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Plexiglass Routing: RPM and Router Bit Question

Discussion in 'CNC Mills/Routers' started by Lyle Landstrom, Jan 3, 2021.

  1. Lyle Landstrom

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    OK folks, Referring to the photo, I did my first plexiglass routing yesterday. I made some foundry pattern letters .06" deep on .125" thick acryllic plexiglass. the routing seemed to work but I noticed I got a buildup of melted plastic on my router bit. I suspect I'm running the rpm too fast. I had the router set at 3 1/2 out of 5. I also used a spiral bit that I'm unsure what it's designed to cut. this bit came with the Openbuilds CNC machine I bought.

    What I really am trying to do is route letters with a slight pattern draft angle: about 2 or 3 degrees. Interestingly enough, although the bit I used had no angle in it, it did pull from the sand in a test mold I made last night. But this is pure luck. Ideally I need a bit with a little angle to it.

    So here's my questions:
    1. what speeds are recommended for acryllic?
    2. Can anyone recommend a good tapered bit with just a couple of degrees to it for what I'm doing.
     

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  2. Peter Van Der Walt

    Peter Van Der Walt OpenBuilds Team
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  3. Lyle Landstrom

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    Thanks! I'm going to order one of those and try it slower.
     
  4. brrian

    brrian Well-Known
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    I cut tons of acrylic. I hold it with tape & sometimes tabs. I almost exclusively use an Amana HSS1621 bit (HSS, 3/16" cut, single flute). It's not tapered, but if you decide you don't need tapered, at under $10 I highly recommend you try this bit.

    I cut at 55IPM - 1/8" thick & under in one pass, 3/16" and 1/4" in two passes. I use the lowest speed setting on the Dewalt router (at work & can’t remember what that is).
     
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  5. Lyle Landstrom

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    Brrain, That looks like it's be a good roughing bit for me. I did order the recommended tapered one last night and will report back to the group. Much, if not most, of my stuff needs to be pretty fine detail and tapered, hence the 1/32nd bit. But I will need to route larger surrounding areas of the pattern and the bit you recommended will be faster.
     
  6. Lyle Landstrom

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    Well that expensive bit lasted just over 20 minutes at the lowest router speed and cutting at .03" deep.
     
  7. brrian

    brrian Well-Known
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    I assume you don't mean the one I suggested. My $10 bits last probably 3 hours or so cutting on the lowest speed at .125" deep. I can push them longer but they're cheap enough that it's not worth it - just put a new one in & continue.

    & if I buy 5 at a time I get a discount & they end up at about $8.50 each... even better.

    & I know they're not tapered so if that's a requirement, none of this matters...
     
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  8. Lyle Landstrom

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    No, it was the tapered bit. I had the router on the lowest speed and I think the problem was when I turned on the shop vac, the router quit spinning and it snapped the bit. They are both plugged into the same power strip. I haven't tried yours yet. the stuff I do it pretty detailed so I need the 1/32nd bit.
     
  9. Giarc

    Giarc OpenBuilds Team
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    This happened to me once. The shop vac is now plugged into a separate circuit.
     
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