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  1. #1
    I had been toying with the idea of making my own clamps and after much looking at what was available on the market I decided to modify something to suit my needs.

    This is what I have came up with.
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    They are cut from 25mm thick aluminium and should be able to suit differing thicknesses of material. Although not quite finished yet Im sure you get the idea.

    So what do you use? Readily available kit or have you came up with your own?


  2. #2
    I'm not sure I see how that works. Can you explain please?

  3. #3
    The top section in the first photo will have a slot milled in it to accept a screw which is used to clamp the section down on to the workpiece. If you imagine the right hand top surface of the right hand part in the second photo having the slot. The screw goes through here and clamps the "hinge" part down to the work table. The hinge part will allow the clamp to hold down different thicknesses of material.


  4. #4
    I tend to use Lenkze's clamps (, these things are rock solid and they have a good range...shame they're a bit on the expensive side. The mitee bite product range is also very inovative for different clamping solutions

  5. #5
    I should probably get some clamps. How about this?

  6. #6
    they do the job, we still use this style in my workshop on a daily basis although the studs break with the constant use

  7. #7
    I mainly mill copper fr4....for clamps I just use ali strips ....about the same length as the copper board (therefore 160mm long) and about 40mm wide (the ali is 3mm thick). So basically one long clamp either side of the copper board...I have my CNCUSB tool sensor wire permanently connected to one of these clamps...& becuase it is ali, when I clamp the board down it makes electrical contact with the copper FR4 surface - which means I can then use the FR4 copper surface itself to touch off for Z auto tool zeroing.

  8. #8
    That's clever! How do you implement such a an auto-z sensing circuit for Mach3?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Tenson View Post
    That's clever! How do you implement such a an auto-z sensing circuit for Mach3?

    It would be similar (I don't use Mach3 now but have in the past)...normally with Mach 3 there's a Z auto tool zero vbscript where you need to enter the thickness of your touch off sensor (a lot of people use PCB material so therefore a thickness of 1.6mm), so you'd just use that same VBscript for a thickness setting of 0 (on account there is no 'sensor' height in play becuase your stock copper pcb surface is now your touch off sensor surface!). So when I change tools, I send my axises to X0Y0 (which is never milled and therefore always has electrical conductivity back to the aluminium clamp) and touch can't get any more accurate than touching off on the surface you are going to mill!! I'lll take a piccie later.

    Re the tool sensor wire itself just run the wire back to a free 'pin' on your board (which has a pull up resistor on it) & then configure Mach3 on the ports/pins page. Plenty of how tos wrt auto tool zero & mach3 on the net.

  10. #10
    JAZZCNC's Avatar
    Lives in wakefield, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 18 Hours Ago Forum Superstar, has done so much to help others, they deserve a medal. Has been a member for 5-6 years. Has a total post count of 5,436. Received thanks 833 times, giving thanks to others 29 times.
    I made these simple longish slimline clamps from scrap 10mm Ali plate, they work well and allow for some akward positions.
    I can also use them in different ways for either single material clamping or if I need or want to cut a few jobs at same time from differant materials pieces using offsets, like for small jobs out of offcuts.!

    I also have some stupidly expensive Swedish Kopal clamps that I use for things like surfacing jobs due to the way they clamp the sides of material.

    The pics should give you an idea, they are just for show purposes here but it's not unusal for me to use similiar setups while working and setup some work offsets,G54 G55 etc then combine the code for several jobs in one G-code file set it off and walk away. Thats the beauty using work offsets with small jobs and a large bed.
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