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I haven't actually built an entire case as such out of this material, but I started making things out of Perspex at the age of 5, at my first school. This was around 60 yrs ago, and in those days we were taught quite useful things like that and didn't need to wear masks, gauntlets and whatever else, to satisfy the Health & Safety guys!

I have made very many items of all sorts since then, including several audio-related (like turntables) and it is a very versatile plastic, in my opinion. Also it has very good physical damping properties, and will make a good enclosure for audio circuits, which some audio manufacturers like DNM, for one, take advantage of.

It can be machined by using normal wood tools with some care, as it is rather more prone to cracking being more brittle, but sawing, filing and drilling etc., is much the same as with hardwoods, although there is no grain to worry about.

Sharp tools used with slowish speeds, or the Perspex can melt with generated heat, are the way to machine this acrylic plastic, and it can be drilled & tapped for threaded screws, or glued with acrylic cements etc., for joining purposes. Cyanoacrylates work quite well to stick small parts together, but the best method of joining larger similar parts is to use Acetone which dissolves the parent plastic so it can be welded together to give an almost invisible join.

Heating to around boiling point in water will make the Perspex go soft almost like butter, so that it can be formed readily, or ovens or hot-air guns can be used with care for this. I still love the smell of Perspex being sawn or drilled, as it has a wonderful 'almondy' smell while being worked, which takes me back so many years!

If you have any specific queries about the construction or machining of the parts, I will be pleased to offer what help I can, but where designs go, this is so personal that you should resolve this on your own, I believe.

Good luck with anything which you have a go at. :)


Over the years, I have seen several pics of Peter Daniel's work using acrylic in the construction of some of his units, but IIRC these were mainly largish chunky blocks of acrylic which were sometimes drilled/bored-out to locate electrolytic caps etc.

Maybe he has also used acrylic in full case-work construction, and it is worth asking him, if you are interested, as I am not too familiar with these things.

He always seems glad to be helpful to DIY'ers, and a query in his "Audiosector" thread never seems to go for long without any answer.

Thankyou for replies, especialy Bobken very informative. It is a brittle material as I found out when I drilled a PC case to fit a fan. My drll bits melted it and I snapped it.

Drills used for acrylic should have a shallower point than HSS types. If you Google "working with acrylic" you can find lots of tips on how to work with it properly. ;)

Here is something I have just started on.

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Hi again

Yes Ill definately do a Google to find out how to work with the stuff, however, I'm not imaginitive, thats why I asked to see some pics to get some ideas:confused:

Thankyou:worship: I hope you don't mind, I won't copy anything. There's so many metal cases in HiFi, perspex makes a change. Also I don't have any nice timber, which makes a nice case, as you know.

It's hard not to copy something these days. There are only so many practical shapes for a hi-fi case, and I bet they have all been tried by now!

And I don't mind admitting that I look around for inspiration when I am planning something. We all need some inspiration! ;)

There is only one real skill in this game - and that is making something that is affordable! :att'n:
Clever - but not very pretty IMHO! The trouble with using that clear acrylic is that everything inside is visible and you have to go to great lengths to make it look 'good'! It looks odd to me having the amplifier module off-centre.

But it does show us a relatively easy way to make up a case using acrylic and wood!
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