Perspex, also known as plexiglass, acrylic, or acrylic glass, is a transparent thermoplastic typically used in sheet form as an excellent, lightweight, and shatter-resistant glass alternative. You can easily cut perspex to size for use in a wide variety of applications around your workplace, home or office. However, it is essential to clean perspex properly, especially when it becomes very filthy. That said, here is a guide on how to clean even the grubbiest of perspex.
Razor blades or other sharp scraping tools are necessary when cleaning very dirty perspex, so keep this in mind. For starters, run your razor blade or shape scraping tool from side to side very carefully, removing any grime or dirt present. Also, ensure that you angle your blade or scraping tool to about ten degrees or at any other angle that will not put too much pressure on your perspex. A sharp razor blade will also eliminate any markings that you would like to remove from your perspex. It’s also prudent to exercise extreme caution when using your sharp scraping tools since you can be easily injured if you misuse them.
Sanding is necessary to eliminate deep scratches, stains, or markings and achieve a matte finish on your perspex. You can use any sander for this task, including a drum, disc, hand, or belt sander. However, your sander choice should largely depend on your piece of perspex's size and surface area. You can sand your perspex just like you would with wood, working your way across the surface with coarse sandpaper and moving on to finer sandpaper. You can start with a 220 or 320-grit sandpaper for deep marks and scratches and move up to a 600 or 800-grit sandpaper. Also, always use light pressure and move the sander at all times to lower heat buildup, which can damage your perspex.
Buffing is an all-important finishing process that will ensure a smooth and clear perspex surface. Stationary polishing wheels are excellent for buffing perspex back to a neat and clear finish after it has been sanded. You can use these wheels or a Dremel tool with a buffing pad. Also, use an 8 to 14-inch diameter bleached muslin with bias strips to make the wheel run much cooler. However, remember to clamp the perspex in place to prevent any shifting while buffing. In addition, use a medium-cutting compound to obtain a glossy finish or a fast-cutting compound for a more lustrous finish.
Flame polishing involves creating a smooth surface on your material by melting it slightly with a flame. You can use a standard hydrogen-oxygen torch to melt the buffed or sanded edges of your perspex for a smooth, glossy edge. Also, continually heat your edges with swift motions and never heat the perspex too closely to avoid any excessive melting that will wreck your finish.