So what are the differences between Extruded Acrylic and Cast Acrylic sheets?
The differences are few and far between, but they can make a difference to your end product so they should be considered.
When Extruded Acrylic is manufactured it has consistent thickness across the sheet making it ideal for general fabrication and suitable for a variety of applications. Extruded sheets have a higher tolerance when heated or bent; more malleable than Cast Acrylic it can also be easily flame polished and it bonds exceptionally well when used in conjunction with solvent based adhesives.
These sheets are as much as ten times more resistant to impact than glass so they are recommended for greenhouse glazing, shed and garage windows and indoor applications such as office screens and dividers.
Cast Acrylic is the highest quality acrylic; more expensive than Extruded it offers the best optical clarity, greater thermal stability and higher resistance when exposed to solvents. With a slightly harder surface than Extruded, Cast acrylic has a less consistent sheet thickness with up to a +/-10% variation possible across the sheet; it is thermo-formable and can be reworked hot, which is not always possible with Extruded sheets.
The surface finish, flatness and optical properties of Cast Acrylic sheets are all superior to those of Extruded Acrylic sheets.
Both types of Acrylic sheet offer outstanding surface hardness and durability, excellent UV stability and are virtually shatter-proof so whether you choose Cast or Extruded Acrylic for your next project, you will not be disappointed.