plating, anodizing, & finishing Q&As since 1989
Removing scratches from clear acrylic sheet
I am trying to remove scratches and blur marks from clear acrylic sheet.Merrie Martino
CSULB - Long Beach CA USA
Merrie, Lottsa luck! The only way to remove scratch and blur marks from Acrylics is to polish it using a rotating buffer wheel having loose felt cloth strips. Too much speed and pressure causes the material to overheat.
The 'local' supplier of acrylics might have some new & wonderful polish (which I doubt) but again you need heat, due to the rotating felt cloth, to so-to-speak 'remelt' the surface. For very bad scratches, first of all sandpaper down, then use fine sandpaper finishing up with superfine water based sandpaper ... and then 'buff' the area.
A pain in le neck. Enjoy life ... didn't the sheet come with a protective paper backing (to prevent scratching)? Acrylic is like most (thermo)plastics, it scratches easily. Hope this helps. Cheers.
Freeman Newton [deceased]
(It is our sad duty to advise that Freeman passed away
April 21, 2012. R.I.P. old friend).
Not to worry, Merrie! Assuming the scratches are fine surface scratches, they're easy to get rid of. Basically, you just need a really fine abrasive to polish the scratches out. You don't need heat.
Rottenstone and pumice are very fine abrasives (pumice is a bit coarser); just make a polishing 'ball' out of an old T-shirt or similar soft cloth and polish out the scratches. If the scratches are a bit deeper, you may want to get some acrylic solvent (you can find it on the web, or at a store that sells thicker pieces of 'Plexiglas' - for example, a hobby store). Warning on the solvent, tho: it will dissolve whatever area of the acrylic sheet you apply it to, and you'll have to polish out the whole area.
I've done this, and scratches will vanish - hard to believe that you can use an abrasive to get rid of scratches, but of course that's how car polish works... Good luck!Rob Hunter
- Cornall Bridge, Connecticut
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