Suggestions for materials that are not as expensive as acrylic

I seem to be stuck between either proofing on draft board or finishing on Acrylic.

What suggestions for something that sits between the two that maybe looks well (even if not quite as good as acrylic) but is cheaper?

Or, have you other ways of finishing materials that make them look great?

Try some Baltic Birch plywood. You can use all conventional wood finishing on it.


If there is a plastics shop near you, they may sell acrylic scrap. For me, it is a pretty cheap way to get the material, but I can’t be choosy about colors.

You also won’t get a pristine 12x20 sheet when you buy scrap, but I get pieces that are about 10x10 all the time.


I’ve been wanting to give this a try (Jump to 16:49):

I found this for coloring:

I bought an Anova to keep a consistent temperature and have a galvanized bucket to put everything in. Just haven’t had the time.

I’m not sure which way to do the dipping. Should I do it before or after? I’ll need to do some tests. My thought would be to do the color before lasering. But then you have the edges clear, so not sure.

Kinda off topic, but if anyone does this I’d love to hear the results!



@takitus has experience dying acrylic I believe.


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