Frosting Acrylic

Advice on sanding clear acrylic to achieve a frosted appearance. December 17, 2014

What is a good source in Northern California for 1" thick clear acrylic panels? Frosted on one side - can we do that ourselves?

Forum Responses
(Architectural Woodworking Forum)
From Contributor H:
Every major urban area has plastics shops and dealers. However if there is nothing in the local yellow pages you can try McMaster-Carr online.

From contributor S:
You can decide if it's appropriate for your project. A graphics shop can supply or apply a film that provides a very good facsimile of etched or frosted glass. It works great for temporary exhibit type stuff or can be sandwiched to prevent scratching for more permanent use. Seal/channel the edges if it's exposed to anything that might get in there, dust, water from cleaning. Most folks that look at it frankly will not see the difference.

From Contributor H:
Also, I bought a spray can of glass frosting at one of the box stores and tried it on plexiglass and it worked great. I've also hit plexiglass with a random orbit sander using 100 grit paper for good results.

From Contributor S:
I don't know where you are, and Northern Ca is a pretty big place but TAP Plastics, Concord would be your source for the material and any fabrication. Better have a good bank account balance though!

From contributor C:
I have a sign shop next to my shop. Apparently sign making materials are a totally different ball game. I often cut aluminum on a PVC core for them. Perhaps a sign shop could direct you.

From contributor K:
Cope Plastics has a lot of locations E of the Divide. 3Form might be closer, but I wouldn't choose only for that reason. Wherever you choose to buy, be sure to ask about packing and shipping cost. As Contributor H said, you can sand it, but I normally use a lot finer grit.

From Contributor H:
Now that I think of it I believe Contributor K is right. It was most likely more like 220 to 320 grit that I used.

From contributor S:
After you guys sanded the faces did you have a problem with fingerprinting or collecting dirt or smudging when cleaning? Etched or blasted glass and clear acrylics we always put another glassacrylic sheet over the etched side. I learned the hard way.