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I just spoke to TAP Plastics in San Leandro/CA and they said they could fashion a 2" thick acrylic platter that is flat top/bottom for just over 100 bucks (112.50). That sounds almost too good to be true. Anyone else tried TAP?
Of course, I would have to then take the piece to a machine shop to drill the hole in the platter as I do not have a full sized drill press to do such things.
TAP Plastics will make a 1.5" thick platter that is 12" in diamter. I asked for the price to make two of them which, when attached together, will make a 3" thick platter like the Teres platter so that the Teres bearing can be used. The cost for both platters including polishing is about 275. You would then have to get the platters drilled for the bearing. Ideally, a machine shop would counter sink the top of the platter for the record label indentation. I am going to find out about that aspect prior to proceeding with ordering the platters.
If you do not want to "attach" two 1.5" thick platters then the 2" thick piece is the best TAP can do. Attaching the two platters together might make it easier to fill it with lead/sand/mercury..whatever. Probably some good bolts from the underside would do the trick just fine unless anybody has a better idea. Perhaps dowels from the top platter inserted into holes on the bottom platter and glued together.
An acrylic base can be made the same way by TAP; ie, use two or three pieces sandwiched together to come up with a thick, inert, and heavy plinth and armboard.
The Teres Platter is only 2.75" thick. TAP Plastics is NOT a CNC machine shop and *I* wouldn't trust the accuracy of their cuts since they do everything by hand. If you want a truly round platter, CNC is the best route. Acrylic can be purchased in 4" (which is actually 3.93701") thickness at San Diego Plastics http://www.sdplastics.com/sdplas2.html
If they feel the job is too difficult, they will sub-contract to a CNC Machine Shop.
* machining a platter is more complicated than just making a round piece of acrylic. Chamfered edges - far edge rounding/chamfering are required for bearings to fit into and rest flat in bores.
Connecticut Plastics is a higher precision option and can be found on the web at: http://www.connecticutplastics.com/ They prefer to receive high quantity orders but may help you if you claim its a prototype.
Flame polishing is almost mandatory for a pretty looking platter. All TAP Plastics stores do flame polishing and so does San Diego & Connecticut Plastics
Hope this helps.
You really don't need a CNC machine to make a round platter. A lathe or bandsaw will do the job quite nicely. I prefer the bandsaw. Just cut the spindle hole on a drill press then use it as a pivot point to rotate the acrylic through the bandsaw blade (use a narrow blade like 1/4 or less) and finish per the Teres instructions.