Still in relatively early stage of this project but I was wondering if my theory is sound.
Could I take a sheet of Aluminium checker board, drill in some vacuum vents and simply form a plastic sheet over the top?
As far as I am aware, providing the forming conditions are adequate i.e sheet temp and mould temp, this should produce a plastic copy of aluminium check plate, that could be used to clad walls or floors at a fraction of the weight.
Please point out any problems I am overlooking here.
That could work to some extent. But those vents would be deep depressions in the plastic. It would work better if you cast or carved your checker-plate in some porous material like plaster, so the vacuum could suck through it rather than only around the edges.