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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Acrylics Materials

Acrylics certainly fit the now generation. Hard as rock music, brilliant as a poster, and with no ties to the past. Chemically speaking, acrylic materials are a sort of one man band, they show up in so many forms. Spawned in the chemical lab, acrylic is a mixture of a liquid monomer with a powdered polymer. When these are combined into a loose slurry, and subjected to heat, one final result can be hard, flat, crystal-clear sheet like the ones used for the room divider.

Material with new potential
Acrylic glue materials don't really have a history, because they are so new. But there is a school of contemporary artists and craftsmen who are experimenting with far out applications. They believe the material in its many variations is perfectly suited to the designs and projects they are creating. They like and utilize the hard edged, pulsating colors, the pure transparency, the freedom to try new shapes and idea not at all in the tradition idiom.

Certainly, acrylic materials open the door for new techniques and applications that are usable by novice craftsmen as well as by professionals. Much potential is built into the plastic itself. A sheet can be cut with hand tools or power equipment in straight lines or curves. It can be drilled and shaped. Heated, it can be bent into gentle loops or the most intricate spirals.

Even gluing offers an opportunity for new applications. No ordinary adhesive holds the plastic sheets together. Instead, the glue is really a solvent that softens the material in a thin line until the two surfaces flow together and set into an almost invisible joint.