Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: PA/MD/DE tristate area
Hot wire foam sheet cutter - help needed
I'm getting ready to make myself a hot wire styrofoam sheet cutter (maximum sheet thickness 2 inches, but mostly I will be working under an inch). I need to be able to cut strips down from the 48 inch dimension of a sheet using a guide wall for consistency/correct angle, and I need adjustable dimensions up to say 12 inches. (cut strips up to 12 inches wide, using the wall) My initial concept is a flat platform with fixed vertical wire location, wire mounted on tension adjustable arm of about 15 inches length. Moveable/adjustable rip wall between base of arm and wire that slides closer to wire for smaller size strip - along the table rip saw concept.
Have any of you made such a project and have ideas toward parts or construction?
I found a 12 volt 14 watt a/c adapter in a drawer that might be handy. I think I'm going to need adjustable wattage output for more control.
Google suggests robbing a toaster or hairdryer for heat wire, or using steel guitar strings. I'd like adjustable tension on the wire on the fly.
My DIY orientation is I like the most industrial construction, not necessarily the simplest or cheapest. I am willing to pay for parts and do the work of good design for a robust, adjustable unit.
I am fairly advanced DIYer and have pretty decent access to most tools.
Thanks for any input/ideas!