Drilling acrylic

Re: Drilling acrylic

Postby Brf » Mon Mar 05, 2018 4:04 pm

I believe that VPI utilizes cell cast Acrylic which is easier to work with. I never had an issue with acrylic deformation due to drill bit heat. The key is to make sure the drill bit is free from acrylic shavings (clogging) by using a series of shallow plunges. A 1/4" hole is a piece of cake.
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Re: Drilling acrylic

Postby 10ovr » Mon Mar 05, 2018 4:32 pm

The heat well come when you hit the metal,,,
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Re: Drilling acrylic

Postby bdp24 » Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:37 pm

Thanks Brf and Golear. I am dealing with two separate hole issues with the HW-19 plinth:

1- The original hole for the stock bearing housing (1" diameter) was enlarged by a former owner, and measures just a hair under 1-1/4". The TNT bearing I have (the early, 1-1/4" aluminum version with three little holes in the housing's mounting collar/flange for securing the housing to the plinth) is just a hair too large to fit in that hole. I bought a 1" drum sander to enlarge the hole just enough to allow the bearing housing to slide into it. I decided sanding the acrylic will be easier and safer than using a drill bit, no danger of damaging the acrylic. The hole in the bottom steel plate under the acrylic will not be involved with that hole, as it is considerably larger in diameter.

2- The TNT bearing housing has, as I mentioned above, three little holes for screws to secure the housing to the plinth. The mounting collar/flange on the housing is larger than the HW-19 Mk.2 original, and the three holes further from the hole's center than the original holes are (which are still there, of course). So I need to drill the three holes, each 1/8" diameter. I found a 1/8" Black & Decker drill bit made specifically for glass and tile to get through the acrylic.

Then for the bottom steel plate I bought a 1/8" Irwin Cobalt bit, the Cobalt good for getting through steel. I'm not yet sure the three bolts will be far enough from the center of the 1-1/4" hole to encounter the steel plate, but will find out when I've drilled through the acrylic layer.

I'll take pics as I proceed, for all to see. Thanks again---Eric.
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Re: Drilling acrylic

Postby Brf » Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:54 pm

Eric, you’ll be fine. Even if you hit the steel plate, the drill bit will pass through it as long as you go slowly and exercise patience. You also have the option of taking your 1.25”bearings to any machine show and have them thread it to accept a bolt, that way you can secure the bearing using a compression fitting like the TNT Mk4/5 bearings.

While you have the bearing out, don’t forget to inspect both the tungsten thrust plate and ball bearing for wear.
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Re: Drilling acrylic

Postby bdp24 » Tue Mar 06, 2018 11:56 pm

Yep Brf, I bought a couple of the silica nitride ball bearings from Boca to install in both the HW-19 and Aries 1. HW told me I could send VPI the 1-1/4" bearing housing, and they will shave off 1/8". The hole in the HW-19's plinth is only 1/16" too small, the sanding drum will take that off very easily. My other TNT bearing is the 1" threaded stainless steel version, and it's going in the Aries. Both platters are the TNT-3/4 version (7/8" lead-lined aluminum, 3/8" Delrin). Thanks again---Eric.
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