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Routering edges on ACM panels to fold on itself

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Frank Ronan

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Post Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:24 pm

Routering edges on ACM panels to fold on itself

Hi, recently we have been asked to fold or v groove acm(diabond) panels on the edges so you cant see the edge lip of the acm. This fold is returned only on the thickness of the acm sheet. the problem is returning the 3mm edge on itself is not easy. Currently we are using a hard rubber wheel. Alot of this work has to be done onsite aswell. Anybody know is there an easier way of doing this?
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Ian Johnston

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Post Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:57 pm

HI Frank.
Ideally you need a Festool pf-1200 to do this on site, well worth the investment
leave an extra 25-30mm beyond your edge you need,
V groove then cut with a very sharp Stanley knife along the Pink line as per the drawing, at the edge of the V cut, cut down to and score into the Aluminium but NOT THROUGH IT. Fold you folded corner and then fold backwards and the Front face of Aluminium will snap along the knife cut.

Leaves a very tidy edge and adds £££ to the look, time consuming, but we do a lot of Bespoke ACM fascias throughout the UK & Ireland and finish them all like this,
unfortunately all our competitors don't so hopefully they will see this and start doing it now too :D they'll soon understand why they where cheaper :o
Attachments
folded edge on ACM.JPG
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Post Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:24 pm

In use a exact tool it's cheap does the job is very useful for other jobs you can set the depth from 0 to 14mm so cutting 2mm in a 3mm leaves a nice gap for folding.
Works a treat. ;)

Just need a ruler when doing I got mine for 35£ ;)

http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Exakt-Precision-Tools
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Harry Cleary

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Post Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:01 pm

That's a nice way of doing it Ian!
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Phill Fenton

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Post Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:46 pm

Yes thanks Ian - that's a great tip, I tried this myself this morning and it works well and gives a good finish to the edge. :D
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Hugh Potter

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:08 pm

love the principle of it Ian but I have to admit - I coughed a bit at the £1500 price tag for a circular saw that didn't even include a blade!

Hugh
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Ian Johnston

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:53 pm

Hugh Potter wrote:love the principle of it Ian but I have to admit - I coughed a bit at the £1500 price tag for a circular saw that didn't even include a blade!

Hugh


TBH Hugh i know where your coming from
but we use our Festool pf1200 on nearly every job , so in principle its like using a Scalpel blade to cut vinyl letters or using a £3K plotter.
There are machine that just do a Job, but do it Very Well :D
Some of the ACM shopfront we do are in excess of £10K+ , they demand a bespoke finish that can only be achieved on site with the right tools
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Vic Adair

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 1:10 pm

You could use a hand wrouter with a V groove cutter for a lot less, does the same job.
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Ian Johnston

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 1:42 pm

Hi Vic,
A router will never leave the same finish as a pf1200, because of the cutting action of the bit,
I though the same , but used it once and seen the difference
There are numerous reasons , a major one is the swarf is blunt and doesn't score the face of the sheet when turning, guide wheels control the depth of the cut, never too deep , even if dropped ,
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David McDonald

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 2:05 pm

Second what Ian says.

The Festool milling tool is excellent. Quick, easy to use, blade seems to last forever, and always a perfect depth and finish.

Yes, its expensive but it doesn't take many jobs to give a return and its more than just making trays - we've over clad numerous shop fronts with aluminium composite as its easy to measure, cut and fold on-site.

OK I don't think there are millions in circulation but you never ever see one for sale second hand - once you get one its a tool you dont want to give up.

Cheers
Macky
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Hugh Potter

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 2:09 pm

Ian Johnston wrote:
Hugh Potter wrote:love the principle of it Ian but I have to admit - I coughed a bit at the £1500 price tag for a circular saw that didn't even include a blade!

Hugh


TBH Hugh i know where your coming from
but we use our Festool pf1200 on nearly every job , so in principle its like using a Scalpel blade to cut vinyl letters or using a £3K plotter.
There are machine that just do a Job, but do it Very Well :D
Some of the ACM shopfront we do are in excess of £10K+ , they demand a bespoke finish that can only be achieved on site with the right tools


I do see where you're coming from, I would love 'a tool for every job' and I do try to have the right tools for every eventuality but the truth is, I just don't do enough trays to warrant the outlay, that said, it's something I'll keep an eye on now I'm aware of it!
Hugh
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Vic Adair

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Post Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:53 pm

Must admit it does look easy to do using the track.... Put it on my Wish list.
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Frank Ronan

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Post Sat Mar 01, 2014 8:35 am

Great example Ian thanks for that, we have been doing alot of onsite work recently , I researched the Festool had a look at it, looks like a great machine will never know till I see it in use. Currently we are doing alot of this acm folded edges onsite 4mm acm firstly setting up a straight edge to cut with a circular saw then adjusting the straight edge and setting up the router which has a v groove cutter. I know the festool comes with guild rails etc but what time would this save you onsite. Taking into account the festool just routers the panel you still have to cut your acm to size with a skill saw. What time does the festool save you in this process to justify its return on cost etc.
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Gert du Preez

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Post Tue Mar 04, 2014 9:31 pm

Wot I do is to cut through the composite with a normal 6mm endmill (CNC router) along the edge of the composite. For the cheaper 3mm (Koma Alu) I "clear" 6mm wide and 2.5mm deep. After routing, the remainder of the plastic material is trimmed away to the alu with an NT cutter. This leaves a 6mm "lip" of the thin alu skin, which is then folded over the side, and a little over to the back.

Folding (or rather, Rolling) is done with a piece of Perspex, running along the side and folding over.

It is easier with the cheaper composites with a thin skin. It becomes a PITA to do it with the better quality material like Alcopolic or Reynobond, but it can still be done.

I must add I mostly do this on smaller signs, like Fire Safety signs. On the bigger signs, a normal groove and 25+ mm returns are used to make a tray.

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