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16 October 2010
Author: Giorgos Lazaridis
Acrylic Glass Folding Heater

Worklog - The idea - The laser - The lamp (October 16 2010)

Who doesn't know the acrylic glass? Most probably yo know it with the name "Plexi glass" which is actually a brand that makes such materials. I use this material a lot. And many times, i want to fold it into an angle. To fold the acrylic glass, it must be heated in a specific temperature (i think this is about 80 oC), and then the heated area can be folded easily. When the material is cold again, it will stay as formed.

To heat the material, i used a heat gun, the same that i use for heat-shrinks. But this method has some drawbacks. First of all, you need a lot of time to heat the glass. Also, to fold the material in a straight edge, it must be heated only at this edge. With the heating gun this is impossible as it heats a very big surface. Also, the heating cannot be done evenly. So, i decided to make a heating apparatus!

Heating source???

To heat the material, i will need a heating source. Fist i began searching for heaters like the ones used in electric towel heaters. Too expensive! Nearly $35 for just the heating resistor. But the heater had to be long and thin, something that the towel heaters do qualify. Then i turned into UV heaters, but hey, i got enough UV from the sun, i do not need more... And then i remembered that i have a treasure in my museum. If you happen to have read older projects, you would know about the photo copier that i chopped quite a while ago. The printing was done with laser, and as we all know, laser printers have a heating element long enough to cover the paper width. So, how this heater works?

I located the heater. It was a long thick tube, with a black heat conductive coating. And inside this tube, guess what i found. Guess what heats this tube. A lamp! Yes, inside this tube there was a long lamp, the same that is used for high power head lights. I tested to see if it was working and worked perfectly. The lamp draws 3.5 amperes, which means that it is 840 Watts.

With no further ado, i began making a housing for this lamp:

This is the heater of the laser pronter And inside i found a high power lamp! I will use simple profiled metal sheets I cut 4 pieces from this metal sheet
This is how they will be fixed finally I made holes to all 4 corners, front and back And then, using brads to fix them this is how it looks from the back side

And this is the front side (remember that you can click to all photos to enlarge):

The lamp into position

Now i need to make a base for the lamp

For the base, i will use 2 more short pieces of the same profile From which i cut one side completely And with the angle grinder i grinned a slot for the flat part of the lamp This is how the lamp goes into the slot
And this is how the lamp will me fixed into position Then i made 2 holes to each base I placed it inside the housing and marked the holes I fixed the bases on the housing with brads

And this is the final result:



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  • At 6 May 2014, 2:38:40 user buce wrote:   [reply @ buce]
    • good afternoon

      Kamenos .... I was introduced Buce %u200B%u200Bof Borneo Indonesia I was very pleased with the files and acrylic glass folding heater at the circuit there is a pic 12F615 microcontroller IC. if I can get the list of programmers, software and downloadernya so I can try if the device can operate ... if Kamenos pleased I could be sent to a file that has been filled in the chip and at what price.

      thank you

  • At 20 March 2012, 7:16:45 user Giorgos Lazaridis wrote:   [reply @ Giorgos Lazaridis]
    • @Charlie i used to use a hot-air gun for bending but believe me, there is no comparison. Unless you make a base which blows equally hot air in a small region.

  • At 19 March 2012, 13:25:25 user Charlie wrote:   [reply @ Charlie]
    • if i remember correctly, genuine folders use a slow flow of hot air, which may work better than light. so perhaps a hot air gun will work great!

  • At 23 November 2011, 15:42:04 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @Emmanuel the schematic is similar to the circuit that i link to. Very small changes (such as some zerner diodes and staff) are all marked on the new schematic. The parts are labeled on the schematic. Which of the parts are you having problem to clarify?

  • At 23 November 2011, 5:12:18 user Emmanuel wrote:   [reply @ Emmanuel]
    • hallo again sir, i'd like to clarify the bills of requirement. im having troubles about it since you've change the circuitry of the PCB. i was wondering if you could post it as well so i can figure out where and what requirements to use.. im abit confuse on that part... TIA..

  • At 12 November 2011, 0:13:03 user Emmanuel wrote:   [reply @ Emmanuel]
    • wow! thank you very much sir.. this will help me on my bender problems... i'll let you know if it does or does not work.. again thanks.. i'm off shopping for the parts in need.. hehehe!!

  • At 3 November 2011, 13:26:25 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @Emmanuel Ah i see what you mean, you want the PCB and the parts layout. Ok, i uploaded them in the 3rd page (http://pcbheaven.com/projectpages/Acrylic_Glass_Folding_Heater/?p=2&topic=worklog)

      Keep in mind that:
      1. You need to CONFIRM twice that the TRIAC is correctly connected. Check the datasheet of the triac. If it is not correctly placed, then the optocoupler may be damaged.
      2. There is LIVE HIGH VOLTAGE on the board. Take super extra precautions, and make sure you've read and understand this first:

  • At 2 November 2011, 8:12:50 user Emmanuel wrote:   [reply @ Emmanuel]
    • @kammenos Bro im abit confuse on how to translate the diagram, i don't know much about electrical diagrams or how translate it, i just wanted to see/ask the full drawing which i can read, like where these 1 ohm resistor goes to etc. basically a drawing type with labels on it so i can understand which and where to put those capacitors, resistors, diodes etc on full PCB look. like on your worklog page 3 on "electronic staff" you labeled a pic there named "the artwork" for your final PCB design. if i could just have that drawing with labels on it so it would be easy for me to follow through..

      thanks in advance..

  • At 30 October 2011, 6:14:17 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @Emmanuel the original circuit is here:http://pcbheaven.com/circuitpages/PIC_DCV_Controlled_AC_Dimmer/
      with all the details needed.

  • At 28 October 2011, 8:20:11 user Emmanuel wrote:   [reply @ Emmanuel]
    • @kammenos yeah sure im trying to find out where are the details and the design of your circuit board so that i can create it. i really do need some helping doing this project of mine. so i can use it for my other project.. please do reply.


  • At 28 October 2011, 4:56:49 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @Emmanuel i suppose the heater you use is a resistive wire, you can use a simple dimmer like i did.

  • At 28 October 2011, 4:41:14 user Emmanuel wrote:   [reply @ Emmanuel]
    • hi there Giorgos

      i've been searching for this kind of bending Machine, and i found it.. i build the same thingy but mine has no cooling type and i can control the heat it produces. i tried looking something to control the amount it gave out, i use a wire from a microwave oven "microme wire" (thats what it is called here in my place). it gives out up to 1500 degrees of heat. i don't know much about circuitry. can you dimmer which can control the amount of heat of the rod will do the same for my "microme wire"? thanks and im looking forward for your reply.

  • At 2 June 2011, 12:07:31 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @michelle everything is detailed documented in the worklog. Read the worklog pages and you will find that there is a pump.

  • At 2 June 2011, 8:59:19 user michelle wrote:   [reply @ michelle]
    • hi there
      love your machine but could u explain, how you make the water circulate/
      what must i use and where is it placed??

      thanks alot


  • At 14 April 2011, 21:18:37 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • @Miodrag the special glue is a kind of glue that is completely transparent and looks very much alike water. When the glue is poured onto plexiglass, the plastic melts temporary. So, when two plastics are put together under pressure and there is this glue between them, they melt and they join together. When the glue evaporates, they become solids again. The bond is very strong. I do not have the glue bottle, as i was given a small quantity into a glass bottle. But if i find more info i will post it.

  • At 13 April 2011, 22:15:57 user Miodrag wrote:   [reply @ Miodrag]
    • Well, impressive explanation !

      But, can You be a little bit specific on what kind of 'special glue' You used and what was the exact procedure for joining those two plexi parts at the end !

      Maybe that can be a separate explanation project ? :-)


  • At 14 January 2011, 6:02:43 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • Hi SoftEe. All materials are listed within the worklog pages. i am not sure about the type of the lamp. actually , it is not lamp, i think it is something like this:

      The one i have i measured it at 800 Watts, which is super high. If you get yours, get at least half smaller. The dimmer materials are listed on the schematic (click to enlarge). When you finish it, send me images of your design and i will post it in my blog.

  • At 13 January 2011, 22:20:50 user SoftEe wrote:   [reply @ SoftEe]
    • Impressive! This reminds me when I was in junior high. Pretty much everything electrical I owned I took apart to see if I could improve it or make something different. Do you have a full materials list available? I would love to build one of these for projects around my house. One main project to hide electrical components behind my flat screen TV like this company without having to pay their outrageous prices. HIDEitmounts.com. Following my completion I will post a picture if that's ok. I live a block from a Radio Shack and 1/8 of a mile from a hardware store. I'm thinking this should be pretty straight forward. I'm excited to try it!

  • At 5 December 2010, 21:04:05 user Rob in Belfast wrote:   [reply @ Rob in Belfast]
    • Superb!

      This is exactly what I am looking for. I have some work to do at home and I need an acrylic strip heater - I no longer have access at work.

  • At 3 December 2010, 22:56:18 user Mario wrote:   [reply @ Mario]
    • Sorry, I haven't seen the "worklog" page tab...

  • At 3 December 2010, 4:02:01 user Arutan wrote:   [reply @ Arutan]
    • Very instructive !
      Thanks and all the best !

  • At 2 December 2010, 18:03:57 user FlashGordon wrote:   [reply @ FlashGordon]
    • Nice thinking.
      My grandfather had already made something similar (but simpler) in the 50-s/60-s when plexiglass was still pioneer stuff. Instead of aluminium/water, he used two sheets of asbestos. Instead of a lamp he used 4 resistor wires (3 on bottom, 1 on top) in between the asbestos sheets, where he put the plexi. Operated on 50 volts.

  • At 2 December 2010, 5:58:33 user Kammenos wrote:   [reply @ Kammenos]
    • There are many materials to be used instead of aluminum indeed. but they come bit expensive.

  • At 2 December 2010, 4:50:10 user Labib Baroudi wrote:   [reply @ Labib Baroudi]
    • Hi there Giorgos

      I like your work and way of thinking I though you might have used marble insted of aluminume I think I saw someone do that using thick marble I have no idea what type is that marble but it was thick one anyway keep the good work you did realy great job, I just love it and your site is full of matirials I would come back and sure got it in my feeder.

      From Lebanon country

  • At 20 November 2010, 8:26:59 user Gangat <Mohsin wrote:   [reply @ Gangat <Mohsin]
    • Please mail me such pojects
      that was fantastic

    reddit this Reddit this

     HOT in heaven!

    NEW in heaven!

    New Theory: AC electric motor working principle

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