PDA

View Full Version : A couple of solid surface projects-LG HiMacs



Larry Bratton
02-25-2009, 7:23 PM
Here are a couple of little projects made on LG HiMacs solid surface. The material is the White Quartz color, engraved and filled. One, is a marker for a deceased pet (not mine) and the other is going to end up on my mailbox post. Just thought I would share them.

Frank Corker
02-25-2009, 7:25 PM
Wow Larry, they look really nice. Very clear.

Bob Cole
02-25-2009, 7:40 PM
That looks great. I've been doing similar things with Corian.

I recently sent a request to LG for a local distributor but unfortunately the closest one is across the state. I don't do enough volume yet to purchase multiple sheets and pay freight (which will be considerably more than I am paying for Corian locally).

I have my hopes up and looking for a fab shop that I could get their scraps.

Dee Gallo
02-25-2009, 7:43 PM
Nice work, Larry! Have you used both Corian and this stuff? I wonder how they compare? Your work is very sharp and clean.

cheers, dee

Mike DeRegnaucourt
02-25-2009, 7:46 PM
Nice work Larry! :)

When you engraved the cat, did you use Photograv? If so, I was curious about your color filling technique. Did you have to use any white in your color fill?

Larry Bratton
02-25-2009, 7:51 PM
Nice work Larry! :)

When you engraved the cat, did you use Photograv? If so, I was curious about your color filling technique. Did you have to use any white in your color fill?
Mike:
Yes, I used Photograv. When this was engraved, it of course, comes out completely white. To make the photo appear, I took some black Krylon Fusion, sprayed it on a cloth and just rubbed it in to the photo engraving..like magic it appears. No white in the fill. I did the lettering the same way, but I clean the excess paint off with WD40.

Bob Cole
02-25-2009, 7:53 PM
What do you use to colorfill? I've been using the rattle can and I occassionally have issues with the paint adhering to the walls of the engraving. It really stands out. Unfortunately, I didn't notice until I was on my way so another reason to have Sharpies in various colors handy.

Bob Cole
02-25-2009, 7:55 PM
Guess I took too long to type.

Thanks for answering my question. That method would probably work better for getting in all the cracks and crevices.

Larry Bratton
02-25-2009, 7:56 PM
Dee:
Corian is about the same. LG HiMacs and Corian are identical in chemical make up (at least that's what they say). I have used up a bunch of stuff the local distributor gave me for free in exchange for making them some sales aids. It routes very nicely also. I am coming to the point where I am going to have to buy some from them! I am making ADA compliant signs with it also.

Anthony Welch
02-25-2009, 8:37 PM
Nice job there Larry. I am so anxious to try the solid surface stuff myself. No one local that handles this stuff, so no "drop offs". But I'm gonna do it now that I've seen your stuff.

Thanks
Anthony

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 8:43 AM
Nice job there Larry. I am so anxious to try the solid surface stuff myself. No one local that handles this stuff, so no "drop offs". But I'm gonna do it now that I've seen your stuff.

Thanks
Anthony
Anthony:
Find you a cabinet shop that does counter tops. Everytime they cut out a sink, they have a drop. Let me see if I can get some more drops. I think I know where I can get some and if I can, I'll send you some to try.

Belinda Williamson
02-26-2009, 8:50 AM
Larry,

Very nice!

Dee,

Corian and Hi-Macs are both acrylic solid surface, essentially the same product, different manufacturers. Hi-Macs is less expensive. There is a third acrylic solid surface - Staron. Avonite is also a solid surface product, but polyester instead of acrylic.

All,

Don't limit yourselves to countertop shops when sourcing drops. Some cabinet companies also fabricate Corian (or at least they do in our area).

Almost anything you can do with wood, you can do with Corian. Personalized cutting boards are very popular. Just a few ideas - mongrammed trivets, picture/mirror frames, desk name plates, bread boards for restaurants. Using a paint fill is the easiest option. The advantage of using Corian or Integra adhesive to fill is that you have smooth surface, and the engraved area appears to be an inlay (which basically it is). Bubbles can be an issue when using the adhesive though. Typically for signs and things of that nature I use paint, for cutting boards and bread boards I use adhesive as a fill when possible. If the engraving is shallow the adhesive fill sometimes sands out if you have to resurface the piece.

Sorry, my camera was stolen from my office and I haven't gotten around to replacing it yet, so I don't have any decent pics to post.

Steve Clarkson
02-26-2009, 8:59 AM
Belinda.....all great ideas.....thanks for sharing.

One thing about cutting boards though.....my concern was that you should use the adhesive instead of paint so that it will still be food safe.

Belinda Williamson
02-26-2009, 9:04 AM
Belinda.....all great ideas.....thanks for sharing.

One thing about cutting boards though.....my concern was that you should use the adhesive instead of paint so that it will still be food safe.

Good point Steve. Also dishwasher safe. Ask the customer about how he/she intends to use the board. Many of the cutting boards I do end up being just for display.

Two photos, one paint filled, one adhesive filled (Low Country Boil). You may not be able to tell the difference. Pix aren't great, these were taken for the customer file just for my reference.

111362
111365
111364

Dee Gallo
02-26-2009, 9:29 AM
Thanks for the comparison info, Belinda! Since there have been so many new solid surface materials introduced, you never know what you're getting, which could be detrimental to your laser.

I love the idea of putting a recipe on the back of a cutting board. Seems like a perfect "family specialty" type gift, newlyweds first Christmas, bachelor's apartment (with hangover recipe on back!), etc. Why did the restaurant want a big hole in the board? Was it to hold dipping sauce or something? Just curious...

cheers, dee

Steve Clarkson
02-26-2009, 10:11 AM
Two photos, one paint filled, one adhesive filled (Low Country Boil). You may not be able to tell the difference.

You're right.....I can't tell the difference......soooooo....are you gonna keep it a secret? I need to know now.

What's "Low Country Boil"?

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 11:02 AM
Belinda:
Nice work! The cutting boards should sell. I also like the idea of the recipe on the back.

Dee: I think for it to be in the class with Corian or Hi Macs, it has to be solid acrylic. As Belinda said, Avonite has some polyester in it, but polyester is laser safe. I have not used any Avonite but I am told it doesn't come off the router as smooth as solid acrylic.

Steve: Low Country Boil is a southern delicacy. We normally keep the recipe secret from Yankees, but Belinda has published here..so I guess the secret is out. Try it sometime, you might like it. It was survival food when Sherman came through and burned us down.

Steve Clarkson
02-26-2009, 11:05 AM
Steve: Low Country Boil is a southern delicacy. We normally keep the recipe secret from Yankees, but Belinda has published here..so I guess the secret is out. Try it sometime, you might like it. It was survival food when Sherman came through and burned us down.

LMAO! I thought it was the ADHESIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bob Cole
02-26-2009, 11:19 AM
What is the process for the adhesive fill? I've only used rattle can but would like to expand my offering.

Belinda,

Did you use a roundover bit for the edge? What speed on your router works best?

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 12:23 PM
Steve:
I have seen some that approached being an adhesive or something akin to it, but no, like I said..it is something to eat!

Belinda Williamson
02-26-2009, 12:30 PM
I love the idea of putting a recipe on the back of a cutting board. Seems like a perfect "family specialty" type gift, newlyweds first Christmas, bachelor's apartment (with hangover recipe on back!), etc. Why did the restaurant want a big hole in the board? Was it to hold dipping sauce or something? Just curious...

cheers, dee

Mother's Day is just around the corner . . . get really personal with mom's or grandmother's handwritten recipe as a gift from mother to daughter, or a child's artwork for mom or grandmother. For Christmas use recipes for Christmasy (like that new word?) food. The board with the hole is a bread board, so the hole is for the butter cup (the spready kind, not the flower).


You're right.....I can't tell the difference......soooooo....are you gonna keep it a secret? I need to know now.

What's "Low Country Boil"?

Larry beat me to it Steve. Low Country Boil is known by various names around here is a staple for outdoor parties in the summer. Cook up a bit pot full, drain, cover a picnic table with newspaper, dump the food of the gods onto the table and spread to cool. Then you just gobble it up. Well, I don't actually serve it off of newspaper, but a some people do. I prefer to use serving bows. FYI, it's also called Frogmore Stew!


Belinda:
I have not used any Avonite but I am told it doesn't come off the router as smooth as solid acrylic.

True, and Avonite is more brittle than Corian, but has some killer rich blue and green translucent colors.

[quote=Bob Cole;1064892]What is the process for the adhesive fill? I've only used rattle can but would like to expand my offering.

Did you use a roundover bit for the edge? What speed on your router works best?

Keith is probably a better one to answer this but I'll give it a go. I've done it a couple of ways. I've masked, engraved, filled the engraving, let adhesive cure, remove mask, and sand off excess. I've also engraved, filled with adhesive and sanded off the excess. If the engraving is small you can squeegee off the excess - you may still have to do some light sanding - but if you have a large area to fill, I wouldn't recommend this because the adhesive may start to set up. If it has already started to set up the squeegee will pull it back out the engraving. The adhesive can allso shrink as it cures, so you have have to fill twice.

The edges are done with a trim router (23,000 RPM for one and 25,000 RPM for another)with a 3/16" RO bit.

Michael Kowalczyk
02-26-2009, 1:30 PM
Hey Larry and others,
I use Avonite and several others also, no LG yet, and yes it has a polyester and acrylic blend but that is how they have the true dimensional look and translucent ones that no one else has come close to, IMHO. I disagree with it not cutting clean on the CNC. Feed-rate, RPM, HP of spindle, tooling, how it is being fixtured/held on the table all factor in. It is usually faster to cut on a CNC than a laser because of the thickness (1/2"). Hard to find 1/4" stocked any where.

What took Steve 20 minutes to do, most of us with CNC's could probably do it in under a minute (Of actual CNC time) but that would not include the complete set up from design to completed part. The big difference would be if you were cutting 50+ pieces from a full sheet. Then it could possibly take that 20 minutes to machine all of them. Obviously it all depends on size of the blanks. So those of you that want to take it to the next level and mass produce cutting boards, address plaques or any other item, contact one of us that have a CNC locally and you might be surprised at how affordable working with Solid Surfaces is.

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 1:38 PM
Michael:
I have a CNC. My laser, 40 watts, simply cannot handle 1/2". It will cut 1/4" albeit mighty slow. My distributor for LG also carries some Avonite and like I said, I haven't tried any, but have just had that comment made. I would like to experiment with some to form my own opinion. There are apparently some nice colors available also. Thanks for the information. What speed and feedrate would you use for it, say with a 1/4" upcut spiral? (5 HP Columbo spindle)

Michael Kowalczyk
02-26-2009, 2:19 PM
Larry,
Sorry I should have made it more clear. I was not disagreeing with you but with what you were told. It will be hard to give you correct feed rates etc... because our Thermwoods have 10HP HSD's but I will look at the files and see what we ran it at. I think the last bit I tried was a spiral "O" flute but we mainly use a 1/2" up down shear PCD and between 400-600 IPM at 16,000 to 18,500 RPM. It also depends on the design and the size. I will check and try to get an exact example for you but remember your HP is 1/2 of ours, so you will have to make adjustments.

When I test new bits or new materials I put the IPM up to 700-1000, depending on material and bit) and use my variable speed feed rate dial and see what the finish looks like as I dial up the speed or it breaks a bit. Once I get to the finish starts to degrade, I back off a bit and run with it.

I typically don't use an up cut spiral on a through cut. It tends to chip the top. A Vortex Viper or Whiteside compression bit works for us but I would go to the Onsrud Cutter and get the Plastics catalog for some ideas. They also have suggested feed/RPM rates. I have found that they are usually on the low end of the spectrum. I use a 1/2" PCD and most bit manufacturer's suggest going no more than 300IPM. We use ours at 650 to 750IPM all the time and have excellent edge quality and some bits have lasted over 500 sheets of material but average around 200-300.

Does your WartHog have a variable speed dial on your controller that would allow you to vary the feed rate as the CNC is running it's program?

Scott Challoner
02-26-2009, 2:34 PM
If my wife cooked it, you probably could use it as an adhesive.

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 3:15 PM
Michael
Yes it does. I can control the IPM via WinCNC and the RPM with a separate control. It's an older machine but it's a good one. I have a Whiteside compression bit on hand that I bought for cutting melamine. I'll give it a try. I do get good results though with just a regular spiral. I use Whiteside almost exclusively. I occasionally use some cutters by Belin for PVC and aluminum. I'm not cutting big volumes so I don't need that much IPM. I just take it slow and seem to get good results at 100 IPM or less. My max is 18000 rpm on the spindle.

Belinda Williamson
02-26-2009, 3:36 PM
When I test new bits or new materials I put the IPM up to 700-1000, depending on material and bit) and use my variable speed feed rate dial and see what the finish looks like as I dial up the speed or it breaks a bit. Once I get to the finish starts to degrade, I back off a bit and run with it.

I typically don't use an up cut spiral on a through cut. It tends to chip the top. A Vortex Viper or Whiteside compression bit works for us but I would go to the Onsrud Cutter and get the Plastics catalog for some ideas. They also have suggested feed/RPM rates. I have found that they are usually on the low end of the spectrum. I use a 1/2" PCD and most bit manufacturer's suggest going no more than 300IPM. We use ours at 650 to 750IPM all the time and have excellent edge quality and some bits have lasted over 500 sheets of material but average around 200-300.


200 to 300 sheets of Corian? If so, what depth are your passes at this speed? We aren't getting nearly that much life out of our Onsrud bits.

Scott Erwin
02-26-2009, 4:29 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Belinda Williamson http://www.sawmillcreek.org/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?p=1064751#post1064751)
Two photos, one paint filled, one adhesive filled (Low Country Boil). You may not be able to tell the difference.



You're right.....I can't tell the difference......soooooo....are you gonna keep it a secret? I need to know now.

What's "Low Country Boil"?



I guess we dont want Steve cooking for us now do we....

Steve Clarkson
02-26-2009, 4:42 PM
I guess Scott C.'s wife and I should stick to setting the table and let someone else do the cooking!

Michael Kowalczyk
02-26-2009, 5:50 PM
200 to 300 sheets of Corian? If so, what depth are your passes at this speed? We aren't getting nearly that much life out of our Onsrud bits.
Hi Belinda,
I wish I was cutting 200-300 sheets of Corian or any solid surface. We mainly cut MDF core melamine and the Melamine is on 2 sides. It is extremely abrasive and eats away at the bit at the top and bottom of the material. back in the old days, I manually adjusted the "Z" by about .050" up and down to get better life out of the bits. Of course this only works on through cuts for 2D work and you have to have room in your spoilboard for the increased depth. That was on our 1st cnc which was an entry level Digital Tool 905 with no tool changer. When we got our new Thermwood CNC, I suggested it to Thermwood and they integrated it into the controller (Z oscillation). So now I can do it at the Controller instead of having to edit the G-code.

I wonder if I could get that kind of mileage out of the bit if it was only cutting solid surface. It is far less abrasive than the Melamine. So if anyone wants to test this, I would be happy to quote a run 200-300 sheets for you. Just have the pallets dropped shipped, prepaid of course, to us and email me your design.:D

John W. Love
02-26-2009, 7:59 PM
LMAO! I thought it was the ADHESIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thats only if you overcook it Steve

Larry Bratton
02-26-2009, 9:18 PM
Hmmm..somehow my thread got hijacked..Low country boil happening here :)