How to Bevel Plexiglass

Use plexiglass to replace glass in some applications.
Use plexiglass to replace glass in some applications. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Plexiglass is a clear, impact resistant acrylic plastic that replaces glass in some applications. Plexiglass is shatter resistant and flexible, allowing for installation on a curve. It is also considerably lighter than glass. Unlike glass, which you can score and beak, plexiglass must be cut through its entire thickness. Use a router or table saw to bevel plexiglass edges. Make your cuts with sharp blades and bits and minimize vibrations to prevent cracking.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • Marker
  • Table saw
  • Router
  • Bevel bit
  • Wrenches
  • Hardwood
  • C clamps
  • Bevel bit with bearing

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Table Saw

Measure and mark the plexiglass to size using a tape measure and marker. Adjust the table saw fence to cut it to the desired width. Locate the blade height adjustment under the table on the side of the saw and set the height to 1/2 inch higher than the thickness of the plexiglass. Cut your plexiglass to the desired size with a square edge.

Adjust the rip fence closer to the blade by a distance equal to the thickness of your plexiglass. Locate the bevel adjustment wheel on the front of the saw body, underneath the table. Twist the small knob in the center counterclockwise to loosen the wheel. Turn the wheel until the indicator arrow lines up with 45 degrees on the miter gauge.

Start the saw and push the plexiglass through slowly, allowing it to cut the square edge on a bevel. Press the plexiglass to the table and against the fence. Reset the fence as needed to cut any remaining edges that require beveling

Router Method

Cut your plexiglass to size as outlined in section 1. Clamp a piece of 3/4-inch thick hardwood with a straight edge underneath your plexiglass with C clamps, so that the edge of the board is even with the edge of the plexiglass. Set the clamps back from the edge enough to accommodate the router base.

Loosen the collet, or bit collar, on the bottom of the router with two wrenches. Turn the outside nut counterclockwise and the inside clockwise to loosen them. Open the collet all the way and install a bevel bit with an end bearing into the router. Tighten the collet. Adjust the height of the bit, so that the shoulder of the bevel is just above the base plate to give you the most angled cut.

Start the router and run it along the plexiglass edge from left to right with the bearing running along the middle of the hardwood edge. Repeat this setup and cutting process for every beveled edge.

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