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Drilling and polishing acrylic.

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Solov

Ez reefer
Joined
Nov 11, 2003
Messages
115
Location
Bothell, WA
Can you guys share your experience on drilling acrylic? What kind of drill/dremel do you use, what kind of bits/saws etc.

Also, how do you work around drilling bottoms of deep shafts like overflow box? (I mean to drill on both side to avoid cracks and chips).

Here's one good link I found:
Acrylic Plastic Uses, Handling

Also, did anyone polish INSIDE the tank? Empty tank I mean. What kind of buffing wheels did you use, what kind of tallow?

Thank you!
Alex.
 

mojoreef

Reef Keeper
Joined
Jul 5, 2003
Messages
7,530
Location
Sumner
Hey Alex
for drilling an acrylic tank its best to use a wood hole saw,you dont need to g fro both ends just from one side works fine. The key is to keep it going and not stop mid stream. Using a slight revolving stroke makes the hole easier to drill also. For deep shaft drilling just go buy the correct sized drill extention bit, or eve better if it an overflow go from the bottom up. just make sure of your measures prior.

On the polishing for the inside of the tank I use a car polisher I bought from an automotive place, its not the big one but one about the size of a palm sander. You approach the polishing that same way you do with a car. Strating with a heavy cut and working your way to a swirl remover (creams)

hope it helps


Mike
 

Solov

Ez reefer
Joined
Nov 11, 2003
Messages
115
Location
Bothell, WA
Thank you for information Mike!

But can you be a little more specific on the brands, or at least on what to look for when picking up polishing creams?

How did you wash you tank after it to make sure there's no cream desidue, if anything special besides really good wash :).

Just trying to get "this worked for me" info before I go get my own bumps ;).

- Alex.
 

mojoreef

Reef Keeper
Joined
Jul 5, 2003
Messages
7,530
Location
Sumner
Alex if you wish I have the polisher along with all the cremes needed, if you wish to borrow it you are welcome to do so.

That is if I can get it back from ALice, rofl


Mike
 

Solov

Ez reefer
Joined
Nov 11, 2003
Messages
115
Location
Bothell, WA
I bought muslin wheel today and I have small bottle of polisher that came with scratch removing kit, but I might run out of this polisher, that's why I was asking about it :).

Thanks for the offer, I might use it later :D (maybe even just in time you get it back :lol: ). It actually works pretty good so far. Deep scratches are not easy to take out though...
 

sumphead

New member
Joined
Sep 21, 2004
Messages
1
Location
Indianapolis
Drilling acrylic isn't that hard at all, but not all common wood hole cutters will work. Depnding on the thickness of the acrylic standard holesaws can work but leave unsightly cuts. Spade bits can be used when going very slowly with little pressure. However finding a spade bit that is the 1-3/4" require for a standard 1" bulkhead is next to impossible. Forstner bits IMO, are the best for the job. Just make sure it had a point in the center as some forstner bits have a threaded screw type center that can crack acrylic. And always remember to "Go Slow".

For scratch removal, the Novus system works well but is a little spendy. For the deeper cuts I used 600, then 800 grit wet sand and then buff out. I recommend trying this on scrap peices until you get the hang of it though. HTH...
R-
 

mojoreef

Reef Keeper
Joined
Jul 5, 2003
Messages
7,530
Location
Sumner
Hi SUmphead and welcome to Reef Frontiers. Forstner are good for sure, but for bigger holes I have always found the hole saws to work better for me. Now I may be a bit bias as the last time I used the forstner, it almost broke my jaw, lol. good to see you here

Solov anytime on the polisher, and good luck


mike
 

jks1

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 29, 2003
Messages
179
If you use the Novus polishes, how do you clean the tank afterwards to ensure nothing leaches into the water? I need to remove a couple of scratches in an older tank.
 

DonW

R.I.P.
Joined
Dec 15, 2003
Messages
8,753
Location
Tacoma, WA
jks1 said:
If you use the Novus polishes, how do you clean the tank afterwards to ensure nothing leaches into the water? I need to remove a couple of scratches in an older tank.
Vinegar on a diaper.

Don
 

big t

tankless
Joined
Oct 21, 2003
Messages
1,914
Location
Denver
The best thing to use to drill holes in Acryilc is a Router with a 1/4" spiral upcut bit and a circle cutting jig. anywhere from 1" to 4 feet or more is pretty easy to do. If you want to use a wood hole saw the bi-metal ones are way better then say black and decker.
 

Doka

Member
Joined
Feb 28, 2004
Messages
13
Location
Spokane
I have tons of new scratches from the dang magent cleaner picking up sand. Where do you find the Novus polish?

Or, how do you "buff" it out?

thanks,

peter
 

reefcam

New member
Joined
May 13, 2004
Messages
4
Location
Portland, OR
I use a hole saw to drill out all my holes. For the thick acrylic (3/4" +) I put some dish liquid soap on the hole saw before drilling. this prevents the acrylic from binding to the saw.

Routers also work well, but I will definately screw up trying to make a perfect circle. :) I call it polygon shape. :)
 
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