Author Topic: DIY Clamping Elements  (Read 2473 times)

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Offline WastedP

  • Posts: 334
DIY Clamping Elements
« on: May 29, 2017, 06:10 PM »
I put together these clamps after seeing the price on the Festool and Armor Tool in-line clamps.


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Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 435
Re: DIY Clamping Elements
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2017, 05:00 AM »
Can the clamps you used be set to spread?
If so it might be better to use them in that configuration, as only clamping with the rod will leave marks...

Offline WastedP

  • Posts: 334
Re: DIY Clamping Elements
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2017, 11:06 AM »
Can the clamps you used be set to spread?
If so it might be better to use them in that configuration, as only clamping with the rod will leave marks...

I have a whole mix of quick-clamps that I experimented with.  With willpower, any of them can be turned into spreaders.  Some have a screw, some have a roll pin, and some have both.  I tried it out, and right away I found that the clamp is too far off the centerline of the pivot point created by the bolt.  Under pressure, the clamp skews the force out of line. The best clamp pad would be right on the end of the bar.

If I can find a cheap and ubiquitous part to use as a a clamp pad, it would be really easy to attach with screws or roll pins.  For the majority of the work I am doing, the metal end of the clamp is good enough because the material can be marked.  In cases where it needs to stay "clean", I just use scrap as a clamp pad.  I realize that's not the greatest solution, but for my purposes it has been sufficient enough to keep me from devoting any more time to a solution, what Stewart Brand dubbed "satisficing."

I also worked on a few styles of hold-down clamps. At some point I will try to post a video that shows the rogue's gallery of not-so-great designs, as well as what worked.  I use a lot of unmodified clamps with different fences and pins.  The MFT-style table is great for being able to come up with clamping solutions on the fly.

Offline Kirk28

  • Posts: 6
Re: DIY Clamping pads
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2017, 09:10 PM »
Regarding clamping pads. Increasingly I have been using PVC "lumber" for various speciality situations. It cuts like wood, so I was thinking that using a table saw you could make dozens of custom clamping pads in no time.

Offline WastedP

  • Posts: 334
Re: DIY Clamping Elements
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2017, 10:54 AM »
@Kirk28 - Thanks for the great idea.  I thought about using scrap HDPE cutting board material for pads, but I didn't have anything on hand that was thick enough.  I'm going to see if I can pick up a small piece of composite decking or plastic lumber today.  All of the clamps have a roll pin on the end.  A longer roll pin and a piece of composite with a slot and a hole is all it would take.  I have some leftover Makita guide rail splinterguard strip that I can stick to the end for grip.