Skip to content
Cast vs. Extruded Acrylic: What's the Difference?

Cast vs. Extruded Acrylic: What's the Difference?

When it comes to acrylic sheeting, two popular options dominate the market: cast and extruded. While both offer unique benefits, understanding the differences between the two can help you make an informed decision for your project. Let's explore the distinctions between cast and extruded acrylic sheeting and the advantages each has to offer.

What is Cast Acrylic?

Cast acrylic is a form of acrylic material that's produced through a process called cell casting. Liquid acrylic resin is poured into molds and then cured to form solid sheets. This method allows for precise control over thickness and quality, resulting in sheets with uniform thickness and exceptional clarity.

Cast acrylic sheets are known for their optical clarity and brilliant shine

Cast acrylic is recognized for its incredible optical clarity and superior surface finish, making it ideal for applications requiring high transparency or intricate designs. Its exceptional transparency and brilliance make it a popular choice for applications like display cases, museums, and framing.

Cast acrylic block on a light blue background 

Cast acrylic is crystal clear and provides superior visibility

  • Optical Clarity: Cast acrylic provides exceptional transparency and brilliance, making it ideal for applications where visibility is paramount.
  • Machinability: It is easy to machine and fabricate, allowing for intricate designs and custom shapes to be created with precision.
  • UV Stability: Cast acrylic resists yellowing and degradation when exposed to sunlight, making it suitable for outdoor applications where durability is essential.
  • Outstanding Resistance to Long-Term Exposure: Cast acrylic demonstrates exceptional resistance to long-term exposure to sunlight and weathering, ensuring longevity and maintaining its appearance over time.
  • Ideal for Laser Engraving: Cast acrylic provides a smooth surface that is perfect for laser engraving, allowing for precise customization of designs and signage.
  • Premium Quality: With uniform thickness, superior clarity, and precision, cast acrylic is often chosen for high-end projects that require a professional finish.


What is Extruded Acrylic?

Extruded acrylic is an acrylic material manufactured through an extrusion process, where acrylic pellets are melted and forced through a die to form continuous sheets. This method allows for high-volume production of acrylic sheets with consistent thickness and surface finish.

an array of opaque extruded acrylic sheets

Extruded acrylic sheets are known for their impact resistance and durability

Extruded acrylic offers better impact resistance and is more suitable for applications that require durability and strength. It provides versatility in terms of colors, thicknesses, and textures, making it a practical choice for project in high-impact environments, such as sports, architectural, and security applications.

Extruded acrylic sheets in a variety of colors

Extruded acrylic is strong, durable, and affordable

  • Versatility: Available in a wide range of colors, thicknesses, and textures, extruded acrylic can be customized to meet specific design requirements, making it suitable for diverse applications.
  • Impact Resistance: Extruded acrylic offers higher impact resistance compared to cast acrylic, making it suitable for protective barriers and applications where durability is essential.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Extruded acrylic is generally more cost-effective than cast acrylic, making it a practical choice for budget-conscious projects without compromising on quality.
  • Durability: It provides durability and strength, making it suitable for applications where impact resistance is crucial, such as protective barriers and machine guards.

Understanding the differences between cast and extruded acrylic sheeting is essential for making informed decisions in various applications. Cast acrylic has exceptional clarity, optical precision, and surface finish make it ideal for projects requiring high transparency or intricate designs. On the other hand, extruded acrylic offers better impact resistance, durability, and versatility in terms of colors and textures.

Whether you prioritize optical clarity or durability, there's an acrylic sheeting option to suit your project needs. By considering factors such as manufacturing process, optical properties, and application requirements, you can confidently select the right acrylic sheeting for your next project.

Cart 0

Your cart is currently empty.

Start Shopping