Polystyrene Cutting Tips

, Polystyrene Cutting Tips, Piel Associates

What is polystyrene? 

Polystyrene is one of the most widely used kinds of plastic in the world. It can be found in disposable cutlery, DVD cases, packing materials and drinking cups. 

What are some of the benefits of using polystyrene? 

  • It will not warp from changes in temperature or humidity. It is also waterproof and cannot be damaged by insects. 
  • It cuts and joins easier and faster than wood moulding, cutting down on manufacturing time and money.
  • All sticks are a uniform 9.5 ft. long, making ordering hassle-free. 
  • It is lighter than wood, so you save on shipping.
  • It costs less than wood; giving your customers an inexpensive, high quality alternative to wood your customers will appreciate

What type of saw do I need to use to cut your moulding? 

Polystyrene moulding can be cut by a regular wood saw. We recommend saw blades with less than 120 teeth, with a 36 tooth blade being ideal. Poly moulding cuts easily with no resistance so it is recommended to cut through it quickly. By using the appropriate blade and cutting technique you will not have to worry about the plastic melting. 

How many RPM’s should my saw be running at? 

Between 2,400 and 3,000 is the ideal range. If it is too low, the saw will build up heat and melt the moulding. If it is too high, it will cause your saw to vibrate and make uneven cuts. 

Can polystyrene moulding be cut using a chopper? 

Absolutely! 

What type of glue should I be using? 

You should be using some type of plastic glue. We also recommend Satellite City brand glue. For a less expensive alternative, PVC glue from any hardware store would work well, although it will take longer to dry (approx. 1 hour). 

Can I join the frame using an underpinner? 

Yes, you can join polystyrene frames just like you would with wood moulding. Make sure the pins are not too close to the edge of the frame corners as they can split. 

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