The quick answer is yes you can. However, there are some stipulations to make sure you are not damaging your precious Cricut maker. Let’s run through them all!
What Cricut Machine Do You Have?
Currently, there are three main Cricut machines to choose from. There’s the Cricut Joy which is the smallest one on the market, the Cricut Explore 3 which is a great in-between model, and the Cricut Maker 3 which is the most hands-on tool.
You can have a little look on the Cricut website directly to find out exactly which model you have and they also have a handy compare and contrast guide as well so you can know exactly what each different Cricut machine can do before you purchase it.
Find out more about each of the Cricut machines here.
Once you find out what machine you have, you can then figure out the maximum thickness of the material you can use. Below, we have put a handy list of the different things you can do with each Cricut machine.
The Cricut Joy is the smallest Cricut machine on the market. It’s great for making cards and getting into decorating without blowing a crazy amount of your budget all at once (though costs do add up when you look at all the extra materials and gear you can buy!)
Cricut Joy Machine– unfortunately, you won’t get far if you try and cut acrylic with this one. It’s great for cutting vinyl stickers, cardstock, label making, and customizing t-shirts and you can purchase additional cutting mats, extra materials, and blades.
So no, unfortunately, your Cricut Joy cannot cut acrylic, it’s more suited to cardstock, vinyl, and poster board and in the interest of protecting your precious machine, it’s 100 percent not worth trying!
Cricut Explore 3
Next up on our list is the Cricut Explore 3.
The Explore model is Cricut’s most popular cutting machine, and is the sort of in-between model for those wanting to try out new methods and crafting techniques but don’t necessarily want to get overwhelmed with the options that the Cricut Explore 3 models are equipped with.
Saying that there is still a whole heap of ways you can play around with the Cricut Explore 3.
Cricut Explore 3 Machine– again, no you cannot cut acrylic with this machine, though the Explore 3 can cut over 100 different types of materials! This is thanks to interchangeable blades (sold separately) that let you cut a wide variety of materials.
You can use a fine-point blade for paper, vinyl iron-on materials, and more, or you can insert a deep-point blade that is better suited to felt, thicker foam, magnet sheets, even thin leather!
As a good base level, Cricut Explore 3 can cut materials no thicker than 2.0mm. So if you have a thinner, acrylic sheeting you could potentially cut it with the Explore 3.
It’s recommended on the Cricut website that you try a tester piece out on your machine, and other users suggest trying the deep-point blade and running it for up to 25 cycles if you want to attempt a thin acrylic (like a 0.007mm thickness).
Again, don’t attempt to cut anything over that as it’s not worth damaging your precious Cricut machine! What you can do with this machine, however, is engrave acrylic- this is super useful if you have pre-cut pieces and want to decorate them effortlessly.
Cricut Maker 3
The most powerful model yet, the Cricut Maker delivers an exceptional range of materials and has loads of fun add-ons and extras with over 200 different uses.
Cricut Maker 3 Machine– you can cut acrylic with this particular machine, but there are still quite a few hoops to jump through. Though it can cut through Balsar wood and other materials up to a thickness of 2.4mm, the thickest Acrylic you’ll be able to cut is 0.020mm thick.
Any more than that and you risk damaging your machine.
If you’re looking to make earrings, decorations, or anything else with your Cricut, we’d probably recommend you choose another material, however. You can play around with leathers, felt, wood, and lots of other fun materials without having to test the boundaries of the machine.
Though some users have cut acrylic of this thickness with their machine, it’s not an approved material on Cricut’s website so you do so at your own risk.
Choosing The Right Acrylic To Cut With Your Cricut Maker 3
So, you can cut acrylic with your Cricut Maker 3. Before you start getting too overzealous, the MAXIMUM thickness you can cut sensibly is 0.020mm thick. This is still pretty bendy so you won’t be able to cut through the solid unbendable plastic sheeting.
For that, you’re best off using something more hardcore like a jigsaw or a laser cutter.
XCEL 0.020mm Acrylic Sheets– this is a good bet to go for if you are looking to cut acrylic. Be sure to check the sizes of your machine against the size of the plastic sheeting you are purchasing.
Preparing Acrylic Sheets For Cutting With A Cricut Maker
If you are using a 0.020mm thick acrylic sheet, you need to attach it to a mat and secure it with masking tape along the edges. This will stop it sliding in the machine and give you a clearer-looking cut.
If your acrylic sheeting comes with a protective coating, leave it on as this will help prevent any damage or scratches to your material.
What Setting Should I Cut Acrylic On With My Cricut Maker?
Despite having a huge range of settings, there is no specific one for acrylic. If you are doing a thin sheet of acrylic, say 0.007mm thick, you can use the acetate setting without any issues.
The setting is preprogrammed to do two passes, but if you want an even cleaner cut you can press the green ‘C’ button on your machine to do an extra pass.
If you are using a thicker piece, say 0.020mm, use the basswood setting with a knife blade attachment. This will give you a programmed 14 passes on your machine and you should tape your material down to prevent movement.
Can I Cut Thicker Acrylic With A Cricut Maker?
Unfortunately not, after several trials, it seems that acrylic is simply too thick for the Cricut to handle.
Yes, you can use a Cricut to cut acrylic, but only the more powerful Cricut Maker, and only at a thickness of 0.02mm. Any more and you risk damaging your machine and material. Happy crafting!
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