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Last weekend I was having some trouble reliably handling thin acrylic stock, specifically putting two .220" wide .015" deep slots into .660" wide strips of .030" acrylic. This morning was more successful:

The router leaves a rather pretty moire pattern as I'm feeding by hand so my feed rate isn't perfectly steady. Pics of new jigs under the cut )

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Pleasant surprise: Vinyl tubing is surprisingly easy to heat form. Put a spring in it, heat to 165F for ten minutes, cool slowly, remove spring. It retained the bend perfectly with no kinking.

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...the ignition I was looking for. Surprisingly difficult to track down. Not scarce, just one of those things where the search terms were hard to come by.

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I've recently started a model project (souping up a Visible V8!) and one of the first things that came up is... with what do you lubricate it? Ask a chemist "what lubricants attack polystyrene?" and the answer is something close to "Oh, wow, just about everything."

The Visible V8 manual advises using vegetable oil, which is a great choice only if you want to sell a brand new model every six weeks. Polystyrene slowly dissolves in virtually all natural oils, and vegetable oil also polymerizes into a solid gunk in the presence of oxygen.

The Internet is full of completely ludicrous advice on the subject of lubricants and styrene. And, of course, vendors don't want to tell you what's in their products or what their criteria is for declaring a particular lubricant 'compatible' with a given polymer. MSDSs are useful for establishing that several lube vendors are probably, to put it bluntly, lying through their teeth about compatibility.

So, what to do? We test.

More under the cut )


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