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Best method to cut down a boat windshield?

MK1MOD0

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I’m looking to cut my Daytona windshield down. Not really sure which would be the best tool to use. So I’m thinking a cut off wheel. If anyone has done this before, please let me know what ya used and how it turned out. Here is a pic of the windshield, you can see the blue tape marking the cut line

F29E24CF-45ED-4923-B623-205113235DEF.jpeg
 

petie6464

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Definitely not a cut-off wheel. A fine blade on a jig saw would do it, having the windshield off the boat and secured in some type of fixture and knowledge of cutting these.

If that doesn't work a torch will do it.
 

old rigger

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As mentioned above, fine tooth blade in a jig saw or band saw. Tape the shit out of the plexi and if you can use a band saw, the best way, and get someone to help you hold the opposite end. You don’t want to have the windshield un-supported at any point.
To get the factory look on the edge you just cut, use a torch or bunson (sp?) burner and melt the edge making sure not to stop the flame in one spot. It’s just like gas welding, start to get the edge to puddle then keep moving. You’ll have plenty of scraps to practice on.
Flame needs to be pretty small.
 

MK1MOD0

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As mentioned above, fine tooth blade in a jig saw or band saw. Tape the shit out of the plexi and if you can use a band saw, the best way, and get someone to help you hold the opposite end. You don’t want to have the windshield un-supported at any point.
To get the factory look on the edge you just cut, use a torch or bunson (sp?) burner and melt the edge making sure not to stop the flame in one spot. It’s just like gas welding, start to get the edge to puddle then keep moving. You’ll have plenty of scraps to practice on.
Flame needs to be pretty small.
Thank you for the info. I don’t have a band saw, so I’ll use a jig saw. Will pick up some fine blades for the cut. And great idea on the edges. Will certainly use the scraps for practice.
 

Warlock1

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Jig saw with a fine tooth blade, masking tape on both side of the windshield to prevent the saw from marking it up. Fire the saw up and keep it at high speed with a smooth even pace. Don't cut on the line but just above it because i guarantee your cut line won't be straight. Grab a 4' 36 grit sanding disk on a air angle grinder and work the cut line straight and to edge of your mark. At this point your shaping and adjusting the top edge. Switch to a DA sander with a 6" disc 100 grit, 220, 400, and so on until you smooth it completely with a 1200 grit. Grab some buffing compound and finish it off. If you don't do it this way you will see the sanding lines in the edge and it'll look like shit.
 

MK1MOD0

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Great info guys. I’ll try to get it cut this week. And be sure to post up some pics in the restoration section. good or bad 😂. The windshield already has a crack that I will be be working and putting an aluminum cover like some other boats have. So if it doesn’t turn out as good as I like, it’s not the end of the world.
 

wzuber

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How about using an air file as opposed to using a grinding disc? It would give you more control over the quantity of material being removed as well as keep a longer, straighter line. Harbor freight has the pretty cheap for a one time use ac and they work well but use a lot of air volume. Angle grinder could still leave it a bit ripply/wavy etc.
 

DRYHEAT

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As mentioned above, fine tooth blade in a jig saw or band saw. Tape the shit out of the plexi and if you can use a band saw, the best way, and get someone to help you hold the opposite end. You don’t want to have the windshield un-supported at any point.
To get the factory look on the edge you just cut, use a torch or bunson (sp?) burner and melt the edge making sure not to stop the flame in one spot. It’s just like gas welding, start to get the edge to puddle then keep moving. You’ll have plenty of scraps to practice on.
Flame needs to be pretty small.
After cutting I used fine grit sandpaper probably 1000 I don’t remember to remove any teeth marks, used a sponge with the sandpaper to give a slight radius, then hit it with fire.
 

FreeBird236

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I wouldn't get a jig saw within 10 foot of that plastic, High speed disc might be harder to even out, but less chance of vibrating, jamming and a crack. IMHO.
 

old rigger

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That option hasn’t been ruled out.
personally I can't stand windshields, or most any other piece of crap bolted to the deck of a boat, unless the deck is dedicated for a windshield.
I'm always amazed what people will bolt to a deck.
On our Spectra the windshield was missing when I bought it and someone had ran some SS screws and beauty washers in each hole. I took them out when I blocked the deck, counter sunk the holes, threaded the glass and ran in some polished SS flat head socket cap screws. Better than filling the holes and re-geling the deck, no. But I don't want to re-gel any deck at this stage of the game.

You can just see them in front of the light pole socket, which I'm not too fond of either.


IMG_3196.jpg
 

MK1MOD0

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Yea. I’ve debated the windshield thing since I purchased the boat. Certainly not my liking in stock form. So figured I’d see what it’s like with a shorter profile. I was checking out a windshield from a mid 90’s 21 Daytona. It has a much nicer rake, and the mounting surface is flat as well. Figured it doesn’t cost me anything but some time to cut down and give her a try. That’s what I love about hot rodding, cut it up........ and if it doesn’t work.... try again.
 

Flying_Lavey

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Hacksaw with a metal blade. It'll take longer but it works. I've cut a fair bit of plexi with that method. If it's not much material, an angle grinder with a flap disc will take off a lot of material quickly and safely.

Sent from my SM-G781V using Tapatalk
 

Taboma

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Thank you for the info. I don’t have a band saw, so I’ll use a jig saw. Will pick up some fine blades for the cut. And great idea on the edges. Will certainly use the scraps for practice.
If you've got a plastic supply place, like MGM or Ridout (Eplastics) in San Diego, they have special purpose jig saw blades for cutting acrylic plastics. On thicker acrylics I've had good luck using a circular saw, but that was on 1/4" thick flat sheets cutting through tape.
I recently cut sheet on my bandsaw and it worked great so long as I didn't force it and get it so hot it started melting and balling up underneath.

I've also achieved nice smooth edges, first beveling it with a sander, then shaping it with a file, then more sanding, finally very fine sandpaper that polishes it.
 

Brokeboatin221

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Harbor freight makes a little hand saw that’s electric and it would be perfect. Tape off below the line to protect it.
 

MeCasa16

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I'll save you some time.. Have a new one made. It's what you are going to have to do once you mess the old one up anyways. Just have it made the way you want it.
 
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