Aluminum to plexiglass

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  #1  
Old 08-12-03, 09:07 PM
carisha
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Unhappy Aluminum to plexiglass

I don't know which forum to post this in, so I guess I'll start here. I'm building a coffee table with a plexiglass top and hollow square aluminum legs. I was originally told to use epoxy to bond the two together; however, that did not work at all. Any suggestions on what to use (preferably clear) to bond the plexi and the aluminum?
 
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Old 08-13-03, 05:18 AM
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carisha:

Did you glue the plexi directly to the end of the leg or is there an aluminum frame for it to sit on?
 
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Old 08-13-03, 12:54 PM
carisha
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Aluminum to plexi--directly glued

I glued the plexi directly to the aluminum leg...definitely didn't work. I want (and I know this is wishful thinking) a sleek, modern look...no frame. But I'm beginning to think there has to be a frame. However, I refuse to put some sort of rectangular frame on the plexi...there has to be a way!!
 
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Old 08-13-03, 03:42 PM
SalvageCzar
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My business, architectural and ornamental salvage, has me dismantling things rather than assembling things so I have no clue how to make your plan work - - BUT - - I've dismantled lots of frameless glass, plexglass, Lexan etc tables with legs that that *appear* to be glued or epoxied ... most recently at a large office building where we recovered several large frameless glass magazine tables with metal legs from a waiting room and lobby. The designer of these tables, and of other frameless tables that I've recovered for resale, didn't glue or epoxy the legs to the glass - the legs were screwed or bolted to the floor and the glass simply rested on the top of the legs. I dunno, maybe that will work for you, maybe not.
 
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Old 08-13-03, 05:09 PM
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carisha:

How about this:

You could fashion four hardwood plugs that would drive into the ends of each leg. A pilot hole would be drilled in the end of the hardwood and then a countersunk stainless steel screw would fasten the top to the leg.

Maybe something here:
<img src="http://www.leevalley.com/images/item/hardware/fasteners/05e01xxgs.jpg">

Check out Lee Valley.
 
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Old 08-13-03, 07:14 PM
NutAndBoltKing
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carisha: Companies that build custom metal and plexiglass/Lexan display cases for trade shows, museums, ship models, sports memorabilia and etc use the type of epoxy you need.

I'd check the Yellow pages or The Blue Book for Display Manufacturers and Suppliers near you.

The display company that used to be near me used a solvent to first clean and prepare the surfaces; then they carefully measured, mixed and applied the soupy, milkish colored, super stinky epoxy; and then they used lots of clamps to hold everything in place for a couple of minutes.

The stuff dried fast. It dried clear and invisible. It has very little working time.

I do not know what strengths the epoxies they used were rated for, or if they in fact had any structural ratings of any kind. I do know that it stuck anything to almost anything and was a skin, eye, and respiratory danger.

If my memory is right, it cost (I bought some from them a couple of times and used it years back) from $40 to $60 total for the three quart (I think they were quart) containers (one of a solvent/cleaner, one resin, one hardener) and plastic hand pumps to get the stuff from the cans at proper amounts.
 
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Old 08-13-03, 07:25 PM
NutAndBoltKing
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PS

a PS: I just remembered that they used to wear gloves and masks; and always used paper cups and plastic throw-away knives to mix and apply the epoxy. Tough stuff to clean up, impossible to clean once it dries. I also think it was a DuPont product.
 
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Old 08-14-03, 10:14 PM
alumtuna
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use VHB tape

Hello Carisa,

Do not get put off by using tape. This tape is an industrial version of 2 sided tape. Its made by 3M and once it cures you would have to practically chisel the plexiglass to get it off. Cure rates are normally about 24 hrs. You could reposition the tape 1 or twice. Also all surfaces must be very clean with alcohol prior to assembly. They sell different widths/colors also.

Really some neat stuff and helped me out alot in other situations. The tape is used for large truck panels and airwing sections.
 
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Old 08-28-03, 11:18 AM
S
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The purpose of a frame is to hold the legs rigid, to prevent them from wobbling and breaking off. The stronger your connection is, the less rigid your frame needs to be. I saw a table similar to what you've described, and it had a frame. However, the frame was on the floor, with the legs sticking up to hold the top. This allowed the legs to retain their rigidity and at the same time let the top appear to float above them. The legs were not even fastened to the top.

Good luck, and have fun.
 
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