Building acrylic display boxes. It's not easy.

Discussion in 'Building Questions, Tutorials and Guidebooks' started by [SC] Arachnicus, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. [SC] Arachnicus

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    I am trying very hard to make custom size display boxes for my planes and it is not easy. The weld does not always do it's job (my error probably) and the lack of a table saw and router does not help my cause either. I scribe and break it off. I sand it to get it smoother, but welding the panes together is a real pain in the ass.

    I went online to shop for display cases. There are very few for 1:72 size planes. Trumpter makes one but the inside dimensions are only 4 5/8 inches. That means only certain planes will fit and all of them have to go in diagonally.

    Oh and a lot of them are very expensive. A lot more then the model and the supplies to make it. Plenty of displays for cars, just slim pickins for anything 1:72 scale.
     
  2. Wurger

    Wurger Siggy Master
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    Instead of welding , just use the COSMOFEN PMMA glue for acrylic "glass" (Plexiglas, Plexi, Pleksi) etc... It might be used for sticking together PCV / PCW / PVC.

    [​IMG]

    or the COSMOFEN PLUS HV glue

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Yep, I agree. Using these adhesives, or a normal two-part epoxy adhesive, the individual panels can be glued direct, or you can use a 90 degree timber moulding trim, to hold the edges and provide a neat look. The hard part is paying for the acrylic sheet !
     
  4. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Terry.

    I built one box so far and that was enough. Expensive to buy, hard to cut (yes, they said scribe and break but despite my best efforts and sharp tools, the sheet did not behave and broke away from the scribe line) and tricky to glue.
     
  5. [SC] Arachnicus

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    As I said, no room for error and ends up costing the same or even more then just buying a pre made case.

    I did order a Trumpter case to see what will fit in them. HOPEFULLY most of the fighters will fit.
     
  6. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    One way to possibly get a case or two at a more affordable price, is contact a local sign maker, if there is one. If they make acrylic sign boards, they may agree to to at least cut the sheet for you, and possibly glue it too. A friend recently did this for some military regalia he wanted to display.
    I'm in a similar situation, and even have a couple of part-built larger models 'on hold', so they don't get spoiled by dust whilst waiting for display cases. I've worked out that it'll be cheaper in the long run to buy a two-door, glass display cabinet, with seven movable shelves, and one fixed, and LED lighting. This would hold an average of 25 to 40 models in 1/48th scale, of 'fighter' to 'medium sized' aircraft, or around 20, maybe more, 1/32nd scale 'fighter size' aircraft. To have cases for this many would cost a considerable amount, whereas the cabinet ranges in price, depending on source, between £124 and £165 - approximately $200 to $266 US.
    A bit of an outlay in one go, but covers future needs, and a lot cheaper than a number of display cases.
     
  7. [SC] Arachnicus

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    #7 [SC] Arachnicus, Sep 26, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012
    Yeah Airframes, I agree. There is one option. I have a book shelf (6 feet tall and three feet wide) that can be easily converted into a display case buying one big sheet with hinges and just have it made then attached to the front. I have no room in my office for a separate large display case.

    Correction, two sheets where it opens from the middle.
     
  8. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Ikea had a nice glass cabinet at a reasonable price that I looked at a year ago but it was not quite the right size for the space I have.
     
  9. Blackcollar

    Blackcollar New Member

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    In the navy, we use methalene choloride to fuse plex together. It literally welds the pieces together. Make sure you have a straight edge with no gaps

    -Al
     
  10. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Easiest way is to find an old book case with panel doors. Remove the panels and replace with glass. Even the case I made at work on the router table from a laminated aluminum (Alucobond) material and tempered (toughened) glass sides has cost me about 600 bucks. But I had a specific area I had to put the bugger in or I woulda gone with an old book case. Now I want to build a corner unit for my 1/72nd B-24 and Lanc size builds but may go with wood.
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    One good way to make a absolute straight cut in plexi is to use a "back saw" aka "Miter saw"...

    Lay the material flat on a clean, smooth surface that won't damage the saw's teeth (and for God sakes, not the kitchen table!) and clamp a straight edge to guide the saw. Using gentle strokes, keeping the saw flush to the surface, you'll end up with a precise, clean cut that may only need a minimal amount of sanding after the cut.

    The problem with a jig-saw or bandsaw, is often times the plastic heats the blade and causes binding and distortion along the cut. There is also the risk of scratching the plastic with the tool rest as the cut progresses. The back saw method eliminates that, though it takes a little longer.

    The results are worth it, though.
     
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