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Author Topic: Couldn't cut HDPE  (Read 7371 times)

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Offline reefatTopic starter

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Couldn't cut HDPE
« on: January 04, 2009, 09:42:47 PM »
I bought a piece of 1/4" HDPE from McMaster.com and tried to cut it with all my handy tools I have. I pushed myself too hard and broke one of those knives. I tried to cut it from both sides of the HDPE and after half an hour I was able to cut only 1mm deep. Then I gave up.

In my previous post http://www.societyofrobots.com/robotforum/index.php?topic=5222.0, some fellows told me to use JigSaw or BandSaw. Currently I am learning SolidWorks to design my ROBOT. But I don't have a 3D Printer (can't afford it, you know). Is there any website where I can upload my design and they will cut it and send the pieces to me?

By the way, does anyone know, how can I export my SolidWorks file as 3D Printer compatible STL file?

Offline cosminprund

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2009, 04:23:19 AM »
See this:

http://www.societyofrobots.com/robot_parts_list_manufacturing.shtml

BlueSaw seem very friendly to me (you can get a quote without going throw loops).

Offline reefatTopic starter

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2009, 07:41:48 AM »
thanks a lot cosminprund.  :)

Offline want2learn

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2009, 10:00:53 AM »
Hi,
 Why were you using hobby knives to cut HDPE 6mm thick  :o  ???
The saw in your picture would have been way easier. When you get to a point where your at the saws max cut depth you can remove the blade wrap one side with loads of tape for a makeshift handle and continue the cut.
Alternatively you can buy cheap plastic handle things to use with hacksaw blades where one half of the blade slides into the handle and the other half is left exposed as your cutting surface.
I personally have never used a hobby knife to cut plastic more than 1mm thick (depending on the plastic type)
The question that drives me hazy:

Am I, or the others crazy?

Offline D1g1talDragon

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2009, 02:43:21 PM »
I got myself a great little scroll saw to cut all of my HDPE.  1/4" cuts like butter.  The one I bought was a cheap no-name brand on clearance at a Lowe's.  Not sure if it's in your budget, but the $60 I spent on this was easily worth saving me the trouble of cutting by hand with a saw much like your own.  Look around online for a cheap one, all you really need is something to move the blade for something as soft as HDPE.

Offline paulstreats

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2009, 09:04:35 PM »
Hey,

I found this place not long ago. http://www.emachineshop.com/machine-shop/Home/page5.html

Basically its a machine shop. You download their cad software to design your part. The software can then give you a quote. If you are happy with it you complete the purchase also through the cad package.

I dont know what they are like, but i thought it was a great concept.

Theres likely to be a large set up cost involved when ordering a part for the first time.(thats why just getting 1 of something cut costs nearly the same as getting 20 of a part cut, it can be similar with getting pcb's etc manufactured. The setup costs are what kills hobbyists....)

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 Remembering back to when i had to cut plastics by hand, I found that a handheld tile cutter with tungsten carbide tip really gets through plastic sheet(they cost about $4), a craft knife has nothing on them ;D.

(the tile cutters look a bit like a craft knife. http://www.toolbank.com/p/C10331/PLATLC207)
« Last Edit: January 05, 2009, 09:13:24 PM by paulstreats »

Offline cosminprund

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2009, 01:33:39 AM »
Anyone knows any manufacturers that would make "1" of something in Europe? I liked the Blue Saw concept (and especially the prices) but they don't ship to Europe. Found this out after I designed a test part :(

Offline paulstreats

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2009, 01:06:25 PM »
Quote
Anyone knows any manufacturers that would make "1" of something in Europe?


cnc machining http://www.firstcut.eu/gb/Default.aspx?s=GOUKFCPgeneral&gclid=CIXDhKXR-pcCFSAbEAoddCR7Cg

injection mouldinghttp://www.dudleyassociates.com/pages/services.php

The first cut website shows a "demo quote" that you can play with, different materials have different costs. Also if you submit a design to them, its handled through their computer system. The quote is generated by a machine and you also get a 3d representation of what the machined product would look like (to see if there are any differences between their end product capabilities and your original design). No sales reps calling and bugging you ;D

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Also another idea is to contact local schools and colleges. Many now have cnc machines, circuit board making facilities and some even 3d printers. It could be worth asking to use their facilities and even offering a 'donation' to them might sweeten them up a bit. Try emailing the head master or principle first, you usually get a better response from them or they will at least tell you which teacher is in charge of the machinery
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 01:38:44 PM by paulstreats »

Offline Admin

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Re: Couldn't cut HDPE
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2009, 12:06:32 AM »
A hack saw used to cut wood can make quick work of HDPE ;D

 


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