ReptileAddiction wrote: TheWaterbug wrote:
I've read in a few places that polycarbonate ages poorly in sunlight unless uv coated, and that it also has poorer scratch resistance. But that it's way stronger.
From that site I can get six pieces of 12" x 12" of either material in either 1/4" or 3/8" at a decent price.
Do you know if there's any material
difference between extruded and cast acrylic?
Have you worked with both materials?
I have worked with acrylic and glass not the poly. I did not know about the poly aging poorly. Do you have a place that can uv coat it for you?
That same site has abrasion-resistant, UV-coated polycarbonate, but the 1/4" UV-coated poly
is quite a bit more than the 3/8" cast acrylic
And then there's the cutting problem. I don't have access to a bandsaw or table saw. But I do have a brake at work. What's the thickest acrylic that you've successfully scored and snapped? What about snapping poly?
I don't really care too much about the quality of the finished edge as long as I get a square box, but I don't want to save money on material and then waste half it through my own incompetence/inexperience. As it is I will probably buy at least one spare piece to learn on.
Regarding the size, that's a tough question, too. I thought about using the 12" pieces as-is, and making a one cubic foot box, but then I tried converting that to an approximate weight. One cubic foot of water weighs 62 lbs. Guesstimates on the density of a pumpkin range from ~50% - 75% that of water, so a 1 cu ft pumpkin could weigh in the neighborhood of 31 - 47 lbs, which is a pretty big pumpkin.
On the other hand the 8" x 8" x 8" box is only 0.30 cu ft, which would be a ~9 - 14 lb. pumpkin, which seems a bit small.
10" x 10" x 10" would be in the 18 - 27 lb range, which seems about right, or perhaps slightly optimistic
Then again I guesstimated the volume of a medium-sized water melon in my kitchen and was surprised to see that it was only 0.30 cu ft. I guess that's not entirely surprising, since that's the size of that melon cuber, but the melon seems larger than that in real life.
I'm growing Howden, Jack-o-Lantern, and Big Max (among others). Big Max should certainly get to this size, and the Howden and JOLs might, if they're doing well.
Maybe I should just stick with the 1 ft panels, save myself the effort of cutting, and put a Big Max in there.
Decisions, decisions . . . .
p.s. that site will cut to any size I want, but sizes smaller than 12" are actually _more_ expensive than the 12" panels, I presume because they already have 12" pieces in stock.
Sunset 23/USDA 11a, Elev. 783', Frost free since 8,000 BC. Plagued by squirrels, gophers, and peafowl, but coming to terms with it!