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No product, including polycarbonate, is indestructible. However, polycarbonate offers the highest impact strength available in a transparent thermoplastic. To optimize the properties of polycarbonate, be sure to design, fabricate and apply the product according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Makrolon® and Lexan® are both tradenames for polycarbonate resin and sheet. Makrolon® is the tradename used by Bayer and Sheffield Plastics for polycarbonate material and Lexan® is used by General Electric for their polycarbonate material.
The best way to clean polycarbonate sheet is using mild soap and water and a soft cloth, followed by a lukewarm water rinse.
Because of the heavy traffic through business entrances, abrasion resistant polycarbonate is your best bet.
Polycarbonate sheet can be cut using conventional carpentry tools. Always use proper safety equipment when working with any power tools. For best results, be sure to use sharp cutting tools and minimize vibration of the material.
Polycarbonate material can be bonded using several techniques including solvent bonding, adhesive bonding or mechanical fastening.
Many machinists use a water spray. However, some find it not normally necessary due to the higher heat resistance of polycarbonate.
The recommended coolant is pure water. When close tolerances are required, you need to perform the machining in steps so that you do not add stress and movement within the part. You need to anneal/stress relieve after each step of machining.
That flexibility is an inherent property that is used in many building and industrial designs. Polycarbonate can be cold-bent or “flexed” 180 times its thickness. Make sure that once bent, the material is securely held in place with the framing material.
The bubbles you are experiencing is caused by water vapor boiling in the sheet. Polycarbonate must be dried prior to heat forming. Generally, four hours of drying at 250°F is sufficient to remove any water vapor present in the product.
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