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How to Bend a Plastic Sheet

2013-05-26   Views:8

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Plastic becomes pliable with the application of heat. With the assistance of a strip heater and clamps, you can bend a sheet of plastic for use in craft and construction projects. You can find all the items you need at most hardware stores to complet

How to Bend a Plastic Sheet

Plastic becomes pliable with the application of heat. With the assistance of a strip heater and clamps, you can bend a sheet of plastic for use in craft and construction projects. You can find all the items you need at most hardware stores to complete a simple, straight-line bend on a plastic sheet.

Skill level:Moderate

Things you need

Permanent marker2 flame-retardant saw horses2 clampsStrip heaterHeavy cotton safety gloves

Instructions

1 Mark the location where you want to bend your plastic sheet, using a permanent marker to make a light tic at either edge of the line.

2 Position the plastic sheet so that the area you will bend is between two flat, flame-retardant surfaces, like saw horses. Secure the sheet in place by using clamps on both ends.

3 Put on cotton safety gloves.

4 Position a strip heater at the recommended safe distance from the plastic, as directed by the manufacturer.

5 Heat the plastic until it begins to sag away from the heating element. Remove the clamps, while still wearing your safety gloves.

6 Manipulate the edges of the plastic, carefully with gloved hands, until you achieve the degree of bend you desire.

7 Clamp the hot plastic into place and leave it for 24 hours to cool fully.

Tips and warnings

Plastic sheets thicker than 3/16 inch need to be heated on each side to achieve a proper bend.

More intricate projects involving multiple bends require specialised skill and tools.

Do not use a strip heater around flammable products like paint thinner and gasoline.

Do not use a strip heater without wearing protective gloves and clothing.

Do not leave children unsupervised near this project.

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