Having trouble with your Festool power tool? Well, we're here to help you. Before posting to the forum, give us a chance to diagnose and resolve your issue. In the U.S. and Canada, call us toll-free at 888-337-8600 on Monday-Friday between 8a-5p EST or contact us via email at service@festoolusa.com. For other countries, please visit http://www.festool.com for contact information for your local Festool service department.

Author Topic: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic  (Read 4241 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline pdlandgang

  • Posts: 59
Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« on: April 21, 2014, 01:19 PM »
I have a TS55.  Material is going to be between 1/2" to 1" thick.  Which is the best blade to get that would result in a "glue" ready edge by itself and what blade would give an edge that might need some small refinement to get ready for "gluing"?  From what I have read, the finer the blade and slower speed is the best combo for the best cuts.

It is for a potential client that needs display cases for a bakery. 

Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline Festool USA

  • Festool USA Employee
    FOG Administrator
  • *
  • Posts: 8429
    • Festool USA
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2014, 01:21 PM »
We have a blade that's made for cutting plastics. Yes, a slow blade speed will help prevent the plastic from melting as it's being cut.

http://festoolusa.com/power-tool-accessories/track-saws/blades/aluminum-plastic-56-tooth-saw-blade-496307

If you want some assistance on it, I know that some of my colleagues have worked with customers who were also cutting acrylic and they may be able to give some advice.

Shane

Offline Tom Bellemare

  • Inactive Member
  • *
  • Posts: 5148
  • Festool demo's & personal service in Central Texas
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2014, 01:50 PM »
I've cut acrylic with that blade quite successfully - also with the Fine Tooth Blade. The "glue" is an extremely low viscosity solvent and with a good cut, the seam will disappear.


Tom

Offline RL

  • Posts: 3040
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2014, 02:39 PM »
I just use the regular blade on full speed but I make shallow passes and it works fine.

Offline Untidy Shop

  • Posts: 2748
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2014, 05:41 PM »
I just use the regular blade on full speed but I make shallow passes and it works fine.

You may like to place masking tape straddling the line of the proposed cut. This helps to minimise any tear out and also better shows your pencil marks.
If you don't like Signatures, just go to Look and Layout and tick No Signatures.

“The test of the machine is the satisfaction it gives you. There isn't any other test. If the machine produces tranquility it's right. If it disturbs you it's wrong until either the machine or your mind is changed.”
― Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values

Offline RL

  • Posts: 3040
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2014, 05:56 PM »
I just use the regular blade on full speed but I make shallow passes and it works fine.

You may like to place masking tape straddling the line of the proposed cut. This helps to minimise any tear out and also better shows your pencil marks.

I have never encountered any tearout but I do clamp the rail down so it does not move at all.

Online rst

  • Posts: 2817
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2014, 07:49 PM »
I fabricate acrylics commercially (up to 1/2") and cut with an AGE plastic/aluminum blade and a TS-75.  I have a Powermatic table saw with a sliding table but the Festool saw and tracks are quicker and easier in many cases.  Actually you should cut fast... it prevents the plastic from heating.  It is important to keep a consistent speed of cut.  If you need transparent edges scrape rather than sand.  It is quicker and leaves an better edge.  There are commercial scrapers but you can use a stiff knife.  If you are butt gluing, use the sawn edge...do not sand or scrape.  For clear edges flame the edge with a torch, I use propane as most of my runs are reasonably short.  Be careful not to over heat as the plastic will bubble.  Practice!!!  Like anything else there a various ways of getting the same results but the above method is a scaled down version of of the methods used by store-fitting companies.
.

Offline pdlandgang

  • Posts: 59
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2014, 08:13 PM »
Does it tend to dull the blade faster?

Online rst

  • Posts: 2817
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2014, 08:45 PM »
You are cutting plastic...carbide is not going to be dulled by plastics.  I have used blades for years and have never sharpened one.  You will need to clean the blade occasionally with conditioning buffs... I use my blades for plastics, aluminum, wood and brass and have not sharpened a blade in 10+ years and that was my aluminum fabricating blades when we were doing storefront work.  BUY industrial blades.  http://www.plasticsmag.com/ta.asp?aid=5048

Online rst

  • Posts: 2817

Online rst

  • Posts: 2817

Online rst

  • Posts: 2817
Re: Blade Choice for Cutting Clear Acrylic
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2014, 11:11 AM »
Another consideration is the acrylic...there are extruded and cast.  You need cast as it machines and finishes better.  The thickness of your material is going to be an issue also.  The reason I bought a 75 was because my 55 did not like cutting 3/8 and above.