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New 1/32" Impact Modified Acrylic

What is 1/32" Impact Modified Acrylic
Acrylic vs Polycarbonate
Why wasn't this available earlier?
Caution about Detailed Etchings


What is 1/32" Impact Modified Acrylic
I'm happy to announce that after more than a year of searching for thinner acrylic options, we have finally found the perfect solution! Normal acrylic (aka Plexiglas) is about 10 times stronger than glass. Impact Modified acrylic is about 10 times stronger than normal acrylic. Because of this, Impact Modified acrylic is the best acrylic to be made in 1/32" thickness.

You can seen in the picture below, a comparison of the thickness to 1/16" acrylic.



This new material is highly flexible and extremely durable. Below are pictures that demonstrate how much this material can bend and be perfectly fine afterwards.



Here it is after straigtening it out.



Acrylic vs Polycarbonate
It's pretty common knowledge that Polycarbonates (Lexan) has always had a 1/32" option. So why 1/32" Impact Modified Acrylic?

Well there has always been pros and cons to Acrylic and Polycarbonate. The most recognized advantage that Polycarbonate has is that it is significantly stronger. It is about 30 times stronger than regular acrylic. It is still considered stronger than Impact Modified Acrylic, but they are a much closer match.

Now there are also noticeable cons with Polycarbonate. Polycarbonate diffuses light differently and has less overall clarity than Acrylic. Polycarbonate is more prone to scratching and will yellow overtime when exposed to UV rays (Sun light).

So while Polycarbonate is still technically stronger, unless you're planning to block bullets with your fight stick, your primary purpose for a cover is to display your artwork. For that, Acrylic will beat out Polycarbonates, to clearly showcase your personality.

Why wasn't this available earlier?
For a while, I've had people ask me about 1/32" acrylic options, and I always had to turn them down because the only material that is normally available in that thickness, is Polycarbonate (Lexan).

The problem wasn't that I couldn't acquire polycarbonate, it was an issue laser cutting it. When laser cutting Polycarbonate, it can emit potentially toxic fumes and tends to discolor and burn the edges. This was not an acceptable quality to be offered. The best way to cut Polycarbonate is using a router, but that is not machinery I currently use for my services.

So for a while I've been searching for an acrylic option in 1/32" thickness. Very few places could make normal acrylic in that thickness, but it becomes way too brittle. Regardless, I continued to look for options. Now after many attempts going from supplier to supplier, I finally found a source for this incredible material. This idea of 1/32" Impact Modified Acrylic is still so new, and uncommon, that most plastic businesses either haven't even heard of it, or still don't carry it in that thickness. Trust me, I've called like over 30 companies in California alone, and only one out of those 30 knew what I was talking about.

So not having this material earlier was not by choice, it was a limitation of availability from suppliers.

Detailed Etchings are not available.
The thing with any type of plastic is that when enough heat is applied it can bend. The thinner the plastic, the less heat is required to bend or warp it. When the laser etches onto plastic, it is applying a beam of heat into specific areas of the acrylic.

Because this acrylic is so thin and flexible, applying that constant beam of heat to it can cause it to bend or warp. Therefore, we no longer offer detailed image etching for the 1/32" material. In many cases, even with small etchings, we found that detailed images will tend to cause warping on the material.

























 
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