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  • Acrylic vs Polycarbonate

    So doing a bit of looking into acrylic (plexiglass) vs polycarbonate (lexan) for building a new case for my epia m (of course, I only started thinking about a alu. and lexan case after building a wooden one). From what I gather, lexan is a lot more forgiving of a material, but is more expensive and will eventually discolor in dirrect sun light. Plexiglass is generally cheaper, but harder to work with as its more brittle (as I've seen first hand). I was just wondering what people out there have used for their clear plastic cases, and what success they had with it and tools they used.
    -Nick

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  • #2
    Lexan all the way
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    • #3
      From the looks of things, your machine is in the trunk of your car, so I don't really see why sunlight stability is an issue, unless you're planning on mounting it in plain view.

      I agree that lexan is stronger, however given the application, it's not like you really need the strength - my box is constructed from 3mm plexi and aluminium, and it's more than enough.

      The other point to remember is that although lexan is stronger, it is more likely to scratch easily - it's part of the trade-off for strength.

      I think you're probably overkilling it going lexan, but it's your money. Would come in handy should anyone ever shoot your carPC!
      :-)

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      • #4
        I have had my lexan cased player for 3.5 years now, and sunlight has not effected the colour. However, lexan seems to be a dust magnet, and is pretty easy to scratch.
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        • #5
          The various threads I've read on this over the last few months have also pushed me towards acrylic, but i'm still wondering about problems that may arise from electro-magnetic radiation and wireless devices. An aluminium os steel case obviously doesn't have these. Any links on this for info?

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          • #6
            Acrylic is more rigid and resistant to scratches. Polycarbonate is stronger (will bend more than acrylic, but is incredibly hard to break). Acrylic has better optical properties.

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            • #7
              I wasn't worried about it yellowing it the trunk of my car, I was just "stating the facts." And I've used acrylic before for a window and had issues with it cracking easily when cutting/drilling, which is why I was inquiring about tool usage.
              -Nick

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              • #8
                Originally posted by MP3DUB
                I wasn't worried about it yellowing it the trunk of my car, I was just "stating the facts." And I've used acrylic before for a window and had issues with it cracking easily when cutting/drilling, which is why I was inquiring about tool usage.
                I think that the issue with acrylic is that you need to be sure that your tools are sharp so that they cut cleanly. I used files, drills, a dremel and a scoring tool to make mine.

                C!
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                • #9
                  what bits did you use for the dremel? for cutting?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Alphared
                    what bits did you use for the dremel? for cutting?
                    Depends on the material being cut.

                    I cut the acrylic mainly with the scoring blade on my stanley knife, except for the cutout for the power supply - this was cut with the little cutting wheels (like those on grinders, except smaller).

                    For the notch in the aluminium by the power supply to give space for the screw, I used the bit that looks like a drill bit, and nibbled away at it.

                    C!
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                    • #11
                      Have you looked at Lucite? acrylic sheets, but they have the workability of Lexan..

                      Basically all the properties of lexan, without the yellowing, and better scratch resistance..
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TintedChrome
                        Have you looked at Lucite? acrylic sheets, but they have the workability of Lexan..

                        Basically all the properties of lexan, without the yellowing, and better scratch resistance..
                        Didn't consider it - mainly cause I work in the city and all the good specialist shops in the burbs are closed when I'm not at work. I had to buy everything from the general hardware shop.

                        The next box will be made for me by the plastics guys, with properbends, welds etc.

                        C!
                        http://carpc.riposte.net
                        I reserve all rights in connection to each post I author, without exception.

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                        • #13
                          Lexan

                          Lexan is the best way to go. It's durable, long lasting and is 25 times stronger than acrylic or plexiglas. I buy it a a lot from http://www.iplasticsupply.com/materi...olon-sheet-rod. It's a great material for display cases.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 2TALLTARY View Post
                            Lexan is the best way to go. It's durable, long lasting and is 25 times stronger than acrylic or plexiglas. I buy it a a lot from http://www.iplasticsupply.com/materi...olon-sheet-rod. It's a great material for display cases.
                            Good information but the prior post was from: 01-15-2003 02:15 AM ... more than eight years ago.

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