Acrylic sheet is commonly manufactured by three techniques. Depending on an individual’s needs, one type may be more beneficial than another. Here you’ll get to know about the manufacturing methods and comprehend the differences between them.
Extruded Acrylic Sheet
Extrusion is a continuous method of production for manufacturing acrylic sheet. In this process, pellets of PMMA resins are poured in an extruder which heats them till they turn into a molten mass. The mass is then transferred through a die to form a molten sheet. The continuous flow of the sheet may then be cut or trimmed into final shapes.
If monomer is still present in the sheet, it can reduce hardness and promote crazing during the fabrication of the sheet. And in extreme cases, it can lower the physical properties like the tensile strength and modulus of elasticity.
Cast Acrylic Sheet
Casting is the most popular form of manufacturing acrylic sheet. It involves pouring of partially polymerised acrylic between two polished stainless steel belts. The belts are kept apart and the space between equals the thickness of the sheet. The belts are then moved through a series of heating and cooling units to regulate the curing.
The material cost for casting and extruded sheet depends on the type of formation and quality desired by an individual. Moreover, it depends on the capacity and utility of the manufacturing facilities. The process of casting helps to manufacture a number of useful items including covers, bases, cake stands, clearance items and acrylic displays.
Cell Cast Acrylic Sheet
Cell casting is further categorised into three processes.
The first, is the water bath technique: molten acrylic is poured into a mould made up of tempered glass. The glass sheets are separated to produce the desired thickness of the acrylic sheet and then sealed with a gasket at the edge. The entire mould is submerged in a bath which lowers the temperature of the same.
The second process involves placing the moulds in a circulating air oven in which high velocity air is passed in a controlled temperature.
The third method is an advanced process which involves the use of a plate and frame filter press. The moulds are alternately sprayed with water at a regulated temperature to promote polymerisation and cure of the sheet.
These were the three main techniques of manufacturing acrylic sheets. Hire a plastic fabricator in Sydney who can provide you the best quality of acrylic products through these processes.