View Full Version : Printed color seen through acrylic cut shape

Allan Wright
08-05-2011, 12:43 PM
I'm sorry if this has been discussed somewhere else in this forum. I've tried searching but it's not something that's easily found in the archives.

I'd like to make some clear acrylic tokens in different shapes about 2" square or a little smaller. On the underside of the token I want an image that I would make using a printer on photo pater, or similar product. This would be glued to the back of the acrylic then the token cut out with the laser.

Here's the question: How do I glue this image to the acrylic such that the glue doesn't blur or otherwise interfere with viewing the imagery on the attached media? What printer, ink and media do I use to prevent the glue from ruining the image as it's attached to the acrylic?

Any suggestions are very greatly appreciated.


Dan Hintz
08-05-2011, 1:31 PM
You could use a quality double-sided tape, like from 3M. A good-quality, crystal-clear liquid adhesive would also work.

Martin Boekers
08-05-2011, 1:37 PM
Don't know if you are set up for sublition but there is a coated acrylic that if designed for this check with the manufactere to see if
they are selling sheeting yet.


There are a handful of vendors selling UV products like this.

www.bestphotocrystal.com/ (http://www.bestphotocrystal.com/)

You can probably get optical adhesive for a UV cure for Acrylic.

Check with your local Acrylic supplier for info on this.

Coda and MacTac make a double stick optical tape adhesive that works. They use it on POP and Trade Show
Graphics. You can check with a local display graphics company and they may sell you some small pieces.
It usually come on a large roll for lamination machines.

I make "coins" out a few things, I use poker chips, blank Brass coins I get from NWT Mint, wood and acylic.
The poker chips and Brass ones are very popular.

You can use a waterslide decal but you would have to seal it to protect it.

Mike Null
08-05-2011, 1:38 PM
MagicTouch makes a paper for laser printers called ORD 8.1 which does exactly what you want. This paper requires a heat press capable of maintaining a fixed temperature. Here's an example of a nametag done with this paper. The adhesive is in the paper's surface and apparently heat activated.

Martin Boekers
08-05-2011, 1:45 PM
Didn't know that.

I guess you could put a piece of sign vinyl on the back for protection if needed.
I'll have to get some of that.


Allan Wright
08-05-2011, 1:50 PM
You could use a quality double-sided tape, like from 3M. A good-quality, crystal-clear liquid adhesive would also work.

I'm unfamiliar with these liquid adhesives. Could you recommend one or two you prefer?

Thanks for the help!

Mike Null
08-05-2011, 1:59 PM

Check out the MagicTouch site. I think there's a demo there. This is the poor man's version of Acryliprint.

Allan Wright
08-05-2011, 2:01 PM
Thanks a bunch. I'll look into that right now.

Rodne Gold
08-05-2011, 2:06 PM
I just ordered a system to do just this on glass and acrylic-- you print on either a transparent or white film and use a glue and a uv cure machine , called photocrystal , real cheap , the printer with a continuous ink feed is $200, the uv exposure thing is about $120 m the paper is about 20c per a4 sheet and glues/ink is real cheap, only thing is that Im not sure whether you can print , apply and then laser cut without edge damage
I also ordered a button badge machine and a whole sublimation setup from them , impressive showroom and quality machinery and products and you can order small qtys of stuff, may be worth looking into...

Martin Boekers
08-05-2011, 2:24 PM

I checked their web page and signed in but no pricing was listed?

A bit confusing to a "Chinese" newbie.

Joe Pelonio
08-05-2011, 8:45 PM
The easiset method is to print on clear adhesive poly film (like vinyl but polyester) then adhere to the acrylic, screen print white over it with an ink that won't bleed the ink on the image, and finally laser cut. Use an image design that allows for imperfect alignment when you cut, for small parts using the same file with registration marks gets pretty close but not perfect.

Rodne Gold
08-05-2011, 11:18 PM
Yeh , their website isnt too hot , but they have a great catalogue and will mail you a price list - stupidly low pricing compared to what I would pay in south africa.
mail "Mr George" and ask for a printed catalogue and price list , ignore their minimum qtys, the printers they supply are the epson R230 and the R290 so spares etc arent a problem ...
With the UV curinbg unit , you can also glue glass to glass , glass to metal etc with totally water clear results (and use it to make polymer stamps or printed circuit borad or use it to cure UV curable resin domes...) Prices of their sublimatable items and photo crystal items are very good imo. even with freight its totally worthwhile to me..
sales01@sunmeta.com (sales01@sunmeta.com)

Joe Pelonio
08-05-2011, 11:20 PM

What kind of printer are you using to do that?Epson Stylus pro 64", a business associate does it for me. For little runs I use the inkjet and 8.5x11" clear film, but it's not as good for color saturation, and I have to use a white film over it so it doesn't run.

Kenneth Chan
08-07-2011, 3:18 AM
You may want to obtain those double sided transparent adhesive films. You can just print the images on good quality A4 papers using regular printers, and then apply the adhesive films together with the A4 paper to the back of the clear acrylic by using a laminator before laser cutting.