Can I Use a CNC Router To Cut Plastic?

Cutting Plastic with CNC Router

Computer numerical control (or “CNC”) routers are certainly making waves in the manufacturing world. And with their unparalleled accuracy and incredible long-term flexibility (thanks to their ability to run any number of different programs), it’s little wonder why. But are they really appropriate for any use?

CNC routers for plastics are a worthwhile investment, and an integral part of any industry toolkit. We recommend them highly as a means to minimize waste and produce the high-precision cuts that build consumer confidence in your product.

Picking the Right Router

While CNC routers can, in theory, work with just about any reasonable substrate (including plastic), there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. If you want the best possible results, you’ll need to seek a specialized fit.

Router prices will vary, but they’re hardly the most important factor to consider. What’s more pressing is the specialty purpose of the machine. When shopping around, ensure that the router in question is designed with plastics in mind – attempting to form plastics with a router intended for wood, for instance, can result in bit slippage, cracked/chipped/melted substrate, and even subsequent damage to the machine itself.

Of course, plastic itself is a blanket term, and not all formulas are created equal. If you’re working with a particularly soft and pliable material, or one with a rather low melting point, recognize that it may be best to perform a sample test and/or gather information from the manufacturer before moving forward with production.

Contact CAMaster today for more information on CNC routers, or to discuss a solution for your manufacturing needs – we’re proud to be a leading supplier in the field.