Can You Cut Acrylic Sheet Using Circular Saw?
Acrylic sheet can be used for a variety of purposes. It can be cut using a circular saw, but if you want the cuts to be straight, use a jigsaw.
Cutting acrylic sheets on a circular saw requires special skills and power tools because it’s soft, beautiful material. If you don’t have these skills, hire a professional.
In this article, we will show how to cut an acrylic sheet with a circular saw by removing all the parts that are attached to the sheet before cutting.
In case there is any glue residue left after removal from the sheet, then sanding may help remove them.
Otherwise, you can also try acetone or rubbing alcohol as solvent to clean up any remaining adhesive residue.
How to Cut Acrylic Sheet with a Circular Saw–Easy Steps Guide
Here are the steps involved in cutting acrylic sheet using a circular power saw.
Step 1: First, push your circular saw into the center of the sheet so that its finest blade is almost touching the straight edge of the sheet. The tip of the powerful blade shouldn’t go beyond the smooth edge of the sheet.
Step 2: Now move the saw slowly towards one side while keeping the sharp blade steady in place.
Make sure that you keep pressure at least halfway between where the metal cutting blade touches the sheet and the edge of the sheet itself.
Adjust the angle of the blade according to the thickness of the sheet being cut. This step helps prevent dings or nicks around the sides of the sheet when the circular blade hits the corners of the sheet.
Step 3: Once the blade depth reaches the corner closest to the opposite end, stop moving the saw and pull it out without letting the proper blade type touch anything else.
Step 4: Repeat steps 2 and 3 in reverse order with the other two corners. Remove the correct blade and let the dust fall off. After drying, the results look like this:
How to Cut Acrylic Sheet without Cracking?
1. Cuts made on the back level surface of the acrylic sheet crack more often than those made on the front stable surface because of uneven heat distribution during casting process.
2. To avoid cracking, make sure that the cut is perpendicular to both flat surface of the sheet. And remember to hold down firmly on the handle of the circular saw.
3. The easiest way to cut a sheet of acrylic is to cut a piece. Drill a hole for the special acrylic blade, make a table to keep the common sheet, and use a circular saw to cut the inch sheet.
4. To cut an acrylic sheet without cracking, cut the sheet widths with a circular saw, cutting like the acrylic, slowly and carefully.
5. The pencil tip is the best tip for cutting right angles. If you are cutting straight lines, use the line guide.
6. Use a piece of wood or plastic to cut the sheet with the circular saw. To avoid cracking, turn the saw off before cutting the thinner sheet.
How to Smooth and Polish Edges of your Acrylic Sheets?
After cutting the acrylic sheet, you need to smooth and polish the sharp edge. There are several ways to do this.
Here are some tips:
A power sander works well if you want to get rid of scratches quickly. You can sand down the edges of your acrylic sheets to make them smooth.
Alternatively, hand-held orbital polishers work perfectly too. You just need to follow instructions provided by the manufacturer.
- Rubbing alcohol
Another effective method is rubbing alcohol, which removes dirt and fingerprints easily.
The thing that is used to improve the smoother edges is alcohol pads. They are used to help remove scratches and dullness on the clean surface of the acrylic.
An easy way to remove adhesives from the edge to chip off the sheets is using acetone, but be careful not to burn yourself.
Wear safety glasses and gloves. Also, cover everything surrounding the area you will work on because fumes may cause irritation.
- Polishing Compound
This product can also help minimize sharpness of the edges. But again, only apply as directed by the manufacturers’ instruction manual.
Cutting acrylic sheet using a circular saw can be dangerous. Make sure you have the skills necessary to carry out these tasks properly.
Always remember to practice first prior to carrying out complex projects. If you don’t feel comfortable doing so, then hire someone who does. It’s better than risking your life.
It’s important to know how to operate the perfect tool needed to perform your job. Follow all OSHA regulations and other company guidelines regarding safe practices.
Below are safety tips you can follow:
- Notice when cutting acrylic sheet using a circular saw, follow some safety tips, such as wear safety glasses, wear earmuffs, wear work gloves, wear long pants, wear a dust mask, wear a hard hat.
- Use a hand guard when you are cutting acrylic sheet. Use a proper grip on the blade when using a circular saw. Sharpen the blade.
- Use a dust mask, as some solvents may damage your lungs. Avoid breathing in the dust or mist, as it's harmful to your health. Stop the saw as soon as you stop the cutting process.
- Avoid getting cuts while handling acrylic sheet with bare hands. Wear good quality boots/shoes to protect against any potential hazards, like nails or regular glass shards when lifting heavy objects.
Best circular saw for cutting Acrylic Sheet
A solid circular saw blade works best for cutting acrylic sheet because it has a smaller gullet than a coping saw, which means it has less friction and won’t bog down when cutting acrylic.
There are three different circular saws you can choose from. The top picks included below.
1. Makita WS70C12SST
This is an affordable model made by Makita. The powerful tool features two speeds. The motor has been designed for light duty applications.
The head adjusts up to 12 inches wide and 30 inches deep. A maximum depth setting allows users to cut through versatile material without having to adjust settings every time.
2. Milwaukee M18BH30X3
Another great tool of choice from Milwaukee. This unit offers three different sizes ranging between 20" and 36". These blades come from various angles, including straight 90°, 45° and 60°.
Each blade comes with extra-long handles, making them easier to maneuver around tight corners.
3. Bosch CS23A2P4SS
This unit boasts a powerful 23 Amp motor. That makes this unit ideal for amazing material. And its 4 position blade height change provides excellent versatility throughout the entire project.
There are four speed options available. Users can choose either high or low.
4. Stanley SDC10G0CWK1
You’ll find that this required tool is very well built. Its 10 amps power assures the user that they will get the most out of their investment.
The variable speed control gives more flexibility during operation. The steel body ensures durability and longevity.
5. DeWalt DW920CSM24
Having a 24 amp motor means you will get great performance even if you’re dealing with large plexiglass sheet. The adjustable handle also helps make things easy. This is another great pick.
6. DeWalt DWC908PS16S
This unit has 16 gauge teeth which ensure accuracy. The aluminum alloy construction ensures reliability and strength.
Both the carbide tip and the flat end provide efficient results. Plus, there is no need to sharpen these blades because they last longer compared to other models.
7. Hitachi HDD15E20L21
This unit comes equipped with 15 amps of power. It also features 3 positions for adjusting the angle of the blade.
This makes it possible to achieve perfect cuts. An automatic switch off feature prevents overheating.
8. Black and Decker SDV60R11T7
In terms of size, this unit measures 17 x 11 x 6 inches. However, its weight only reaches 8 lbs. In addition, it features a 7 inch capacity.
This machine is best suited for medium-sized projects. For example, you could use this cutter in small windows.
9. Ridgid RDS40D14Z8
Similar to the previous item, the Ridgid unit weighs less than 14 pounds. But unlike the others we have listed here, it does not offer any adjustments. Instead, it just stays put once set.
Using a circular saw is a quick and easy way to cut a piece of acrylic sheet. The circular saw is a versatile tool that’s good for cutting wood, plastic, and acrylic.