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Video: Easy Acrylic Unmasking

Posted by Emily on 3 January 2019

We do a lot of laser cutting here at Pololu as part of our custom laser-cutting service, so we know first hand how tedious it can be to remove the paper masking from laser cut parts like acrylic. Check out the video below for a simple trick you can use to speed up the process.


Ah! Removing the masking from Acrylic! I've tried many techniques in the past W/ some success, but the best way (especially if the Acrylic is old), is to place the part into a sealable plastic bag and add a couple ounces of Alcohol solvent. Let it sit for about 20 minutes and then the masking just slides off so easily!
We've never tried this but we know rubbing alcohol causes acrylic to crack and haze. Is that what you're using or some other alcohol-based solvent?

I use Denatured Alcohol, which is available in 1 Quart cans. It may be purchased from the major paint stores that cater to the Automotive trade. "Big Box" stores will probably have it as well! The ingredients are listed as: Ethyl Alcohol, Methyl Alcohol, Ethyl Acetate & Heptane. Since the solvent is not in contact W/ your Acrylic for an extended time, there is little time for hazing & cracking to appear. Wear common "Blue" painters gloves, do not breathe the fumes and wash the Acrylic w/ slightly warm, soapy water and then rinse after the masking has been removed. Pour off the used solvent and store in a tightly capped can or bottle for re-use!
Thanks for the detailed response. We'll have to try it sometime!


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