Acrylic (plexiglas) Welding

I wanted to share a little project with you on a display case I'm making for the Taneytown History Museum. The bottom will be a basic wood box, while the top (what you see here) will be a Plexiglas or acrylic top. Many people assume that these tops are made by gluing the Plexiglas together, but they are not glued. Glue does not work well. Making a case top involves welding the Plexiglas with an acrylic cement. Smelly, as well as thinner than water, it presents it's challenges.

The joint where the 2 pieces of Plexiglas come together need to be tight. They also need to NOT be touching anything else. They must be pressing against each other AND suspended in the air. The cement is applied to the joint of the 2 pieces of Plexiglas and the cement chases the joint through capillary action. The cement melts the 2 pieces of Plexiglas and over the course of a number of hours the area where the Plexiglas melts becomes one, just like in welding steel.

With Plexiglas and the Acrylic Cement, the joint must be suspended because the cement, thinner than water, will chase anything that it can possibly chase. So we cannot tape the joint in order to weld it, or we'll have an imprint of the tape on the Plexiglas. The same goes for clamps, pieces of wood, and so on.

I give each joint a day to complete.

I hope you found this interesting.