How to Build an Acrylic Display Case How to Build an Acrylic Display Case

There are many reasons why you would want to have an acrylic display case. If you are a collector of anything from signed baseballs to costumes worn in movies then an acrylic display case is something you must have. The following article will show you how to build an acrylic display case.

Tools and Materials:

  • Carbide tipped saw
  • Acrylic glue
  • Silicone caulk
  • Clamps
  • Rags
  • Measuring tape
  • Display item
  • Newspapers
  • Safety goggles
  • Safety mask
  • Work gloves
  • Acrylic sheets
  • Hinges
  • Drill
  • Drill bits
  • Kitchen torch
  • (2) 1/8-inch long bolts
  • Utility knife
  • Strap of leather
  • Sandpaper
  • Masking tape

Step 1 - Determine the Size of the Acrylic Display Case

Decide what it is you want to display within the acrylic display case. This will determine how big you need the display case to be. Measure the height, width and depth of the display item. Add several inches to the measurements to give the item ample clearance. You need to think about the acrylic display case in three dimensions. You need four sides that are identical and a top and bottom that are equal to the width and the depth of the overall acrylic display case.

Step 2 - Cutting the Acrylic

Make sure you are wearing your safety equipment because cutting acrylic can spin off small pieces into your eyes or smaller ones you can inhale. Lay the newspapers down on your work surface and place the acrylic sheets on top. Measure out your pieces onto the acrylic scoring the lines with a utility knife. Use the saw to cut out the pieces. Sand down the edges when you are finished.

Step 3 - Assembling the Acrylic Display Case

Place one of the ends onto the work area and apply acrylic glue to the side and attach one of the other ends so that it is standing up. Repeat with the third side, top and bottom until you have a box without a back. Apply clamps to the pieces. Use a rag to wipe off excess acrylic glue from the inside. Apply silicone caulk to the inside of the acrylic display case along the seams. Allow the acrylic glue to cure for at least a day.

Step 4 - Finishing

Place the remaining side on top of the acrylic display case to cover the opening. Determine where you want to place the hinges and then attach them to the remaining side and the stationary side. Once your door is attached with hinges you can stand the acrylic display case up in the orientation you intend for it to be in. Tape the door closed with a piece of masking tape. Opposite the hinges find the center of the door about an inch from the edge. Make a mark and do the same on the side around that corner. Melt the acrylic with the torch at the mark and quickly place a bolt. Sink it about 1/4 of the way through. Melt the acrylic more if you need. Repeat with the side. Cut a wide slice in the leather and place the bolt through it. Stretch it over to the side, make a wide slit and slip the bolt through it. Cut off the excess leather.

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