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Source For Lexan and Acrylic Glue (a.k.a. Solvent)
I wanted to incorporate bit guards and blade guards into the various jigs and fences I've been building lately, so I went to the orange big box DIY store the other day, and looked over their inventory of acrylic sheets and poly-carbonate sheets (sold as brand name Lexan.)

Just to clarify, acrylic is okay to use, and it's usually widely available in 1/4" thickness, but it's not shatter proof, so if you can get your hands on some 1/4" Lexan, you're MUCH better off. Lexan is a far superior guard material, because it is virtually shatter-proof, but it can be difficult to find in the 1/4" thickness.

There were plenty of smaller 2' x 4' acrylic pieces available, but the only Lexan they had was similar sized 1/8" pieces that seemed a bit too floppy.

And I cannot stress this enough, THEY DID NOT STOCK THE GLUE/SOLVENT MOST RECOMMENDED FOR CONNECTING TOGETHER PIECES OF ACRYLIC OR LEXAN (neither did the blue big box DIY store, by the way.)

So I picked up the acrylic (and no glue), but was determined to find a better source for both.

Later, I started Googling. What I found in almost every forum thread on the subject of plastic sheets and the glue to use with them, was that a person in the market for that stuff, should just Google "plastics retailers" or "plastics distributors", followed by "in the XXXX area", where "XXX" was the area where you live.

I gave it a try, and lo and behold, a ton of listings came up. I started calling them from nearest to furthest, and on about my fourth try (the first three didn't sell retail), I found what I would consider THE PERFECT SUPPLIER.

Their name is Laird Plastics. They have locations all over, and most of them have nice little retail shops right in the office end of their building. They not only had poly-carbonate sheets of pretty much any thickness, but the pleasant counter guy was happy to look out in the warehouse for a smaller cut-off at a discount, AND STOCKED NEATLY ON A SHELF, they had the Weldon #4 acrylic solvent that's most recommended (I bought the 4.5 ounce canister, but there were pints there too), along with the applicator bottle, and even different sizes of special purpose drill bits specifically for drilling plastic.

So if you're in the Providence, RI area, like me, they're located at 380 Jefferson Blvd., Warwick, RI.

Maybe I'm too easily excited about this sort of thing, but I'm THRILLED to have a plastics supplier so close. Hope you'll be too.

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