Plastic Question

Carving gurus…
I’m cutting polypropelene plastic .098 thick with a single flute upcut. Feed rate is 105 in/ min. Dewalt router on “1”

It’s cutting clean, but the waste isnt clearing out consistently…making a mess of cleanup. Any suggestions on how to get it to clean up better? Its almost like it’s melting a little bit and sticking together.

Heres a post-carve picture

In reading about cutting acrylic, it seems a faster pass is key to stopping it melting. Fast pass with a slow spindle speed.

Additionally, I read a few posts indicating air assist was beneficial.

What’s your DOC?

105 IPM is already pretty quick.

Full depth. .12 actually to make sure it cuts all the way through consistently

Well try lowering your DOC and see how that’s working for you.

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PP is just aweful to clean up. There’s always burrs after to touch up. I’ve read extremely sharp endmills to be the key to counter this - HSS with a honed edge (feeds and speeds first and foremost however). Some of the coated carbide endmills can be dull by comparison due to the buildup

I cut 1.5mm (~1/16") acryllic sheet on a regular basis with V-bits.

What I do to help clean-up is to run a 2nd pass which clear about 95% of the fray, and the remaining ones are easier to get rid of.

During the 1st carve/cut there is heat and they stick like you experience.
For the 2nd pass its cooled down and very little new heat is generated => cleaner seperation :slight_smile:

I saw Mo do a video once on bits, seems the upcut is not good for plastic as the waste is being brought up to the top and heated and then melts. The slower your speed the more melt it gets.