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Old 03/06/2018, 06:43 PM   #1
~RuSh~
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quick ?

Any issues with cutting acrylic sheet with my table saw?


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Old 03/06/2018, 06:49 PM   #2
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If you have the correct blade it works great. Fine tooth or better yet one ment for plastics/acrylic what type of acrylic do you have? Extruded no way, Cast yes.


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Old 03/07/2018, 06:56 AM   #3
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Haven't bought it yet, guess I'll be looking for cast... how many teeth on the blade is fine,


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Old 03/07/2018, 07:36 AM   #4
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Haven't bought it yet, guess I'll be looking for cast... how many teeth on the blade is fine,
A fine tooth eighty (something) should work


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Old 03/07/2018, 08:14 AM   #5
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I believe mine is a 60 tooth carbide and it works just fine.. But I do use the router to clean up the cut prior to solvent welding for a better joint..

A low rake blade intended for acrylic would be "better" though than a general purpose blade...

In general a table saw cut is not sufficient to ensure a high quality/bubble free joint.. But most of the time it will work..
Edeg prep is key and a table saw (unless VERY heavy/high quality,etc..) is typically not the "best" or not suitable to create the final edge without some secondary operation (shaving/routing,etc...)


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Old 03/07/2018, 08:39 AM   #6
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I believe mine is a 60 tooth carbide and it works just fine.. But I do use the router to clean up the cut prior to solvent welding for a better joint..

A low rake blade intended for acrylic would be "better" though than a general purpose blade...

In general a table saw cut is not sufficient to ensure a high quality/bubble free joint.. But most of the time it will work..
Edeg prep is key and a table saw (unless VERY heavy/high quality,etc..) is typically not the "best" or not suitable to create the final edge without some secondary operation (shaving/routing,etc...)

yup forgot, use carbide! good tip


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Old 03/07/2018, 08:57 AM   #7
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Would a band saw be better?


I think I might need to swap out blades. I have a new one sitting in the garage but haven't put it on and at this point I don't recall what it is. Carbide does sound familiar though...


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Old 03/07/2018, 09:45 AM   #8
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Would a band saw be better?

.
Absolutely not..

A table saw will be superior to a band saw for this application hands down..


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Old 03/07/2018, 01:55 PM   #9
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Lol, just checking.


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Old 03/07/2018, 04:29 PM   #10
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i use a Diablo 120 tooth blade . They last much longer then 80 tooth blade and Diablo blades run much truer ...


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Old 03/08/2018, 09:32 AM   #11
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Well scold me if you must, but I used my old blade. I searched high and low for the newer blade but couldn't find it. The old blade is a 64 tooth general purpose blade, I bet as old as the table saw (15 years probably).

I think the biggest issue I had was when I wanted to push the acrylic sheet across the saw, the saw wanted to lift the acrylic upward and this would cause a fair amount of chipping. I had to get my hands a little closer to the blade than I normally do to prevent this but I just moved slow and got it done.

Anyway, baffles are cut and siliconed in. Here's a close up of the edges. If your picky, definitely use a better blade.




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Old 03/08/2018, 10:21 AM   #12
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2 things..
#1-The chipping/lifting is easily solved by holding it down with a piece of wood close to or even right into the blade (even cutting right through/into the wood at the same time).. Its also only a problem with material thinner than 1/4"

#2-Good luck with thin material.. Its really not suitable for baffle material at all..
It WILL bow like crazy the way you have it..
I see a failure in your future..

I wish you would have explained what you were doing so we could have corrected your mistakes and not let you continue..

IMO rip it all out and start again with .220"(1/4") material..


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Old 03/08/2018, 12:07 PM   #13
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I'll test it tonight. I'm pretty sure this is the width I used for my last set of baffles, but I could be wrong.


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Old 03/09/2018, 08:06 AM   #14
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2 things..
#1-The chipping/lifting is easily solved by holding it down with a piece of wood close to or even right into the blade (even cutting right through/into the wood at the same time).. Its also only a problem with material thinner than 1/4"

#2-Good luck with thin material.. Its really not suitable for baffle material at all..
It WILL bow like crazy the way you have it..
I see a failure in your future..

I wish you would have explained what you were doing so we could have corrected your mistakes and not let you continue..

IMO rip it all out and start again with .220"(1/4") material..


--------

Number 1 is finger boards on your table saw..
number 2.. sandwich the piece between a sheet of cheap plywood and use finger boards push very slowly

and i agree that acrylic is much to thin if there is any back pressure on it ..


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Old 03/09/2018, 12:48 PM   #15
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Ok this is what I got after a water test. This pic was taken when the only chamber holding water was the first one, so no support other than the silicone... other than a few leaks sprung, which I also patched last night.

Still think it won't hold even with water on the backside of that baffle? The bowing seemed less significant with the second and third chambers filled to what I believe they would stay at with the pump running...


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Old 03/09/2018, 01:02 PM   #16
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Those baffles we fail no doubt.. I also have concerns of them stressing the glass and cracking the tank....


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Old 03/09/2018, 03:10 PM   #17
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Cracking the tank? How so?


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Old 03/09/2018, 08:10 PM   #18
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Acrylic expands when it is submerged in water. So it can crack the glass on the sump. That is why it is always best to use glass baffles in a glass sump. That & the baffles will eventually fail because the silicone will eventually pull away from the acrylic. Silicone doesn’t bond to acrylic well at all. U can lay a bead of silicone on a piece of acrylic & let it cure & it will peel off by just using your fingers.

I also agree with them on the thickness. I wouldn’t use anything less then 1/4” on just about anything we use it for. That goes for glass & acrylic


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Old 03/11/2018, 10:10 AM   #19
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Thanks for your experience and advice. I don't see the acrylic expanding enough to crack the tank. The baffles are cut about a blade width short on each side, so around an 1/8 inch and I just don't see it expanding that much personally.

I am a little worried about the silicone peeling away from the baffles which is why i beefed up the silicone around the edges of the first and last baffles. I am however going to move forward with these baffles. I recognize your advice and appreciate it and have weighed it in my decision. I will keep you all updated for the benefit of those less experienced if the baffles do fail. Thanks.


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Old 03/11/2018, 10:54 AM   #20
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Thanks for your experience and advice. I don't see the acrylic expanding enough to crack the tank. The baffles are cut about a blade width short on each side, so around an 1/8 inch and I just don't see it expanding that much personally.

I am a little worried about the silicone peeling away from the baffles which is why i beefed up the silicone around the edges of the first and last baffles. I am however going to move forward with these baffles. I recognize your advice and appreciate it and have weighed it in my decision. I will keep you all updated for the benefit of those less experienced if the baffles do fail. Thanks.
Silicone will not bond with the acrylic. As soon as you add water the lack of bond will start to fail. When you use glass and silicone a chemical bond forms. When you use acrylic and weldon 3 or 4 a chemical bond forms, there is no way to adhere acrylic to glass that is safe for your aquarium. Do yourself a favor and call a glazer (glass fabricator) and buy some custom cut pieces. Around here a small piece like that would cost about $10.

Here are some of the tanks I've built, I'm not a professional tank builder by any means but I've done it and you cannot bond acrylic with silicone because it does not form a chemical bond.Attachment 388506KIMG0011.jpg

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Old 03/11/2018, 02:55 PM   #21
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With a sharp and proper blade, you can cut anything from 1/8 and thicker. Go very slow, especially at the beginning and end of the cut. Make sure to apply pressure close to the cut (not Too close) to avoid vibrations that lead to chips. I use a table saw all the time. Any free-cut (band saw, scroll, etc.) will have more chipping without a guide, and small blades like that can actually have the material melt around them and get stuck.


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Old 03/13/2018, 07:54 PM   #22
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Alright guys - I'm man enough to admit when I'm wrong and I was wrong. I was lucky enough to witness this baffle failure early on so it's not a huge inconvenience for me to rip them out now and go with either glass or thicker baffles, but bottom line is 1/8 inch thick is not thick enough. Do not use these. I used a lot of silicone and they still just popped. Do not use.


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Old 03/13/2018, 10:03 PM   #23
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Holy balls Batman.. glass shop will cut and polish glass for those baffles for about 7 bucks

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Old 03/14/2018, 01:16 PM   #24
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Thanks. I'll probably be looking into that.


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