I am in the process of building up yet another light for my bike. This one has 6 xp-e with 10mm square carclo optics. I need a protective lens to slide into the front of my light housing, needs to be 1mm thick and approximately 12mm x 65mm. I am open to glass, poly carbonate ect. I am currently thinking about cutting a plastic window meant to go over a welding shield. I want something with good transparency that I can cut to the desired size mostly to keep it cheap, I dont have tons to spend on this so paying lots of money for custom cut glass is probably out of the question.
KD/DX SELL very thin flat glass lenses in a variety of widths.
Acrylic is superior to Lexan (polycarbonate) because it's more scratch resistant. However, either one probably can't realistically be made to 1mm thickness. It's too easy to break. KD/DX also have acrylic lenses, you will note that they are thicker than the glass but that's apparently what the application called for.
However, either one probably can't realistically be made to 1mm thickness. It's too easy to break.
Are you kidding?
If I were building this and wanted to keep it cheap, I'd use a strip cut from a CD case.
A bike light doesn't see that much scratching (unless you crash all the time). You'll be better off adding an aluminum shroud to guard the lens than to try to prevent scratching with a harder lens material.
I would use acrylic, 1mm sheet can be simply scored and snapped in straight lines easily.
A CD case would be perfectly fine for this, simply score it deeply with a few passes of a knife blade using the tip pulling backwards to gouge rather than cut, then snap the line by bending it towards the opposite side from the score.
It's a good idea to remove any edges and score the entire length, only scoring the size you want will result in a shatter piece.