Mechanics and Construction > Mechanics and Construction

Acrylic Glass (Polymethyl methacrylate) as a building material?

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I was looking at the pricing of HDPE, and it was quite expensive because it isn't available to 'small buyers'. Most companies (In Holland, that's where I live) will only deliver large ammounts to companies. I found a site that selled HDPE in sheets of 1m2. However, this is too expensive.

So I looked a little further on that site and also found sheets of Acrylic Glass (or: Plexiglass/Polymethyl methacrylate/PMMA) in sheets of 50cm * 50cm * 4mm. I was wondering if it is a good building material. So, for your convenience, information about the product from wikipedia :):

--- Code: ---Molecular formula                (C5O2H8)n
Molar mass                        varies
Density                        1.19 g/cm?
Melting point                        130-140 ?C (265-285 ?F)
Boiling point                        200.0 ?C (392 ?F)
Breaking index(translated from dutch): 1,489 n
--- End code ---

I use that on my robot. But its my first robot, so it might be a stupid choice.
Its fairly easy to work with. I only used a hand saw and a small dremel.

If you look for a place where they make/fixes windows for cars, you can probably get some for free. I did that :)

Can't you find a hardware store in your vicinity? There's a "stock americain" near where I live, and they sell that for a good price...
Ofcourse getting it free like h3ro said is much better ;)

The material itself is ideal to make robots. It's beautiful, easy to work with, sturdy,...
The only small downside is that it's pretty easily scratchable, and when it's damaged you can always see it from whatever angle you look at it.

If you've got a store that sells kitchen stuff (Walmart or something like that), you can buy plastic breadboards from them, which are basically solid chunks of HDPE...

- Jon

I would use polycarbonate (Lexan) instead because it has about 100X the durability of Acrylic.


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