How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (2023)

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Plexiglas is an affordable alternative to glass that you can use for many home projects. However, it is important to use the correct method for cutting plexiglass as this material is prone to cracking and chipping during the cutting process.

In this article we will discuss how to cut plexiglass with a table saw using proper technique to get the best cutting results.


  • What is plexiglass?

    How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (1)

    Contrary to what the name might suggest, Plexiglas is not glass. It is a clear and tough petroleum based thermoplastic acrylic material that is an inexpensive replacement for regular glass. It is also an unbreakable, lightweight, translucent and resistant material that is commonly used in:

    • Window
    • screens
    • Sign
    • lighting
    • Display boards for aquariums

    There are different types of plexiglass sheets and the following information will help you understand if you can use a table saw to cut your plexiglass sheets.

    extruded acrylic sheets

    This type of plexiglass has a low melting point and is also not as durable or hard as other types. Therefore, you should use hand tools to cut extruded acrylic sheets.

    (Video) Hot To Cut Acrylic Using A Table Saw AKA Plexiglass

    cast acrylic plates

    This is what most people think of when they hear Plexiglas work. These blades are durable and tough, and you can easily cut them with a table saw.

    The polycarbonate plate

    These panels fall somewhere in between the types of plexiglass mentioned above. They have a higher melting point than the extruded type but are not as hard as cast acrylic sheet and can be cut with a table saw.

    How to cut plexiglass with a table saw

    many people goUse a circular saw to cut plexiglass, but a table saw is much more precise. You can also use a table saw to make many repetitive cuts in a row.

    How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (2)

    While it is possible to use any type of table saw to cut plexiglass, we recommend that you use a more powerful table saw that has at least a 2 horsepower motor and a 10 inch saw blade. You can use the following steps to cut plexiglass with a table saw.

    Step 1: Be safe

    it is extremely importantensure your safetywhen using a table saw. You should always wear safety goggles and adust respiratorwhen using a table saw, but it's even more important when you want to cut plexiglass. Because during the cutting process, small pieces of plastic can fly away, which can injure your face.

    You should also avoid wearing jewelry and loose clothing, and curb long hair before you start trimming.

    Step 2: Choose the right saw blade

    If you're using a smooth type of plexiglass, we recommend using a blade with less even teeth, e.g. B. 50-60 TPI. If you use a blade with more teeth you will create more friction which will melt the softer acrylic sheets.

    Remember that it is difficult to avoid chipping and cracking when cutting plexiglass less than 1/8 inch thick. Therefore, consider using a blade that is at least 1/8 inch thick when cutting with a table saw.

    (Video) How to cut Plexiglass on aTable Saw

    Also, for harder acrylic sheets, you should use a blade with more teeth (60 to 80 TPI) as they can withstand more friction.

    How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (3)

    Anyway theThe best table saw blades are minimize the risk of chipping and cracking.

    Step 3: Take action

    Use a tape measure to take measurements and mark the cutting line on your Plexiglas sheet with a marker. When measuring, keep in mind the width of your table saw blade as this will slightly reduce the height/width of your end results.

    monitoring: Do not remove the protective film that your plastic films have. This prevents scratching.

    Step 4: Start cutting

    Place the saw blade in the table saw with the protective foil facing down and make sure that the cutting line is flush with the saw blade. Turn on the table saw andStart running your blade through the bladeslowly and steadily.

    Do not use force when feeding as this increases the risk of chipping. Keep the blade steady throughout the cutting process to ensure an accurate cut. You can also clip multiple sheets together by stacking them and securing them with staples.

    How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (4)

    Use a pressure padto push the material through the cut. This is safer than using your hand.

    You should not feed the plexiglass sheet through the sheet at a feed rate greater than three inches per second if the sheet thickness is ¼ inch or thicker. If you have a thinner sheet, reduce the feed rate to 1 inch per second. The goal is to have the blade cut through the foil rather than speeding up the process.

    (Video) How I Cut & Drill Clear Acrylic - Plexiglass? - Lexan?

    Step 5: Sand Edges

    After the cut you will needSand the edges of your acrylic sheet. Depending on the material, slightly rough or glazed edges are possible.

    Start by sanding the edges with a sheet of 120-180 grit sandpaper and a soft sanding pad. As the plexiglass becomes smoother, switch to even finer grit sandpaper. You can use a 600 grit blade for a very smooth finish.

    Use a polishing pad attached to aRechargeable drillIt's also a great way to soften the edges of acrylic panels. Not only does it provide great results, but it also saves you a lot of time and effort.

    Use the same steps to cut as many plexiglass sheets as you like.

    Tips on using a table saw to cut acrylic

    How to cut acrylic with a table saw | sawhub (5)

    Consider the tips below if you need to cut plexiglass with a table saw.

    • Never use a dull blade to cut plexiglass sheets with a table saw, as worst-case scenarios can result in chipping and even cracking.
    • If you notice your blade melting, stop the table saw immediately and switch to a blade with fewer teeth. However, if you notice the edges of the blade chipping, consider using a blade with more teeth.
    • If you accidentally removed the protective film from the Plexiglas before cutting, put masking tape on the cut line. This reduces the likelihood of chipping and cracking.
    • With a table saw, you can only cut the blades in a straight line. You can use other toolslike a jigsaw puzzleÖDremel makes irregular cuts in Plexiglas.
    • There are several Plexiglas alternatives on the market. But you must make sure that you buy the genuine product because of its superior quality.

    frequently asked questions

    Can you cut plexiglass with a utility knife?

    Yes, you can cut plexiglass with a utility knife if the blade thickness is 1/8 inch or less. First take the correct measurements and mark your sheet with a marker. Then, using a ruler, run the knife along the marked cutting line five to six times to mark the blade. Be sure to dig a little deeper with each pass. After that, insert the plexiglass sheet to divide it into two parts.

    (Video) How to Easily Cut Plexiglass

    Can you cut acrylic with a circular saw?

    If possibleCut plexiglass with a circular saw. This method gives virtually the same results as a table saw. The only benefit of using a circular saw for this purpose is its portability. You must also follow the same rules we mentioned for a table saw, such as: B. Using a sharp blade with a large number of teeth and wearing safety equipment.

    What is the best tool for cutting plexiglass?

    Using a table saw is the best way to cut thick acrylic sheets. But when it comes to thinner sheet metal, using a jigsaw gives the best results. This is because a jigsaw generates much less heat compared to a circular or table saw, reducing the risk of melting during the cutting process.

    Table saw basics for beginners

    (Video) Cutting Plexiglass With Table saw.

    last words

    A table saw is a powerful tool that can cut many different materials, including plexiglass, but it can result in chipping and cracking if you don't follow the right process. We hope this guide will help you cut your plexiglass sheets effectively with a table saw to get the best results.


    1. Cutting Acrylic Sheet with a table saw
    2. Cutting aluminum and acrylic with the table saw
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    3. How to Cut Plexiglass Without Chipping
    4. How to easily cut acrylic sheet
    (Ultimate Handyman)
    5. Cutting Plastics on the Table Saw.mp4
    (Ralph Bagnall)
    6. Cutting PLEXIGLAS® with a Table Saw
    (PLEXIGLAS® by Röhm)


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