Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Acrylic showcases

G’day; Further to my previous mail on the subject, I saw some
other Orchidist comments on acrylic showboxes. I must emphasise
that plexiglass/perspex is an acrylic plastic which tends to
melt if one cuts too fast and with the wrong sort of saw. Like I
said, I had a special saw for the work; it did not even have
carbide teeth, but didn’t get blunt quickly because of it’s
unique design… But a portable jigsaw with a metal-cutting blade
at slow speed used with cutting fluid works well. The plastic
cannot be cut even reasonably by scoring and breaking over an
edge, like glass - that just doesn’t work well at all. When one
buys the plastic it comes completely covered with a heavy paper
stuck to it for protection. Keep this on until the very end of
the work. When carrying or storing the plastic, wrap it
carefully in newsprint - cheap and easy to get. It is correct
that it does take on a sort of grey haze after a (fairly long)
while due to many fine scratches. I restored a large number of
the local (cash-strapped) Public Art Gallery showcases by using
an automobile cutting polish with a soft polishing mop in a SLOW
SPEED electric drill and after washing well, followed by
Brasso on another mop, then followed by a clean soft mop. The
mops were of freshly washed and dried lambswool and used flat,
not the edge. The edges of the sheets had been used as they
came off the supplier’s saw, having dreadful-looking rough edges.
These were planed with a hand woodworking plane to a gentle
curve, then treated as I mentioned in my last with abrasive
papers and Brasso… The acrylic sheets came up almost like
new. There were at least 40 sheets in all, and if you are
wondering how much a bloke would demand for that sort of job - he
didn’t. It wasn’t all that arduous. And acrylic plastic
doesn’t really attract much more dust than most other objects.
If it does get dusty, the dust must be gently removed with a wet
soft cloth and dried with an old fresh-laundered towel. There
are anti-static polishes on the market, but apply very thinly,
again with soft, freshly-laundered cloths. Wash and dry the
sheets before storing away. Finally all the above refers ONLY
to acrylic plastic like Plexiglass or Perspex, Cheers,

   / \
 /  /

/ /
/ /| \ @John_Burgess2
At sunny Nelson NZ