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  1. #1
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    Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Hi, I need some help!

    I need to drill quite a few holes through an A4 sheet of 3mm acrylic.

    I haven't drilled through acrylic for a long time (since my school days)!

    I have a wood drill bit and a metal drill bit, a cordless vari drill and a good old fashioned hammer drill......ol yeah and a dremel drill!

    What drill would be the best for drilling through acrylic and what drill bit would do the job, I am talking 10mm holes (encoder shaft size!).

    I really don't want to snap the acrylic or apply too much presure, but not sure whether a fast speed or slow speed would be best!

    So if you have any thoughts on this, or experience of doing so, I'd love to hear your advice!

    Cheers,

    Alex !
    Building An Airbus In My Garage!

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    1000+ Poster - Fantastic Contributor Tomlin's Avatar
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    This may help with drilling, but it is a must for cuttong acrylic- place masking tape where you plan to cut and it will help keep the plastic from fusing back to itself. For drilling, it will help the bit to stay where you want it until it digs in a little because the tape prevents the bit from run off.
    Eric Tomlin-
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  4. #3
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Jay View Post
    Hi, I need some help!

    I need to drill quite a few holes through an A4 sheet of 3mm acrylic.

    I haven't drilled through acrylic for a long time (since my school days)!

    I have a wood drill bit and a metal drill bit, a cordless vari drill and a good old fashioned hammer drill......ol yeah and a dremel drill!

    What drill would be the best for drilling through acrylic and what drill bit would do the job, I am talking 10mm holes (encoder shaft size!).

    I really don't want to snap the acrylic or apply too much presure, but not sure whether a fast speed or slow speed would be best!

    So if you have any thoughts on this, or experience of doing so, I'd love to hear your advice!

    Cheers,

    Alex !
    Alex,
    For non plastic drilling bits take a file and file down the two tangs of the drill bit that I have circled in the picture. Make sure you use a medium speed and not slow.

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  6. #4
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Try using an HSS metal bit but sandwich the acryilic between 2 pieces of scrap MDF/wood and drilling through. that should stop it cracking.
    cheers
    Steve
    another bedroom boeing.....

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    150+ Forum Groupie Kerbo's Avatar
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    I have also found it useful to use a lubricant when drilling acrylic. A 50/50 mix of water and liquid dish soap worked well for me. It is on the messy side but made the drilling (and circle cutting) process very smooth.
    Kerbo on YouTube or Twitch
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  10. #6
    75+ Posting Member cscotthendry's Avatar
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Alex:

    One of the most useful drills I have found for drilling large-ish sized holes in sheet metal and acrylic are the stepped drills.

    http://isctools.com/store/merchant.m...egory_Code=P12

    They don't tend to "snatch" the way normal bits do. You may have to experiment a bit to get the speed right for what you are drilling. I found a set at my local hardware store that had three different sizes in a pouch.
    Regards: Scott Hendry
    www.scotthendry.com

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  12. #7
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Yes the stepped drills works great as I have drilled many holes with one and never have had a problem.. I drill a small 1/8 hole to start and then use the step drill and works great. You just stop at what ever size hole you want. I use the 1/2 inch max size one as I have not needed to drill a hole larger than that.
    percy

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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    Quote Originally Posted by wriley View Post
    I have also found it useful to use a lubricant when drilling acrylic. A 50/50 mix of water and liquid dish soap worked well for me. It is on the messy side but made the drilling (and circle cutting) process very smooth.
    That will help. Theres a company called Onsrud that sells bits just for acrylic and they work great. Here are some acrylic fabrication manuals, one is for drilling.


    Acrylic Fabrication Manual

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    150+ Forum Groupie twisted8's Avatar
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    Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    how do you cut squares? for korry switches for example
    thanks

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    Thumbs up Re: Drilling Through Acrylic!

    All real good suggestions. My findings is the right drill bit, mask it off and take your time. You don't want to melt the acrylic but you don't want to chip/punch through either..In reference to the square cuts..I drill 4 holes and use either dremel/scroll saw and file it. I would like other suggestions if they make a square bit.

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