Available at www.delviesplastics.com or www.tapplastics.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
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Originally Posted by TLHarrell View Post

I haven't tried sandblasting it yet, but that sounds cool. Since you have access to a blaster, try it out on a piece of scrap and see how it does. I'd assume the edges would become more eroded, so I'd consider blasting the panel before cutting. If I want a dead flat matte finish, I just hand sand it with 220 grit. You can use a random orbit sander to hurry it along, but I prefer to finish up the surface by hand.

Acrylic shouldn't produce enough static buildup to do anything to your mobo. It will be attached to the case which is grounded. And if you give it a nice matte finish, it won't show fingerprints, dust or other smudges as easily. There is also frosted acrylic available in many colors, with the frosted look cast through the entire panel. www.acrylite-shop.com Prices aren't too bad, but their shipping/handling is a bit high for ordering up smaller single pieces.

White is cool, but there's also a couple versions of translucent white, frosted, and a couple versions of clear privacy texture that would look sweet in the mix. Available at www.delviesplastics.com or www.tapplastics.com
By a matte finish do you mean apply something to it or just sand blast? I have acrylic on hand so I don't need to worry about shipping costs or anything like that, I will try out a piece of white when I get the chance, I know that when it is sandblasted it absorbs the grease from your fingers really easily, how should I get around this or should I just not worry/ wear gloves?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
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Originally Posted by Wicked x Josh View Post

I feel like sandblasting it might crack it. If you just take some time to sand it by hand it will remove the gloss finish.

And if your looking for something a little stronger this is the stuff you want: http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=22883&catid=715
I've sandblasted clear acrylic before for a light and it worked perfectly but that isn't going to come into contact with finger prints hence the questions.
 

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Matte finish = not glossy. So sanded, sand blasted or textured in some way to not be shiny. If your technique causes fingerprints (or at least dirty smudges), by all means pick up a thin pair of cotton gloves (the super thin kind) and wear those. Two pairs would be ideal. One for working on cutting/sanding and one for assembling (clean pair).

As far as sandblasting, you could try different materials for blasting it with, different pressures, etc until you find a setup that creates the finish you want. I'm actually thinking of building myself a large tumbler for putting parts into with a mess of steel pins or shot. It'd smooth out the edges pretty nicely, round everything out a little and leave a pretty nice finish. I also make jewelry parts, so would be super useful for that too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by TLHarrell View Post

Matte finish = not glossy. So sanded, sand blasted or textured in some way to not be shiny. If your technique causes fingerprints (or at least dirty smudges), by all means pick up a thin pair of cotton gloves (the super thin kind) and wear those. Two pairs would be ideal. One for working on cutting/sanding and one for assembling (clean pair).

As far as sandblasting, you could try different materials for blasting it with, different pressures, etc until you find a setup that creates the finish you want. I'm actually thinking of building myself a large tumbler for putting parts into with a mess of steel pins or shot. It'd smooth out the edges pretty nicely, round everything out a little and leave a pretty nice finish. I also make jewelry parts, so would be super useful for that too.
Nice, as I said I will give it a go next week when I have access to the blaster
biggrin.gif
 
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