Q. Is there a type of 'plastic' mirror available?
A. There are 2 types of mirror sheet in circulation, we only stock one.
One is called perspex mirror, also known as 'acrylic mirror' or 'plastic mirror'. The second is ACP mirror or Aluminum ComPosite mirror.
At Plastic Solutions, in the past we stocked Perspex mirror but then there was a shift in the industry (and public demand) and we moved to the composite mirror. Right now in stock (at time of writing Nov 2020), we stock the Aluminium Composite, or ACP mirror.
Both Perspex mirror and ACP mirror are 3mm in thickness, Perspex mirror has a bit of a bend in it and for example, you could bend the sheet around a gentle curve e.g. at reception desk or similar. It is essentially a clear sheet of perspex with a mirror coating applied. (Glass mirror is similar - a clear sheet of glass with a mirror coating applied).
ACP mirror is a little different. It is entirely rigid, there is no bend in the sheet - it's like a flat board. ACP mirror is comprised of a black core of Polyethylene (PE), with a very thin layer of aluminium on either side. One side has a highly polished coating giving the mirror effect. For this reason, ACP is often referred to as 'sandwich' panel but you'll also hear other names used like 'composite' and also 'dibond' .
Q. So honestly, what's the ACP mirror like?
A. Honestly, for most purposes it's absolutely fine. We get probably the most amount of enquiries from people who are building home gyms. So we say this - you're not buying a glass mirror but if you want an alternative reflective sheet, then this is ideal. The sheet has a polished aluminum coating to give the mirror effect - request a free sample and see for yourself :)
Q.I heard the mirror sheet causes wobbles and distortions?
A. This is probably what the Perspex mirror was most known for. The Perspex mirror (that we used to stock), was purchased by some people for home gym applications. This sheet worked okay for home gyms but it is subject to the following conditions:
- It has to go on to a FLAT surface!. When we say flat, we mean extremely, 'snooker table' flat. This is where the issue arose when it was being attached or adhered vertically to walls. If there were any bumps, paint blobs, creases, raised areas on the wall surface, when the sheet was applied it was not sitting entirely flat in places and any of these 'uneven' zones could cause minor distortions on the other side of the sheet - the side you are looking at. It's not necessarily that the sheet was bad quality, it just happened that the sheet followed the contour of the surface it was being applied to.
- Both Perspex and ACP mirror sheets can be damaged and care is needed in the handling and installation.
If you were to drop a hammer onto a glass mirror, it could be game over!
If you were to drop a hammer onto a Perspex mirror, you might scuff or crack it.
If you were to drop a hammer onto ACP mirror, you might dent it. While you can dent ACP mirror with a hard enough impact, the sheet is basically unbreakable and shatterproof.
As mentioned above, the ACP mirror is the sheet that we now stock. It was deemed the better of the two variants (Perspex Vs ACP).
Request a free sample of ACP mirror. (Free samples are basically A5 in size -approximately 6 inches by 8 inches).
This article was written by our Ecommerce Manager - Fergal Walsh, who has many years experience working and handling these types of sheets.
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