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Old 24-08-2015, 21:34   #1
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Switchpanel material

Hi,
I am in the process of replacing my switchpanel in my 34ft yacht and am seeking advice as to the best material to use to mount the switches, gauges, etc. into. Whatever I use will be framed with timber.

Any recommended thicknesses of what you recommend would also be appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your advice.
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Old 24-08-2015, 21:57   #2
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Re: Switchpanel material

Clear plastic works well. If you wanted too, you could light it. There are several ways to do it.
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Old 24-08-2015, 22:09   #3
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Re: Switchpanel material

Depending on the look required, plywood or acrylic. Both easy to work and cheap to replace if you want to rearrange the knobs and dials down the track. 1/4"" for plywood and 1.8 to 3/16 acrylic should be more than adequate for an average sized panel.
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Old 24-08-2015, 23:38   #4
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Re: Switchpanel material

Traffolyte.
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Old 25-08-2015, 00:21   #5
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Re: Switchpanel material

Thanks for your help.

Clear not really ideal as my wiring will be behind and look too busy.

Ply and acrylic are options and thanks for the sizing.

Looked up Traffilyte and that's an option as well. I knew of the stuff but not the proper name. Any idea of thickness?

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Old 25-08-2015, 04:20   #6
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Re: Switchpanel material

[QUOTE=Firesec;1899266]Thanks for your help.

Clear not really ideal as my wiring will be behind and look too busy.




You would paint it. A few LEDs behind or in the plastic would give light where you remove the paint.
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Old 25-08-2015, 10:49   #7
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Re: Switchpanel material

Thin sheet aluminum is a very good material. It is easy to work with and you can find it powder coated or paint it yourself. Plastic is good too. Don't use anything too thick though. You will have trouble using the screws that come with circuit breakers if the material is too thick.
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Old 25-08-2015, 11:15   #8
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Re: Switchpanel material

Clear acrylic, with paint on the backside looks pretty good.
Get a piece and just spray paint it and see.
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Old 25-08-2015, 11:21   #9
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Re: Switchpanel material

HDPE (High Density Polyethelene) is a good plastic material. It doesn't crack as easily as, say, plexiglass (acrylic).

If you want to use aluminum, take a look at Front Panel Express (http://www.frontpanelexpress.com/). They have free software you can download that makes it pretty easy to create a good-looking panel. I use this for a black-anodized panel with lettering and it came out well.
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Old 25-08-2015, 11:53   #10
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Re: Switchpanel material

1/8" aluminum (anodized or epoxy painted) will likely be the most durable but it's harder to work. Acrylic works well but is easier to crack while making it. G10 or similar fiberglass sheets are great but again a bit hard to work.
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