25 years experience
Concept to manufacture
Market leading machinery
Acrylic fabrication services
Acrylic is often used to create eye-catching and functional Point of Sale displays in retail. Unlike wood, there are a number of alternative techniques that can be used when fabricating acrylic items to shape, join and finish. Our experienced team of fabricators can help with almost any requirement:
Using our hot wire strip heater, we can heat bend acrylic along a straight line to create an angle. This process allows us to make more complex shapes from a single sheet of acrylic, which avoids the need for any joins. For example, our acrylic lecterns are made from only two separate pieces of acrylic, one bent to shape the top and the other to shape the three sides of the upstand.
For more complex shapes, we can create a jig from MDF, then a sheet of acrylic can be heated to the correct temperature and draped over the form. With this method, the acrylic cools and sets in the desired shape.
Polishing acrylic edges
When acrylic is cut using the CNC Router, the drill leaves a matt surface on the cut edge. To create a more decorative finish, we polish the edges, which gives a shiny finish. In the case of some special acrylics, polishing the edges can reveal a different colour tint. For example, you can get clear acrylic with a glass effect, so it appears completely clear when viewed straight on, but the polished edges have a green tint – just like real glass!
For the best result, we use diamond edge polishing, where we move the acrylic edges over fast-moving diamonds. However, this method can only be used on straight edges, so for curves, holes and inner corners we use flame polishing. Flame polishing involves melting the edge surface with a high temperature (2700 – 3300 degrees Celsius) flame, which creates a clear finish.
If you are making an eye-catching display from clear acrylic, the last thing you want is to see a lot of metal pins holding everything together! So how do we avoid this? The answer is to use an invisible method to bond the surfaces.
When we need to create a really strong invisible bond, we use solvent bonding. We apply a layer of chemical solvent, or acrylic cement, to the surfaces to be joined. This works by dissolving a very thin layer on the edge of the acrylic, so it is like welding the parts together.
Another option is to use a UV bonding method. We use a special glue that hardens when it is exposed to UV light. The UV glue does not chemically bond to the acrylic, so the join is not as strong as solvent bonding , but the advantage of this method is that the hardening time is reduced to seconds when a UV light is used.
All products are fabricated here in the UK
Don’t just take our word
“I would rate Trade CNC as a 5 star. Not had a single problem bar reaching our own credit limit. Drawings were fast and altered when needing changes. Would recommend for any precision cutting services.”
“Ordering my CNC cut items was straight forward and customer care was clear and concise. Goods turned up nice and quickly and were exactly to my specification and design.
Couldn't ask for more.”
“Yes, it was great thank you. It went together really well and everyone is really pleased with it. Thank you very much for manufacturing it and delivering it on time. Hopefully, we will give you more notice next time!”
“Performance rating 5 out of 5 stars. We have only been dealing with 3D Solutions for a couple of months. But during this period we have found all the team are very knowledgeable and helpful at all times.”
“Yes, everything was all good thanks. We are installing the oval lights this week so will send you some images next week once they are installed so you can picture how the ovals you cut for us fit in with the whole lightbox.”
“5 out of 5 stars. The whole process was really good, and at every stage, the help we received was good.”
“Just to say the fretwork has arrived safe and well and looks incredible! Many thanks for your help with this, we really appreciate your patience, we got there in the end.”
Artist for National Trust Commission
“The table top that you made for me was perfect. The customer is delighted and I am so relieved. So many thanks to you and your staff for the lovely accurate work that you did for us.”
Voodoo Furniture Design
If you have manufacturing design drawings in a suitable format ready to be imported straight into our CNC software and cut, we can offer you a fast and efficient service at a very competitive price.
However, many of our clients are looking for a wide range of services in addition to CNC cutting, and we have invested in our people and equipment to be able to offer a complete turnkey solution, from design drawings through to assembly and packaging, and all the steps in between.