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Can I cut 1mm thick polycarbonate with a KNK Maxx?

trectrec Member Posts: 2
Hello all,

First post on this forum so apologies if it is in the wrong place. I am thinking about buying this KNK Maxx and will be using it to cut 1mm thick polycarbonate plastic. Can anyone advise if this is a material that the Maxx can cut and work with easily? Any help is appreciated.



  • leslie6111leslie6111 Member Posts: 2,379
    If no one comes around to answer this question today - I would suggest you call knk on Monday and ask - they might even be willing to test cut some of the material for you. I know that you can cut mylar and acetate on these types of cutters - but they are relatively soft plastics.

  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,263
    @trec - since I am not familiar with this material, don't have any to test, I suggest you try a test yourself. Take a piece, and with an exacto or other similar type of box cutter knife, and with an even pressure, cut it. I don't mean press with all your weight, just an even pressure as if you were cutting boxing material. Since I have googled this material and I get this as part of the description: "shatterproof windows, lightweight eyeglass lenses, and such" I am going to suggest that NO, this is not a suitable cutter for your purposes. It is suggested that this material be cut with a circular saw. Hope that helps.

  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,263
    As another thought, you may be able to cut this with the rotary tool attachment that is sold as an accessory for the KNK Force cutter. You can read more here: https://knkusa.com/knk-force-cutter/
  • 1cardcreator1cardcreator Member Posts: 846
    @trec ; I would definitely ask someone to test cut your exact material. Polycarbonate is also known under the brand name Lexan, I used to sell this product to industrial graphic printers.  One of the major properties of it, is the toughness and strength anti scratch properties.  Most of your touch pads for cars and appliances are made out of this because they are so strong.  Not at all like polyester.  You rarely see the touch pad for a microwave with a crack or scratch in it.   It all depends on your product, I think our cutting mats may be made out of polycarbonate and they can be scratched, but just not that easily.  ~Diane
  • Liz_ALiz_A Member Posts: 10,263
    @1cardcreator - are you sure? The materials made of polycarbonate: "plastic lenses in eyewear, in medical devices, automotive components, protective gear, greenhouses, Digital Disks (CDs, DVDs, and Blu-ray), and exterior lighting fixtures, are engineering plastics in that they are typically used for more capable, robust materials such as in impact resistant “glass-like” surfaces." does not sound like a description that matches our flexible, easy to cut through cutting mats :).

  • Crazy_Mr_ZingCrazy_Mr_Zing Member Posts: 3,510
    I'm not sure but I think the cutting mats are probably polypropylene

    I have my doubts about cutting polycarbonate I would imagine it would be quite tough on blades
    The roof sheeting can be cut with shears or several strokes of a utility knife but it not really a smooth finish
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  • GabeGabe Moderator Posts: 4,550
    I agree with Liz. I think the KNK Force would be a better choice precisely because it has a rotary cutter attachment.  You could use a very small diameter bit, much like a small needle, and cut your shapes with that.  It would produce a "sanded" look on the edge of the cutout, so I don't know if that is a show stopper for you.
  • 1cardcreator1cardcreator Member Posts: 846
    @Liz_A ;  I am not positive what current manufacturers use for their mats, I remember I had read a suggestion from another member suggesting the use.
    "kb25t17 Member Posts: 277
    March 2014 edited March 2014
    You can purchase flexible polycarbonate sheet in 24" x 48" sizes from Tap Plastics. They don't have it listed on the web site but it is in stock in their stores. They have several thicknesses of it including .02" and .06" (1/16). I just got a piece of it yesterday to make a custom sized mat for my Silver Bullet that uses .02" thick mats. The store does not charge for cutting it into smaller sizes, at least the Seattle store did not."
    I sold the matte Lexan (polycarbonate) to screen printers 20 years ago, it was referred to as Lexan film, in thicknesses of 15 to 30 mil most commonly for the application of items inside the auto dashboard and appliances like microwave touch pads.  In addition to the other qualities it had properties that would stand up to cleaners and was also excellent for conductivity, all substrates do not allow the electrical current to move within it.  Back in the day, some screeners were printing circuit boards on to the polycarbonate film.
    I am sure technology has changed greatly since then, I retired in 1997 to care for my inlaws.
    We also sold clear Lexan (polycarbonate) sheet to the glazing industry.  It was used then in the manufacture of bullet resistant glass in thicknesses of around 1.5 to 2 inches.
    Back then the only shiny material I sold to screen printers was callendered vinyl, to make credit cards in around 30 mil.
    As I said I have been out of the industry a long time so my information is probably as ancient as I am lol.  ~Diane

  • trectrec Member Posts: 2
    Thank you all for your replies. Looks like the Maxx might not be the right tool for the job. I will look into the Force with the rotary cutter.
  • SandyMcCSandyMcC Member Posts: 7,539
    I noticed that Chad at KNK USA left a response to your question on the KNK USA forum.
    Sandy McCauley
    Cutting with KNK Force, Maxx Air, Zing Orbit, Skycut C and D
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